A festive bean salad with peaches and red peppers
June 30, 2019
Bean salads are some of my favorite dishes to make in the summer as they can last several days and can be used as a main dish, side dish, or just a little dash of color.
From a health viewpoint, they are a key part of the Mediterranean eating style and can be a tasty way to build a healthier gut microbiome.
The fiber in bean salads also helps to keep you feeling satisfied longer. This can help you resist those after dinner or cookout temptations that can sidetrack you from your efforts to eat healthier or limit your calories.
Bean salads are also a great way to practice something I often say to people who are seeing me for help in making changes to their eating habits:
If meal planning is holding you back from healthier eating, ditch it!
Focus instead on having healthier ingredients on hand that can be used in a variety of ways.
The salad I put together the other week is a prime example of this. It took less than 5 minutes to make and we enjoyed it as a side dish for dinner and as part of our lunches the next day.
What type of bean to use?
For this bean salad, I used a can of cannellini beans because I wanted their softer texture to pair well with the ripe peach and their white color to make the color of the peppers and peaches more vibrant. However, this recipe could also be made with any of the following: kidney beans, navy beans, black beans, or chickpeas. You could also use home cooked beans instead of canned beans.
Fruit in a bean salad?
Are you surprised at the peach in the recipe below? Fresh peaches can often be a good substitute for tomatoes in salads, especially when local ripe tomatoes are not yet available or too costly for your the budget. The peach’s tanginess and sweetness gives this dish an unexpected, but a delightful touch of flavor.
- 1 15 ounce can of cannellini beans, rinsed well
- 1 large red pepper, diced into bite-sized pieces
- 1 medium peach, diced (leave peel on)
- 1 or 2 scallions, diced
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley or cilantro (or 2 teaspoons fresh)
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
- black pepper to taste
- garlic powder to taste (optional)
- Place first four ingredients in a bowl and gently mix.
- Drizzle remaining ingredients on top and gently mix until salad is coated.
- Serve immediately or chill. Use within three days.
I’ll be sharing more of my recipes and tips in the future on this blog, but the best way to make sure you don’t miss them is to sign up to receive emails from me with tips and recipes.
Having personally struggled with weight and gut health issues, I understand how easy it is to think that food is the enemy especially with the changes our bodies undergo as we age. It doesn’t have to be that way!
I love using my extensive education and coach approach to help people realize it is possible to feel better and be healthier while still enjoying their life and food.