Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

A fiber rich and filling side (or main dish) for your menu. A better take on three bean salad with a light herb lemon dressing that pairs perfectly with rustic bread.

Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

Today's healthy recipe as part of our late January menu planning series is essentially a better three bean salad. Which is frankly, hilarious. Three bean salad has long term joke status in my parent's house. Three bean salad is what you generally term any flavorless, on the verge of casserole, recipe. Although mostly, it's what my Dad says my Mom's family would make (they were not into cooking and yes, they were from the mid-west).

But don't turn away because in spite of the 27 years of anti-three-bean-salad discussions from my life, I'm really into this recipe and I think you will be too. This bean salad recipe is very filling and very healthy. It's light with the herbs and lemon dressing but incredibly satisfying. And while I have it categorized as a side, this could easily be a vegetarian main or dressed up with rotisserie chicken if you're looking for something more. 

All I'm saying is, give beans a chance. I have a feeling this will be a go to fridge salad for us for a while. So...sorry fam. Your ass is being fed three bean salad if you come over.

Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing
Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

You are not required to serve rustic bread with this recipe, but it's a priority recommendation from the both of us. For us, rustic means two things:

1. An endearing term you call something that looks like a bit of a hot mess but still want people to try. It's like saying 'bless her heart', but for food and in a less negative way. More "Aw-she looks like she got run over by a small SUV but can kind of pull it off" and less "Aw-she is the devil reincarnated and I hope someone plants invasive bamboo all over her pristine lawn and she can never remove it EVER".

2. Bread that has an actual hard crust.

Rustic is a pretty versatile adjective. The bread is nice because you can soak up the bright lemon dressing to cut through how creamy the beans are.

Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing
Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing
Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing
Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

Also, while this is technically called a 'winter salad', I have visions of warmer weather (because it's mid January). I can see this being served with a mess of zucchini and peppers and meat from the grill. 

Winter Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

Winter Three Bean Salad with Herb Lemon Dressing

Serves 6

/// Ingredients /// 

  • 1, 15.5 oz can butter/broad beans
  • 1, 15.5 oz can kidney (dark red)
  • 1, 15.5 oz can pink beans 
  • 1/2 medium red onion, diced
  • 2 large celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 handful Italian parsley leaves, fresh
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons fresh marjoram leaves
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 loaf rustic bread of choice

/// Directions /// Drain and rinse beans. Add to a large bowl with onion and celery. In a small bowl whisk lemon, vinegar and oil. Add garlic. Pour over top of bean mix and toss together. Refrigerate, or if serving immediately, top with chopped herbs and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with a side of rustic bread.

Dietitian Nutritionist. My husband Chris and I create food and beverage photos, videos, stopmotions and recipes. And they're really cool.