A Healthy White Bean Salad for a Big Protein Boost
I love this recipe because it's so versatile. You can use just about any white bean, like garbanzo, navy, or cannellini. It also only takes about 10 minutes to make and is full of protein and fiber. For this particular recipe, I used kalamata olives and cilantro, but you can use any variety of olive and any fresh herbs that you have available.This flexible recipe lets you swap out a few ingredients while still getting plenty of plant-based protein and having a satisfying flavor profile.
Bean Salad: The Perfect Vegan Protein Boost
The biggest health benefit of bean salad is the massive amount of protein — 33g per serving! It makes this white bean salad the perfect meal after a long workout. All that protein helps your body get the most of your exercise session, building muscles and making you stronger. And the best part is it’s 100% vegan. With all these awesome health benefits, this high-protein bean salad will surely become a staple in your diet.
Why white beans? Sure, you can make a high-protein bean salad with almost any type of bean and still get a healthy, flavorful, bowl of nutrients. I chose white beans for this recipe because they’re packed with nutritional value and make for a colorful salad!
White beans are full of fiber and protein, as well as vital micronutrients such as folate, magnesium, and vitamin B6. One cup of white beans also provides 16% of your daily calcium, 21% of your daily potassium, and 36% of your daily iron. Combine that nutritional goodness with the other ingredients in my recipe — garlic, onions, tomatoes, fresh herbs, lemon juice — and you’ll get many more health benefits besides just high protein!
The Benefits of Vegan Protein
Relying on plant-based protein sources has several advantages for your health. While all whole plant foods have some protein in them, legumes (beans, lentils, soy), nuts, and seeds have the most. When you go with plant-based options rather than animal-based protein, you get an added fiber bonus. Most of us don’t meet our daily fiber requirements, but fiber is essential for good health.
Some vegan protein sources like walnuts, chia, hemp, and ground flax seeds also contain omega-3s, which help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. When you swap out plant-based protein for animal-based protein, you’re also less likely to consume saturated fats, which leads to an increase in LDL cholesterol (the bad one), and a greater risk for heart disease.
There are some nutritional benefits to consuming animal-based protein, of course, but the extra nutrients you get from vegan protein sources in addition to protein makes them more worthwhile.
Delicious High-Protein Bean Salad With 33g Protein Per Serving
This white bean salad is easy to whip up with simple ingredients. You can prepare it ahead of time, chill it, and chow down after a long run. You can also serve it warm for family dinner. It’s healthy, delicious, simple, and flexible — sub in different herbs, change up the dressing, add other veggies, or countless other options. I also encourage you to use organic ingredients when possible, as it makes this white bean salad even healthier!
White Bean Salad with Olives and Fresh Herbs
Prep time: 10 min (if using canned/jarred beans)
- 3 ¾ C of white beans, soaked and cooked OR 2 (15-ounce) cans white beans (drained well and rinsed)
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 red onion (minced)
- ½ C fresh parsley (chopped) OR fresh cilantro
- 2 TB olive oil
- 2 large tomatoes (diced)
- ¼ C kalamata olives (chopped)
- 2 TB red wine vinegar
- 1 TB fresh lemon juice
- Himalayan Pink Salt (to taste)
- Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
1) Over low heat, combine beans, garlic, onion, and half of the parsley (or cilantro) in olive oil. Heat for 60-90 seconds, or until fragrant. (You don't want to actually cook the ingredients, just warm them enough to bring out the essence and flavors).
2) Remove from heat and place in a large bowl.
3) Add the tomatoes, olives, vinegar, lemon juice, the remaining parsley (or cilantro) and gently toss to combine well. Salt and pepper to taste.
4) Serve your white bean salad warm or you can also chill before serving.
Who said eating healthy was hard? Get all the protein and nutrients you need in under 10 minutes with my vegan white bean salad!
XO - Serena