Chicken, Bacon and White Bean Soup Portuguese Style

"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."
photo by diner524 photo by diner524
photo by diner524
photo by Dreamer in Ontario photo by Dreamer in Ontario
photo by daisygrl64 photo by daisygrl64
photo by daisygrl64 photo by daisygrl64
photo by Sageca photo by Sageca
Ready In:
2hrs 30mins




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

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  1. 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
  2. I very much enjoyed this soup! Used Great Northern beans, turkey bacon and the chicken that comes in the packet like tuna does. Didnt have the bacon grease so I added olive oil to saute the vegetables in. Instead of the cayenne pepper I added a pinch of red pepper flakes. Couldnt wait for the soup to get done as it smelled delicious and it tasted just as good! Light, simple, and flavorful soup I enjoyed for lunch. When finished dieting will make this again with real bacon. Thank you for sharing LIF! Made and reviewed for the Culinary Quest 2016 - Azores required.
  3. Very good! I made the recipe as directed. It was delicious.
  4. 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.
  5. I love bean and bacon soup and loved this Portuguese version with a little kick!!!! I made 1/2 of the recipe and cheated and used canned Northern Beans, but otherwise, followed as written. I picked a perfect summer day to make it, as it became very dark and then stormed while I was making the soup, so not so hot and humid. I loved the wonderful smokey bacon flavor. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Made for ZWT8.


Hello! I have a wonderful husband and two fantastic kids. I love to read, have fun with family and friends, stay active with: running; soccer; golf; biking; hiking; and gardening. I love to travel. I'm looking forward to more international travel someday. Cooking has become a passion for me. I love to read cookbooks, watch the Food Network, and try new recipes. I have way too many cookbooks! A few of my favorites are: Barefoot Contessa (any - but especially 'Family Style'),Rachael Ray 30-Minute Meals 2, Roasting by Barbara Kafka, Beyond Parsley & The Black Dog Summer on the Vineyard Cookbook. I try to carefully choose recipes that I think my family will enjoy, which is why most of my ratings are 3-5 stars. Happy cooking!
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