Gigantes Soup with Feta Cheese, Olives, and Olive Oil

Maria Loi

Loi - NYC

Gigantes are large, white beans that are popular in Greek cooking. If they aren't available, substitute other white beans, such as Great Northerns or flageolets.


4 to 6 servings


  • 1 pound dried gigante beans
  • 2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 5 kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Feta cheese to garnish


Rinse the gigantes and pick out any stones. Place in a large bowl and cover with water. Let soak overnight.

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Drain the beans and rinse well. Put the beans in a large pot and cover with water. Set the pot over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the beans are tender, about 50 minutes.

Drain the beans and transfer to a large baking or roasting pan with high sides. Add the celery, carrots, onions, tomatoes, olives, olive oil, parsley, tomato paste, and sugar. Toss to combine and add just enough water to cover everything. Cover the pan with foil, place in the oven, and cook for 1 hour. Remove the foil and continue cooking in the oven for another 10 minutes.
Working in batches, purée the soup in a food processor or blender. Divide among 4 to 6 soup bowls. Garnish with crumbled feta cheese before serving.