Happy July! Maybe you’ve seen the inspiration for this salad at potlucks and picnics around this time of the year. The salad we are talking about is typically made with three different kinds of canned beans and bottled Italian salad dressing.  It’s the right idea, just not the healthiest and tastiest use of the wonderful protein and fiber packed beans.

Instead, our recipe uses four kinds of beans in bright fresh vinaigrette, made with one of our favorite ingredients, avocado. A fast dish to whip up for dinner tonight, or easy to carry along to a friend’s house, it keeps great in the fridge for a couple of days – getting better and better as the avocado vinaigrette soaks into the beans.

We’ve used parsley in the salad for several reasons. Of course we love it for its bright clean taste and slightly crunchy texture, but also because of its incredible nutrition. It’s more than just an herb – it’s a super-herb! Parsley is actually considered an anti-inflammatory powerhouse. The flavonoids in it help protect cells from damage and increase the antioxidant capacity of the blood. The volatile oils qualify as a “chemoprotective” food, and in particular, a food that can help neutralize particular types of carcinogens. Wow, more than just a pretty green on the side of your plate— This is perfect to bring to a Fourth of July Celebration this week!

Modern Day Bean Salad

1 Can Chickpeas

1 Can Black Beans

1 Can Cannellini Beans

1 Can Red Beans or Kidney Beans

2 Roasted Red Peppers

2 TB Chopped Green Onion

1 TB Chopped Parsley

½ Cup Chopped Sweet Peppers or Pepperoncini

¼ Cup Capers

Rinse well and drain the canned beans. Stir all the ingredients together in a large bowl and toss with the avocado dressing below.

Easy Avocado Vinaigrette

1 Haas Avocado, peeled and pitted

3 TB White Balsamic Vinegar

¼  Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

½ Tsp Sea Salt

1 Garlic Clove

Puree all the ingredients together in a food processor or blender.

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