Quick & Budget-Friendly Suppers with Canned Beans
Summer Squash & White Bean Saute
Bountiful summer vegetables--zucchini, summer squash, fresh tomatoes--are quickly sautéed with protein-rich white beans and topped with Parmesan for a hearty dish. This sauté is endlessly versatile and works well with eggplant, peppers or corn. Double it and toss the leftovers with bowtie pasta for lunch the next day. Serve with: Brown rice or bulgur.
Pomodoro Pasta with White Beans & Olives
Capture the flavor of vine-ripened tomatoes with this elegant-yet-quick, fresh tomato sauce. Although it's an uncooked sauce, the beans are heated briefly in the olive oil and garlic to infuse them with flavor.
BBQ Baked Beans & Sausage
Here we turn baked beans into an easy main dish by adding chicken sausage and collard greens. Serve with: Coleslaw and cornbread.
Middle Eastern Chickpea Platter
This recipe combines the flavors of two Middle Eastern favorites--hummus and baba ganouj--in one easy dish. Serve it family-style, letting diners take their own favorite combination of ingredients. Serve with tabbouleh or a green salad tossed with lemon vinaigrette.
A Mexican-style torta is just like a burrito, except the “wrapper” is a hollowed-out roll instead of a tortilla. Here it's filled with mashed spiced black beans and a quick guacamole. Take this vegetarian version to another level (and add calcium) by melting Monterey Jack cheese onto the bean side of the sandwich. Serve with: Grilled corn on the cob or Spanish rice.
Black Bean & Salmon Tostadas
Pickled jalapeños, cilantro and avocado perk up convenient canned salmon for a quick tostada topping. Skip store-bought and make your own crispy shells in the oven. Serve with: Brown rice cooked with diced tomatoes and onions or salsa.
Creamy Avocado & White Bean Wrap
White beans mashed with ripe avocado and blended with sharp Cheddar and onion makes an incredibly rich, flavorful filling for this wrap. The tangy, spicy slaw adds crunch. A pinch (or more) of ground chipotle pepper and an extra dash of cider vinegar can be used in place of the canned chipotles in adobo sauce. Wrap these up to take as a healthy and portable lunch for work.
Southwestern Beef & Bean Burger Wraps
Kids and adults alike will love these quick, zippy burgers. The beans make the burgers a little fragile, so be careful when taking them off the broiler pan. Make it a meal: serve a green salad and frozen mango slices for dessert.
Bean & Salmon Salad with Anchovy-Arugula Dressing
This simple bean and salmon salad becomes something truly exciting when dressed with a bold dressing flavored with anchovies and arugula. Canned wild Alaskan salmon is a healthy and environmentally sound choice. Thoroughly drain the beans so the salad doesn't taste watered down. Sometimes heating beans slightly makes it easier to drain off the cooking liquid.
Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto
This fragrant, Italian-flavored soup takes advantage of quick-cooking ingredients--boneless, skinless chicken breast, bagged baby spinach and canned beans. It features a simple homemade basil pesto swirled in at the end to add a fresh herb flavor. If you are very pressed for time, you can substitute 3 to 4 tablespoons of a store-bought basil pesto. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.
Sweet Potato Fritters with Smoky Pinto Beans
These easy sweet potato fritters have a crispy crust and a tender middle. The beans are flavored with smoked paprika, but sweet or hot would work well too. To give it a Mexican-inspired twist, use chili powder as the spice instead of the paprika.
Cowboy Beef & Bean Chili
Anything but dainty, this healthy cowboy beef and bean chili recipe is hearty with the addition of mushrooms and beer. To keep the saturated fat low, we use one pound of ground beef and add whole-grain bulgur to boost the volume and fiber in this chili recipe. After all the ingredients are added to the pot, we like to slowly simmer our chili for close to an hour to develop the best flavor, but if you're in a hurry, reduce the liquid by half and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes.
Pinto Bean Chilaquiles
This Mexican chilaquiles recipe is a one-skillet dish made with corn tortillas and eggs. Making chilaquiles is a great way to use stale tortillas, as they are crisped in the oven before being simmered in a flavorful garlicky sauce. Unless you want a very spicy sauce, make sure to use regular (not hot) chili powder.
Bean & Barley Soup
This hearty bean and barley soup tastes like it has simmered for hours, but actually it's quite quick to throw together. Plus this recipe for healthy bean and barley soup freezes beautifully. If you have cooked barley on hand, omit the quick-cooking barley and stir in 1 1/2 cups cooked barley along with the broth in Step 2.
Fiber-rich beans stand in for the beef and pork in this surprisingly rich-tasting vegetarian take on pasta Bolognese. Without the meat, the dish has only a third of the fat and 80 percent less saturated fat. To make the perfect meal, serve with a peppery arugula salad and warm, crusty Italian bread.
Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans
In this one-skillet supper, we toss dark leafy greens, diced tomatoes and white beans with gnocchi and top it all with gooey mozzarella. Serve with a mixed green salad with vinaigrette.