Beans... Beans.. Beans...

Beans are a staple when it comes to pantry foods. Whether they are canned or dried they always last for a really long time and come in handy when you're in a pinch. They are super cheap along with being a great source of protein which means they can keep you full for a while! I want to send you three great bean recipes to inspire you to crack one of those bad boys open and make something delicious. 


For any of these recipes you can use any kind of beans that you have on hand so don't worry about not having the kind of bean I used for each recipe. I also added some recommendations on substitutes for some ingredients and how I would serve each dish! Hope you enjoy using your beans and tag me @lifebymikeg on instagram to show me what you came up with! 




Curried Red Lentil & Carrot Soup

Ingredients: 

  • ½ an onion, diced

  • 1 jalapeno, deseeded & diced

  • 1 leek, chopped 

  • 3 large carrots, peeled & chopped

  • 1 teaspoon curry powder

  • 2 tablespoons of oil

  • ½ cup red lentils 

  • Enough water to cover

  • Salt & pepper to taste

  • Olive oil & lime to finish


Instructions:

  1. Start by sauteing your onion, jalapeno, leek, carrots, and curry powder in 2 tablespoons of oil until everything is soft & caramelized on a medium low flame. This will take about 15 - 20 minutes.

  2. Next, add in ½ cup of red lentils and enough water to cover the lentils. 

  3. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the lentils & carrots are tender. 

  4. Shut the stove off, blend until smooth or your desired texture, and add salt & pepper to taste. 

  5. Serve while warm and finish off with a drizzle of olive oil & a squeeze of lime. 


Substitutions: 

  • If you don't have carrots, you can use any root veggies you have. Any kind of potato works and sweet potatoes work especially well!

  • If you don't jalapeno, use any spicy condiment or chili powder you have in your pantry. 

  • The curry powder works really well in this soup. However, using a blend of 5 different spices works well. Choose some of your favorite ground spices to add to the soup & I'm sure you'll love it.




Oregano Spiked Beans

Ingredients:

  • 1 small carrot, diced 

  • ¼ of an onion, diced 

  • 1 clove garlic, peeled & diced

  • 1 tablespoon of oil

  • 1 can of white cannellini beans 

  • 2 tablespoons of water 

  • 2 teaspoons of oregano 

  • Salt & pepper to taste


Instructions: 

  1. In a medium sized pot, caramelize your carrot, onion, and garlic in 1 tablespoon of oil 

  2. Next add in 1 full can of white cannellini beans, 2 tablespoon of water, & 2 teaspoon of oregano. Let everything come to a simmer and continue cooking for 2 minutes. 

  3. Shut off the heat, give it a taste, & add salt & pepper to your liking. 


Substitutions: 

  • What really makes this dish is the oregano and onions so if you're missing any of the other ingredients don't sweat it. 

  • If you don't have any onions you can always use powder or any other allium like shallots or leeks. 

  • As for the oregano, you can use basil, parsley, or cilantro. Really any herb adds a ton of flavor to spice up your beans.

  • I usually eat these beans with some rice, potatoes, or some chips! 




Smashed Red Bean with Cilantro 

Ingredients:

  • ½ of an onion, diced 

  • 2 clove of garlic, minced 

  • 2 teaspoon of oil 

  • 1 can of red beans 

  • 2 heaping tablespoon of roughly chopped cilantro 

  • 1 lime 

  • Salt & pepper to taste


Instructions: 

  1. In a pan saute the diced onions & minced garlic in 2 teaspoon of oil until softened. 

  2. Add in 1 can of red beans and cook for 5 minutes until the beans have become tender.

  3. Take the beans out of the liquid you cooked it in and place into a bowl. Be sure to include the onions & garlic as best you can. Smash the beans with a fork, leaving some to create a chunkier texture. 

  4. Toss in the roughly chopped cilantro and squeeze some lime juice in. Season with salt & pepper to taste. 

Recommendations:

  • This makes for a great dip for chips or a spread for bread. After I made this smashed bean dip, I spread it on some miche sourdough and made a sandwich with garlic & herb cheese, mixed greens, & leftover rotisserie chicken. It leveled up my sandwich by added great flavor and texture to my sandwich so give it a try & spread it on things you think it would be delicious on! 



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