I knew I finally perfected this white bean mash when a shocking comment flew across the kitchen - these are better than the real thing!
When simmered together, these healthy and simple ingredients transform into luscious mashed "potatoes".
After many experiments and research, I learned that flavoring canned beans is very similar to flavoring a soup. Sauté some onion, garlic and herbs. Add seasoning. Then simmer until all the flavors have melded together.
Not only is this easier than traditional mashed, it's much healthier too.
Why I love beans
Beans are a detox MACHINE. They help our body remove toxins and heal.
Here's how it works:
When soluble fiber (beans) are separated from fats (oils, nuts, avocado) it will attach to our bile (toxins from our liver detox process) instead of the fat and remove the toxins from our body.
So why would I eat potatoes when I can eat beans?
How this recipe fits into your speciality diet
This recipe is designed to be...
- Vegan / Vegetarian
- Grain Free
- Gluten Free
- Dairy Free
- Soy Free
Always be sure to check your ingredient labels if you have a food sensitivity, allergy or preference.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- white beans: cannellini beans, navy beans, butter beans, great northern beans, white kidney beans... you can use any kind of cooked white bean. 2 cans of beans = 3 cups cooked beans if you are cooking your own dry beans on the stovetop, instant pot or pressure cooker.
- yellow onion: also known as brown onions.
- minced garlic: take a head of garlic, remove a few garlic cloves and peel them. Then finely mince with a knife or garlic press. You can also use roasted garlic or ¼ teaspoon garlic granules per clove (but the flavor won't be as strong).
- fresh thyme: fresh thyme adds amazing flavor to this white bean mash. You can throw in the thyme sprig (with the leaves on the branch) or you can remove the leaves and mince them. If you use the sprig, remove the branches before blending or mashing. Fresh rosemary is a great alternative or addition. Dried thyme can also be used.
- vegetable broth: any vegetable or chicken stock / broth will work. Beef broth can also be used but the color of the bean mash will be darker.
- lemon juice: lemon juice adds an amazing depth of flavor and should not be skipped. I promise, you cannot taste the lemon once mixed in.
- olive oil: any neutral oil can be used to sauté the base.
- seasonings: sea salt & ground black pepper.
See recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact quantities.
How to make it
If you aren't using canned beans and instead cooking your own dry beans, do this first.
Step 1. Sauté: In stovetop pan, heat a tablespoon of olive oil on medium heat. Add finely diced onion and a pinch of salt and cook for 5 minutes or until they start to become translucent. Then add garlic and thyme sprigs into to the pan. Stir frequently for 2-3 minutes to prevent burning.
Step 2. Add then simmer: Stir in the cannellini beans, vegetable broth, salt, and pepper. Bring the bean mixture to a boil on medium-high heat then simmer on low for 10 minutes until it has thickened and is creamy.
Step 3. Blend: Remove the thyme sprigs. Blend or mash the bean mixture. Mashing with the back of a fork or potato masher will result in a more textured dish while blending will result in a smooth creamy dish. I recommend blending in a small blender, food processor or immersion blender on medium speed.
Step 4: Squeeze on some fresh lemon juice: Adding the lemon juice at the end ensures the lemon juice does not cook and turn bitter. The lemon juice adds an amazing depth of flavor and should not be skipped. I promise your mash will not taste like lemon juice. Serve and enjoy!
What to serve with white bean mash?
Anything you would serve with mashed potatoes, you should serve with this mashed white bean recipe.
For a typical dinner I serve this easy white bean mash with roasted chicken breasts and a seasonal roasted vegetable. Or if I'm feeling fancy I might top them with some seared scallops and broccolini.
You can even make a big batch for a holiday meal or keep the ingredients in the pantry for a simple side dish on busy weeknights.
It can also transform into an amazing spread to be used on toast, baguette or crackers.
Meal Prep & Storage
Store: Once at room temperature, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days then discard.
Freeze: Once the mashed white bean has cooled to room temperature it can be frozen in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 6 months. You may want to freeze in individual portions unless planning to use all at once. Thaw overnight in the fridge, for a few hours at room temperature or by placing your container in a pan of warm water.
Reheat: Reheat the bean mash on medium-low in a pan on the stovetop. Since some of the moisture has evaporated, you'll need to add a little stock / broth or a splash of water and stir to prevent burning. Continue until warm and at your desired consistency. If the bean mixture is separating re-blend or whisk the mixture briefly.
It depends what texture you want. If you want a completely creamy texture, blending the beans for a few seconds in a small blender if my favorite method.
You can, but I don't recommend it since the chickpea texture isn't as smooth.
More bean recipes you'll love!
I hope you love this white bean mash recipe! If you make it I’d love if you could leave a rating & connect with me on Instagram @passthesprouts!
White Bean Mash
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ yellow onion finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic peeled & minced
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon sea salt fine
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cans white beans (cannellini, navy, great northern) 2 cans = 3 cups of cooked beans
- ½ cup vegetable broth or chicken stock / broth
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- Sauté: In stovetop pan, heat olive oil on medium heat. Add finely diced onion and a pinch of salt and cook for 5 minutes or until they start to become translucent. Then add garlic and thyme into to the pan. Stir frequently for 3 minutes to prevent burning.
- Add: Stir in the white beans (drained and rinsed), vegetable broth, salt, and pepper. Bring the bean mixture to a boil then simmer on low for 10 minutes until it has thickened and is creamy.
- Blend: Remove the thyme sprigs. Blend or mash the bean mixture. Mashing with a fork will result in a more textured dish while blending will result in a smooth creamy dish. I recommend blending in a small blender or food processor.
- Top with lemon juice: Mix in the lemon juice. Adding the lemon juice at the end ensures the lemon juice does not cook and turn bitter.
- Thyme Sprigs? a thyme sprig is a 3-4 tiny branches of thyme bundled on one branch.
- Quantity: This recipe makes ~2.5 cups of bean mash
- Storage: store in the fridge for 3-4 days or freeze for up to 6 months.
- Reheat: add a splash of water or broth and stir on stovetop until warm and at desired consistency.
- Using dry beans: 2 cans of beans = 3 cups cooked beans if you are cooking your own dry beans on the stovetop, instant pot or pressure cooker.