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White Bean Salad with Sardines

(Easy 5-minute Summer Salad Recipe)

Written By: Byron | June 3, 2024
A bowl of white bean salad with sardines

White Bean Salad with Sardines is a fantastic and easy-to-make summer salad recipe combining white beans with fresh veg and canned sardines. The salad adds some crispness with some red onion, plenty of pop, and lots of fresh parsley. The dressing is very simple and is made with just 4 ingredients which helps bring all the flavors together with the freshness of the lemon and garlic.

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Serving:

Salad for 4

Ready in:

5 minutes

Skill level:

Easy

Serve with:

Good on its own

A bowl of white bean salad with sardines

Why This Recipe is So Good! 

  • No cooking!
  • Easy to prepare in just 5 minutes
  • Healthy
  • High protein, high in fiber
  • Loaded with Mediterranean flavors
  • Cheap to make
  • Uses pantry staples (no boiling and soaking beans!)
  • One pot recipe

Watch step-by-step recipe video

If you’re looking for this recipe’s video and many other great recipe ideas, why not check out our Spanish Radish YouTube Channel? We’ve got everything from quick and easy tapas recipes to delicious main meals, to incredible Spanish dessert options too.

How to Make White Bean Salad with Sardines

Ingredients

For the salad

  • 15 oz. (450g) jar white beans (cannellini beans or similar)
  • 7 oz. (200g) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ red onion, finely sliced
  • ½  English cucumber, cut into half-moons
  • 1 can (5 oz. 150g) Sardines in Olive oil (keep the oil)
  • Half cup of black olives, chopped
  • Handful of fresh parsley, chopped

Salad dressing

Equipment Needed

Method

  • Rinse and drain the white beans and add to a large salad bowl
  • Dice the cucumber, onion, and halve the cherry tomatoes and add the beans
  • Drain oil from tin of sardines (keep the oil for the dressing). 
  • Flake the sardines (if whole, carefully remove the larger bones, spine, etc.). Add flaked sardine to the bowl with the other ingredients.
  • Top with the chopped black olives and fresh parsley.
  • Drizzle some of the oil from the sardines over the salad. Add the olive oil too.
  • Add the zest from ½ lemon, plus the juice.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper, mix well, and serve immediately!

      Cooking Tips:

      • If you want to remove the sharpness from the red onion, add the finely sliced onion to a bowl of iced water and submerge for 5 minutes. Drain and shake off excess water, then add the red onion to the salad. 
      • Use good quality extra virgin olive oil for best results
      • Source sardines that have been marinated in olive oil rather than sunflower oil.
      A small bowl of seasoning sits beside some sardines

      Best White Beans to Use

      You can use any white bean for this recipe. We used a can of Canellini beans. They are easy to find in any supermarket, they’re cheap (ours cost under 1 Euro), and they can be added to the recipe ingredients with a rinse and the water drained (no cooking required!). 

      Canned vs. Dried Beans

      Both work fine and we used canned beans for convenience. If you prefer to use dried beans (they’re cheaper), then allow extra time to soak and prepare the dried beans for cooking. Refer to package instructions for specific details on how to prepare the dried beans you choose.

      Are White Beans Good for You?

      Yes, white beans are good for you. Beans are an integral ingredient found in many recipes from the Mediterranean, and you’ll find no shortage of bean recipes in Spanish cuisine. Beans are a nutritious and versatile food that offer several health benefits:

      1. High in Nutrients: White beans are rich in essential nutrients, including protein, fiber, vitamins (such as B vitamins, especially folate), and minerals (such as iron, magnesium, and potassium).
      2. Protein Source: They are an excellent plant-based source of protein, making them a valuable addition to vegetarian and vegan diets.
      3. Fiber-Rich: The high fiber content in white beans aids in digestion, helps maintain bowel regularity, and can contribute to a feeling of fullness, which may assist with weight management.
      4. Heart Health: The fiber, potassium, and magnesium in white beans are beneficial for heart health. They can help lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol levels, and improve overall cardiovascular health.
      5. Blood Sugar Control: The complex carbohydrates and fiber in white beans can help regulate blood sugar levels, making them a good option for individuals with diabetes or those looking to prevent blood sugar spikes.
      6. Antioxidants: White beans contain antioxidants that help protect the body against oxidative stress and inflammation.
      7. Bone Health: The calcium and magnesium in white beans contribute to bone health and can help prevent osteoporosis.

