As we shift into a time of darker, colder nights, hearty meals become the craving on everyone’s mind. This winter soup recipe fills that craving and also offers a platform for customization. The ingredients and texture of the soup can be interchanged to suit anyone’s needs, from a hearty meal on a winter night to a refined appetizer for a home-cooked dinner. Time to start the winter season with a bang!

Shelby Guy / Daily Nexus


  • 3 strips of turkey bacon, plus extra for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 15 ounce (1 can) of butter beans or cannellini beans
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 2 cups of chicken stock
  • ½ cup of orzo
  • 1 cup of water 
  • ¼ cup of feta cheese
  • Salt and ground pepper to taste


  • In a small skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until well browned. Remove and place the bacon on a plate covered with a paper towel and drain.
  • Pour off all but 1 teaspoon of the bacon fat from the pan.
  • Add the olive oil to the bacon fat and add the diced onions. Sauté the onions for 3-5 minutes or until just starting to brown.
  • Add the beans, thyme and chicken stock to the pan and raise the heat to high. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer. Half-cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Purée the soup, carefully, in batches in an upright blender or all at once with an immersion blender to your desired thickness. Put the soup back on the heat and add the feta, orzo, 2 strips of crumbled up bacon and the water. Cook for 5 minutes or until the orzo is tender and season to taste.

Adapted from: “A Feast of Ice and Fire: The Official Game of Thrones Companion Cookbook” by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer