Cannellini Bean Stew

Cannellini Bean Stew

This may be the world’s quickest stew, it really only takes five minutes to make! Don’t worry though it still has the same warming, comforting, wintery feel as a traditional stew, which is perfect for this time of year. The other amazing thing about this recipe is that it’s made up of just a handful of easy to find ingredients, all of which come from a cupboard so you don’t need to stress about buying lots of fresh produce. Instead all you need are cannellini beans, cans of chopped tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, a little tahini, garlic, chilli flakes, salt and pepper. Once you have these you’re good to go – all you have to do is mix the ingredients together in a pan and let them heat up – no chopping, almost no washing up and absolutely no stress! Beans are so nutritious too as they’re packed with fibre and protein, so you’ll feel satisfied and energised for hours after eating this. I love serving it with my marinated kale salad and some sliced avocado or with a big bowl of hot brown rice, both are so delicious!


Serves 4

– 1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes (drained weight of 150g)

– 2 400g tins of chopped tomatoes

– 2 400g tins of cannellini beans

– 1 tablespoon of tahini

– 1 teaspoon of ground chilli

– 3 cloves of garlic

– salt and pepper

Simply pour the beans into a colander, rinse them with water and then drain them before placing them in a large frying pan.

Next drain the sun-dried tomatoes in the colander and add them to the pan with the tins of tomatoes, tahini, crushed garlic, chilli, salt and pepper.

Allow the pan to heat for a few minutes until everything is nice and hot, then serve and enjoy!


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  • Evie

    This looks amazing, thank you! Do you know how long it would keep in the fridge, or if it could be frozen? I’d like to make a batch up for quick lunches!

  • Katharina

    Thanks for this idea! I just made it for lunch and I now feel nourished enough to take a dip in the Mediterranean Sea.

  • Tracey

    I love how simple the ingredients are, but it looks like it still packs a tonne of flavour! Can’t wait to make this! :)

  • Zwaan

    Mmmm, this sounds really good. I’ll be making this very soon!

  • Caroline Harker

    This was delicious! My husband had second helpings!

  • Millie l Add A Little

    Looks delicious! I never thought to add tahini but sounds great!

  • Sian

    Yum- can’t wait to make it this week! Quick question: is there any substitute for garlic? I have IBS and react really badly to garlic unfortunately.

  • Nadia

    I made this today and absolutely loved it, thank you so much Ella for a delicious recipe!

  • siguemiestilo

    Looks great!!!

  • Kitty

    Sounds gorgeous! Unfortunately tomatoes trigger my IBS – can you recommend any possible substitutes? x

  • Valerie

    I made it last night and for all the none vegans out there it goes great with frying sausages

  • Joy Napolitano

    I made this for dinner tonight. The kids really loved it. I made it with brown rice and Kale chips. They just devoured the Kale chips. Thanks for a quick and easy dinner to make during the week.

  • ellawoodward

    Sorry, they are fairly essential to this but there are plenty of other tomato-free recipes

  • ellawoodward

    You can leave the garlic out x

  • ellawoodward

    I haven’t tried to freeze it but I am sure it would be fine frozen or kept in the fridge for up to about 5 days x

  • Jasmine Stephanie

    Hi Ella, I’m wondering do you find beans hard to digest? I would like to incorporate more plant based meals into my diet but beans do my stomach in. Did you have any digestive issues when you changed your diet?

  • Lizzle

    Made this last night. Took about 5 minutes. Really tasty. I’m a fan!

  • Susan

    I tried this last night and it was so deliciously warming, healthy and tasty

  • Edith

    This is delicious!!

  • sumos_mom

    Do you chop the sun dried tomatoes? They are quite large out of the jar I just bought!

  • Beth Elyse Shaw

    This is so so yummy! I did not have the sundried tomatoes, or the canellini beans so I used chick peas, kalamata olives, and added some capers and turmeric. It came out wonderful. I made a pot of organic brown rice and served it over that. Delicious! Thank you Ella!

  • ellawoodward

    You can chop them if you like!

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Jasmine
    I don’t really have problems with them but if you do you could look into soaking them first and see if that helps at all.

  • ellawoodward

    So pleased they loved it!

  • Nell

    Love this recipe, great to make as a batch then have for lunch during the week. Super economical! Thanks Ella.

  • Molly Jameson

    I add aubergine to this and it’s really good!

  • Heather

    Made this tonight for dinner and absolutely loved it! I had a red pepper that needed using up so added it with an onion. Served with some steamed Cornish greens! My husband has even asked me to make it again! Thanks!

  • Yatu

    Love this recipe! Had it for dinner tonight and added Kalamata Olives for a salty kick! Massaged kale for the first time too & it was just delish!

  • Julia

    I was wondering what to pair with the stew. If anyone has any recommendations vegetable wise? Please let me know. Thank you

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Julia,
    In the recipe I’ve suggested kale, avocado or brown rice – but I’m sure lots of other vegetables would also go with it, hope that helps. Ella x

  • ellawoodward

    So glad you enjoyed it, sounds delicious! Ella x

  • Julia

    Thank you I will certainly try all those delicious veggies with it

  • ellawoodward

    Hope you like it :) Ella x

  • Maya

    Ella I just wanted to say thank you so much for all the incredible recipes. I suffer from Crohn’s and your delicious recipes suit me so well and always make me feel well-nourished and healthy. Thank you, with love from Australia xxx

    • ellawoodward

      Thank you Maya! I’m so happy the recipes are helping you feel better – food and feeding yourself just an amazing way to help the body :) Have a wonderful day, Ella x

  • Suzanne

    I just keep coming back to this website for inspiration. Buying ingredients i never would have before and now knowing how to cook with them. So easy to follow recipes and most importantly they are nutritious. Great job and thanks for sharing your talent and ideas with us. Suzanne S

  • ellawoodward

    Thanks so much for that Suzanne, it makes me so happy to hear! Have a lovely day :) x

  • Abigail

    Absolutely gorgeous! I always used to make this type of dish with chorizo and I didn’t miss it at all in fact it was more enjoyable the flavours were so perfect with the beans. Thank you Ella.

  • ellawoodward

    So glad you loved it :) x

  • lovealwayserica

    Ella, a lot of your recipes that call for sundried tomatoes look like they’re those large, liquid-y tomatoes. The sundried tomatoes that I have are literally dried – scrunched up and dry. I guess I can soak them in hot water before using them? I don’t know, have you ever worked with this type? They’re kinda like so –

  • ellawoodward

    Hey Erica, yes some sun-dried tomatoes are literally dried! You can remoisturise them with warm water, but the best way is to fill a small jar with olive oil and store them in there – the oil can then also be used as well and has the most amazing tomato-ey italian-inspired depth of flavour! x

    • lovealwayserica

      Wonderful! I made it last night and just soaked the tomatoes in warm water for about an hour prior to sautéing, and it worked wonderfully! Thanks for the olive oil tip though, I’ll try that out! ❤️

  • lovealwayserica

    What’s your opinion on tinned tomatoes having BPA? It’s a struggle for me to use them for that reason.

    • Danielle

      I find passata to be a good substitute. It is pureed which means no tomato chunks but the peace of mind of no BPA is pretty worthwhile.

      • lovealwayserica

        I’ve seen passata in grocery stores before! I guess if there is one with no additives – that’s my best bet for a BPA free tomato paste/tinned tomato search. Thanks, Danielle!

  • Rhianna Roper

    Just made this for my husband and I – it was so good! We had it with some quinoa, kale and avocado. It was a bit skeptical because it looked so simple but it was delicious.

  • AHM

    I’m not a big commenter on blogs, but I just wanted to pipe up to say thank you. For health reasons, I’ve recently changed my diet radically to exclude wheat and dairy and your blog has given me plenty of inspiration.

