Spicy Black Bean Soup

Do you ever get a cooking itch you just have to scratch? Like you get something in your head and you just can’t crush the desire to make it until it happens? That’s what happened to me a few weeks ago upon realizing I had never cooked with dried beans (seriously, WTF).

Delicious Vegan Spicy Black Bean Soup

So one recent Saturday, I was digging through the clearance food items at Target (shocking, I know) and happened upon a 1 pound bag of organic black beans for $1.42. And I took it as fate.

black beans - dried

Cue the urge to make black bean soup. Spicy, hearty, black bean soup. Yum.

Black Bean Soup - Vegan!

This recipe is sort of inspired by Panera Black Bean Soup. But I gotta say it – this might be a little better (sorry/still love you Panera).

Easy Spicy Vegan Black Bean Soup

This was my first time using dried beans for anything, and I must say, I totally understand why people prefer using dried beans over canned. The beans turned out al dente and were less mushy than canned beans.

black beans

Yes, it took longer, but if you have the time (and you really don’t have to babysit the soup), I’d say it’s worth it!

Spicy Vegan Black Bean soup

I made this soup super spicy, but you don’t have to. The recipe includes ranges of spices to use and you can base how much you use on your taste preferences. Personally, I like it HOT HOT HOT so that’s just how I made it.

Vegan Black Bean Soup - Kbaked

This soup is excellent with some cubed avocado and cilantro on top. You could also top it with shredded cheese or vegan cheese, and tortilla chips. Up to you!

Black Bean Soup - Vegan!

Spicy Vegan Black Bean Soup

Black Bean Title Card

Prep Time:  30 minutes
Cook Time: 1-3 hours, depending on if you use dried or canned beans
Servings: 3-4

Ingredients – Soup:

  • 1 cup dried black beans or 2 cans black beans
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons liquid aminos or soy sauce (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1-2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 – 1 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1-2 tsp turmeric (adjust all species to preference)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Cilantro & avocado for topping, plus any additional desired toppings (suggestion: vegan cheese, crushed tortilla chips)

Method:

  1. If using dried beans, soak for one hour in 4 cups water. Boil for 10 minutes and allow to simmer for additional hour.
  2. Place poblano pepper in foil and broil in 500 degree oven until charred.
  3. Meanwhile, dice onion and bell pepper. Mince garlic.
  4. Heat oil and onion and garlic on stove and cook on low heat until onions are translucent.
  5. Add spices and continue to cook. Add bell peppers and cook until peppers are soft.
  6. Remove charred pepper from oven. Peel off skin. Remove seeds. Dice. Add to other peppers.
  7. If using canned beans, rinse and drain. Add to large pot with 3 cups water or veggie broth.
  8. Add nutritional yeast, aminos/soy sauce and onions/peppers to beans and allow to simmer on low heat for one hour.
  9. Add juice of one lime. Top with cilantro and avocado and serve.

PS: You Can watch me make this on YouTube!

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Black Bean + Butternut Squash Swiss Chard Wraps

On Friday night my mom brought home a bunch of reduced-cost vegetables from our local grocery store, Sendiks. When I saw all the goodies she brought home I was giddy inside. Love me some produce, and love me a deal.

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Sendiks is awesome in that they put all this perfectly beautiful produce on their large “Reduced Produce” table far before most grocery stores would. If there’s a single bruise or a bag of lettuce is like, a week away from expiring, to the Reduced table it goes.

I actually prefer to buy my bananas from the Reduced table. Because they’re just starting to speckle and get ripe and not green like regular store-bananas. I’m not into green bananas. I’m more into spotty browns.

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So in addition to a large bunch of dandelion greens for $0.56 and a batch of practically free potatoes, she snagged a large bunch of beautiful Swiss Chard for $0.46. Can you believe that?! Me either. What a #blessing.

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I forgot how much I like Swiss Chard. It’s such a lovely change of pace to the greens I eat regularly. I haven’t purchased it on my own in years because I tend to not like cooked greens, and typically associate Swiss Chard with being cooked. On Friday night, I had an epiphany: it can be eaten raw. This followed by realizing just how outstanding it is raw. It’s crunchy, tangy, and a bizarre mixture of earthy, sweet, and bitter.

Thus, I was inspired to make wraps with it, and this recipe was born. I used Target Brand’s Simply Balanced frozen Butternut Squash cubes that happened to be literally chillin’ in our freezer. This worked really well and saved a ton of time. Butternut squash cubes are one of the few vegetables I will eat frozen and not fresh. These would also be delightful with cubed sweet potatoes or any other winter squash you have on hand.

