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Venezuelan Black Bean Soup

Venezuelan Black Bean Soup: a healthy, nutritious soup that is naturally vegan and gluten-free!

One of my goals on Thyme & Love is to share recipes that reflect my family and culture, along with celebrating the traditional Mexican recipes that my husband Hector grew up with. Besides our traditional family favorites, I’m always looking for new recipe ideas and inspiration to add to our recipe box. Sharing recipes with you has become one of my greatest passions over the past few years. It feels my heart with so much happiness. For me, recipes are more than just creating something to eat; they reflect who we are and our history, travels, and culture.

Today I am sharing a recipe for healthy and nutritious recipe for Venezuelan Black Bean Soup. I learned this recipe from my best friend Angie, who really is more like a sister to me, last year and it has become a favorite in our house.

A few things makes Venezuelan Black Beans unique from other Latin black bean recipes. The beans are not spicy at all, rather they are a little on the sweet side. They get the sweetness from sweet bell peppers and from piloncillo {panela}. Piloncillo is an unrefined sugar that has a molasses flavor to it. Before getting added to the soup, the piloncillo is made into a syrup. You can just add a little bit of the syrup and decided if you want your beans a little bit sweeter. The piloncillo adds a depth of flavor and earthiness to the beans. I think this is what sets this bean soup recipe apart from others.

Piloncillo adds a depth of flavor to traditional Venezuelan Black Bean Soup!

The soup is seasoned with a sofrito, a sautéed mixture of onion, bell peppers, and garlic. In Angie’s recipe she uses those really tiny sweet bell peppers. I opted for using a red and green bell pepper because I always have those on hand and actually prefer their flavor over the tiny ajies dulces. When the dried black beans are almost done cooking, the sofrito is made in separate pan, which is then added to the beans along with the piloncillo syrup after the beans are tender.

Sofrito is the seasoning base of Venezuelan Black Beans.

This Venezuelan Black Bean Soup is a healthy and easy recipe that I think your family will really enjoy. The soup does take a few hours to make, but most of the time it is inactive cooking. Perfect for making on a lazy Sunday afternoon. The soup is naturally vegan and gluten-free and makes a great make-ahead meal.

Venezuelan Black Bean Soup. Naturally Vegan + Gluten-free!

If you try this recipe be sure to tag a picture #thymeandlove on Instagram. I really would love to see!

Venezuelan Black Bean Soup: is seasoned with a sofrtio base and a touch of piloncillo. #vegan #glutenfree #venezuelan

Venezuelan Black Bean Soup: a healthy, nutritious soup that is naturally vegan and gluten-free!

Venezuelan Black Bean Soup

Yield: 6 Servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes

A traditional Venezuelan black bean soup recipe that is very different from other Latin black bean recipes. It's a touch sweeter rather than spicy like Latin bean recipes. Naturally vegan and gluten-free.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Black Beans, sorted and rinsed
  • 8 Cups Water
  • 1 Small Piloncillo Cone, about 2 ounces {about 2-3 Tablespoons}
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper, diced small
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced small
  • 1 Large Yellow Onion, diced small
  • 1 Celery Stalk, diced small
  • 4 Large Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1 Tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 Cup Cilantro, finely chopped
  • 2 Tsp Salt, or to taste
  • Optional Garnishes: Chopped Cilantro, Avocado Slices

Instructions

  1. Soak the beans In a large bowl covered with water overnight. Drain and rinse the beans. Place the beans in a large stock pot or dutch oven and add the 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until the beans are tender. The time will depend on how old the beans are, ranging from 1-3 hours. Check after 1 hour, then every 20 minutes for doneness.
  2. Halfway through the beans cooking, make the sofrito and piloncillo syrup.
  3. For the sofrito: In a large deep sided skillet heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced bell peppers, onion, celery and a pinch of salt. Cook for 20-22 minutes, occasionally stirring, until the vegetables are soft and tender. Stir in the garlic, cook for 30 seconds. Add the cumin and stir. Finally add the cilantro and stir. Turn off the heat and set aside until needed.
  4. For the piloncillo syrup: In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the pilconcillo and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a low simmer then reduce heat and cook until the piloncillo has melted and the syrup has thickened slightly. Turn off the heat and set aside until needed.
  5. After the black beans are tender, add in the reserved sofrito. Add 1 Tablespoon of the piloncillo syrup. Bring up to a boil then reduce heat to low for 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add more of the syrup and any additional salt.
  6. Serve with chopped cilantro and avocado slices if using.

Notes

You will not use all the piloncillo syrup. Store the leftovers in a container with a tight fitting lid in the refrigerator. It'll be ready for the next time you make the recipe!
I always try and buy the freshest dried beans that I can find. The older your beans are, the longer they will take to cook.
Prep time doesn't include soaking the beans overnight.

Did you make this recipe?

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Venezuelan Black Bean Soup: Easy and simple soup recipe that is packed with flavor. Vegan and Gluten-free!

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Karen

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Can"t wait to make this!

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