If you’re looking for ways to use cranberry beans, you’ve come to the right place.
So grab that bag from the back of the pantry, and let’s get cooking.
If you’re thinking, “what the heck are cranberry beans” you’re not alone.
Also known as Borlotti, Cargamanto, and Roman beans, they’re small, beige, and covered in pink/purple streaks.
They come fresh, canned, or dry and are a fantastic replacement for pinto beans, with their nutty and slightly sweet flavor.
Plus, they’re a terrific source of protein, iron, copper, and fiber.
I’ve found the best ways to use cranberry beans, so keep reading and let me know which bean recipe is your favorite.
How to Cook Cranberry Beans
1. Fresh Cranberry Beans with Olive Oil and Garlic
Are you on the hunt for a simple and tasty dish to bring to your next potluck? Well, look no further than this hearty cranberry bean dish.
You only need eight ingredients, one pot, and less than 30 minutes to prepare it. But it’s so flavorful and filling that everyone will love it.
It’s also very customizable as four of the eight necessary ingredients are seasonings. That means you can change up the flavors as you see fit.
This one features thyme, red pepper flakes, bay leaves, and salt. It’s garlicky, spicy, and delicious!
2. Pasta Fagioli with Cranberry Beans and Kale
This vegan soup is thick, filling, and full of delectable flavors.
I guarantee you’ll enjoy this Italian-inspired soup even if you’re not vegan. There’s no “rabbit food” here!
This recipe includes two versions: one for the stovetop and one for the pressure cooker.
So, you can make this yummy soup with whatever kitchen equipment you have.
Filled with savory spices like red pepper flakes, rosemary, oregano, and paprika, it’s absolutely loaded with veggies.
It has onions, tomatoes, celery, kale, and garlic.
Of course, cranberry beans and pasta star in this dish, providing flavor and texture.
3. Braised Cranberry Beans with Chorizo
If you’re a fan of barbecue baked beans, you must try this dish! It’s intensely flavorful, filling, and oh, so delicious.
And if you’re not a baked beans fan, this might change your mind.
These braised cranberry beans are cooked with chorizo, so there’s lots of protein, vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber.
Plus, it has no added sugars.
This dish features spicy chorizo, peppery red cabbage, and nutty cranberry beans.
It’s flavored even more with garlic, onion, smoked and sweet paprikas, oregano, and red pepper.
I think I might dream of this dish tonight.
4. Italian Slow-Cooker Cranberry Bean Soup with Greens
I love simple and healthy soups like this one. It’s filling, it’s comforting, and it’s seriously yummy.
Plus, I get to take a cooking break – and so do you!
There is some prep work, of course, like cutting vegetables and soaking the beans. So, it’s a meal you’ll want to plan.
But really, the slow-cooker does most of the work.
This easy vegetable soup can be made with any veggies you have on hand. Serve it with warm bread to complete your hearty meal.
5. Vegan Stewed Beans
Transport yourself to warmer climates with this Caribbean-inspired bean stew. It’s super flavorful, and you will not miss the meat whatsoever.
This stew gets its bold flavors from ingredients like smoked paprika, mild chilis, allspice, and so much more.
It’s loaded with healthy, tasty goodness, and I know you’ll love it.
6. Cranberry Beans with Warm Spices
Often, cranberry beans are paired with punchy spices like paprika and red pepper.
That means those dishes are often a bit spicy.
This cranberry bean recipe departs from those flavor profiles. Instead, it’s a deliciously warm yet fresh dish.
It features ingredients like lemon, carrots, mint, cinnamon, and white wine. I think it feels more Mediterranean, or maybe Middle Eastern.
Either way, it’s incredible.
7. Fresh Cranberry Beans with Pasta and Greens
This dish is fresh, summery, and seriously scrumptious. I think it’s perfect for lunch, but it’s also ideal for a light dinner.
Made with sautéd cranberry beans, tomatoes, onion, garlic, and greens, it’s both full of texture and loaded with color.
Toss in some pasta with lemon juice, seasonings, and fresh basil, then serve warm and enjoy!
8. Great Big Pot of Braised Beans and Kale
Get ready for a busy week with this easy meal-prep recipe.
It makes a huge serving, so it serves you all week long. Or, it’s at least enough for dinner and lunch for the family.
Braised beans and kale are very healthy and wonderfully tasty. Plus, this recipe is pretty versatile.
You can eat it on its own, on toast, as a side dish, or next to a big bowl of chili.
The flavors are simple and rustic but very delicious. You really can’t go wrong having this recipe in your back pocket.
9. Slow-Cooker Chili
Speaking of chili…this one is hearty, delicious, and perfect for bringing to events.
Cranberry beans are the perfect choice for chili because they’re creamy, nutty, and delicious.
In addition, cranberry beans don’t stay hard and starchy like kidney beans tend to do.
Overall, this chili is pretty traditional. However, it has added flavor surprises like pumpkin and green salsa.
It’s rich, delicious, and has the added benefit of being made in a slow-cooker. That means you just have to dump and go (after browning the meat).
When it’s ready, serve it with your favorite toppings!
10. Broccoli and Cranberry Bean Salad
This flavorful salad screams summer barbecue side dish to me! But it can be a whole meal on its own, too.
Either way, it’s a fabulous way to sneak extra nutrition into any meal.
The love child of pasta salad and a rice bowl, it looks and feels like pasta salad but uses cooked rice instead.
Therefore, it’s very filling.
This salad also features the perfect contrast of sweet and savory. Dried cherries and grapes add sweetness, while everything else is very savory.
It’s tossed in creamy, tangy lemon, garlic, and yogurt dressing. Every bite is fresh, textural, and insanely good.
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