Favorite Legume Recipes??

tanders(Zone 5)June 29, 2006

Hi! I just came across this new forum and was excited to see that it includes one of my favorite foods on the planet--beans--any and all kinds!

I was hoping others would like to share some of their favorite recipes using legumes?

I hope it's an appropriate topic and I'm not going to get scolded for not posting this in the cooking section....

Thanks! I'll come back when I have more time to post a few of my favorites if it's OK.

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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

I'm rather a minimallist when it comes to cooking with beans, My favorite bean thing to do is to boil up some water and toss in a few strips of bacon, then add Jacobs Cattle beans (presoaked) and cook until tender over a simmer, tastey as can be.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2006 at 9:59PM
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fliptx(Houston 9)

I don't have a name for it, but it's one of my favorite ways to eat legumes:

(Apologies in advance for my rather vague quantities. I never pay attention to how much I use.)

1 lb Roma beans, cut into one inch pieces and blanched
1 can cannellini or other white beans, drained and rinsed
1 large can peeled tomatoes, including juice, chopped
diced onion
crushed garlic
olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
shaved parmesan

Saute onion in olive oil, add everything else but the parmesan and lemon. Cook over medium high heat until beans are the tenderness you prefer. Remove from heat. Add a squirt of lemon. Serve over rice, pasta, polenta, etc. Top with parmesan.

Sometimes I also add sliced Boca smoked sausage.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2006 at 10:00PM
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john90808(z10 So Cal)

There was a recent thread on bean recipes over on the harvest forum. I have included the link. There are some good recipes over there.

Also, if you peruse the book sites (e.g., Amazon, etc), you will find lots of cookbooks dedicated to bean recipes. I have two called "Easy Beans" and "Easy Beans-2" that I often utilize.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bean Recipes

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 10:41AM
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gardenlad(6b KY)

"Favorite" is too definative a word. Instead, here is a cross-sampling of some of the dozens of recipes I have using beans and other legumes:


2 cups dried limas
1 medium onion, chopped
1-2 hot chiles, chopped fine
2-3 cloves garlic, mashed
2 tbls tomato paste
1 tbls butter
1 cup green pepper, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 14-oz can whole tomatoes
Pinch dried thyme
1 tsp brown sugar
salt & pepper to taste

Cook limas until tender, reserving some of the broth.

Heat butter in a large pan. Saute garlic, onion and peppers until on8on is golden. Add celery, tomatoes, tomato paste, thyme, and sugar. Cook until all veggies are tender, about 15 minutes.

Add drained beans and simmer a few minutes to meld flavors. Add as much reserved bean both as you like to achieve the desired consistency---which can be very thick to soup-like, however you wish.


4 cups black-eyed peas or other cowpeas
1 red onion, sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1 Jalepeno, diced
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 large eggs
2 tbls flour
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup parsley
2 1/2 cups bread crumbs
1/3 cup oil.

Cook peas. Drain. Divide in half.

Mix half the peas with the onion, red pepper, Jalepeno, parmesan, four, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Run through foodprocessor in batches. Blen in 1 cup bread crumbs and the eggs. Fold in reserved whole peas.

Scoop out 1/2 cup of the mixture. Form into cakes about 3" in diameter and 1/2" thick. Coat with remaining breadcrumbs. Chill finished cakes.

Heat oil in a heavy skillet. Cook cakes a few at a time, uncovered, 4-5 minutes per side, turning once. Drain cakes and place on a baking sheet in oven to keep warm.

Mango salsa goes very well with these.

I often make them smaller (2 tbls per), and serve them as a small plate or appetiser.


2 tbls olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
2 large jalepenos, minced
1 tsp chile powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 16-0z cans black beans, rinsed & drained, or equivalent
2 tbls lime juice

Heat olive oil in havey skillet. Add onion and chiles and cook until onion is translucent, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Add chili pwder and cumin. Stir 30 seconds. Add beans and lime juice. Cook until heated through, stirring and mashing means slightly, about 4 minutes.

