Tuxedo Soup

Last week, I got a note from a reader:

Great stuff but — It’s all about boating and cooking in the tropics. Where are the recipes for the colder latitudes? I’m planning to spend a winter on a narrow boat in northern England- rib sticking stews and soups and pies will be more the go.

Well, that made me realize that yes, I’ve put more of my “hot weather” recipes and “how to stay cool” info here on the site.  But we have definitely encountered our share of cool to downright cold weather on boats — ours, our friends’ and on charter.  And I do have a number of favorite cold weather recipes!

I originally wrote this for my column in PassageMaker magazine, where it appeared in the January 2013 issue.

My husband Dave and I made our first long distance trip helping a friend move his boat from the Bahamas to Rhode Island, traveling primarily up the ICW.  While we started out in tropical warmth, each day the weather was just a little cooler until it was noticeably chilly.

Our last day out, we went through New York harbor, first seeing the New York City skyline from a distance, then passing the Statue of Liberty, the World Trade Center (this was a few months before 9/11) and the United Nations – one of the most spectacular days I’ve ever had aboard a boat.  Despite being cool, we all spent the day on deck, gawking and taking photos.


We entered Long Island Sound as the sun set and the temperature dropped even further.  We needed a hot, hearty meal to warm us up.  Tuxedo Soup was perfect, along with a tomato salad and some garlic toast.

Tuxedo Soup – named for its use of black and white beans – is delicious yet simple to make, particularly if you’ve had chicken a few days before and cooked an extra piece or two.

Tuxedo Soup

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Serves: 4


1 can (16 ounces) white beans, such as Navy or Great Northern beans, not drained

1 can (16 ounces) black beans, not drained

1 bell pepper (any color), diced

1 onion, diced

1 tablespoon hot sauce, or to taste*

1 teaspoon chicken bouillon powder OR ¼ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons minced garlic OR 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 diced cooked chicken breast OR 1 can (6 ounces) chunk chicken or turkey, drained

*If you don’t like food that’s too spicy, try Pickapeppa sauce – it’s flavorful without being hot.

Mix all the ingredients except the chicken in a saucepan.  Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down and simmer for 45 minutes.  Add the chicken, stirring gently so as not to break it up.  Simmer for another 10 minutes, then serve.

Variation:  Instead of chicken, use 6 ounces of smoked sausage, cut in ¼” slices, and add it at the beginning of the cooking.

Vegetarian/vegan option:  Omit the chicken and use salt instead of bouillon powder.  If desired, add 1/2 cup of sliced carrots or parsnips.

Want more boat-friendly recipes? Check out The Boat Galley Cookbook with over 800 recipes or get a free PDF sample of it with 30 recipes:


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