Nourish PA: Bean Gumbo

If you’ve got some odds and ends in the fridge — like a few cups of beans, a carrot or two, and some greens that need to be used up before they wilt — this gumbo is the perfect way to make the most of them! Bonus: This recipe will teach you how to make a roux with olive oil and flour, a technique you can use to give any soup or stew more complexity and depth.

Bean Gumbo

Serves 4-6
Prep Time Cook Time Total Time
10 min 45 min 55 min


  • 1/3 cup olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 bunch greens, such as kale, rinsed and chopped with stems
  • 1 (14-ounce) can tomatoes, not drained (keep tomato liquid)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or thyme
  • 2 onions, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into coin slices
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cups cooked dried beans, or 2 cans garbanzo or black beans
  • Salt and pepper


  1. In a pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Whisk in flour, reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until flour mixture is a dark reddish-brown, about 10 to 15 minutes (this gives the gumbo its rich taste).
  2. Stir in greens, canned tomatoes with liquid, dried oregano or thyme, onions, and carrots. Cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Add chopped garlic and 2 quarts (8 cups) water or liquid from the dried beans if you cooked dried beans from scratch (if you don’t have enough liquid, add water to make 8 cups).
  4. Continue stirring until liquid comes to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add beans, and cook additional 15 minutes.
  5. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

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