Delicious Greek Style Beans
Delicious large butter beans coated in an amazing rich tomato sauce with lovely Greek herbs – pure healthy comfort food. Wonderful served on toast or with rice.
I have a question for you, before we get into the nitty gritty–have you ever tried Greek beans?
Now, I have. And let me tell you–you need to jump on board this bean train ASAP. I was first introduced to them after trying them from Odysea (a fantastic *not sponsored* company that import Greek and Mediterranean food right to your door here in the UK and available at all good supermarkets. The pots were packed full of giant beans coated in this rich tomato sauce that was just inviting me to dive right in.
They work perfectly as served as part of a meze, hot or cold, or served with a plethora of other dishes–or even just eaten straight from the jar, as I have done many times.
As soon as I tried them, I just knew I had to recreate them. There was something so wonderfully simple about the dish that intrigued me. How by bringing together just a few simple ingredients, you could create something that was uncomplicated but could also become super complex all at the same time.
Now, I know I can’t replicate them completely, but this is my ode to them! A thick and dense tomato stew packed with both fresh and dried herbs and the all-important Gigante beans. Gigante beans (meaning Giant in Greek) are renowned for their buttery texture and unique flavour. Grown in Greece and populating in its cuisine,
Gigante beans have a sweet taste but a meaty texture that can hold its own through cooking, making them perfectly creamy and tender, once slow roasted such as in this dish.
Now they can be a little tricky to track down, but Amazon is a great starting place–if you’re still unable you can use standard butter beans, they are similar in both taste, shape and texture. Now this dish is one that is quite simple, but what makes it unique and calls you in with its deep siren song is the distinctive herb mix that is completely and truly Mediterranean.
The dish uses a mixture of thyme, mint, dill and oregano and, unlike most dishes, it uses both fresh and dried rather than favouring one over the other. This combination allows different parts of the palate to be hit and offering a well-rounded flavour profile which coats the Gigante beans perfectly as they cling onto the surface, allowing the flavours to travel from fork to tongue properly.
Sticking on the simple theme, this dish allows itself to open up too many side dishes and accompaniments. You could serve them on a fresh chunk of sourdough for a late lazy brunch on a Sunday afternoon, or with freshly made flatbreads (I have a quick step-by-step tutorial on how to make the best effortless flatbreads here) and a crisp leaf salad for lunch.
They would also work amazingly served with a fluffy rice or quinoa side dish or a roasted vegetable salad with lots of dips on the side for a more hearty main meal.
They also freeze super well–so I would recommend doubling the batch and popping them in the fridge or freezer to use throughout the coming days or weeks. The flavours are even better the next day once they have developed and infuse all the wonderful components. Just portion out and freeze in jars or individual portions and thaw overnight in the fridge–it can be kept in the freezer for a few weeks. The recipe is super simple to create and because it’s cooked all in one pan, makes the washing up a breeze, making it the perfect dish for breakfast, lunch or dinner!
If you like this recipe, why not give one of my other bean recipes a try…?
My Smoky Beans with Aubergines topped with Cheesy Toasts was like the grown-up version of your ultimate childhood breakfast of dreams–cheesy beans on toasts.
My Spiced Black Beans with Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower is a super speedy and incredibly easy dish everyone needs to try at least once in their life.
And finally, my Spicy Beans with a Creamy Cashew Cheese Sauce served with Crispy Potato Wedges are my nod to the Mexican cuisine and is a pure comfort on a plate with a little fun twist added.
Delicious Greek Style Beans
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 large carrot finely chopped
- 2 stalks of celery finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic chopped up
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme
- Big handful fresh mint chopped
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Pinch chili flakes
- 3 tbsp of tomato paste
- 1 can chopped tomatoes plus fill the can with water
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 500 g giant beans large butter beans or 2 cans butter beans drained
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive
- In a medium-sized pot, heat olive oil and add the onions, garlic, celery and carrots and sauté for 8-10 minutes until veggies are tender.
- Season with salt and pepper, then add the herbs, chili flakes, and oregano and sauté for another minute.
- Now add the tomato paste and sauté stirring well for another minute.
- Pour in the tomatoes, water. Simmer for 20 minutes.
- Finally, add the beans, maple syrup and sea salt and stir to combine.
- Before serving, stir in the olive oil.
Amazing recipe, niki! Thank you so much! I played the beans on top of a baked sweet potato since I had it on hand. Nontraditional, I know, but it worked!
Sounds good to me! xx
What’s the white thing in the photos? Yogurt or cream? I can’t find it in the ingredients list or method…
Its greek style yogurt! xx
Greek beans are one of my most favorite things to eat so finding this recipe was a dream. I’ve just made them and am devouring them as I type, they are delicious. Thank you x
Fantastic! So happy to hear that.
Much love Niki xx
Thank you for you lovely recipes Niki! My husband has had all your recipes in you new cook book and has greatly been impressed by the flavours. This is the first time trying this one but he has tried ALL of your recipes as of today. I especially like to say thank you for bringing simplicity to my life. Oh, the kids prefer veggies to fruit now. Lol!
Thats fantastic to hear and I’m so happy you all like them. Great news about your kids!
Lots of love, Niki xxx
I’ve tried this and I’m loving it! Easy to prepare and so full of flavors!
Thank you for sharing this! 🙂
So happy you liked