Sometimes you need a nourishing, simple meal without a lot of fuss. This butterbean stew delivers flavour without many ingredients or a mountain of washing up!
Into one pot, throw in the ingredients, and cook. Done!
Fresh ingredients, especially herbs, are the key to this tasty, simple meal. I use fresh rosemary from my little balcony garden. This creamy, vegan butterbean stew is hearty, packed with iron and fibre and perfect for your mid-week meal. You can eat it as a main along with some sourdough or even as a side dish to your mains.
- Butter beans
- White onions
- Baby spinach
- Bay leaf
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
See the recipe card for quantities.
Soak the butterbeans overnight in water or at least six hours before making the stew.
Before cooking, prepare your ingredients.
- Drain and rinse the butterbeans that have soaked overnight.
- Wash the baby spinach and set aside to dry.
- Roughly dice the onions.
- Peel the garlic and cut it in half.
- Dice the tomatoes
Over medium/high heat, add the oil, butter beans, water, onions, garlic, tomatoes, rosemary, and bay leaf in a pot.
Bring to a boil, and once boiling, turn the heat down. Put a lid on the pot, and simmer for thirty minutes. Add more water if necessary and stir occasionally.
Once the butterbeans are soft, season the stew with salt and pepper to taste. Cover again and cook for a further five minutes.
After about thirty minutes, once the butterbeans have cooked - they will easily break between the fingers - stir in the baby spinach and cook for a minute or two.
Serve the butterbean stew with bread. Sourdough is a perfect accompaniment.
Tinned butterbeans can be used instead of rehydrated beans. Cooking time will reduce but, in my opinion, the flavour of the beans is affected. Tinned beans may contain preservatives, salt etc.
You can replace the butterbeans with borlotti or cannellini beans; cooking time may vary.
Instead of rosemary, you can use thyme or both if you wish.
You can replace baby spinach with rocket leaves for a more peppery flavour.
This is a basic bean stew recipe; adding fresh chillies can make it spicier.
You can be creative; make it your signature stew by adding spices, herbs, vegetables, or a protein of your choice.
You can store the stew in the fridge for up to three days. Reheat thoroughly before serving.
You can freeze this stew without the addition of the spinach. As always, defrost overnight in the fridge before use and reheat thoroughly.
It is essential to soak the butterbeans; this helps them cook faster, reduces bloating and improves digestion.
A heavy bottom pot helps the stew cook slowly, making it more flavourful. Fresh ingredients are what give this stew flavour, especially fresh herbs.
Here are more of my stew recipes.
One-Pot Butter Bean Stew
- Digital scales
- 300 g Butterbeans dried
- 150 g White onion
- 120 g Tomatoes
- 25 g Garlic
- 5 g Rosemary one sprig
- 50 g Baby spinach
- 1 Bay leaf
- 20 ml Olive oil
- 1½ teaspoon Sea salt flakes
- ½ teaspoon Pepper
- 1 l Water
- Wash and soak the butterbeans overnight, or a minimum of six hours.
- Peel and roughly dice the onions.
- Peel the garlic. If the cloves are too big, cut them in half.
- Roughly dice the tomatoes, along with the seeds.
- Wash the baby spinach and leave to dry.
- Rinse and drain the butter beans.
- In a pot over a medium/high heat, add the butterbeans, water, onions, garlic, tomatoes, rosemary, bay leaf and olive oil. Cover and bring to a boil. The moment it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Check the stew after 20 minutes to ensure it has enough water. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes.
- Once the butterbeans are soft to the touch, season with salt and pepper.
- Cover and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Once the butterbeans are tender and easily break, the stew is ready.
- Stir in the baby spinach just before serving.
- Serve hot with sourdough.
In a professional kitchen, food hygiene and safety are a top priority, and from the beginning of training, I practised good habits and routines. Of course, practising good food hygiene and safety at home is also very important. Here are some fundamental practices to adopt in the kitchen.
- Wash your hands regularly while preparing, handling and cooking food
- Wipe down countertops and high-contact points regularly.
- If you cook meat and fish, do not use the same utensils on cooked food that previously touched raw meat. Use separate chopping boards for meat and fish. Wash your chopping boards immediately after use.
- Thoroughly cook food to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods (more than 2 hours)
- Store food correctly
For more details on food hygiene and safety in the home, visit the UK Government's Food Standards Agency webpage.