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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.
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American, French
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 524kcal


  • 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


  • 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.


  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.


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