Can be made ahead of time and thinned with water if necessary


8 oz lentils
1 large onion, chopped fine
8 garlic cloves, mashed
3 tbls olive oil
1 cup ground pecans
3 cups breadcrumbs
1 tbls tomato paste
1 tbls red wine
1 1/2 tsp oregano
3 tbls parsley, chopped
3 eggs
salt & pepper to taste

Cook the lentils. Drain.

Saute the garlic and onion until lightly colored. Remvoe from heat and add the nuts, lentils, breadcrumbs, tomato paste, wine, oregano, parsley and eggs. Season with salt & pepper.

Line a loaf pan with buttered foil. Place the mixture in the pan, pressing down hard, and cover with buttered foil. Bake at 350 for one hour.

Let pan sit a few minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and turn out the loaf. Serve in thick slices.

I like this with a mushroom sauce, either white or brown.

I had posted these on the bean recipe thread John has linked to. So if you go over there and they sound familiar, that's why.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 2:27PM
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username_5(banned for no reason)

Wow, lots of recipes to try out. I just like green beans saute'd with oil, onions and garlic at the end. Sometimes some bacon strips.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 10:24PM
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fliptx(Houston 9)

Gardenlad, I'm so glad you shared that lentil and nut loaf recipe. I was just in my fridge, looking at a bowl of leftover lentils, thinking, "I should find a good lentil loaf recipe." And here it was!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 10:38PM
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gardenlad(6b KY)

You actually get leftover lentils, fliptx? Not around here we don't. I almost always have to start by first cooking a mess of them.

Lately we've been using the Indigo (aka French, aka Purple) ones, as they seem to have a smokey flavor we find appealing. One recipe we particular like is

Scallops with Braised Lentils

6 slices bacon, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 cup lentils
3 cups vegetable stock
1 bay leaf
2 tbls butter
1 lb bay scallops
3 tbls white wine vinegar
chopped fresh parsley

Cook bacon until browned. Drain, crumble and reserve. Pour off all but 2 tbls oil, reserving balance. Add onion and carrot to drippings in pan and saute until onion is almost tender, abut 5 minutes. Add lentils, stock, and bay leaf. Bring to simmer, cover, and cook until lentils are tender (time depends greatly on which color lentils are used). Set aside and keep warm.

Melt butter in heavy skillet over high heat. Season scallops with salt & pepper. Add to skillet and stir until just cooked, about 3 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.

Add vinegar to skillet, bring to boil, scraping up any browned bits. Whisk in enough reserved bacon drippings to make a dressing.

Make a bed in lentils. Spoon scallops over lentils. Spoon dressing over scallops and sprinkle with reserved bacon and parsley.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2006 at 6:05AM
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fliptx(Houston 9)

"You actually get leftover lentils, fliptx? Not around here we don't."

I'm the only one I know who eats them, strangely enough. So when I cook them, I either only cook a small amount, or have leftovers. Somewhere around here I have a great recipe involving red lentils, green onions, lemon juice, and feta cheese, served over rice. I guess that IS the recipe, now that I think about it!

    Bookmark   July 1, 2006 at 11:22AM
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glover(z7 DC)

This one appeared many years ago in our community garden cookbook - it works on that old theory - take something really healthy and add fat (ha ha). But it's really simple, delicious and elegant.

Adrienne's Green Bean Salad

3/4 c. olive oil
1/2 c. white wine vinegar
1 garlic clove
1/2 cup. minced mint leaves
1 lb green beans
1/2 or so red onion diced
some crumbled feta cheese
a handful or so of chopped walnuts

1. Make a dressing of the first 4 ingredients in a blender.
(This makes a lot - you can get by with less)
2. Boil/steam beans for about 4 min. Run under cold water and pat dry.
3. Toss beans, feta, red onion, walnuts with the dressing and serve. Best to make day of use - dressing turns the beans a less appetizing color by the next day - still tastes great, but doesn't look as pretty.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 10:06AM
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I like to eat dried or fresh pinto beans. Cooked until tender in a pot with a lot of chopped onion, garlic, some red pepper flakes, salt, and a chopped jalapeno. If you're a meat eater, you can throw in some cooked bacon. They taste great with fresh biscuits or tortillas.


