When you want a delicious, satisfying hot-weather dish that’s a breeze to throw together, beans are there for you. “They offer a variety of flavours and textures and can go in many directions – hot, cold, rich and comforting, or elegant and refined,” says Christopher House, the chef at Cal-a-Vie health spa in Southern California.

 

And the body benefits of beans are powerful. “Packed with protein and soluble fibre, beans improve digestion and keep cravings at bay,” says Kara Ludlow, RDN, a registered dietitian nutritionist in California. Plus, beans are loaded with essential nutrients, including zinc, a mineral that supports your immune system, and iron, a mineral used to make proteins in red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout the body. Case in point: A half-cup serving of white beans, for example, contains 8 grams of protein, 5 grams of fibre, 3.2 milligrams of iron (nearly 18 per cent of the RDA), and 1 milligram of zinc (nearly 13 per cent of the RDA), according to the USDA.

 

In the summer months, though, the last thing you’ll want is a piping hot bowl of chilli. To get quell your hunger and score those key nutrients, make one of House’s protein-rich bean salads. Trust, they’re packed with flavour, are easy to make, and won’t make you sweat.

 

Calypso Bean Salad with Pesto

Serves: 4

 

Ingredients

  • 8 cups of water
  • 2 cups dried calypso beans, soaked overnight
  • 1 carrot, cut into large dice
  • 1 celery stalk, cut into large dice
  • 1/2 onion, cut into large dice
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup store-bought basil pesto
  • Protein rich salads
    Credits: Nathalie Jolie/ Unsplash

 

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring 8 cups of water; 2 cups dried calypso beans, soaked overnight; 1 carrot, cut into large dice; 1 celery stalk, cut into large dice; 1/2 onion, cut into large dice; and kosher salt to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook the beans until soft, for about 1 hour. Strain the beans, discarding the vegetables; let cool.
  3. In a medium saute pan, heat 2 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil over high. Add the beans, and saute until their exterior is crisp. Toss with 1/2 cup store-bought basil pesto. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Cranberry Bean Salad with Lemon and Olives

Serves: 4

 

Ingredients

  • 8 cups of water
  • 2 cups fresh or dried cranberry beans
  • 1 carrot, cut into large dice
  • 1 celery stalk, cut into large dice
  • 1/2 onion, cut into large dice
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 lemon, cut into quarters
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup nicoise olives, pitted
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Manchego cheese

 

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring 8 cups of water; 2 cups fresh or dried cranberry beans; 1 carrot, cut into large dice; 1 celery stalk, cut into large dice; 1/2 onion, cut into large dice; and kosher salt to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until beans are tender, for about 25 minutes.
  2. Drain beans, discarding the vegetables. Place beans in a medium bowl. In a small pot, add 1/4 cup grapeseed oil and 1 lemon, cut into quarters. Simmer on low heat for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove lemon, and cut into small dice; add to beans. Add 1/2 cup roughly chopped parsley; 1/2 cup nicoise olives, pitted; and 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil. Toss and season with salt and pepper. Garnish protein-rich salad with grated Manchego cheese if desired.

Sweet Corn and White Bean Succotash

Serves: 4

Protein rich salads
Credit: Tijana Drndarski/Unsplash

 

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup corn (white and yellow)
  • 1/2 cup sugar snap peas
  • 3/4 cup canned white beans
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon non-dairy butter or regular unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • Basil
  • Chervil

 

Directions

  1. Heat 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil on low in a medium nonstick skillet. Cook 1/4 cup diced onion and 1 cup corn (white and yellow) for 5 minutes (The corn should have no colour.)
  2. Add 1/2 cup sugar snap peas; 3/4 cup canned white beans; 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt; and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Raise heat to high, and cook for about 1 minute.
  3. Add 1 tsp non-dairy butter or regular unsalted butter. Add 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes, tossing quickly; remove from heat. Garnish with basil and chervil and your protein-rich salad is ready.

This story first appeared on www.shape.com

 

(Main and Feature Image Credit: Jen Causey)

 

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