Chicken, Bacon and White Bean Soup Portuguese Style

Total Time
2hrs 30mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 2 hrs

One of Emeril Lagasse's favorites. This is a soup his mom would always cook. He describes it as a stick-to-your-ribs soup. Enjoy! *Note: the dried beans need to soak for at least 8 hours. You could do that overnight* (For a quick soak, bring the beans and water to a boil over high heat and cook for 2 minutes at the boil, then remove from the heat and allow to stand for 1 hour. Drain.) Prep time does not include soaking the beans.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Put the beans into a large pot.
  2. Add water to cover by 2 inches and soak for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  3. Then drain.
  4. Fry the bacon in a heavy stockpot over medium-high heat until crisp, about 7 minutes.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to lift onto paper towels to drain.
  6. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the pot.
  7. Add the onions and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 4 minutes.
  8. Add the shallots, garlic, bay leaves, salt and cayenne.
  9. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots soften, about 1 minute.
  10. Add the beans to the pot with the stock, and bring to a boil.
  11. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender, about 1 1/2 hours.
  12. Stir in the chicken and the reserved bacon and heat through.
  13. Remove and discard bay leaves.
  14. Ladle into warm bowls and sprinkle with the grated cheese.
Most Helpful

Absolutely delicious! I added 3 small potatoes diced very small and some sort of very small pasta, just to make it a little more hearty. I will defiantly make this again. Made for NZ/AUS Recipe Swap #34

daisygrl64 November 07, 2009

Very good! I made the recipe as directed. It was delicious.

Lorac June 13, 2013

Wow! Goodbye to my search for a good bean and bacon soup. I think the only thing I did different was to not use the shallots. My only disappointment was the kids weren't quite as thrilled as my hubby and said it was too spicy and one didn't like the chicken. I actually tasted the soup before adding the chicken and it was still quite good so I might do without the chicken next time but I hate to give up on the heat, which I don't really feel is that strong.

Miriachi May 27, 2013