This White Bean Soup is so easy to make in one pot and it has a flavor packed herb broth and plenty of bacon!  This hearty, soul warming soup is ready in 30 minutes!

white bean soup with bacon in bowl

White Bean Soup:

I originally posted this soup recipe all the way back in October of 2016!  It’s still a favorite of mine, and it was time to give it some love.  I’m updating the post so that you have instructions to make this on your stove top or in your instant pot.  This soup is packed full of creamy white beans!  Don’t be fooled by its simplicity, the rosemary and thyme flavored broth is out of this world.  Topping with bacon and parmesan cheese doesn’t hurt anything either.  I’m loving super cozy soups right now like our Crockpot Potato Soup, but this one is just as decadent and filling while somehow still just being perfectly light! Let’s talk about our favorite beans to use here, and how to make it!

Stove Top or Instant Pot:

This soup works out great in either.  I did actually find that it was shorter to make it on the stove by the time my IP came to pressure.  But, either way, it’s still 30 minutes or less.  I’ve included directions in the recipe card for either prep method.  The most important note to make here is that you MUST deglaze your pot!  It’s important to follow that step either way, but, especially if you’re using your IP because if you don’t you may end up with a burn notice.  You want to scrape the pan as directed as well because it adds lots of flavor to the soup!

photo of white bean soup topped with bacon

What is Considered a White Bean?

Some of the more popular white beans that you guys are most familiar with are Cannellini beans (also called white kidney beans) which is my personal preference for this recipe.  I love that they’re large, creamy, and hold their texture and shape well.  A few other varieties that can be used in this soup are navy beans, and great northern beans.  I always use canned just to make my life easier, but that is a personal choice and dried work fine as well!  If you’d like to use dried white beans for this recipe.  You’ll just want to make sure you soak your beans overnight, then drain them, and simmer long enough that your beans are soft.

Recipe Notes:

  • If you want this to be a vegetarian soup, you can simply leave out the bacon.  Use about 1 Tablespoon of butter to saute your shallots and garlic instead of the bacon grease.
  • Once the soup is cooked, grab your tongs and remove the large sprigs of rosemary and thyme from the pot.  Some of the herbs will have fallen into the soup, and those you want to leave!  Only remove the long sprigs because they get in the way when you’re serving.  If there are still herbs left on the sprig, don’t worry, they’ve already added plenty of flavor to the soup.
  • If you don’t have/can’t find shallots that’s ok.  You can simply use about 1/4 of a small white or yellow onion.  The trick is to mince your onion very finely so that it dissolves into the soup and you don’t have overpowering flavor.

bowl of white bean soup



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White Bean Soup

This White Bean Soup is so easy to make in one pot and it has a flavor packed herb broth and plenty of bacon!  This hearty, soul warming soup is ready in 30 minutes!
Prep 10 minutes
Cook 20 minutes
Total 40 minutes
Servings 4


  • 12 Ounces Bacon, Cut into 1 inch strips
  • 2 Shallots, Minced
  • 5 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 6 Cups Vegetable or Chicken Broth
  • 3 (15 ounce cans) White Beans, Drained and Rinsed Cannellini or Great Northern
  • Salt & Pepper, To Taste
  • 1/8 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/2 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 4 Thyme Sprigs
  • 2 Rosemary Sprigs
  • Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese, Optional



  • Cook the bacon in a large stock pot or dutch oven over medium heat until slightly crisp and remove from pan with a slotted spoon to drain on a paper towel lined plate.
  • Drain excess bacon grease, leaving about 1 Tablespoon in the pan.
  • Add the minced shallots to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes until soft.
  • Add the garlic and cook stirring constantly for one minute.
  • Pour in about 1/2 cup of the broth and use a wooden spoon to scrape up all of the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Pour in the remaining broth along with the beans, salt & pepper to taste, red pepper flakes, oregano, thyme and rosemary.
  • Bring the soup to a boil, then, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and if desired use tongs to remove the large sprigs of rosemary and thyme from the soup.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls and serve topped with the cooked bacon and parmesan cheese if desired.
  • Leftover soup can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • Turn the instant pot on to saute (high/more). Add the bacon and cook, stirring constantly until cooked through and crisp. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon to a paper towel lined plate.
  • Drain all but 1 Tablespoon of bacon grease from the pot. Add the shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally until soft.
  • Add in the garlic and cook, stirring constantly for 30 seconds.
  • Turn the instant pot off. Pour in 1/2 cup of broth and thoroughly scrape the pot with a wooden spoon to deglaze.
  • Add all of the remaining ingredients to the pot and stir well.
  • Place the lid on the pot, set the valve to sealing position. Cook on SOUP setting for 8 minutes.
  • Once the time is up, allow the pot to come to pressure naturally (don't do anything) for 5 minutes, then, do a quick release.


NOTE:  If you don't have or can't find shallots, you can use 1/4 of a small white or yellow onion that is finely mined for this recipe instead.
NOTE ON ROSEMARY AND THYME:  A "sprig" is a piece of the herb plant that will be about 3-4 inches long.  You can purchase these pre-packaged at any grocery store in the produce section.  The sprigs go in whole.  If necessary, you can substitute 3 teaspoons of dried thyme and 2 teaspoons of dried rosemary.


Serving: 1.5Cups, Calories: 200kcal

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
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Hey! Nice to meet you! I'm Nichole!

Welcome to The Salty Marshmallow! I'm a mom, animal lover, photographer, & kitchen mess-maker. Here you will find the result of my decades-long passion for chasing the best flavors in the kitchen, all meant to be cooked by regular people with busy lives just like you and me.

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    1. You can put the bacon in during simmering and it will be “softer” or you can leave it out and put it on the soup at the end if you want it more crisp

  1. I am planning to make this dish for Sunday dinner. I was thinking up using roasted garlic in place of the regular garlic cloves. Do you think it would work well with the other flavor profiles? Oh and now I want cornbread.