    I can’t tell you just how much I enjoyed this stew recipe. Rich, filling, delicious and so incredibly quick – it’s going to be one of my new staples! I’m already thinking up ways to vary it; not because it needs to be varied, but because that tomato sauce is so good that I’m sure it there are plenty other applications for it! Layered with aubergines? Yes please! :)

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Ailie, I’m so happy to hear that you love the stew!. Yes, layered aubergine sounds like a great idea! X

  • Lisa livesey

    Wow this is delicious my husband doesn’t like tomatoes he loved yay! And so simple and easy to make thank you

  • Katherine Thomas

    This is lovely with some herbes de provence to liven it up a bit and paprika for a bit more spice! I also let it cook down for about 30 mins so the beans softened up a bit more. Incredibly delicious and love the meatiness of the sun-dried tomatoes! Thank you xx

  • Vicky Litton

    I have recently had flu and a chest infection and this has resulted in 3 weeks off work, extreme fatigue and no sign as yet of any recovery. Please can you advise me on best foods/recipes that would help boost my energy , stamina and immunity to other germs. Thanks!

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Vicky, make sure you have lots of Vitamin C and immunity defense foods such as lemon and ginger. Superfoods like spirulina and maca are really great for boosting energy too! Hope you feel better! X

    • Vicky Litton

      bless you…thankyou Ella! I have also just ordered loads of food stuffs from Biona and Go Organic as I am in preperation for getting your book which I ordered from Waterstones a while ago! so excited! also ordered the Mini Magimix food processor today as I live alone…do you think this will be big enough to manage all your recipes?x

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Vicky, I think so as you will not be making huge quantities of each recipe. Just be sure to not blend too many dates at one time. Hope you love the book! X

  • Marshall Jean

    Did you use the sun dried tomatoes that are packed in oil? Can’t wait to make this recipe!

    • ellawoodward

      Hi Marshall, I buy organic sun dried tomatoes soaked in olive oil, but make sure to drain them when you use them. Have a lovely weekend! X

      • Marshall Jean

        Thanks for replying! You too!

  • Danielle

    No problem! Just make sure to go for the glass jars as that’s what keeps them BPA free, I should’ve mentioned that in the first post!

    • lovealwayserica

      I always look for BPA free. It’s hard to find – but sometimes I am successful!

      • Alexandra Franco

        I always use fresh tomatos. I think is the best even if it doesn’t get as tasty.

  • Liz Cleeve

    Hey! I love the sound of this recipe but where do you get your sun dried tomatoes from? The ones that I’ve found contain additives and preservatives but I love the flavour they give to dishes. Any info would be great! Thanks!

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Liz, you can order organic ones from Ocado! Have a lovely day! X

    • Liz Cleeve

      Brilliant! Thank you! x

  • jonny

    Hi Ella
    love your blog, look forward to trying recipies, i notice you use a lot of tinned food isnt that processed and acidic, suppose i could use fresh tomatoes and beans, what are your thoughts on tinned food

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Jonny,I make sure I buy organic tinned products without any additives or preservatives. I find tins really useful and great to have on hand in my kitchen cupboards! X

    • jonny

      Thanks Ella really look forward to trying your recipies

  • amelie

    Dear Ella – I may have missed something you have written on your blogs, but I notice you appear not to use onions in your recipes. Is there a reason for this? I have very bad eczema and have experimented cutting out one food and another to no avail. Do you have any info on onions? Many thanks.

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Amelie, I don’t eat onions as I find them quite difficult to digest but this is just a personal preference. Have a lovely day! X

  • Michelle

    Could I blitz the sun dried tomatoes in a food processor? My son doesn’t like lumps of tomato. i’ve never used sun dried so don’t know if they’d blitz ok.

