Black Bean Soup with Sweet Potatoes

  • Prep-time: / Cook Time:
  • Serves 4-5

This soup has an irresistible quality; the flavors are deep and earthy with some sweetness from the potatoes. Don’t let the number of ingredients intimidate you – they build layers of flavor, but this soup is not at all difficult to make!

From Plant-Powered 15

Find this recipe and more in the Forks Over Knives Recipe App.


  • 1-2 tablespoon(s) water
  • 1½ - 1¾ cups chopped onions (one large onion)
  • 1½ cups combination of chopped red peppers and green peppers
  • 1¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste (generous is good)
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice (rounded)
  • ¼ teaspoon (or less/more, to taste) red pepper flakes
  • 4 medium-large cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 4½ - 5 cups black beans (reserve 1 cup; drain and rinse if using canned - about three 14 or 15 ounce cans)
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • ½ - 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1½ cups cubed (in small chunks, about ½”) yellow sweet potato (or can substitute white potato)
  • Chopped cilantro for serving
  • Extra lime wedges for serving
  • Chopped avocado tossed with lemon juice and dash of salt, for serving


  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, add water, onions, red and green peppers, salt and pepper, cumin seeds, oregano, allspice, and red pepper flakes. Let cook for 5-7 minutes until onions and peppers start to soften.
  2. Add garlic. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and let cook another few minutes to soften garlic - if sticking/burning, add another splash of water.
  3. After a few minutes of cooking, add 3½ cups beans (reserving one cup of beans), water, tomato paste, vinegar, lime juice, and maple syrup (start with ½ teaspoon).
  4. Using an immersion blender, puree soup until fairly smooth.
  5. Increase heat to bring to boil, add bay leaf and diced sweet potatoes, then once at boil reduce and let simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  6. Add remaining cup of black beans and extra maple syrup if desired (taste test). Stir through, let simmer for another few minutes, then serve, topping with cilantro if desired and with lime wedges. Also delicious to top soup with some chopped seasoned avocado or a simple guacamole.

    Sweet Potato Tip: Sometimes I have leftover sweet potato home fries that have been seasoned with just sea salt. If so, I take a recipe and chopping shortcut and simply add these to my soup during the last 5-10 minutes of cooking, just to heat through.

Healthy eating shouldn’t be a hassle.

With weekly meal plans customizable for any size table and any dietary restrictions, Forks Meal Planner takes the hard work out of healthy plant-based cooking.

Start Planning

Learn to cook plant-based meals at home

Forks Over Knives online cooking course will help you learn new techniques, flavors and styles to live your very best life.

Join the course
about the author

Dreena Burton

Dreena Burton has written five cookbooks charting her journey as a plant-powered cook and at-home mother of three. Always passionate about creating nutritious recipes, she is an advocate of using the “vegan basics” (beans, nuts, seeds, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables) to create dishes that are healthy but also very satisfying and delicious! For more on her plant-powered recipes and newest cookbook, Plant-Powered Families, visit

see more from this author
Free Download

7 Keys to Success on a Healthy Vegan Diet

Getting started on a plant-based diet or looking to refresh your eating habits? Download our practical guide to long-term success.

Have something to say about this article? Click to expand the conversation

More from Forks Over Knives

Join our mailing list

Get free recipes and the latest info on living a happy, healthy plant-based lifestyle.

Thank you! You have been successfully subscribed.