Kelly Cuip 

White Bean Stew is a hearty bowl of perfection to warm you to your toes during the cold months. Brimming with white beans, aromatic herbs, and vegetable stock, it’s a comfort dish that hits every spot. Serve with garlic bruschetta on the side for an added dash of deliciousness.

This hearty recipe features bold flavors of fresh rosemary, sage and leeks, it only requires one pot and includes no ham hock. It’s just pure, clean protein, no tomatoes, with zero cholesterol, and as healthy as can be. When served with garlic bruschetta or Crusty Bread, it becomes a complete and satisfying meal. If desired, you could always serve it with some Ciabatta Bread or Focaccia Bread on the side as well. If you decide to add more side dishes, that’s totally up to you, but often ends up being too much food for me. This is one hearty meal!

What is Ribollita Soup?

Ribollita soup is a Tuscan bread soup made with beans and vegetables. It’s usually made with a specific flavor from a rind of Parmigiano reggiano cheese. In our case a kind alternative, dairy-free nutritional yeast baby. This specific recipe is basically a white style ribollita as no tomatoes are used in this dish. This changes with the seasons and the regions. There isn’t only one, legit version of ribollita out there. It varies from home to home and pantry to pantry.

White Bean Stew Tips + Variations

  • Storage – Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Reheating – Reheat over the stove or in the microwave. Over the stove just seems to taste better and is always my first option.
  • Add-in ideas – If you want to kick up the ingredients on this white bean stew, try some add-ins. Some of my top choices are broccoli rabe, Swiss chard, spinach, mustard greens, collard greens, basil pesto drizzle, sun dried tomato pesto, or plant-based Italian sausage, cooked separately, and added to each bowl when serving.
  • Can I use canned beans? – I don’t tend to go for canned beans as they always have added junk in them. However, if you’re in a pinch or need a quicker option, canned beans will do. Just be sure to drain and rinse them. Be careful cooking them for too long as they might turn into mush. The magic of this stew has a lot to do with being cooked low and slow from scratch, truth is you can never get this out of a can.
  • Use day-old bread – If you don’t want to make the garlic bruschetta, use some day-old bread to serve on the side. I personally prefer the bruschetta because it just completes the dish, but old bread will definitely do the trick as well.
  • What does ribollita mean in Italian? – Well, it simply means “reboiled.” This is because it was originally a peasant food. It was often leftover minestrone soup with added, old bread, that was reheated before serving. Hence the term “reboiled.”

Are White Beans the Same as Navy Beans?

Navy beans are just a type of white bean. There are quite a few varieties of white beans out there. For example, cannellini, pea beans, great northern beans, etc. Although many of them taste very similar and look very similar, they are definitely different varieties and not the exact same. So, for this soup, choose your favorite white bean and roll with it, the authentic Italian beans would be the cannellini.

White Bean Stew from Scratch

White Bean Stew – a hearty bowl of perfection to warm you to your toes during the cold months. Brimming with white beans, aromatic herbs, and vegetable stock, it’s a comfort dish that hits every spot. Serve with garlic bruschetta on the side for an added dash of deliciousness.


  • 3 cups white beans dry
  • 1 leek or yellow onion diced
  • 1 carrot chopped
  • 1 celery stalk chopped
  • 7 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 1 sage sprig
  • 1 bay leaves
  • 8 cups water or vegetable stock
  • 1.5 tsp smoked applewood sea salt
  • bread + garlic for bruschetta(optional but recommended)
  • 1 -2 Tbsp Nutritional yeast optional


  • Rinse and pick the beans then cover them with water and soak for 6 hours or overnight. Drain.
  • In a large heavy bottom pot heat up a good lug of olive oil (or veggie broth for WFPB) and saute the leek (or onion) with the carrot and celery until they begin to soften.
  • Quickly stir in the chopped garlic and cook for a few seconds just until fragrant then add the soaked beans.
  • Pour in the water and bring to a constant simmer. Add the bay, sage and rosemary, cover with a lid and cook for 45 minutes or until the beans are soft and tender to your liking.
  • Check the beans half way through cooking and see if you might need to add extra water if they are absorbing lots of liquid.
  • Once your beans are perfectly cooked remove from heat, stir in the nutritional yeast and season to taste with the smoked sea salt.
  • OPTIONAL but Recommended: Meanwhile grill or toast the bread on both sides until nice dark char marks form. Rub each slice on both sides with a garlic clove, lightly brush with some olive oil and finish with sea salt.
  • Ladle the bean stew into bowls and tear chunks of the garlic bruschetta over the top. Finish with a light drizzle of olive oil on top and enjoy.


Calories: 266kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 32mg | Potassium: 1415mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1459IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 203mg | Iron: 8mg

This article was originally posted here.