Meatless Monday: Bounty of Beans

Meatless Monday: Bounty of Beans

From Roasted Chickpeas to Crockpot Gumbo, try a vegetarian recipe that’s bursting with beans this Meatless Monday.

Packed with protein, fibre, iron, and zinc, beans are an important source of nutrients in vegetarian or vegan diets. Canned varieties are super convenient (yay!), but they can also be high in salt (boo!). Look for BPA-free cans with no salt added, and lessen the sodium content by up to 41 percent by draining and rinsing the beans. This Meatless Monday, celebrate the bounty of beans with a recipe that incorporates one of these famous varieties.

Black beans

Most of us have probably cooked with these popular pods; they’re used in all sorts of soups, stews, and rice dishes. Look for their meaty flavour in this lunch- or dinner-worthy Oat and Sweet Potato Salad.

Black-eyed peas

I gotta feeling that these legumes are more associated with the musical group than cooking. Where is the love? Really, black-eyed peas are excellent in salads, casseroles, and traditional Southern dishes. Vegetarian Crockpot Gumbo, for example, is a make-ahead meal that’s bursting with boom boom pow.

Chickpeas

I think of these beans—roasted and tossed with maple syrup and extra-virgin olive oil—as the best part of movie nights. I’ve even been known to sneak a baggie or two into theatres. Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are popular in recipes for hummus and minestrone soup. Try Roasted Chickpeas for an easy movie snack with as much crunch and flavour as popcorn, or whip up Penne with Roasted Tomatoes for dinner tonight.

Edamame

Green soybeans are a simple, tasty treat when dusted with salt, cayenne, and lemon juice. Edamame also enliven Asian dishes such as Chili Eggplant Noodles, a unique update on typical noodle bowls. Or get experimental with an Earl Grey-Infused Edamame Quinoa Salad, which is next on my list of must-try salads.

Pinto beans

These pint-sized powerhouses are the most popular bean in the US—and with good reason: just 1/2 cup boasts 32 percent of our daily recommend fibre intake without any fat, cholesterol, or sodium. Bring kids on board by packing Batman Bean Burritos in their lunches. I’m not sure what these wraps have to do with Batman, but kids like superheroes, right? (Especially around costume time!)

Red kidney beans

Stews, salads, chilli, rice dishes—there a variety of meals that benefit from a boost of kidney beans. Even meat lovers will appreciate the heat of this Vegetarian Chilli that incorporates two zinc superstars: kidney beans and chickpeas.

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