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Spanish Bean Soup (Garbanzo Bean Soup) takes you on a trip to Tampa Bay, where Cuban heritage is so alive & full of flavor. This simple soup is made with garbanzo beans, potatoes & savory sausage and is just bursting with deliciousness!

Spanish Bean Soup in a white bowl with a slice of buttery garlic bread.

This soup is a staple in the Tampa Bay Area. The Cuban heritage here brings with it such wonderful food. I am a very lucky girl to live here.  We have such diverse cuisine and I get to enjoy and share it all with  you! 

Now let me say y’all this is my version of this soup. (This is my disclaimer for all the die hards -lol) Some people use Chorizo and ham and it is wonderful like that, but this a little spin on it I came up with. Actually, I should give my mom some of the credit. She made it similar to this, I just adapted it a bit. I let this cook in the Crock Pot all day, mom made hers on the stove top. It can totally be done that way as well. My family and friends just love it and request it often. So, I hope you will too!

Spoon Spanish Bean Soup
A little background on my Version of Spanish Bean Soup recipe

We started out making this soup from a Dixie Lilly bag mix (shhh, don’t tell anyone), but found it hard to find at one time and came up with my own recipe. I must say I am so glad I did!  This recipe is so much better. It’s such a savory, heartwarming bowl of Cuban vivaciousness!  Are you dancing yet!!

Oh you mustn’t forget some warm Cuban bread to dip in it! Or an Authentic Cuban Sandwich is perfect with this! Um Ummm UMMMMMM!!!  Just completes it!

Items you need to make Spanish Bean Soup

  • dried garbanzo beans
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • Minced garlic, garlic powder or garlic salt
  • Vigo spanish seasoning
  • chicken stock
  • red potatoes
  • beef smoked sausage (or any smoked sausage) – chorizo is traditionally used
  • Water 
the pinterest image for this spanish bean soup recipe aka garbanzo bean soup recipe

How to make Spanish Bean Soup (Garbanzo Bean Soup)

Step 1.   Rinse beans, cover with water and add 1 tablespoon salt. Soak overnight.  If you forget this step, just boil on stove top for 1/2 hour. 

Step 2.   Add beans with water to crock pot or soup pot. (If watching sodium: You can drain water and add beans to pot. Then add water as needed after all other items are added). Next add chicken stock or broth, cubed potatoes, cut up sausage, minced garlic, pepper and Vigo seasoning. I do the seasoning last so not to splash it out.  You will see what I mean – lots of color 🙂

Step 3.   Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours in CrockPot or bring to boil on stove top then reduce to med low for 2 to 3 hours (or more).

TIP:  I always taste soup (a few hours before done) and add any additional salt, pepper, garlic (or garlic powder) as needed to taste. 

More Cuban inspired Recipes you May Enjoy

an overhead view of this spanish bean soup aka garbanzo bean soup recipe
4.89 from 69 votes

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Spanish Bean Soup (Garbanzo Bean Soup)

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 16
Author: Nikki Lee
Spanish Bean Soup (Garbanzo Bean Soup) takes you on a trip to Tampa Bay, where Cuban heritage is so alive & full of flavor. This simple soup is made with garbanzo beans, potatoes & savory sausage and is just bursting with deliciousness!


  • 1 lb bag of dried garbanzo beans
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced (you can also use garlic powder 1/2 to 1 teaspoon according to your taste)
  • 3 packets Vigo Spanish seasoning
  • 32 ounces chicken stock
  • 3 pounds red potatoes, cut up into bite sized cubes
  • 2 packages beef smoked sausage, sliced & quartered
  • 6 cups Water, Approx 3 cups to soak and more to add as needed as soup cooks down


Prepare Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas)

  • Rinse beans, cover with water and add 1 tablespoon salt. Soak overnight. If you forget this step, just boil on stove top for 1/2 hour.


  • Add beans with water to crock pot or soup pot. (If you want less sodium drain first, add ingredients then fill with fresh water as needed after all other items are added)  Add chicken stock, cubed potatoes, cut up sausage, minced garlic, pepper and Vigo seasoning.
  • Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours in crock pot or bring to boil on stove top then reduce to med low for 2 to 3 hours (or more).


