fbpx

Creamy Tomato and White Bean Soup

Article written and reviewed by Cyrus Khambatta, PhD and Robby Barbaro, MPH
Published January 2, 2023

This easy to make creamy soup has a small kick by adding cayenne. Yes, you can make a creamy soup entirely from plant-based ingredients! Loaded with tomatoes and beans, this dish is full of protein and antioxidants.

The creaminess in this delicious recipe comes from blended beans, while the tomatoes infuse the soup with flavor and color. It’s the perfect diabetes-friendly, winter warm lunch or dinner. 

Turn up the heat a little further, if you wish, by adjusting the cayenne pepper to your liking.

Tomatoes 101

Tomatoes are the major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K.

Usually red when mature, tomatoes can also come in a variety of colors, including yellow, orange, green, and purple. What’s more, many subspecies of tomatoes exist with different shapes and flavors.

What’s So Great About Tomatoes?

Tomatoes are loaded with lycopene. This gives them their bright red color and helps protect them from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. In much the same way, it can help protect your cells from damage. Tomatoes also have potassium, vitamins B and E, and other nutrients.

Lycopene is an antioxidant that fights molecules called free radicals that can damage your cells and affect your immune system. Because of that, foods high in lycopene, like tomatoes, may make you less likely to have lung, stomach, or prostate cancer. Some research shows tomatoes might help prevent the cancer of the pancreas, colon, throat, mouth, breast, and cervix, too.

Tomatoes are a good source of several vitamins and minerals:

  • Vitamin C. This vitamin is an essential nutrient and antioxidant. One medium-sized tomato can provide about 28% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI).

  • Potassium. An essential mineral, potassium is beneficial for blood pressure control and heart disease prevention.

  • Vitamin K1. Also known as phylloquinone, vitamin K is important for blood clotting and bone health.

  • Folate (vitamin B9). One of the B vitamins, folate is important for normal tissue growth and cell function.

Add in Beans for Extra Nutrients

Kidney beans are an excellent plant-based source of protein. They're also rich in various minerals, vitamins, fibers, antioxidants, and other unique plant compounds. Therefore, these beans may aid weight loss, promote colon health, and moderate blood glucose levels.

Kidney beans are mainly composed of carbohydrates and fiber but also serve as a good source of protein. Only 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of boiled kidney beans boast almost 9 grams of protein.

Kidney beans are rich in various vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Molybdenum. Beans are high in molybdenum, a trace element mainly found in seeds, grains, and legumes.

  • Folate. Also known as folic acid or vitamin B9, folate is considered particularly important during pregnancy.

  • Iron. This essential mineral has many important functions in your body. Iron may be poorly absorbed from beans due to their phytate content.

  • Copper. This antioxidant trace element is often low in the Western diet. Aside from beans, the best dietary sources of copper are organ meats, seafood, and nuts.

  • Manganese. This compound is present in most foods, especially in whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables.

  • Potassium. This essential nutrient may have beneficial effects on heart health.

  • Vitamin K1. Also known as phylloquinone, vitamin K1 is important for blood coagulation.

Beans are also considered a “superfood” because they are one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. As a result of their high fiber content, beans help protect against diabetes, cardiovascular disease and maybe even some cancers.

Buying Tips

Whenever you buy a tomato, press it to see if the tomato is hard or not. Hard tomatoes do not rot easily and they are also easy to store. Not only this, hard tomatoes remain fresh for a long time. 

Take special care of their color as well. Never buy yellow or discolored tomatoes. They are not fresh and get spoiled soon. If the tomato is slightly green and red, you should go for them.

Tomatoes should have a sweet woodsy smell to them and be very aromatic. A tomato with no smell will have no flavor.

When shopping for beans, you have two options: dried beans versus canned. If you're looking to save money, dried beans are almost always cheaper than canned because one bag will last longer than a single can.

Canned beans are pre-cooked and stored in water, while dried beans are dehydrated and pre-cooked and therefore, they weigh less. After soaking or boiling your dried beans in water, they will weigh more, so in the end, you will get more from the bag of dried beans than a single can of beans.

Nutrition-wise, canned and cooked beans are relatively comparable, as dehydrated and cooked beans contain the same amount of protein, fat content, and mostly the same ingredients.

However, you should be wary while buying canned beans, as sometimes, they're stored in incredibly salty water, so be sure to read the ingredient list before grabbing that can. You can also rinse your beans, and doing so can cut the sodium content in half.

Creamy Tomato and White Bean Soup

Beverly Verwey
Servings 2 people
Calories 457 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 3 very large tomatoes remove the skin and chopped
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 clove garlic chopped
  • 1 tbsp ground savory
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 2 tbsp cilantro chopped

Instructions
 

  • Remove the skin from the tomatoes. See notes. Chop the tomato and set aside.
  • In a large pot, heat up the vegetable broth and saute the onion and garlic for 5 minutes.
  • Add black pepper, savory and cayenne and continue to saute for another 1 minute.
  • Add the tomatoes, beans, cilantro, and carrot. Cook for 25 minutes until vegetable are soft.
  • In a high-speed blender, blend the soup in batches. (be careful, the soup is hot) until creamy smooth.
  • Return to the pot and heat up again.

Notes

To remove skin from tomatoes: Boil a pot of water and place tomatoes in the boiled water for 1 minute. Remove the tomatoes and then submerge them in a bowl of ice water and pull off the skin from the tomato.
Instead of fresh tomatoes you can use 1 can of canned low-sodium whole tomatoes.

Nutrition

Calories: 457kcalCarbohydrates: 56.9gProtein: 24.3gFat: 2.6gSodium: 50.8mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the author 

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD and Robby Barbaro, MPH

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD, and Robby Barbaro, MPH are the coauthors of the New York Times bestselling book Mastering Diabetes: The Revolutionary Method to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, Type 1.5, Type 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes. They are the cofounders of Mastering Diabetes, a coaching platform that teaches people how to reverse insulin resistance via low-fat, plant-based, whole-food nutrition. Cyrus has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002, and has an undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from UC Berkeley. Robby was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2000, and has been living a plant-based lifestyle since 2006. He worked at Forks Over Knives for 6 years, and earned a Master’s in Public Health in 2019.