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Winter Wine Picnic with Chicken and Bean Soup

Sylvia Fountaine
Just because the temperatures are dropping doesn't mean an outdoor adventure is out of the question. Make a big batch of this warm bean soup, pack it up in a thermos and head out with a blanket and a bottle of wine for a walk in the woods or a stroll in the park.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main
Servings 8 cups


  • 1-2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 1 celery stock chopped
  • 4-6 garlic cloves rough chopped ( or sub 1 ½ tablespoons granulated garlic)
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh rosemary chopped (or 1 tablespoon dried) or try fresh sage or thyme, or a combo (or even Herbs de Provence)
  • 1 bay leaf optional
  • 1 cup dried beans white, cannellini beans, pinto, kidney, heirloom beans
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast ( leave whole)
  • 4 cups flavorful chicken stock sometimes I’ll add an additional bouillon cube
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • crack pepper to taste
  • squeeze of lemon
  • Additional garnishes- fresh Italian parsley avocado, sour cream, chili flakes,


  • Turn the Instant Pot on, to the saute function and add the oil, onion, celery, and fresh garlic, and sauté 5 minutes until fragrant and tender. Add the remaining ingredients (except the lemon) – herbs, bay, beans, chicken breast (leave whole), chicken stock or broth, salt and pepper. Give a good stir and set pressure cooker to 30 minutes on high pressure. If using particularly large beans like lima, corona, or fava, increase time by 10-15 minutes.
  • Let the pressure release (either naturally, or let it out manually) and pull the chicken meat apart using two forks, shredding. Give a good stir, taste, adjusting salt and pepper and add a squeeze of lemon.
  • Serve with fresh chopped Italian parsley, and for added richness sour cream or avocado.