Crema de Frijol {Creamy Bean Soup}

Creamy Bean Soup_Crema de Frijol

Very seldom do I make something so incredibly simple and delicious that I am at a loss for words.  But that's exactly what has happened to me with this creamy and silky Crema de Frijol (Creamy Bean Soup).

I will say one thing about this soup... I wish I had made more!  Actually, every time I make it, I wonder why I don't make it more often.

Crema de Frijol is a creamy bean soup made with beans, Mexican crema, chile de arbol and butter.

It's so easy that it doesn't matter what kind of bean you use.  Any bean will work in this soup.  (I used a combination of Peruano and Flor de junio.)  The only "must" in this soup is the chile de arbol.  I've tried making it with other chilies, like canned chipotles en adobo and dried ancho chilies, both of which I love, but their flavor outshines that of the beans.   But with chile de arbol, this soup becomes a whole different story.  A love story, of sorts, because the two flavors complement each other so well.  They bring out the best in each other and you can't imagine one living without the other.

Crema de Frijol_Creamy Bean Soup 1

Crema de Frijol
(Creamy Bean Soup)

  • 2 to 3 Arbol Chilies
  • 3 cups Cooked Beans (with broth) (Canned beans will work too!) 
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup Mexican crema

In a skillet or comal, toast the chiles de arbol over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes, just until they release their aroma.  Remove the stems from the chilies.

Puree the beans with the toasted chiles de arbol in a blender or food processor until smooth.  If the mixture is too thick, add one cup of water.

Melt the butter in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat.  Pour the bean puree into the saucepan.  Let cook, stirring occasionally, just until it begins to boil.  Reduce heat and stir in the Mexican crema.  Let simmer for about 2 minutes.  Season with salt, if necessary.

Garnish with chile de arbol flakes.  Enjoy!!!

Crema de Frijol_Creamy Bean Soup 2


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  1. If that road is ever built, or I eventually make it to your house, plaese promise me that you won't make this for me! LOL!

    If I liked beans, I would be all over trying this. But, I think I pass this time and all the times following! LOL!

    But, I can say that you are the queen of the kitchen so all other bean eaters, I demand you try making Leslie's lovely bean soup!

    Love ya, Leslie! You know that!

  2. @Valarie: Hahahaha! While I was writing this post, I kept thinking to myself that this is one recipe you wouldn't be commenting on, because I know how much you dislike beans. I wonder if you'd like beans if I baked them into a cake. LOL :)

  3. My shopping mission this week: Find those chiles. I'm not sure if we have them here but if we do I'm trying this recipe. I always have tons of beans and need new ideas for what to do with them. How would you describe the Mexican creme? Is it like a sour creme or more like a butter? We have so many different kinds and I don't want to mess it up.

    1. I know Leslie already answered your question, but I can elaborate a little. Mexican crema has about 25% fat, sour cream has about 20% fat, heavy cream is about 36% fat, and creme fraiche has about 48% fat, so I think the consistency is closer to sour cream but the taste is closer to creme fraiche.

  4. This does sound SOOOOO good! Pass me a bowl :D

  5. Leslie they sound really good, I've made a very similar recipe before, I love sopas de crema. you didnt say if it needs salt? will pinto beans work ?

  6. I love simple, yet gorgeous dishes! This sounds lovely, my kind of happy soup:-) oxox, Terra

  7. @Jennifer Reyes: The closest thing to Mexican crema would be Creme Fraiche or heavy whipping cream, but sour cream works great in this recipe. It's what I used to use when I lived in the States. :)

    @beautyqueen: Any kind of bean will do, especially pintos and/or black beans. The reason I don't mention adding salt until the end of the recipe is because everyone seasons they're beans differently when cooking and canned beans are usually saltier than beans cooked at home.

  8. LOL! HA! You would have to trick me like you tricked your family and make it without me knowing. I wouldn't voluntarily try making a cake that required beans. I seriously think they are the devil's food! LOL!

  9. What an easy way to use up cooked beans. Looks great!

  10. Are the arbol chilies really hot? I've never used them. The recipe sounds great, but I don't like really spicy things.

    1. Hi Angeline! Arbol chilies do pack a little heat. If you've never cooked with them, I suggest you use just one chile. Be sure to remove the seeds before adding the chile to the beans. :)

  11. Will dried Arbol chilies work?

    1. Yes, they will! That's actually what I used in this recipe. Sorry if I didn't specify that the chilies were dried. :)