Fasolada: a traditional greek white bean soup recipe

Main Dish
8 servings
12 hours
90 min
Fasolada is an amazing dish which is hardly known outside the borders of Greece. It’s a tasty soul-soothing bean, carrots and celery soup, which is widely popular in Greece. Definitely one of the most characteristic Greek comfort foods, it is called the National Food of Greece. Yes, not the souvlaki, the tzatziki or the moussaka;


Number of serving: 8
500gr/17oz white beans (dry)

500gr/17oz carrots (4 5 carrots), in 1cm (0.3 0.4 inch) thick slices

230gr/8oz (1 bunch) of celery, coarsely chopped (prefer celery leaves)

250gr/9oz (2 medium sized) onions, coarsely chopped

3lt (12cups) warm water

80ml (1/3 cup) olive oil

salt and pepper

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (per serving)

2lt (8 cups) water (for soaking the beans)


  • Put the beans in a large bowl, cover them with 2lt of water (room temperature), and let them soak all night. Rinse before starting to cook in the next morning.

    If you will cook the beans later in the day, it's better to put them in the fridge after rinsing, covered with some fresh water and rinse them again before cooking.
  • Step 2 - Fasolada: a traditional Greek white bean soup recipe
    Put the olive oil in a large pot, on medium to high heat. Once hot, add the onions and cook until they are translucent. At this point, add the rinsed beans and saute for 3-4 minutes.

    Next, add 8 of the cups of warm water (2lt), cover half the pot with the lid and reduce the heat to medium-low. Let it simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Step 3 - Fasolada: a traditional Greek white bean soup recipe
    Then, add the rest 4 cups of warm water (1lt), the celery and the carrots and continue cooking for 1 more hour. It's important to check that you always have enough water in the pot towards the end of the hour. Also stir every 5 minutes towards the end of cooking.
  • Step 4 - Fasolada: a traditional Greek white bean soup recipe
    After 1 hour, the beans and vegetables are ready (soft when bitten). If the beans are not fresh enough, they may be a bit hard. In such case, add some more water and continue cooking for 30 more minutes.

    At the end, the soup must have thickened, due to the starch from the beans. Add salt and pepper and stir.

    Serve with 1 tablespoon of olive oil on top of each dish, fresh lemon juice and ground pepper. Kali oreksi!
  • Step 5 - Fasolada: a traditional Greek white bean soup recipe

    1. When you have added the water, you don't have to be on top of the pot all the time. Stir every 10 minutes or so. Be more careful and stir more often towards the end of cooking time though, when some of the water will have evaporated.

    2. You can serve this dish with: black olives, spring onions (choppped and salted), any salted meat or fish, smoked herring or Greek sausage (Horiatiko Loukaniko).

    3. As mentioned, if the beans are not fresh enough, it may take longer to cook, so add warm water again and continue cooking until ready.

    4. If you prefer the red fasolada version, add 180ml (2/3 cup) grated tomato and 3 tablespoons of tomato paste along with the carrots and the celery. With this simple addition you 'll get a different, tasty alternative!


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