Whole Living Daily

Meatless Meal: Garlicky White Bean Stew

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When I was in school for nutrition I went back home to live with my mom. (Understatement of the year to say she was happy about this.) This is when I began really cooking for the first time in my life. Every night was an experiment: knives blazing, spices flying, pots and pans getting some serious exercise. We always sat down to something special and, despite my insanely busy schedule, I found that cooking dinner for us was the most relaxing moment of my day.

Sometime during those months, I came up with this stew. On a particularly busy night when I was cramming for an exam, I threw together what we had in the fridge--amazing how cleaning out the kitchen can result in such deliciousness! This dish quickly became a staple and my mom, although now living without her live-in chef, has mastered it as well.

I am always trying to get more kale into my diet. Why? Because it packs more nutritional punch per calorie than almost any other food on the planet. Seriously. It is chock-full of vitamin K, an essential vitamin for preventing bone fractures, postmenopausal bone loss, calcification of your arteries, and has even been shown to protect against liver and prostate cancer.

Kale is the richest source of carotenoids in the leafy-green vegetable family, making it a top cancer-fighter. Kale helps to regulate estrogen, protects against heart disease, and regulates blood pressure. The calcium in kale is more absorbable by the body than milk (and ounce for ounce, contains more calcium than milk)! This makes it an excellent choice for both prevention and treatment of osteoporosis, arthritis and bone loss.

Garlicky White Bean & Kale Stew
Serves 3-4

Knob of coconut oil or ghee
2 medium onions
6 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional, but really delicious)
5 bay leaves
Pinch chili flakes
Sea salt
Cracked black pepper
2- 2 ½ cups cooked white beans (lima, butter, navy, cannelini…)
2 cups packed shredded kale leaves
2 cups vegetable broth
1 can (14 oz.) organic whole tomatoes
Cold-pressed olive oil to garnish

1. Heat a knob of oil in a large stockpot. Slice onions and add to the pot with a couple pinches sea salt, chili, bay leaves and paprika. Cook for a few minutes until the onions have softened, then add sliced garlic. If the post becomes dry, add a little juice from the tinned tomatoes.
2. Add all other ingredients, bring to a boil, season to taste, and serve with a drizzle of olive oil (since everything is cooked, you don’t need to heat it long). If you are going to let it simmer for a while, add the kale about 5-10 minutes before serving so that it retains more of its nutritional value.

Sarah Britton is a holistic nutritionist, vegetarian chef, and the creator of the award-winning blog My New Roots. Sarah is currently a chef at three organic restaurants in Copenhagen, Denmark, where she has earned praise for her creative and adventurous recipes. A Certified Nutritional Practitioner, she is also the founder of New Roots Holistic Nutrition, where she educates others to be an active participant in their own health and healing.

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Comments (54)

  • Can I freeze this? I will add the kale when I reheat it...

  • So sorry that this is your last post. I have really enjoyed and made good use of these posts.

  • I just pinned this to make for dinner tonight, yum!

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  • Just made this for dinner. Cooked bean component till it became saucy before adding kale. Made gnocci and added it at the end. A most delicious satisfying meal. Big Aussie thank you.

  • My husband and I just made this for dinner. It was SO easy and SO delicious. I added some chopped Thai chiles and 1/2 cup extra water because I like really brothy soups. I also subbed chard for the kale because our market didn't have any. This will definitely be a go-to quick dinner for us.

  • I'm excited to try this! Have you ever used broccoli instead of kale? My husband has a kale-aversion...

  • Kale is readily available this time of year here in Holland and this looks like a great alternative to the traditional Dutch boerenkool (kale) stamppot. Looking forward to trying it.

  • Perfect for January when we are trying to atone for our December excesses!

  • This is wonderful. The garlic and pepper cuts right through the worst cold. This is a keeper. Thank you.

  • Delicious! This is the first food I have cooked now in the new year, and I completely enjoyed it. I am not in my own kitchen right now, so didn't have access to the herbs listed...still, it was fantastic without them. But I did add some sweet peas because they are fantastic. Thanks for the beautiful recipe!

  • I have done Google and Bing searches and have been unable to find any reference to "a knob of oil". What is it? a teaspoon? tablespoon? ½ cup?

  • @Joe - I think a knob translates into about 2 tablespoons.

  • What's a knob?

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  • [...] used Sarah Bitton’s recipe Garlicky White Bean Stew as my Inspiration. However, my version of this this soup ended up being more of a cleaning out the [...]

  • I have a weak stomach, how do you think this recipe will gel with irritable digestion?

  • Soup recipe looks yumalicious

  • I see, this item is good for arthritic patients. My mom is suffering from arthritic pain in knee joints. I will surely tell her to incorporate this item into her daily diet chart. Thanks for sharing. it is a good help..

  • I made this and it was great! I used fire roasted tomatoes, smoked paprika and fresh bay leaves. Really easy. I ordered the MS Meatless cookbook and can't wait to try more.

  • [...] recipe was adapted from the Garlicky White Bean Stew recipe on [...]

  • What fast, simple and wonderful soup! Thank you for sharing

  • [...] made the Garlicky White Bean Stew earlier this week. It’s definitely a win! Again, i found the recipe on The Blender [...]

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  • Looks delicious! I just wanted to ask about canned tomatoes, I read recently that tomatoes react with the can lining and for that reason you should not eat canned tomatoes....your thoughts and any way we can replace the canned tomatoes with freshed ones?
    thank you

  • I tried your recipe, its amazing. Can you post something with porcini mushrooms. I wan to try new recipe using varieties of mushrooms. I recently tried making Mushroom Chips and it tasted great. May be you could add some more to mushrooms. Will wait for your post.

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  • [...] used Sarah Bitton’s recipe Garlicky White Bean Stew as my Inspiration. However, my version of this this soup ended up being more of a cleaning out the [...]

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  • Fantastic recipe!!! I would like to eat this dish in morning with some crunchy item.

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  • This is what I'm cooking this weekend. I actually made a navy bean soup last week, but it had ham. I like to add some thyme to my beans.

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  • That looks sooooooo good!!!


  • yess good, fantastico

  • I can't wait to try it tonight!

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  • Fantastic recipe, yes, i would like to eat this dish in morning with some crunchy item.

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  • I have to make this asap! Looks and sounds delicious!

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