White Bean Soup with Red Chard


Taking a little extra time to cook sweet onions over low heat until tender and mellow adds a nice caramelized flavor to this simple soup, which you can assemble otherwise with little effort. For extra richness, add a Parmesan cheese rind to the broth as the soup simmers.


  • olive oil, 2 Tbsp
  • sweet onions such as Vidalia or Walla Walla, 2 large (about 1 lb/500 g total weight), finely chopped
  • red chard, 2 bunches (about 1 lb/500 g total weight), leaves torn into bite-sized pieces, ribs and stems chopped
  • sea salt, tsp
  • garlic, 2 cloves, pressed or minced
  • dried thyme, ¼ tsp
  • low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth or stock, 6 cups (48 fl oz/1.5 l)
  • low-sodium cannellini or white kidney beans, 2 cans (15 oz/470 g each), drained and rinsed
  • Parmesan cheese, ¼ cup (1 oz/30 g) freshly grated


  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and chard ribs and stems and stir to coat well with oil. Sprinkle in salt, reduce heat to medium, and sauté until vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and thyme and cook, stirring constantly, until garlic is fragrant but not browned, 1–2 minutes longer.
  3. Add broth and bring to a simmer. Add beans and chard leaves, return to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until chard is wilted, 5–7 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls and top each serving with Parmesan cheese. Serve right away.

per serving 200 calories, 12 g protein, 25 g carbs, 6 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 5 g fiber, 840 mg sodium