Black Bean, Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup

Even though the temperature is now in the 80’s, it was in the upper 40’s here this morning.  This cooler weather inspired me to make a more fall-like dish for dinner.  I love sweet potatoes, but rarely cook with them…I can’t tell you why, it’s just a problem I have.  They’re so good for you, and a great fall ingredient.  I also like their versatility.  Sweet potatoes can be used in tons of dishes, both sweet and savory.  You can even make fries with them!  I am sure the deep frying that makes sweet potato fries so delicious cancels out some of their nutritive value, but it still makes me feel better to eat them instead of regular french fries.  Some of you are saying, “You know that you can bake sweet potato fries in the oven” but you and I both know they’re not as good.  Sorry.

Anyway, I don’t know how I arrived at this recipe.  I searched for sweet potato soup recipes and ended up with black beans and sausage in there at some point.  I found a lot of variations with similar basic ingredients, so I used a few recipes and combined what I liked about each of them to make this soup.

This recipe from Epicurious uses dried black beans, so I used this recipe from Laura’s Kitchen also which uses canned.  I used ingredients from both, which are almost identical.  I used smoked turkey sausage, 2 sweet potatoes, 2 cans of black beans, 1 medium yellow onion, a couple cloves of garlic, tomato paste and half chicken broth half water.  For spices I used cinnamon, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, Worcestershire, salt and pepper.  Use the cinnamon.  It is so yummy.  Laura’s recipe garnishes with cilantro, which is probably delicious.

I made simple cornbread to eat with the soup, and topped Ben’s off with a little sour cream and cheese.  I ate mine without the extras and thought it was pretty good.  The flavors were not overpowering, but it may need just a dash more salt.  The sweet potatoes were tender, but not mushy.  The black beans are so very tasty in this soup, and the sausage is a nice addition but not absolutely necessary.  This would be great as a vegetarian soup, and I think I will make it that way next time.

Black Bean, Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup

Adapted from and Laura’s Kitchen


  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into cubes
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 12 ounces smoked turkey sausage, sliced


  1. Heat olive oil over medium heat, in a medium saucepan, sauté onions until tender, then stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Mix in all spices and cook for 30 seconds.
  3. Add sweet potatoes and stir, cooking for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Pour in chicken broth, water, tomato paste, and black beans and stir together.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Sweet potatoes should be just fork tender.
  5. While soup is simmering, saute sausage in a pan over medium heat to brown.  Set aside when done.
  6. When the potatoes are just tender remove about 2 1/2 cups of the soup and transfer to a blender.  Make sure there is enough liquid.  Puree the soup and return it to the pot with the rest of the soup.
  7. Stir in the sausage and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes over low heat.
  8. Serve with sour cream and grated cheese if desired.