Escarole and Bean Soup

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Welcome to Claire's: 35 Years of Recipes and Reflections from the Landmark Vegetarian Restaurant

Welcome to Claire's

By Claire Criscuolo

Published 2014

  • About

Escarole can be found in the produce section of most supermarkets. The entire head (minus the stem) is delicious in soups. The tender pale green inner leaves also make a delicious salad.


  • 4 quarts water
  • 12 ounces Great Northern beans, picked over
  • 8 large cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ small head green cabbage, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 10 leaves fresh basil, chopped or ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium potatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 large heads escarole, chopped
  • Salt, to taste


    1. Bring the water to a boil in a large covered pot. Add the beans, garlic, cabbage, parsley, fennel seeds, red pepper flakes, basil, and olive oil. Return to a boil, then lower the heat to medium and cook, uncovered, for 1½ hours, stirring every 5-10 minutes.
    2. Add the potatoes, pepper, escarole and salt. Continue cooking over medium-low heat for 1 hour, stirring frequently, until the beans are soft and the broth is creamy. Taste for seasoning.