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This creamy bean soup cooks up hands-free in the slow cooker and gets topped with a sprinkling of smoky tempeh bacon.

You have my husband to thank for this one. After living together for five years I thought I’d squeezed every vegan recipe idea possible out of the guy. (I have a regular practice of grilling everyone I know for recipe ideas.) Then one day he comes out with vegan bean with bacon soup. A childhood favorite he tells me. Sounded good to me!

I don’t think I’ve ever actually had bean with bacon soup, but it seemed pretty straightforward. And so this vegan version is pretty basic, but it’s definitely one of those super cozy and comforting simple meals. He took one bite and was like “Yup! That’s bean with bacon soup all right!”

I decided this would be a good one for the slow cooker, so I went all out, started with some dried beans, and let the soup simmer away all day. I think my lasagna soup from last year pretty much sold me on the slow cooker, so these days I’m constantly looking for reasons to use it. Beany soup that requires a long simmer anyway is perfect slow cooker material, so I threw everything in and let the machine do it’s thing.

The bacon part of this soup does not cook in the slow cooker. All the smoky flavor would probably just run right out of it. That’s okay though! It sill works, because while the soup cooks away, you can let the tempeh bacon marinate. Once the marinating is done, it cooks up super quick in a skillet, so no big deal right? I think you’ll find the result to be delicious and well worth the extra five minute investment. 😉

5 from 1 vote Print

Slow Cooker White Bean Soup with Tempeh Bacon (Vegan Bean with Bacon Soup!)

This creamy bean soup cooks up hands-free in the slow cooker and gets topped with a sprinkling of smoky tempeh bacon. CourseSoup CuisineAmerican Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 5 hours Total Time 5 hours 10 minutes Servings 6 Calories 433 kcal Author Alissa


For the Soup

  • 1pounddried great northern beans,soaked in water overnight
  • 5cupsvegetable broth
  • 114 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 2tablespoonstomato paste
  • 1medium onion,diced
  • 2celery ribs,diced
  • 2carrots,diced
  • 4garlic cloves,minced
  • 1 ½teaspoonsdried thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Tempeh Bacon

  • 3tablespoonssoy sauce or tamari
  • 1tablespoonmaple syrup
  • 1tablespoonapple cider vinegar
  • 1teaspoonliquid smoke
  • 18 ounce package tempeh, cut into ½ inch cubes
  • 1tablespoonolive oil

For Serving

  • Cayenne pepper hot sauce
  • Chopped fresh parsley


  1. Make the soup first. Stir all ingredients except salt and pepper together in the slow cooker. Cook on high for about 5 hours, or on low for about 8 hours, or until the beans and veggies are tender. You can add some water during cooking if it becomes too dry. When the soup is finished cooking, season it with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. While the soup cooks, prepare the tempeh bacon. Stir the soy sauce, maple syrup, vinegar, and liquid smoke together in a shallow dish. Add the tempeh cubes and toss to coat. Allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes. You can leave it sit at room temperature for up to two hours, but place it in the fridge if you let it marinate longer.
  3. To cook the tempeh bacon, coat the bottom of a medium skillet with oil and place it over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the tempeh and cook for about 10 minutes, flipping 2 to 3 times to achieve browning on multiple sides.
  4. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with tempeh bacon, hot sauce, and parsley. Serve.

Recipe Notes

For even more smoky flavor, add a few dashes of liquid smoke to the soup while it simmers.

Nutrition FactsSlow Cooker White Bean Soup with Tempeh Bacon (Vegan Bean with Bacon Soup!)Amount Per ServingCalories 433Calories from Fat 77% Daily Value*Fat 8.5g13%Saturated Fat 1.8g9%Sodium 1267mg53%Potassium 1573mg45%Carbohydrates 63.4g21%Fiber 17.8g71%Sugar 9.2g10%Protein 29.5g59%Calcium 170mg17%Iron 6.7mg37%* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.« Vegan Saag Paneer (with Tofu Paneer!)Vegan Mocha Layer Cake »

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About Alissa Saenz

Hi, I’m Alissa! I’m a former attorney turned professional food blogger. I love creating vegan recipes with bold flavors! You can read more about me here.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Maja Harder says

    Never heard of Tempah bacon – but omg I have to try it!


    • Alissa Saenz says

      Tempeh bacon is a game changer! You should totally give it a try. 🙂


  2. Diane says

    Can I bake the tempeh bacon as I don’t use oil in my cooking? If so, how long and at what temp in the oven? Thanks


  3. Marcia says

    I made this for dinner last night. Unfortunately, we ate so late, I didn’t get around to the Tempeh but I will next time! It was a REAL HIT with my husband, just as is (as so many of your recipes are, thank you!) and he had a second helping. I only served myself two ladles of it because it was so late but ended up going back and getting a 3rd (our normal serving size)!

    I was surprised that there wasn’t more liquid, but all it did was remind me of my Mother who used to make what she called “stoup” which is a combo of stew and soup! That has ALWAYS been my favorite form of soup. Stephen (my amazing husband) said it was much more substantial than it looked like it would be, probably because the broth wasn’t thick. Whatever the reason, WE ARE VERY HAPPY! I bet it would be delish over a baked potato too and this time, I’ll add the bacon tempeh for sure!

    Thank’s for all you do to make US look so creative! Stephen has started to recognized your hand in the meals that come out of our kitchen and he knows he’s in for a treat! Happy hubby = happy life. Tan Q.


  4. Dianne Sylvan says

    Thank your husbeest a thousand times for this idea. I grew up on this soup, and when I saw the pics that look almost identical to the canned stuff (which for once is a compliment) I *had* to make it. I’m not that into tempeh so I just added a bunch of liquid smoke to the soup as it cooked, and it was soooooooo good. The thickness is spot on for my memory of Bean With Bacon and it smells just like it – I got this huge nostalgia rush thinking back to eating it with toasted cheese sandwiches as a kid. But now I can enjoy it as a vegan too!


  5. Abigail @ OhMyVegan says

    5 stars
    Such a great recipe!
    I always add a generous teaspoon of liquid smoke to give it that bacon flavor.
    Tastes just like the real thing.


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