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White Beans with Garlic, Lemon & Parmesan

Scott Phillips

Servings: four to six.



For the beans:

  • 1 cup dried white beans, such as Great Northern (to yield about 3 cups cooked) or 1 29-oz. can white beans
  • 1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 small onion
  • 1 3-inch sprig fresh rosemary

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 3-inch sprig fresh rosemary
  • 3 anchovy fillets, rinsed and roughly chopped (optional, but great)
  • 1/4 cup finely grated fresh Parmigiano Reggiano (about 1/2 oz.)
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

To assemble:

  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on six servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 220
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 90
  • Fat (g): 10
  • Saturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7
  • Cholesterol (mg): 5
  • Sodium (mg): 430
  • Carbohydrates (g): 25
  • Fiber (g): 6
  • Protein (g): 10


  • Spread the beans on a baking sheet. Rinse the beans well, put them in a large pot, cover by 3 to 4 inches of water, add the salt, onion, and rosemary, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook until the beans are very tender but not falling apart, 45 minutes to 1-1/2 hours, longer if necessary. Start checking early because beans cook at different rates; if the water level gets low, add more. When the beans are cooked, let them cool in their liquid for about 15 min. and then drain. Transfer them to a large bowl and keep them warm. (If using canned beans, rinse and drain them well.)
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan or skillet, combine the olive oil, garlic, and rosemary. Heat gently until the rosemary starts to sizzle lightly, remove the pan from the heat, and leave to steep for about 20 min. Discard the rosemary.
  • Take the garlic cloves from the oil (reserve the oil) and put them in a food processor, along with the anchovies, grated cheese, salt, pepper, zest, and lemon juice. Process to a fairly smooth mixture. Taste for seasoning; the dressing should be highly seasoned.
  • Toss the dressing with the warm beans, using a rubber spatula to gently fold so the beans get well coated but not smashed. Let the beans sit for a few minutes and then toss a few more times. It may seem like too much liquid at first, but the beans will gradually absorb it all. Fold in the reserved infused oil, the tomatoes, and the parsley. Taste for seasoning and serve.


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Reviews (4 reviews)

  • Gracias99 | 08/13/2016

    A long-time favorite - the lemon, garlic, and parmesan really liven up the beans. I've served it many times and always get great comments.

  • KRCMc | 06/03/2016

    This is a terrific recipe which I have been using and adapting for some time. I often use canned beans, rinsed - chickpeas, romano, navy beans. I also often add diced red peppers, fresh cooked corn, finely diced onion. To suit my family's taste, I increase the proportion of tomatoes to beans. I also am a bit heavy handed on the freshly grated parmesan. A terrific summer salad that keeps well in the fridge when made ahead.

  • jfrey | 09/26/2015

    Loved the garlic rosemary flavors of this recipe. I agree with the previous reviewer that I would use less salt next time. I did not use anchovies.

  • jlew | 07/08/2008

    This is a great way to eat your beans. Very flavorful and easy to make. I made it with the anchovies and thought that next time I will use a little less salt because of the anchovies. Four out of the five of us really liked this dish and one asked for the recipe.

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