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Michelle, I’ve not ever blitzed them before but I think they should be fine as long as you have a powerful food processor! X

  • Julie

    Thank you. I just made this and it was delicious. I live in malawi so can only really get basic products. When i found sundried tomatoes i was really excited and this was the perfect way to use them x

  • katiejayne

    Looking forward to it. What tahini brand do u get i hear some arnt good and never used it beflre

  • Eloise

    Hi Ella, I was stumbling through your recipes and came across this one and literally can’t wait to try it! I was just wondering if by any chance chickpeas would also work as a substitute for cannellini beans, as I dont have them on hand for the moment.
    Thank you! :)

  • ellawoodward

    Yes you could try this with chickpeas instead! Hope you love it x

  • ellawoodward

    There isn’t a particular brand which I use. I usually buy it from my local supermarket! Have a lovely day! X

  • lucumaaa

    Can’t wait to make this. Sending tons of love & positive vibes from the great white north xx

  • Doz

    Ella love your recipes can this and others be frozen.

  • Chereen Strydom

    Oh. Em. Gee! I’m busy cooking this right this minute, and already in love! I can’t stop ‘testing’ it… HUGE mouthfuls at a time. Genius! Thank you for sharing this!

  • Claire

    Oh. My. Goodness. This is the nicest main course I have cooked for myself for ages 😀 I have run out of tahini, so I added peanut butter instead (and probably about twice as much… :) ). It was absolutely delicious, served on top of two slices of superfood bread and with a few peas. And SO easy and quick!! Oh and my colleague said today she can see that I have lost weight, because I look generally narrower from behind! lol :) This is the first time in my life I am allowing myself to eat previously ‘forbidden’ ‘too-fattening’ foods like nuts and oils and snacks… I am so happy to be eating this way, I feel great! A great big THANK YOU, Ella! xx

    • ellawoodward

      Hi Claire, I am so glad that you love the stew, it’s one of my favourite recipes! I hope you continue to enjoy the recipes as you make them! Have a lovely day, Ella x

  • Mia

    Yum! Just made this and it only took 10 minutes! Replaced the tahini and ground chili (as i didn’t have any) with a tablespoon of harissa paste and some sesame oil… delicious!

  • Sascha McMeekin

    Hi Ella! I just wanted to let you know this recipe is one of my favourites and to thank you for introducing me to the delicious wonders of Tahini and Tamari together! Sascha x

  • Tilly

    This was so so good! Thank you 😀

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Maria, I buy organic tinned cannellini beans which have already been cooked. Hope you love the recipe x

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Miriam, I buy tinned cannellini beans which have already been cooked. I go for organic tinned beans which don’t contain any additives! You can buy them in most health food stores or Whole Foods or even Amazon. Have a lovely day x

  • Nicola

    Could I make this & reheat/freeze? X

    • ellawoodward

      Hi Nicola, yes it freezes really well and is easy to reheat. Hope you love it x

      • Nicola

        Thank you ill be trying this later x

  • Nicola

    I made this tonight, took literally 5 minutes and was absolutely gorgeous x

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Hirad, so sorry but I don’t have the calorie content for any of my recipes as I much prefer to focus on goodness rather than calories x

  • ellawoodward

    There are so many of these kind of recipe in the Main Meals section on the blog such as the sweet potato and carrot mash bowl. The bean chilli recipe in the book is also a great one to try! Hope you love it! X

  • ellawoodward

    That’s awesome to hear, so happy you’re feeling so inspired by the blog! Have a lovely evening x

  • jemma

    Tried this out tonight for the family before flatting next year. Served with rice. Perfect meal! It was suer easy, super fast and super yummy.

  • ellawoodward

    Sadly I don’t think it would taste as good as the sundried tomatoes add an amazing depth to the flavour but it’s definitely worth a try! X

  • ellawoodward

    The organic Biona ones are great – you can find them in most health food stores x

  • ellawoodward

    At the moment we are using the Biona ones x