    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 12:54PM
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Here is an unusual one from my Indian cookbook. They are just as good without the butter dressing... if you want it less soupy and more beany then use less water.

Lentils with a Butter Dressing:

3/4 cup red lentils
2 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon ginger pulp
1 teaspoon garlic pulp
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
salt to taste

butter dressing:
1 tblsp. oil
1/3 cup butter
1/2 teasp. onion seeds (I never have these)
3 whole garlic cloves
1 onion sliced
2 tomatoes sliced
1 green chile
cilantro to taste

heat the oil and butter, saute everything about 2 minutes and pour over the red lentils. Serve with rice, as a side, or with some good bread.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 2:17PM
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Blane_in_MS(z8a Mississipp)

My goodness! what is this a french cooking class? Were talking about beans here...theres just too much receipt stuff going on!

Really, we want beans or some gorm-ay dish for the county fair!

Go ahead with your trials, and whatnots...but I keep it simple, Good mess of picked pole beans or bush, 2 or 3 strips of bacon, or ham hock....and let em slow cook all day.

Then I serve em to the kids when theyre Army green-colored...but my serving, I let it get a little darker, till almost burnt!!! Mmmmm-Howwy!!!

Whats left is mine! Burnt lightly, nobody like that, but me! Have at it!

    Bookmark   July 4, 2006 at 8:35PM
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How did this thread slip by me?!!? This is a regional favorite. For the greens you can use escarole or even spinach (any greens you like cooked will work). I like the contrast of the spicy Italian sausage & hot pepper flakes with the milder taste of the beans.

Beans n Greens, Italian Style

1 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, about 8 ounces
3 cloves garlic
1 bunch fresh broccoli raab or kale, about 1 pound
One 14.5-ounce can fat-free, reduced sodium chicken stock
Two 14.5-ounce cans cannellini beans
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Hot pepper flakes

1)Put the sausage in a large heavy skillet. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, depending on the thickness of the sausage. Cook until the sausage is lightly browned and has no pink in the center.
2)Meanwhile, put the oil in a 12-inch sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Peel and quarter the onion and peel the garlic. Put the onion and garlic in a food processor and pulse until chopped. (Or chop by hand.) Add the onion and garlic to the skillet, stir, and increase the heat to medium high.
3)While the garlic and onion cook, cut off 1 inch from the bottom of the bunch of broccoli raab and remove any withered or yellowed leaves. Then lay the bunch on its side on a cutting board. Cut the bunch crosswise beginning at the top. The leafy tops should be cut into ribbons about 3/4-inch-wide. The stem portions should be no more than 3/8-inch wide. Put the broccoli raab into the sauté pan with the onion and garlic. Add the chicken stock, stir, cover, and increase the heat to high.
4)Empty the cans of beans into a colander and rinse. When the broccoli raab mixture comes to a boil, add the beans, salt and pepper to taste, and hot pepper flakes, if desired. Stir well, cover, and reduce the heat to medium high.
5)When the sausage is done, cut crosswise into 1-inch wide pieces. Add to the broccoli raab and beans. Stir well and cover. Cook about 4 minutes or until the greens are just tender. Serve with crusty Italian bread.
Serves 4

    Bookmark   July 12, 2006 at 1:10PM
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hemnancy(z8 PNW)

I really like to keep it simple. I just boil up the beans, season with lemon pepper, and melt some cheese on top. That's my favorite way to eat summer squash, too. If you want you can add some cubed cooked chicken or whatever.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 6:26AM
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jimster(z7a MA)

Booberrie's recipe for Greens and Beans is a long time favorite. It's simple to make, delicious and healthful. For a vegetarian version, omit the sausage and increase the olive oil a little. I like escarole best for the greens. The slight bitterness makes it zesty. And dried canellini beans come out just a little better, IMO, than canned ones. Cannelini is best, but other white beans can be used if necessary.

