Instant pot White Beans Soup (30 Minutes)

Traditional White Beans Soup recipe (or stew) with garden vegetables and ham/sausage (optional), prepared in Instant pot (pressure cooker) in about 30 minutes time. Vegan too.

Traditional Instant Pot white Beans Soup (in 30 minutes)

Today we are making an easy white beans soup recipe that is traditionally enjoyed in Bulgaria. This white beans soup has been cooked (and still is) in a variety of ways – on the stove top, in a clay pot (cooked slowly in fire ovens) or most recently pressure cookers like Instant Pot. It always comes up extra delicious. My mom used to make it in a traditional pressure cooker bought 30 years ago from a store in Moscow. Today, I make it in the Instant Pot. So good!

DID YOU KNOW: Orthodox Christian Tradition in Bulgaria has it that on Christmas Eve people eat a vegan festive meal made of odd number of different dishes (3,5,7,9 or even 11). White beans soup is one of them. Another would be cabbage rolls (made of sour cabbage leaves and rice), dried red bell peppers stuffed with rice, nuts, Christmas round loaf and so on.

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • White dry beans, soaked overnight in cold water – make sure to have enough cold (with hot water beans increase volume quicker) water to cover beans with as they increase volume
  • Onion, chopped – regular yellow onion or any other type you may have on hand
  • Carrot, chopped – in small pieces
  • Red bell pepper (dried or fresh) – chopped
  • Tomato paste – or tomato puree, whichever you have on hand. Or even finely chopped fresh tomato works well
  • Olive oil – extra virgin, or any type of vegetable oil (like canola or sunflower oil)
  • Lovage, herb – important for taste of soup
  • Spearmint, herb – important for taste of soup
  • Savory, herb – important for taste
  • Salt and black pepper – to taste
  • Chili pepper flakes, optional
  • Ham, optional – not part of vegan version, can be left out. For garnish only. I usually do not add in, or replace with baked sausage.

TIP: all herbs contribute to the unique flavor of this white beans soup, however you you prefer use your own herbs blend. Italian seasoning or Greek Seasoning blend (like these) are a good alternative.

How to make white beans soup in Instant Pot

Soak beans overnight in cold water. Drain and wash well on the next day.

Sauté vegetables on high with some olive oil. Then, add remaining ingredients and pressure cook for 20 minutes. Allow 10 minutes natural steam release. Then switch to vent and release remaining pressure. Serve with chopped ham or as is (hot).

Cooking alternatives (no Instant Pot)

This white beans meal is a traditional Bulgarian recipe that has been cooked generation after generation. It was first cooked in large clay pots on slow fire in special fire-ovens. Then, on the stove top (again slowly) – on low heat for several hours. It’s possible to make this soup in a slow cooker too. Just make sure to soak beans overnight, otherwise they will not cook easily.

Traditional Instant Pot white Beans Soup (in 30 minutes)

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Traditional Instant Pot white Beans Soup (in 30 minutes)

Instant pot White Beans Soup (30 minutes)

The European Dish
Easy traditional white beans soup (or stew) recipe, cooked in an Instant Pot. Ready in about 30 minutes. Vegan too.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Bulgarian,, European
Servings 10 Servings

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 500 g. (17oz) dried white beans soaked overnight
  • 4 tbsp. oil olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup carrots diced
  • 1 onion minced
  • 1 minced red bell pepper fresh or dry
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste or 1/3 canned tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. lovage dried
  • 1 tsp. spearmint dried
  • 1 tsp. savory dried
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 liter of water (0.26 gallons)
  • 1 tsp. chili pepper flakes optional
  • 200 g ham, chopped for garnish optional

Instructions
 

  • Soak dried white beans overnight in cold water (between 8 and 12 hours). Water should be 4 fingers above beans (or more) as they absorb water when soaked and increase in volume. Rinse beans thoroughly with cold water and set aside.
  • Chop onions, carrots and fresh red pepper (if dried crush with hands in smaller pieces) and place in IP pot. Add olive oil and choose SAUTEE on high.
  • Next let IP warm up and sauté vegetables for 3 minutes (under a lid). Then add tomato paste (puree) and sauté for another minute. Press cancel to switch off IP.
  • Add all remaining ingredients (beans, herbs, chilli flakes and water). Choose PRESSURE COOK (custom) on high for 20 minutes. Seal the lid (seal/vent knob).
  • Let IP do it's magic and release pressure naturally for 10 (to 15) minutes. Then, switch the knob to vent and let remaining steam escape. Open the IP lid and serve white beans soup with some chopped ham (sausage) – optional.

Notes

  • Always soak dried beans for a few hours (recommended 8 to 12) before cooking. 
  • Control thickness by adding more or less liquid in. 
  • Change water for homemade broth. 
Instant Pot that I use (Instant Pot Pro
Keyword Soup, stew, white beans
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