      Incorporating white beans into your diet can be as simple as adding them to soups, salads, stews, or as a side dish. Their mild flavor and creamy texture make them a versatile ingredient in many recipes.

      Are white beans part of the Mediterranean diet? 

      Yes, white beans are a part of the Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet emphasizes whole, plant-based foods, and legumes like white beans are a staple. Beans are one of the cheapest protein sources available and can be bought in bulk for even greater savings. 

      Incorporating white beans into your meals can help you adhere to the principles of the Mediterranean diet, supporting overall health and well-being.

      Nutrition Facts

      Servings: 4

      Amount per serving

       

      Calories

      366

      % Daily Value*

      Total Fat 13.3g

      17%

      Saturated Fat 2.1g

      10%

      Cholesterol 0mg

      0%

      Sodium 187mg

      8%

      Total Carbohydrate 40.5g

      15%

      Dietary Fiber 10.6g

      38%

      Total Sugars 4.2g

       

      Protein 15.4g

       

      Vitamin D 0mcg

      0%

      Calcium 34mg

      3%

      Iron 1mg

      7%

      Potassium 266mg

      6%

      *The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

      A bowl of white bean salad with sardines
      A bowl of white bean salad with sardines

      White Bean Salad with Sardines (Easy 5-minute Summer Salad Recipe)

      Byron
      White Bean Salad with Sardines is a fantastic summer salad recipe that brings to life a can of white beans and a few other pantry staples. Fresh, loaded with protein, and ready in 5 minutes.
      No ratings yet
      Prep Time 5 minutes
      Cook Time 0 minutes
      Total Time 5 minutes
      Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
      Cuisine Mediterranean, Seafood, Spain, spanish
      Servings 4 main or side
      Calories 366 kcal

      Equipment

      • 1 large Glass Salad bowl
      • Large knife and Cutting board
      • Salad serving spoons (for serving)
      • Microplane

      Ingredients

      For the salad

      • 15 oz. 450g jar white beans (cannellini beans or similar)
      • 7 oz. 200g cherry tomatoes, halved
      • ½ red onion finely sliced
      • ½ English cucumber cut into half-moons
      • 1 can 5 oz. 150g Sardines in Olive oil (keep the oil)
      • Half cup of black olives chopped
      • Handful of fresh parsley chopped

      Salad dressing

      • Salt and pepper to taste
      • Juice and zest from 1/2 lemon
      • ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

      Instructions
       

      • Rinse and drain the white beans and add to a large salad bowl
        15 oz. 450g jar white beans (cannellini beans or similar)
      • Dice the cucumber, onion, and halve the cherry tomatoes and add the beans
        7 oz. 200g cherry tomatoes, halved, ½ red onion, ½ English cucumber
      • Drain oil from tin of sardines (keep the oil for the dressing).
        1 can
      • Flake the sardines (if whole, carefully remove the larger bones, spine, etc.). Add flaked sardine to the bowl with the other ingredients.
      • Top with the chopped black olives and fresh parsley.
        Half cup of black olives, Handful of fresh parsley
      • Drizzle some of the oil from the sardines over the salad. Add the olive oil too.
        ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
      • Add the zest from ½ lemon, plus the juice.
        Juice and zest from 1/2 lemon
      • Season to taste with salt and pepper, mix well, and serve immediately!
        Salt and pepper

      Video

      Notes

      Cooking Tips:

      • If you want to remove the sharpness from the red onion, add the finely sliced onion to a bowl of iced water and submerge for 5 minutes. Drain and shake off excess water, then add the red onion to the salad. 
      • Use good quality extra virgin olive oil for best results
      • Source sardines that have been marinated in olive oil rather than sunflower oil. 

      Nutrition

      Serving: 200gCalories: 366kcalCarbohydrates: 40.5gProtein: 15.4gFat: 13.3gSaturated Fat: 2.1gSodium: 187mgPotassium: 266mgFiber: 10.6gSugar: 4.2gCalcium: 34mgIron: 1mg
      Keyword 5-minute recipe, extra virgin olive oil, healthy, omega 3, salad, salad dressing, sardines, white bean salad, white beans

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