Tomato and Fava Soup

February 7, 2013

Tomato and Fava Soup
This is my sis all-time favorite soup. So when I invited her over for lunch last week to celebrate her birthday I already knew what I had to cook.
Don’t change a winning plan. That’s the rule, right?
Plus I know for a fact that she’s never going to cook it for herself. Partly because her cooking skills are on the scanty side. Partly because she’s a slacker when there’s a stove involved. Partly because she doesn’t have the time (you know, kids + work). Mostly because she knows that every now and then I will cook it for her.
That’s the kind of awesome brother I am. Cooking for the sis. I think I deserve a medal.

Making this soup is a snap. It just takes some time to cook the fava beans.
Which is easily dealt with a kitchen timer. Press 60 times the MIN key. Then press start. After 1 hour (that is 60 minutes or 3,600 seconds) the little device will start beeping. That’s when fava beans are done.
How many things you can do in-between? A spinning class. A yoga class. A crossfit class. 40 minutes on the treadmill plus 15 minutes of stretching plus 5 minutes for showering.
I guess you can also just sit on the couch watching TV, but if you read this blog I don’t think you’re that KIND of person.
Back to the soup. Without a doubt it’s the quintessential hearty food. It’s comforting, warm and so damn good. The best part is that it’s very filling. Meaning that even if you want to have seconds (or thirds) there won’t be any room left in your stomach for that to happen.
Why is that so? Because fava beans are chocked full of fiber, that stays in your stomach for longer giving you that sense of satiety.
All this for just 132 calories per serving and 7 grams of protein. Yes, you heard that right. Just damn right awesome. My sis has definitely a healthy swag when it comes to food!
Tomato and Fava Soup Print this recipe!
Adapted from Rick Bayless's Mexican Kitchen and inspired by 101 Cookbooks

The original recipe is much fancier than my version but entails much more labor. As I like to keep things simple, I adjusted it accordingly (sorry Rick!)
I like the kick that the touch Tabasco sauce add to it. If you don’t have it at home, any other hot sauce or red pepper flakes or chiles would do the trick as well.

Serves 8

1 lb / 16 oz / 450 gr peeled dry fava beans (as known as broad beans)
8 cups / 2 l vegetable broth
3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 large onion, sliced into ¼-inch (0.5 cm) rings
1 28-oz / 793 gr can crushed tomatoes
1 ½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint (dried can work too)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Tabasco sauce (optional)


Make sure the dried fava beans are clean and free of dirt. Place in a large soup pot and cover with the broth. Simmer over medium-low heat, partially covered, until very tender, about an hour. The beans should be starting to fall apart at this point.
In the meantime, roast the garlic in a heavy skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until you get black spots all over, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, remove the papery skins, smush into a paste and set aside.
In the same skillet heat two tablespoon of olive oil, add the onion and cook for 20 minutes stirring every now and then until they start to brown. Set aside.
At the 1-hour mark, add the garlic, onion and crushed tomatoes to the fava beans and simmer until the beans are the consistency of a coarse puree, 20 to 30 minutes.
Just before serving, add enough water, if necessary, to bring the soup to the consistency of a medium-thick bean soup.
Let the soup come back up to a simmer, remove from heat, then stir in the mint, and adjust with salt. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil, sprinkled with some mint and a couple of drops of Tabasco sauce to add a little bit of kick to it.

Nutrition facts

One serving yields132 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 20 grams of carbs, 7 grams of protein and 5.5 grams of dietary fiber.


  1. I love a hearty soup. Will definitely try this out!

  2. Great recipe. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Mmmm! This looks so yummy and your pictures are so good! I love your blog dear! I am definitely going to be following you on bloglovin. xx. McKenna Lou

  4. This is hearty and flavoursome! I love it.

  5. This looks fantastic! I would never think of adding mint; I'll definitely have to try this!


    please help

    1. I'm so sorry Daniel, where do you live?
      Here in the US you can find them at almost every grocery store (Trader Joe's, WF, etc.) or you can order them online (Amazon carries them for instance)
      I hope you'll succeed in what seems to be a quest to find fava beans ;)

  7. REALLY great soup.
    My supermarket did not have dried fava beans so I bought green split peas knowing that they would be dissolved in the cook time.
    Really excellent. Can't wait to try with fava beans!

  8. I tried it with fava beans the other day.
    I'm not sure which I like better