Cuban culinary traditions reflect the Spanish, African, and Caribbean roots of the island's population. Beans and rice, as in most Spanish-rooted cultures, are popular. And in Cuba, some kind of root vegetable is often added to the meal. Traditionally, this colorful, hearty soup can be made with pork bones or meat, but the same soup without the oinker is choaper and even more true to its ingredient flavors and colors. This recipe yields a very thick soup, so add water if you'd like a thinner version. If you're pressed for time, you could put all the ingredients in at one time, but adding the sweet potato after the beans are mostly cooked helps to preserve its texture and color.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1 cup dried black beans
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • Pinch of chile flakes
  • Salt
  • 2 jalapeno chiles, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 avocado, diced


In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and saute the onion for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the celery and carrots and cook for 2 minutes longer.

Transfer the mixture to a 7-quart slow cooker and add the tomatoes, black beans, and water. Cover and cook on LOW for about 6 hours.

Serves 4 to 6

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Submitted 9/3/11.
Source: 50 Simple Soups for the Slow Cooker by Lynn Alley
Submitted By: b smith

Cuban Black Bean and Sweet Potato Soup