Halloween is full of scary images that are black – black cats, black bats, black spiders, witches with black hats, and black cauldrons. So, if you’re looking for something scary and black to serve at the annual Halloween BOO-ffet, why not black beans?
The following recipe for Mexican Loaded Black Bean Soup is easy, and takes very little hands-on time. The beans cook in the slow cooker unattended (no presoak necessary), and the rest of the ingredients can be assembled and added in less than 15 minutes; dehydrated onion eliminates the need to chop onions, saves on tears, and saves on time. For those who haven’t thought to plan ahead, canned black beans may be substituted with good results.
To make the soup more appealing on the BOO-ffet table, purchase a black cauldron big enough to comfortably house the slow cooker for serving. Cauldrons are available at most discount stores on the Halloween aisle.
Of course this soup is fabulous even if it isn’t Halloween. It is a substantial, filling soup, and perfect to serve on cold fall and winter evenings. Kids love it because they get to stir in their favorite condiments; cooks love it because it takes so little time. Pair it with some store-bought crispy bolillos (Mexican Rolls), and, if there is time, a salad.
Mexican Loaded Black Bean Soup
1 cup black beans, sorted and rinsed
4 cups water
2 cups chicken broth
3 tablespoons dehydrated onion flakes, or 1 finely chopped medium onion
1 4 oz. can diced green chilies
1 cup medium salsa
1 10 oz. package chorizo, browned and well-drained
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
chopped green onion
Queso Fresco or Monterey Jack Cheese
- Place the beans and water in a 4-5 quart slow cooker, turn the heat to high, and let them cook about 6 hours until tender (they can be put in the night before; add 2 extra cups water so they won’t cook dry during the night).
- Mash the beans with a potato masher. They don’t have to be smooth – there should still be some whole beans; mashing just helps thicken the soup while its cooking.
- Add the chicken broth, onion flakes, green chilies, salsa, chorizo, cilantro, salt, and pepper.
- Cook 4-6 hours on low or 2-4 hours on high.
- Set the condiments out for guests to stir in.
Note: if you’re in a big hurry, substitute 3 14.5-ounce cans black beans for the dry beans. Rinse them well and add them to the slow cooker with 2 cups water. Proceed with the recipe as written.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 154 Calories from Fat 84
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 54% Protein 21% Carb. 24%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 9 g
Saturated Fat 3 g
Cholesterol 20 mg
Sodium 1110 mg
Total Carbohydrate 9 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 8 g
Vitamin A 4% Vitamin C 8% Calcium 0% Iron 6%