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Lima Bean Soup

A yearly Lima Bean Festival in nearby West Cape May honors the many growers there and showcases different recipes using their crops. This comforting chowder was a contest winner at the festival several years ago. —Kathleen Olsack, North Cape May, New Jersey
  • Total Time
    Prep: 10 min. Cook: 30 min.
  • Makes
    12 servings (3 quarts)


  • 3 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) chicken broth
  • 2 cans (15-1/4 ounces each) lima beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 small sweet red peppers, chopped
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup half-and-half cream
  • 3 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled


  • In a Dutch oven or soup kettle, combine the first 12 ingredients; bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-35 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  • Add cream; heat through but do not boil. Sprinkle with bacon just before serving.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 110 calories, 7g fat (4g saturated fat), 22mg cholesterol, 431mg sodium, 9g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 2g fiber), 3g protein.

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  • Deborah
    Sep 30, 2020

    I used 3 cans of lima beans and full cream. This soup is addictive and delicious with garlic bread.

  • Nina
    Feb 20, 2019

    I have the original recipe for this Lima bean soup from the winner cape May Lima bean festival I love this soup , I been making it for year and it’s always a big hit , on the original recipe was heavy cream, not half

  • alan
    Nov 18, 2018

    Are we talking bell peppers or pepper peppers?

  • Sharon
    Nov 1, 2017

    I have been making this soup for many years..... it is one of my favorites!! I lost my paper copy of this recipe so thank goodness I found it on-line. I follow the recipe exactly which is rare for me. A fabulous soup.

  • Esther
    Sep 13, 2017

    This is so scrumptious! I will definately be making this again. I didnt have Marjoram but I had Herbes de Provence which had marjoram, oregano, basil,thyme & rosemary. I used that instead of marjoram & oregano. It was creamy but not too thick. I also didnt find frozen lima beans but I had dried lima beans which I soaked overnight. I put everthing in my instant pot cooked on high pressure for 35 minutes. Added the half & half when done. So easy to make on the instant pot

  • Rabid_Monkey202
    Mar 27, 2017

    Amazing! I'm extremely picky and prefer bland food, so I left out several ingredients and seasonings, but I literally cannot get enough of it! Next time I'll add the beans much later (they kind of dissolved after being cooked for so long).

  • kolate
    Oct 23, 2016

    Delicious! This will definitely be part of our soup rotation.

  • jbpar
    Oct 4, 2016

    My husband and I loved this soup! I did do a little tweaking because of what I had on hand. I used a bag of dried baby lima beans for the first time ever....I most usually buy frozen lima beans (fork hook or baby limas), as I do not like canned. I did cook the dried baby lima beans for a while before adding the other ingredients to soften them up first. And I did not have any sweet red peppers on hand but I had a seasoning jar of dried chopped sweet red and green peppers so I added some of that. It turned out great! Very thick and flavorful. Next time I'll make it with frozen limas and fresh sweet red peppers. And as others have commented on the difference of lima beans....the dried baby limas that I used tasted more like butter beans in my personal opinion. Lima beans have a different taste I think and are supposed to be green. That may not be correct, just commenting on what I was brought up on. Definitely will make again!

  • Pilatespro
    Jan 3, 2016

    It was delicious and easy to make:) Great food for a snowy day.

  • lsdteacat
    Jan 1, 2016

    My family loves this soup! Perfect the way it is but I bump-up the bacon to 5 or 6 strips for more flavor. Sometimes I add a bit of chopped chicken to make it heartier. I am trying it today with crumbled hot Italian sausage added, just to change it up a bit. So easy and so tasty! I love this soup. I would rate it one of my top favorites!