Sausage and Bean Stew

Weeknights were made for Sausage and Bean Stew, a rustic French recipe that simmers up in one cozy little pot. Every bowl is bright tomatoes, creamy white beans, and topped with toasted bread.

Sausage and bean stew in white bowls.

This is one of my personal favorites! It’s so simple and tastes better than you imagine. The toasted bread croutons start out crispy from the oven but get soggy in the stew, and for some reason it’s just exactly what you want. If you like spicy, add extra red pepper flakes on top.

Recipe ingredients:

Labeled sausage and bean stew ingredients in various bowls.

Ingredient notes:

  • Italian Sausage: Sweet or mild, but you can use hot or spicy if you prefer. To substitute sausage links, brown them in the skillet with the onion, then transfer to a cutting board and chop into small pieces. Return to the pot.
  • Red onion: Yellow or white onions are fine too.
  • Thyme: Fresh thyme tastes a lot better than dried here. But, dried works if that’s all you have.
  • Red pepper flakes: Omit if you don’t like spicy food. Add more if you do!
  • White beans: You can use navy beans, great northern beans, Cannelini beans, or whatever beans you have in your pantry. To substitute dried beans, cook 8 ounces of dried beans separately and proceed with the recipe.
  • White wine: Choose a dry variety such as Chardonnay. Substitute water or chicken broth if you want to omit the wine.

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. To make the toasted bread chunks, arrange torn pieces of bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Broil until browned, about 5 minutes, shaking the pan as necessary for even browning. Remove from oven and set aside.
    Torn bread pieces on a silver baking sheet.
  2. In a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil until it shimmers, then add the sausage and the red onion. Cook until the sausage is cooked through and the onions are soft—stirring occasionally—5 to 7 minutes.
    Ground sausage and vegetables cooking in a silver pot.
  3. Stir in the garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes until fragrant, about 30 secdons. Add the canned tomatoes and their juice, one can of beans, and the white wine. Bring the stew to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
    Sausage and bean stew ingredients being added together in a silver pot.
  4. Stir in the second can of beans. At this point, you can adjust the consistency of the stew. If it looks too thick, add 1/4 cup of wine or water to the pot. Then give it a stir and check again. Season the stew to taste with salt and pepper. When you’re ready to serve, throw some chunks of bread over the top of each bowl, so they soak up the broth as everyone eats.

Recipe tips and variations:

  • Leafy greens: Go ahead and add a handful of kale or spinach! They add a lovely color and a boost of nutrition to the soup (and maybe help you clean out the fridge, too!).
  • Parmesan cheese: A sprinkle of cheese fits right in here.

Sausage and bean stew in a white bowl.

More delicious soup recipes:

Sausage and bean stew in a white bowl.

Sausage and Bean Stew

Weeknights were made for Sausage and Bean Stew, a rustic French recipe that simmers up in one cozy little pot. Every bowl is bright tomatoes, creamy white beans, and topped with toasted bread.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American, French
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 524kcal
Author: Meggan Hill

Ingredients

  • 4 thick slices bread torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for drizzling
  • 16 ounces ground Italian sausage sweet or mild (see note 1)
  • 1 red onion chopped (see note 2)
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons dried (see note 3)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional, or more to taste (see note 4)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes undrained
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans white beans rinsed, drained, and divided (see note 5)
  • 1 cup white wine or water, plus more as needed (see note 6)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and preheat broiler on high. Arrange the torn pieces of bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Broil until browned, about 5 minutes, shaking the pan as necessary for even browning. Remove from oven and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat, heat oil until shimmering. Add sausage and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sausage and cooked through and onions are softened, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Stir in garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes until fragrant. Stir in tomatoes and their juice, 1 can of beans, and wine. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered until stew thickens and darkens, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Add remaining can of beans to pot. If stew looks too thick, add more wine or water, 1/4 cup at a time until stew reaches desired thickness. Stir until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish individual portions with chunks of bread and a drizzle of olive oil.

Notes

  1. Italian sausage: Sweet or mild, but you can use hot or spicy if you prefer. To substitute sausage links, brown them in the skillet with the onion, then transfer to a cutting board and chop into small pieces. Return to the pot.
  2. Red onion: Yellow or white onions are fine too.
  3. Thyme: Fresh thyme tastes a lot better than dried here. But, dried works if that's all you have. 
  4. Red pepper flakes: Omit if you don't like spicy food. Add more if you do!
  5. White beans: You can use navy beans, great northern beans, Cannelini beans, or whatever beans you have in your pantry. To substitute dried beans, cook 8 ounces of dried beans separately and proceed with the recipe.
  6. White wine: Choose a dry variety such as Chardonnay. Substitute water or chicken broth if you want to omit the wine.
  7. Leafy greens: Go ahead and add a handful of kale or spinach! They add a lovely color and a boost of nutrition to the soup (and maybe help you clean out the fridge, too!). 
  8. Parmesan cheese: A sprinkle of cheese fits right in here.

Nutrition

Serving: 2cups | Calories: 524kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 843mg | Potassium: 391mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 240IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 2mg
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  1. Susie

    Super easy and super tasty! I only used 1/2 lb. Italian sausage. Made my croutons out of Focaccia bread.5 stars

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