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Black beans add a nice heartiness and earthiness to the sweet squash. A blend of spicy, warm, umami flavors compliments both the squash and black beans, and really brings together the dish. I added a smudge of hummus for a creaming contrast, and some pomegranate seeds for a colorful pop of juicy tangy sweetness. It was blissful.

This makes a wonderful light and energizing lunch, or could work well as a server or side to dinner. Make these wraps and make them your own. I encourage you to also listen to rap music while assembling your rap. It helps set the tone for your tastebuds and the whole rest of your day.

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25-35 minutes
Level: Easy

makes 4 chard wraps, serves 2

Ingredients:

  • one 16-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cup cubed butternut squash or sweet potato (I used organic frozen pre-cubed butternut squash ~ but time saver and worked super well with this recipe!)
  • 4 large swiss chard leaves (or really any large leafy green will do)
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • salt + pepper to taste
  • 6-8 tablespoons hummus (optional)
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate perils (optional)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425F. Cube butternut squash or sweet potatoes into 1/4 inch cubes. Place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Place in the oven and roast until browned and crisp, about 25-35 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Transfer back to bowl.

2. Drain and rinse black beans. Add beans to bowl with squash cubes. Sprinkle cumin, turmeric, chili powder, curry powder, and toss until all black beans and squash are coated evenly.

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3. Wash and dry swiss chard leaves. Pat dry. Spread 1-2 tablespoons hummus on each. Add about 3/4 cup filling to each leaf.

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4. Add pomegranate seeds, hot sauce, or anything else you may desire. Roll up and enjoy! 🙂

Almond Joy Black Bean Brownies [vegan + gluten free]

Black bean brownies have been going viral on the blogosphere for quite a while. It seems like every time I turn around I see them re-pinned or re-blogged or re-attempted or talked about by a foodie friends. And for the last year or so, I have been curious. Skeptical, but curious nonetheless.

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Last night my curiosity finally got the better of me and I finally set out to give them a whirl. Here are my thoughts: you really can’t taste the black beans. Like at all. I was very skeptical that they’d have a strong bean-y flavor. They don’t.

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Texture wise they’re my ideal brownie: FUDGY. I’m team-fudgy when it comes to brownie. Not team cake-y. This is a personal preference. Taste wise they’re pretty darn chocolately I must say. The coconut oil adds a nice mild coconut undertone to the chocolate, but you can use vegetable oil if you’d like.

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I added almonds and coconut and decided they were Almond Joy themed but truly this was a result of what was on hand in the house (per usual).Also I adore nuts and chocolate and coconut together, but you can twist and turn these babies with whatever mix-ins you desire. Dried fruit would be lovely too. I also added dark chocolate chips. Don’t skip this. They’re basically essential. #texture #morechocolate

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The secret, in my humble opinion, to black bean brownies, is patience. I KNOW. The worst. Especially when you’re me and you’re hungry and/or things smell good and they’re chocolate-related. But trust me. Wait until these are fully chilled to enjoy. In fact, they taste best frozen. And they taste best if let sit overnight. This gives the chocolate flavor a chance to develop and really sink in and take over. The longer they #chill the chocolatelier they are. So I’d highly recommend cooling or even freezing these babies for maximum enjoyment.

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So here is my first attempt at/experience with black bean brownies. They’re better than I expected, for sure. But personally I do tend to enjoy black bean-less brownies over black bean brownies, but I’m happy I tried to make these, as they certainly are delicious, healthy, full of fiber, and were fun and super easy and fast to make, and most importantly they’ve put me on a brownie kick, and I’m now fully amped to share a bunch of my favorite brownie recipes ever on kbaked.com. Stay tuned, stay full of gas, and stay chocolatey. 😉

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Stay tuned, stay full of gas, and stay chocolatey. 😉 xoxo, kbakes.

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Prep Time: 10 minutes

Bake Time: 25-30 minutes

Level: Easy

Yield: one 9″ square pan of brownies, about 12 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 15-ounce can black beans (approx 1 1/2 cups), drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce or 1/2 mashed banana
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds, plus more for top (optional, but highly recommended)
  • 1/4 cup coconut shreds (optional)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. In a food processor or blender combine all ingredients besides chocolate chips, almonds, and coconut shreds. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and fold in chocolate chips, almonds, and coconut shreds.

3. Grease or line a 9″ square baking tray with parchment paper. Pour batter into the baking tray and smooth it around with a spatula. Pop into the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick placed in the center of the brownies comes out clean upon removal.

4. Allow to cool completely before you even attempt to slice them (I know, I know, it’s basically torture). I recommend letting them cool in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, and slicing them and storing them in the freezer and enjoy :-). #fudgy

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