Escarole and Beans

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Hi Everyone, 

Well, it’s that time of year again when the weather is getting cooler and we are turning to comfort food, soups and stews.

Since the temperature took a drop this past weekend, I decided to make an old favorite,  Escarole and Beans

Many families make this many different ways, but the recipe below is my version. 

Bob is not a big fan of just escarole and beans, so today, just for him, I served it over soft polenta and it was a big hit. The important thing to remember about escarole is WASH IT WELL. I rinse mine in a large bowl of cold water at least three times. A lot of dirt hides in the leaves and you don’t want dirt in your soup.

But here is my traditional recipe. I usually serve this without the polenta and just a nice warm piece of rustic crusty bread for dipping. 

I hope you give it a try on a cool fall night. A hearty meal in 15 minutes.


Until my next post, make every day a celebration!


Escarole and Beans



3-4 Tbsp. of olive oil (enough to cover the bottom of a soup pot)

4-6 cloves of garlic, minced

Pinch of red pepper flakes

1 tbsp. tomato paste

Salt, freshly ground pepper and garlic powder to taste

Parmesan rind (optional- remove before serving)

2 heads of escarole- washed VERY WELL, rinse a few times, drained and chopped or torn by hand into bite sized pieces

2 (14 oz.) cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed- divided: 1 ½ cans whole, ½ can mashed

4 cups of chicken broth

Freshly grated parmesan

Slices of rustic crusty bread


Heat a soup pot over medium heat and add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the soup pot

Add the garlic and red pepper flakes plus a pinch of salt and sauté for a minute or two

Add the tomato paste and sauté or toast it for a minute in the pan before mixing it well with the garlic

Add the escarole and stir to coat with the oil. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the escarole wilts. Add another pinch of salt.

Stir in the beans (1 ½ cans whole and ½ can mashed) * you can mash by hand or in the food processor.

Lower the heat, and add the chicken broth or water (more if you prefer it soupier).

Add the salt, pepper, garlic powder and parmesan rind (if using)

Simmer for 10-15 minutes

Serve with a drizzle more olive oil over each serving, add grated cheese and more red pepper flakes (optional).

Serve soup with a slice of warm rustic crusty bread like ciabatta

Serving suggestions:

Over polenta

With grilled sausage


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2 thoughts on “Escarole and Beans

  1. Mike Mazzarese

    I love this recipe. My family made it the same way. They didn’t use the tomato paste but I’ve been doing it that way for a long time. I also …just ocean a while… sauté a little anchovy int the oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Adds a “nutty, toasted” taste that adds something the French wild call a “je ne sait quoi”! ;-). One of my favorites on a cold evening. Thanks for posting this.


    1. aries041158 Post author

      Hi Mike, I’ll have to try the anchovy in the escarole. I always use anchovies when I make broccoli & macaroni and top it with toasted breadcrumbs. Thanks for the comment.



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