Galician Soup Broth (Caldo Gallego)

Caldo Gallego

 Xurxo Lobato/Getty Images

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 90 mins
Soaking Time: 12 hrs
Total: 13 hrs 40 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
554 Calories
9g Fat
79g Carbs
40g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 554
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 11%
Saturated Fat 3g 16%
Cholesterol 79mg 26%
Sodium 251mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 79g 29%
Dietary Fiber 16g 57%
Protein 40g
Calcium 163mg 13%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Galician Broth or Caldo Gallego is the traditional dish of Galicia, Spain. It is a region of rolling hills with cool, wet weather year-round. Galicia still has many small farms, where family plots of vegetables and herds of dairy cows dot the landscape. Galician Broth is the emblematic dish of the region and is eaten any time of the year because it is inexpensive, nutritious, and is a great way to warm up.


  • 8 ounce (225 grams) dry white beans
  • 32 ounce (1 liter) water
  • 1 ham bone
  • 1 veal (or beef) bone
  • 1 ounces (20 gram) pork fat
  • 2 handfuls fresh turnip leaves
  • 2 pounds (1 kilogram) potatoes
  • salt to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Rinse beans and remove any debris. Put beans in a pot and cover with water. Soak overnight.

  2. Peel and cut potatoes into small pieces (1-inch squares).

  3. Place two large pots on the stove, each with about 2 cups of water. In one pot, put in the bones, beans, and a pinch of salt and bring to a slow boil.

  4. When the beans are half cooked (30 to 60 minutes depending on the type of beans), remove the bones and add the pieces of potato and continue to simmer.

  5. Bring the second pot of water to a boil.

  6. Place the turnip leaves into the boiling water and boil for 5 minutes.

  7. Pour out the water and replace with 2 more cups of water.

  8. Bring to a boil again and cook for another 5 minutes. (This process releases the acidity of the turnip leaves and they will turn the water very green.)

  9. Remove the turnip leaves from the water and place in the pot with the potatoes and beans.

  10. Add the pork fat and water if necessary.

  11. Simmer until all the ingredients are well-cooked. Adjust the salt to taste.

Recipe Variation

  • This is a basic caldo gallego recipe. Add small pieces of pork and/or pieces of Spanish chorizo to give more flavor and color, if desired.