Greens and beans can be served as a side dish or they can be used as a topping for pasta. (You get the full complement of essential amino acids.) Small shells combine very nicely with the greens and beans. Sprinkle with cheese.

Thanks for posting that, Boo.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 1:52PM
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Glad you like the recipe Jim. I'm surprised there aren't any (Yankee) chili recipes listed!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 8:42AM
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gardenlad(6b KY)

The fact is, Booberry, that anyone with a good chili recipe keeps it secret. Chili cooks are notoriously close-mouthed.

Take me. I make the second best chili in the world. I could tell you what's in it, but then I'd have to kill you. :>)

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 2:46PM
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Ok Gardenlad, no chili recipe for you (I feel like the bean Nazi).


I did find this thread on Dilly beans on the Harvest forum. I guess dilly bean recipes aren't as sacred as chili.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 4:14PM
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jimster(z7a MA)

I make a wicked good chili (you didn't expect me to say otherwise, did you?), but it has no beans in it. And I don't have a recipe.


    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 11:38PM
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granite(z6 NC)

I like to fix lentils in the crockpot...sorry, no measurements, just use the # cups you would want to feed your family:

Crockpot lentils

Spinach or Swiss Chard

Use water or chicken broth as a base. Be sure to check liquid content after 1 hour to make sure it does not cook dry. (Generally, 1 cup dry goods to 2 cups water works). Cook 4 hours on high or longer on low.

Sometimes I cook a pot of brown and wild rice. I mix the lentil dish with the rice, top with cheese, and bake.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2006 at 12:25PM
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jessyf(Z10 So Cal)

For those of you who like a 'smokey' flavor with your beans or lentils, try adding the crushed seeds from a few pods of black cardamom (available at Penzeys - online and in their store).

    Bookmark   July 31, 2006 at 1:34PM
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Goodness. My beans are fairly simple. I had a 1 to 3 heaping tablespoons of chili powder. The more chili powder the more ranch style like. Most times I'll include a little ham.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2006 at 2:18PM
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Cuban black beans (similar to BB soup but thicker)
I'll try to find the recipe.

Green beans made with a small addition of seasoned tomatoes
(The BEST GBs I've ever had [and the south is filled with good GB recipes], which is made by the church ladies at the local Greek Orthodox Church for the annual Greekfest eating festival.)

    Bookmark   August 5, 2006 at 8:22PM
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Split Bean Soup


Mung Daal 1 cup
Broth/Stock (Chicken or Vegetable) 4 cups
Onion 1, medium (chopped)
Tomato 1, medium (chopped)
Green Beans ¼ cup (chopped)
Cauliflower ½ cup (chopped)
Frozen Carrots & Peas ½ cup
Ginger 1 tsp (minced)
Garlic 1 tsp (minced)
Green Chili to taste
Salt to taste
Oil 1 tbsp
Mustard Seeds ½ tsp
Curry Leaves 1 sprig
Lime juice to taste
Cilantro for garnishing (finely chopped)
Green Chili for garnishing (finely chopped)
Fried Onions for garnishing


1. Wash and drain the Mung Daal.
2. In a pressure cooker, add the following - Mung Daal, Broth (3 cups), Onions, carrots & peas, Ginger, Garlic, Tomatoes, Cauliflower, Green Beans, Green Chili and Salt.
3. Mix well and let it whistle 2 times. Turn the stove off and let the pressure release by itself.
4. Once the pressure has gone, open and mix well.
5. In needed, transfer the Daal to a bigger pot.
6. Add in the balance of the Stock.
7. Blend well using a handblender or a blender.
8. Add Lime/Lemon Juice to taste.
9. For the seasoning, take a pan, add in the Oil and heat.
10.Add in the Mustard Seeds and allow them to splutter.
11.Wash the Curry Leaves and place on the Daal.
12.Pour the seasoning over the Curry Leaves.
13.Mix well and allow it to come to another boil.
14. Pour into soup bowls and serve.
15. For this soup, garnishings are very important. So garnish with Lemon/Lime Juice, Cilantro, Green Chilis and/or Fried Onions.


