Ever wondered how to cook cranberry beans and what to do with them? Then this recipe is perfect for you. It is quick, simple and super flavorful.
What are cranberry beans?
Have you ever heard of cranberry beans ?
I know, I know. Thanksgiving has already come and gone, and between all the prepping, the eating and the leftovers, you probably don’t wanna hear the word cranberry till next year…
But don’t worry, cranberry beans actually have nothing to do with cranberries. They’re beans that are white and have this really cool deep pinkish-red color lines (hence the name) and a nice nutty flavor. Unfortunately, cranberry beans lose their beautiful color once cooked, but they are still deliciously creamy and flavorful.
How to cook cranberry beans
We had never heard of cranberry beans before, but happened to find them the other day at our local produce market and couldn’t resist. They looked so pretty, we had to buy them. We had no idea what they would look like on the inside, or what they would taste like, but you know how much we love experimenting, so we figured we would give them a try anyway.
So when we got home, we opened up the pods, and these little guys were inside. Really cool looking, aren’t they?
We were trying to figure out what to do with them, when the light went on. We thought about an old friend originally from the northern part of Spain, who taught us how they cook fresh black beans in his hometown. Super simple, but bursting with flavor.
The ingredients are simple: really good olive oil, garlic, herbs, and water. That’s it! You will have a flavorful pot of beans in 20-25 minutes. A super simple recipe that lets the flavor of the cranberry beans shine!
If you can’t find fresh cranberry beans, you can buy them dry, but you will need to soak them overnight before cooking them. The cooking time will be longer, about 30-45 minutes, and you will need more water.
The method to cook cranberry beans is simple
- Cook garlic in olive oil, tilting the pan so the garlic cooks evenly
2. Add thyme (or you favorite herb) and hot pepper flakes
3. Add the beans, water and bay leaves and cook until tender
4. And that’s it! Enjoy!!
Fresh Cranberry Beans with Olive Oil & Garlic
Other Bean Recipes You May Enjoy
- Black Beans and Rice with Plantains
- Sweet Potato Chili
- Cannellini Bean Kale Soup
- Tomato Avocado Chickpea Salad
- Chana Masala
- Burrito Bowl with Tomatillo Salsa
- Black Bean Chili
- Black Bean Salsa
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If you ever wondered how to cook cranberry beans and what to do with them, this recipe is perfect for you. It is quick, simple and super flavorful.
- 2 lb fresh cranberry beans ( about 4 cups shelled) ( See Note 1 for dry cranberry beans)
- 6 garlic cloves, whole
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp red hot pepper flakes (or to taste)
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- 2–4 cups water
- 3 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp salt ( more or less to taste)
- Shell the cranberry beans, rinse and drain
- Heat the olive oil in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and tilt the pan so all the oil goes to one side of the pan and the garlic cooks evenly. Cook for about 2 minutes or until it starts to get a slight golden color (make sure it doesn’t burn!)
- Add the red hot pepper flakes and thyme and cook for another 2 minutes
- Add the shelled beans, stirring well so the beans get evenly coated with the oil and cook for 3 minutes
- Add 2 cups of water, bay leaves and salt. Bring to a boil for about 5 minutes, uncovered
- Turn down the heat and simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes or until the beans are tender but not mushy. (See Note 2). You should have some cooking liquid remaining in the pot. If the beans are not tender and there is little water left, keep adding water until thy soften. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed (take into consideration that, as the beans, cook the flavor and saltiness concentrates. Do not oversalt!)
- Mash the garlic into the cooking liquid ( It should be very tender and mash easily. These are delicious eaten plain, served over rice or with crusty bread
- If you can only find dry cranberry beans, you will need to soak them overnight in 2.5 times their volume in water. Add a couple of teaspoons of baking soda. The next day, rinse the cranberry beans really well and follow the cooking instructions. You will probably need to use more water (just remember to check the pot periodically during the cooking process).
- It may take longer than 20 minutes for the beans to get tender, it will depend on your stove and the beans. Just keep adding water as it cooks out.
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 331
- Sugar: 0
- Sodium: 292
- Fat: 11.3
- Saturated Fat: 1.7
- Unsaturated Fat: 1.5
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 43
- Fiber: 15.2
- Protein: 16.5
- Cholesterol: 0