Red Bean Soup with Beef and Pumpkin

Red Bean, Beef  and Pumpkin Soup

One of the things I love most about Colombia is its many geographical, topographical, and climatic variations. Naturally, there are going to be variations in what people eat throughout the country as well, but beans are a country wide staple.

If you had to choose one food that you would miss the most if it were to be removed from your diet, what would it be? Sometimes that question comes to my mind and the answer to that question for me is beans!

They are, after all, a healthy, inexpensive protein. And even though beans have been a part of my diet my entire life, I still really enjoy cooking with them and eating them.

I love soups like this traditional Colombian Red Bean Soup. It gives me a complete dish in one bowl with many delicious flavors. This recipe is sure to be a hit… hearty and perfect for the many cold days to come.

Buen provecho!



(8-10 Servings)

  • 1 pound dried red beans
  • 1 1/2 pound beef, cut into small pieces
  • 12 cups of water ( more if necessary)
  • 1/2 cup aliños sauce
  • 1/2 cup hogao
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and grated
  • 1 cup butternut squash or pumpkin, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 pound yuca, diced
  • 1 ripe plantain, peeled and diced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Fresh cilantro

Sopa de Frijoles Rojos


  1. Wash the beans and soak overnight in cold water. Drain the beans and place in a large pot and add the water, aliños, carrots and beef. Over medium-high heat, bring the beans to a boil, then cover the pot and reduce the heat to medium-low. Allow the beans to cook until almost tender, approximately 2 hours.
  2. When the beans are almost tender, add the hogao, plantains, yuca, butternut squash, cumin, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for another 45 minutes or until the beans are fully cooked. (Add additional water as necessary).
  3. Add chopped fresh cilantro and serve with plain white rice.
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  1. says

    Wow, your photography is gorgeous! Not to mention the recipe looks delicious–the flavor looks like it would be out of this world.
    The one food I couldn’t do without: rice! Desde pequeña, siempre ha sido mi comida favorita–arroz blanco.

  2. Jenny says

    Hi Erica,

    I’m Colombian too and love your blog and recipes. Everything looks delicious and I can’t wait to visit my family in NYC (I live in Washington DC) to try and share some with them. When I was little, my mom used to make a salad with cooked carrots and beets, do you happen to have a recipe for it? If so could you post it?

    Best of luck and thanks so much for your hard work spreading the goodness of Colombian food. Your blog is a dream come true for me and I’m sure many others.



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