Notes: I always taste soup (a few hours before done) and add any additional salt, pepper, garlic (or garlic powder) as needed to taste.
* You may also use chorizo sausage for the more traditional recipe. (But this one gets rave reviews and is a family favorite so I recommend trying it as is) 
For a thicker consistency: As the soup cooks the beans often break down and thicken the soup. If you want it thicker you can pull out some of the beans and mash and return to pot.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1.5 cup Calories: 184kcal (9%) Carbohydrates: 33g (11%) Protein: 9g (18%) Fat: 3g (5%) Saturated Fat: 1g (6%) Cholesterol: 2mg (1%) Sodium: 467mg (20%) Fiber: 6g (25%) Sugar: 5g (6%)

Nutritional Disclaimer

Soulfully Made is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

©️Soulfully Made

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    1. They used to mostly all be 16 oz now they are smaller sometimes. You can use either. I would go with 16 if you can because we like it meatier, but they both work well.

    1. 5 stars
      One of the best recipes I have now thanks to Nikki. I ordered this soup at Columbia Restaurant in Ybor City fifty years ago on my birthday and am thrilled to be able to make this soup. My son has requested this for his birthday coming up and that will be the fifth time I have made it! I make it exactly as the recipe.
      Nikki, thank you for meeting up with a milestone in my life! You are excellent at what you do!

      1. Thank you so much, Deborah! This has made my day. It is such a tradition at our house and glad to know it is part of yours as well! Happy birthday to your son! My son always requests this soup as well!

      2. Thank you for sharing this recipe! I am also from the Tampa area and looked everywhere for a dup recipe of our famous Spanish restaurants. I did this the crockpot method with the ingredients you listed. I drained the beans and then added 6 cups of water along with the 32oz of chicken stock. After 8 hours a lot of the liquid was soaked up by the beans and red potatoes so I actually added another 32oz of chicken stock at the 8hr mark to give it more soup broth. Absolutely delicious! Just curious if yours soaks up a lot of liquid too and if you end up adding more water/stock after it’s cooked for awhile ?

      3. Thank you, Phoebe. Sometimes I do have to add a little water or broth and others more. I think so many factors can contribute, like the slow cooker heat, the beans, and the water content in the potatoes. I am so glad you enjoyed it! My family has been asking me to make again soon. So it’s on my menu for this week.

  1. 5 stars
    THE best soup!! Make as directed!! Huge hit at parties here in the Tampabay area! It’s a winner with the Texas family, too!?

    1. Thank you, Kat! So very glad to hear you and your family enjoyed it! We are making it this year for our Christmas Eve celebration!

  2. This looks good. Just wondering on the sausage or other meat. Two packages of sausage could vary based on the package. Can you provide an approximate weight?


    1. It can vary but usually 12-16 ounces per package. The ones I buy are now 12 ounces. They used to be packaged at 16 ounces.

  3. LOVE This! A friend from Plant City (who now lives in D.C.) wrote me recently asking for the recipe for the Spanish Bean Soup I often made in college. I had to admit it was, shhhh!, that awesome Dixie Lily mix mom always used. Reading your recipe also made me miss that fresh Cuban bread also available in the local Publix supermarket. Hard to find that in Atlanta. Thanks for the good memory!

    1. I hope your friend enjoys it! I think if I ever moved away from the area that would be something I sure would miss! Glad this recipe could bring you some wonderful memories. I love so many memories are surround a meal and the recipe.

  4. I actually grew up eating this, this is actually a cuban recipe brought from Spain. My mom and grandma always added cabbage, ham and cuban pumpkin. So good, I make mine in a pressure cooker. But this slow Cooke recipe is amazing.

  5. 5 stars
    Adding to my previous reply…I used my InstantPot on this and it was great. I cooked it on the ‘bean’ setting first before adding chorizo and potato. Stopped it, then added the chorizo and potato, just to cook that through. Beans were starting to fall apart, but the soup was thick and flavorful. Just a little too salty for me.

  6. 5 stars
    I made this with a ham hock and 2 chorizo sausage links. Couldn’t find Vigo seasoning so used Sazon, which must be similar. In the end, it was absolutely delicious BUT extremely salty. Could be because of the ham hock? I would cut back somewhere. But that isn’t a game changer! I normally don’t use much salt in cooking. This really was wonderful.

