How To Thicken Bean Soup

Comment author avatar
Donna Modified: February 18, 2024
How To Thicken Bean Soup

How To Thicken Bean Soup: A Delicious and Simple Guide

Bean soup is a comforting and nutritious dish that is perfect for chilly days or when you’re in need of a hearty meal. However, sometimes the broth of the soup may be a bit too thin, leaving you craving a thicker and more satisfying consistency. Fear not! In this guide, we will share some easy and flavorful ways to thicken your bean soup to perfection.

1. Add More Beans

One of the simplest ways to thicken bean soup is to add more beans. As the beans cook, they naturally release starches that will help thicken the soup. You can either add a can of pre-cooked beans or cook a batch of dry beans separately and then incorporate them into the soup. This not only thickens the broth but also adds extra texture and flavor to your soup.

2. Use a Potato

A potato is a versatile ingredient that can work wonders when it comes to thickening soups. Simply peel and dice a potato into small cubes and add it to the simmering soup. As the potato cooks, it will release starches, creating a thicker consistency. Once the potato is tender, you can mash it slightly to further enhance the thickening effect. This method is great for adding a velvety texture to your bean soup.

3. Make a Roux

If you prefer a creamy and luscious bean soup, making a roux is the way to go. In a separate pan, melt some butter and add an equal amount of flour. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat until it turns golden brown. Then, gradually whisk the roux into your bean soup, making sure to incorporate it well. The roux will not only thicken the soup but also add a rich and savory flavor.

4. Blend a Portion of the Soup

For a smooth and silky texture, you can blend a portion of the bean soup and then add it back to the pot. Take about a cup or two of the soup (depending on your desired consistency) and carefully blend it until smooth. Once blended, pour it back into the pot and stir well. This method will thicken the soup while retaining some chunkiness, offering a delightful contrast of textures.

5. Use Cornstarch or Arrowroot Powder

If you’re looking for a gluten-free option to thicken your bean soup, cornstarch or arrowroot powder can be excellent substitutes. In a small bowl, mix a tablespoon of cornstarch or arrowroot powder with some cold water until it forms a smooth paste. Then, gradually add the mixture to your soup while stirring continuously. Allow the soup to simmer for a few minutes to activate the thickening properties. Keep in mind that a little starch goes a long way, so be cautious not to over-thicken the soup.


Thickening bean soup is a simple and rewarding process that can elevate your dining experience. Whether you prefer a heartier texture or a creamy consistency, these techniques will help you achieve your desired result. So, don’t hesitate to experiment with these methods and enjoy a delicious, thickened bean soup filled with flavors and warmth.

If you have any tips or tricks for thickening bean soup, head over to the Cooking Techniques forum and share your thoughts on “How To Thicken Bean Soup”.
Can I use flour to thicken bean soup?
Yes, you can use flour to thicken bean soup. Start by making a slurry with flour and cold water, then add it to the soup and stir well. Allow the soup to simmer for a few minutes to cook out any raw flour taste.
Are there any gluten-free alternatives to thicken bean soup?
Absolutely! If you’re following a gluten-free diet, you can use cornstarch or arrowroot powder as a thickening agent. Simply mix it with a small amount of cold water to create a slurry before adding it to the soup.
Can I use beans to naturally thicken bean soup?
Yes, you can use the beans themselves to thicken the soup. Take a ladle or two of cooked beans from the soup, mash them with a fork, and then return them to the pot. This will release starch and give the soup a thicker consistency.
What other ingredients can I add to thicken bean soup?
There are several ingredients you can add to thicken bean soup while adding flavor at the same time. Try adding tomato paste, pureed vegetables like carrots or potatoes, or even a spoonful of nut butter. These additions will enhance the thickness and taste of your soup.
Can I use a blender to thicken bean soup?
Yes, a blender can be used to thicken bean soup. Simply remove a portion of the soup and blend it until smooth. Then, pour the blended soup back into the pot and mix well. This method will create a thicker texture without adding any additional ingredients.
Is it possible to thicken bean soup without altering the flavor?
Absolutely! To thicken bean soup without altering the flavor, you can simmer it uncovered for a longer period. Allowing the soup to cook down will naturally reduce the liquid and create a thicker consistency without adding any extra ingredients.
Can I add dairy products to thicken bean soup?
Yes, dairy products like heavy cream or milk can be used to thicken bean soup. However, keep in mind that this will alter the flavor and make it creamier. Add the dairy gradually while stirring constantly until you achieve the desired thickness.

Was this page helpful?