Saturday, September 1, 2012

Four (Is Better Than Three) Bean Salad

There's just something so nice about a simple side salad. An easy vinaigrette and some beans can do the trick and it goes with pretty much everything.

It's great to find a side that is easy to make and easy on the budget. Most of the ingredients in this are ones you probably already have on hand and if you have to buy a few, they're really inexpensive. All you need is a few cans of beans, an onion and a few standard dressing ingredients. I've noticed a lot of other bean salad recipes out there have tons of sugar in their dressings but I've cut mine down a ton and you won't even miss it. And because it's full of 'good for you' beans and a small amount of sugar and oil, this is one healthy dish!

My version takes the popular three bean salad and adds more variety by bringing some chick peas along for the ride. I've used pinto beans or white kidney beans before instead of the standard red kidney beans because I'm just not a fan, but you can definitely use those if that's what you prefer. You can, in fact, throw just about any bean in this! Just make sure it isn't a real soft bean or it might turn mushy after a day or two. I also added some chopped pimento for color and a little flavor boost, but if you don't like them they can easily be left out.

This was so good and so easy to make that I think it might be my new 'go-to' side dish. I'm definitely bringing this for next year's big 4th of July party!

Four Bean Salad

1 can cannellini beans, kidney beans or pinto beans
1 can garbanzo beans (chick peas)
1 can wax beans
1 can green beans
1 sm onion sliced into thin rings
2 TB chopped pimento (optional)

1/4 c cider vinegar
1 TB white wine vinegar
3 TB olive oil
1/2 TB lemon juice
2 TB sugar
1/2 TB honey
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

1. Mix dressing ingredients together and set aside.
2. Drain and rinse all the beans and put them in a large bowl.
3. Add the onions and pimento.
4. Pour the dressing over everything and give a gentle mix so you don't break up the beans.
5. Cover the bowl and chill in the fridge for at least two hours.

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