warm canneloni beans with olive oil

white bean salad

I get all confused when winter rolls around. Do I get excited over wearing sweaters, or do I sit around all mopey that we get three hours of daylight? Do I start making a list of all the stews and soups I can make or start a countdown to the springtime equinox? Being a creature of all things comfort-related, sweaters and food finally win out. Sure, I mope a little about how it’s cold and dark outside, but I mope while shoving a forkful of food into my mouth.

Last Friday, I invited a friend for dinner, but given my current job-seeking status, I spent the day running about without so much as having given a fleeting thought as to what I was going to feed my hungry, weekend-ready guest. I got home with only an hour to spare and had to think on my feet – fast. I had very little in my cupboards, and even less in the fridge. A can of cannelloni beans caught my eye. And thus a simple dish was born.

Whenever I am at an Italian restaurant, I always look for warmed cannelloni beans in the appetizer section. I find it filling, comforting and delicious. So I wanted to make warm cannelloni beans, but spruced up a bit. You know, for the holidays. I added tomatoes, basil, onion, and some other ingredients and it turned out incredibly well!

the italian flavor triumvirate

I am telling you, people, this recipe is so simple and so good that you will make it over and over again. Unless you hate beans. In which case, you’d probably never even try to make it in the first place. My guest had seconds. And thirds. And then complained that I didn’t make enough. Which was true, I was craving more of it myself.

If you plan ahead, unlike me, you can soak the beans and cook them, instead of resorting to canned ones. If, however, you’re like most people, you can hardly plan your next few hours, never mind dinner.

1 can of canneloni beans
2 vine ripe tomatoes
half a bunch of parsley
half a red onion
2 tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar
basil leaves
extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp lemon juice
lemon zest

1. In a small pot, warm olive oil and drained beans.
2. In a non-stick skillet, warm up garlic, tomatoes and basil; add salt & pepper to taste.
3. Chop the onion and the parsley and add the balsamic to marinate them while you cook other ingredients.
4. Add the warmed ingredients, mixing well.
5. Add lemon juice and lemon zest.
6. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top and serve.


  • deb

    Yum! I do the same. I’ll order anything with white beans in it, double-bonus if it’s a bedding for something drippy and fabulous. This looks delicious, and I’ve made versions of it with everything from bits of sundried tomatoes to capers and even once, flecks of prosciutto. But I’ll have to try your way next!

  • radish

    deb, i’m going to have to try to the version with capers and see how i can expand on the white bean theme. sometimes, having them just with olive oil and sea salt is just about the most perfect thing – and sometimes you long for a little something extra.
    gluten free, glad i can contribute something that doesn’t have gluten – i often take it for granted that i can consume foods without thinking of the ingredients. hope you enjoy the recipe.

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