Another favorite white bean would work well here too. The soaking step speeds up the cooking process, but if you forget, don’t fret.
- 1lb. dried Great Northern beans, soaked overnight if possible, drained & rinsed*
- 3 carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 2 stalks celery, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp. dried rubbed sage, such as Sprouts Organic dried sage
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- salt and pepper to taste
- Soak beans in water at least 4-12 hours, or overnight (see notes for a detailed explanation of how to do this.) Drain and rinse beans in a colander.
- Place soaked beans, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and sage in the slow cooker.
- Cover with broth and water.
- Cover with lid and cook on HIGH for about 6-8 hours (the beans will be tender after 3-4 hours if you’ve soaked them beforehand, but the longer it cooks, the creamier the soup gets).
- Taste soup and add salt and pepper to taste.
How to Soak Beans (& Why) – Soaking beans beforehand makes them easier to digest, and shortens their cook time. I highly recommend taking the time to do this the night before for the best texture and fastest cook times. To soak properly, first pick through your beans to make sure there aren’t any bad ones or stray pieces of rock or sand that can sometimes make their way into dried beans. Then, rinse them in a colander for a minute or two. Transfer to a large bowl and cover with water. (The water should reach 2-3 inches above the level of the beans.) Refrigerate in the bowl for 4-12 hours or so (I leave mine overnight). Then, drain and rinse them, and they’re ready to use!
Forgot to Soak Your Beans? If you forgot to soak your beans, you’ve got 2 choices: 1) just rinse them in a colander and plan on them taking about 7-8 hours to fully cook in the slow cooker. 2) Take a shortcut. For the shortcut method, put the beans in a large soup pot and cover with 2 inches of water (2 inches above the level of the beans). Bring to a boil, and boil for 2-3 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let them soak for about an hour. Drain and rinse them in a colander, then proceed with the rest of the recipe.
Dress it up (variations) – For vegan friends, you can add in some extra veggies (like bell peppers, or leeks), play with the herbs (a little rosemary or thyme along with the sage is amazing). For non-vegan friends, try adding a little ham hock or a few slices of crisped bacon into the soup before your cook it (better yet, top it with a few slices of crisp bacon or kielbasa before serving).
- Prep Time: 10 minutes (+ soaking time)
- Cook Time: 6-8 hours
- Category: Soup, Main Dish
- Method: Slow Cooker, Crock Pot
- Cuisine: American
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