Butter Beans Are Having A Moment – Here Are 8 Recipes To Try

Butter beans are cheap, versatile, and packed with plant protein


6 Minutes Read

A butter beans salad recipe featuring tomatoes, spinach, and vegan cheese Butter beans are a great ingredient for a wide range of recipes - Media Credit: Happy Skin Kitchen

Oh, butter beans, a food worthy of their own love songs and Shakespearian sonnets. And don’t fret over their name having “butter” included, as these beans have been around much longer than when humans eating dairy became a thing. They’re also known as lima beans, and social media has recently become flooded with recipes containing them. As well as being delicious and versatile, butter beans are super healthy also.

They are a protein-packed member of the legume family and can assist with enhanced blood sugar control and improved heart health. Oh, and they are packed with essential nutrients such as iron, magnesium, and potassium.

Here are eight tantalizing recipes to unleash the protein power of these delightful beans in your cooking.

Butter bean stew

A vegan butter bean stew
Natlicious Food Butter beans are a great source of plant protein

This recipe, courtesy Natali Eleftheriou (owner of Natlicious Food) is full of veggies, including carrot, celery, and leek. It makes for the most comforting midweek dinner, and is ideal for meal prep also. The flavors of chilli, paprika, thyme, and more will have you revisiting this one again and again. 

Find the recipe here

Butter Bean Bourguignon

A vegan butter bean bourguignon
Jamie Orlando Smith This butter bean bourguignon is sure to impress

Butter? Bourguignon? Vegan?! You’d better believe it. This is a recipe that doesn’t have beef, and your tastebuds certainly won’t have beef with it either, as it’s quite simply delicious. 

This is a fully vegan take on the famous stew which originates in France. Butter beans exquisitely replace beef as the main ingredient. It comes from Matt Pritchard’s book Dirty Vegan: Fast and Easy.

Find the recipe here

Pesto butter beans

A bowl of vegan pesto butter beans next to some cutlery and bread
Plant Baes These pesto butter beans taste as good as they look

Butter beans are such a creamy little number, that they lend themselves so perfectly to this Plant Baes pesto butter beans recipe with aplomb. It also clocks up a bicep-exploding 35g protein per serving, so a great one to get down you after a strength workout. We tip our hat to the tofu for helping tip the protein scales on this one. Throw into the mix cashew and pine nuts, leeks, spinach, chill flakes, and more, and you’ve got one fiber-packed and succulent dish.

Find the recipe here

Harissa aubergine with butter bean mash

A plate of harissa aubergine served on butter bean mash
Yuki Sugiura Yes, you can make mash from butter beans!

This recipe list hasn’t peaked in the tastiness arena by any means. Because now we’re pairing butter beans with harissa aubergine (eggplant), and it’s a certified banger of a dish. This time, you’ll be creating an oh-so-creamy butter bean mash (it’s officially a thing!) This, paired with the aubergine and the flavor factor of olive oil, rose harissa, onion, garlic, and herbs and spices — mamma mia! It’s just the right amount of spicy. This recipe comes from So Vegan.

Find the recipe here

Butter beans pesto salad

Pesto butter beans, a vegan butter bean recipe
Happy Skin Kitchen Pesto and butter beans are a match made in heaven

It turns out butter beans and pesto are bezzie friends, as they’re being paired together once again for this scrumptious salad. Creaminess is clearly a consistent factor in this list, and this mouth-watering salad is no exception. Cherry tomatoes, red onion, rocket, the option of crumbled Greek style vegan cheese, and the walnuts and pine nuts for the pesto make this a sensation in its own right. Seeking a big hit of plant-protein, minerals, and fibre? Then get this Happy Skin Kitchen butter bean salad down your gullet. 

Find the recipe here

Vegan bean, orzo, and pesto salad

A vegan bean, orzo, pesto salad, all divided into separate containers for meal-prepping
Plant Baes This is a great recipe to store in the fridge and eat throughout the week

Diving straight back into the butter bean pesto salad vibes, this orzo version of the dish is an absolute dream for the meal prep gang out there. This dish from Plant Baes is protein-rammed and full of fibre with a full rainbow of veggie ingredients. If you do decide to meal prep this one, we’d suggest prepping a lot, as you’ll want to eat it as often as humanly possible, and the plant-based feta will have you chefs kissing up to the skies above. Sundried and cherry tomatoes, broccoli, asparagus, oh my. Let’s go, orzo!

Find the recipe here

Mushroom bourguignon with white bean mash and kale chips

A vegan mushroom Bourguignon with white bean mash and kale chips
Rebel Recipes Mushrooms work as a great meat alternative in a bourguignon

We’re doubling down on the butter bean mash — why should potatoes have all of the fun?  If you’ve got a dinner party planned, this is a dish to dazzle your friends with what a fancypants you are. The legends at Viva! have upgraded the traditional meat-heavy dish with the brilliant inclusion of kale chips and a generous portion of health-giving porcini mushrooms.

Find the recipe here

Bean, kale, and lemon stew recipe

A vegan kale, bean, and lemon stew
Rebel Recipes This kale and bean stew is a warm and high protein vegan dinner idea

Beans in stews, it’s just a thing that’s meant to be. And it’s great to see butter beans and kale teaming up to match their incredible health properties once more. Shout out once again to Viva! for this one. They’ve billed this one as the midweek meal of your dreams, and is quick and easy to assemble, only requiring 30 minutes of your time. Stews, a solid winter favorite, are many people’s favorite way of packing as many whole foods ingredients into a dish as possible, and this particular stew is no exception.

Find the recipe here

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