1. Use a variety of vegetables to get a different flavor everytime.
2. If you do not have Stock avaiable, use water or bullions.
3. For a full meal, we also serve this with rice, chapati or garlic bread.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2008 at 11:37AM
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jimster(z7a MA)

I'm glad to see this thread revived. Thanks for the soup recipe. It looks like a tasty one.

Most of my bean cooking is improvised, so I don't have recipes at hand. I will try to write some up. I believe method is more important than ingredients. A simple pot of beans can be very satisfying if prepared well.


    Bookmark   February 10, 2008 at 2:56PM
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Our absolutely favorite soup - simple, high fiber, low fat and delicious:

Escarole and White Bean Soup

2 Tbs olive oil
1 bunch escarole, washed and chopped
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3 cans Great Northern beans or Cannelli (or of course 5-6 cups cooked fresh)
3 cups chicken broth
1 piece parmesan cheese rind

Saute the escarole in the olive oil until wilted. Add crushed red pepper, 2 3/4 c. chicken broth and 2 1/2 cans of beans. Add 1/4 c. of chicken broth to the remaining beans in the can, and puree with hand held blender or dump into blender or food processor and puree. Add the pureed beans and the parmesan cheese rind and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve with slices of crusty bread.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2008 at 7:51PM
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Nobody's mentioned Hillbilly Beans?

A small handful of each kind of bean and lentil you have available to you, cleaned and soaked; a quart of home-canned tomatoes; a couple of cloves of garlic, smashed; about a teaspoon of dried oregano, enough water to cover the beans, or a little more; a hambone if you have it. Put it all in a crockpot and let it cook on medium heat till done. I first got a jar of mixed beans and a little cheesecloth bag of spices (it had bay leaf in it, too) as a christmas gift from a co-worker. Now they sell an equivalent in grocery stores, but it's ever so much better with your own beans and flavors and spices that you know are real.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2008 at 8:40PM
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Wow, tried and tested bean recipes. Cool beans! Can't wait to fix some of them.

For me, I usually just take the easy way out. Soak overnight (or longer - I like truly mushy beans) how ever many beans will do up right in your crockpot. Drain and rinse well. (Despite all the pro and con arguments about this, I find this does help somewhat with bean's one single flaw.)

Put the beans in the crockpot with some ham hocks or leftover ham or any kind of seasoned pork on hand (- I usually use a whole package of ham hocks). Handful of chopped onion if you feel like cooking. Water to cover.

Cook in crockpot on high overnight. In the morning, turn it off and go somewhere. When you come back, they'll be the right temperature for eating. Pick the meat off the neckbones (cooking tip if you're using these: cook these on top of the beans, NOT mixed in, so that when you get to the picking stage you're not dealing with them covered with mushy bean "meat"). Stir neckbone meat into the beans, then spoon out into your soup bowl and enjoy.

Yum!! Nothing else that easy is that good. (BTW you can substitute lentils or dried peas for the beans, just as good.)

Verdant Croft

    Bookmark   February 23, 2008 at 6:36PM
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greenwitch(Sz19 SoCal)

My favorites are Pasta Fazool (Italian) and a Lebanese recipe (name escapes me) that consists of green snap beans, a can of crushed tomatoes, crushed garlic and a half stick of cinnamon simmered until the beans are tender (season w/salt & pepper)- this can be served at warm temperature or cold too (and is better tasting the next day). But now that I think of it, I'm also really fond of dahl (Indian/Nepal), curried fresh sugar peas, homemade hummous, Santa Maria pinquitos BBQ style....
My life is richer because of legumes.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 7:36PM
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I grew up at a time when the school lunch room served beans twice each week. I loved the Pinto day but wasn't to wild about the other one. Then about 5 years ago I discovered a recipe for Creole Lima Beans (a lot like the one above) and it runs a close 2nd to Pintos for me. My husband puts it in first place. Carol

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 8:20PM
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