  7. Finding this recipe made my day. I went to college at UT and worked at Valencia Garden one summer and this soup was on their menu! So sad they closed years ago… their food was amazing and I even served the mayor there once! I thought about this soup lately and had no idea it was unique to the Tampa area. Will be trying it soon!

    1. I am so glad you found it Mari! A few wonderful gems have closed in Tampa and it is so sad. I so hope you enjoy it!

  8. I’m a tampa native and grew up having this soup every Christmas Eve. Well this year looks a little different and I’m going to take a stab at making it myself and found your recipe ? can’t wait to try it, thank you!!

    1. Hi Jenna! Mine is a little different and you can use some chorizo and ham in place of the sausage, if you like to make it a little more authentic. This is always a big hit as is when I serve it, so I recommend trying it like the recipe states at least once. It thickens the more it cooks (or the next day when reheating) as the beans break down too (that may be the difference you see). If you like it thinner you can cook a little less or do not mash up beans. I hope you enjoy it! Please let me know how it turns out.

  9. 5 stars
    I grew up eating the canned version of this soup that was sold by the Garcia Canning Company back in the day. They just disappeared years ago and I had been looking for my Spanish Bean Soup fix ever since. I ran across this recipe and tried it. I used the smoked chorizo sausage because I recall bits of that being in the Garcia’s version. I also can’t find Vigo seasoning but the Goya Saison Goya works quite well in this soup. I use 2 envelopes for the perfect seasoning. More will overpower the soup I think. Oh I also mince up some onion and saute that in some olive oil in the pot with the minced chorizo and garlic before adding the Saison Goya and the stock. Bring to boil and then add peas and potatoes. Now, as to cooking … there is no way you can cook this for more than 30 minutes, 45 minutes tops or you will just cook the beans and potatoes away. At 35-45 minutes the potatoes are very soft and giving up some starch to the broth and making a nice soup. This is not a simmer all day soup. It’s done in 30-45 minutes.

    1. So glad you enjoyed it! The all day cook is in a slow cooker. You are correct it doesn’t have to cook all day on stove top.

  10. We lived in Brandon (just below Tampa). We used to go to a Cuban restaurant there for this soup. I have never seen it anywhere else. I love soup, this is my favorite!

    1. Hi Linda. I am also from Brandon. I live in Lexington Ky now and I moved mom up here. We have been craving the recipes we all used to make. She specifically asked for Garbanzo Bean Soup so I am so happy to find this recipe. I also have mom’s Gasparilla Cook Book! That recipe asks for Chorizo. But I’ll stick with the ham. So good to hear from another Brandonite!

      1. I hope your mom and you both enjoy it. Ham and Chorizo are def traditional and either or both can be used in place of the sausage. I am glad that you found a recipe from home.

  11. 5 stars
    This soup is excellent !!
    I resorted to using chorizo because I had it on hand. I also had to make my own Spanish seasoning to the seasoning I added to a tsp of tumeric just for color.

    Again fantastic recipe !!

    1. Thank you Ron! Chorizo is excellent in this too! I am so glad you enjoyed it! It is really one of my most favorites soups too!

  12. Is there a way to modify this recipe to an Instant pot? I’m cooking in a crock pot this time but would love to try my instant pot next time. Thanks!

    1. I have not tested it yet. But It is on my list to try. I will post it and let you know when I get it perfected.

  13. What is Vigo spanish seasoning? Is that a discontinued product? Or a nickname for an actual product? I have searched all over the website for Vigo foods and there is no such product listed. Please let me know what the real seasoning is or what you would use in place of a pre packaged product.

      1. Nikki, I use Sazon, Goya, con azafran. It’s a small box with packets. It gives the soup the color and flavor that it’s supposed to have. I’ve lived in Tampa all my life and have grown up eating the cuban staples. Most locals know how to make the everyday dishes like chicken and yellow rice, picadillo, etc. The Sazon gives great flavor to a lot of dishes. I love it on home fries

      2. Sazon works too! They have great products. I use it in other recipes like black beans. Are you still in the Tampa area? I love it here it’s such a wonderful place to grow up!