Tuscan White Bean Salad
This classic Tuscan White Bean Salad is a beautiful combination of textures and flavours. Anyone who has spent a vacation in Italy will have eaten a version of this country-style salad. The sweet, tangy blend of apple cider vinegar, rich olive oil, garlic and basil is soaked up in a colourful salad of roasted cherry tomatoes, roasted zucchini and cannellini beans.
To prepare this flavourful bean salad, you can do it two ways—the easy way by using canned beans. Or start with dry beans by soaking them overnight and then cook them fresh the next day.
♥ Should you use dry beans or canned beans?
If you want my opinion, starting with dry beans gives the salad better bean texture and flavour. However, I know we don’t always have time to cook beans unless you have an Instant Pot. Most beans cooked in an instant pot take about 45 minutes without soaking, and well worth the extra time. Not only because the beans have a fresher flavour but because you control the salt. Most canned beans are laden with salt. Many cans of beans contain more than 1,000 milligrams of sodium per cup. So if you rinse canned beans, you’re still left with 700 milligrams, which is about half what we should consume for the entire day. If you do decide to use canned try and get low-sodium beans and always rinse them well.
I know most of you have tried my instant pot warm white bean salad and loved it. This is why I wanted to change things up a bit and made this Tuscan white bean salad. Because I wanted to add more flavour to the salad, I briefly roasted the cherry tomatoes with zucchini, olive oil, garlic and seasoning. Then I added them to the beans, including the juices in which they were roasted. The flavours of the roasted veggies made the bean salad come to life.
This Tuscan white bean salad is not typical. The juices from the roasted veggies combined with the fresh basil and parsley make this bean salad a winner. I recommend making this salad one the day before serving to improve the flavour. Enjoy!
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