Beans are a fantastic source of protein and they don’t come with all the saturated fats that are found in beef, lamb and pork. They are also high in complex carbs, fibre, antioxidants, as well as an abundance of other vitamins and minerals that are important to a healthy diet.
They have numerous health benefits that include keeping your insides happy and regular and are also low GI and will provide you with a good source of slow release energy and keep you feeling satisfied for longer!
Mixed bean salads have been around for a long time, and one of the things I love about them is that they can bulk up any protein dish as a simple side to complement a green leafy salad. They are also wonderfully diverse and can be adapted to suit the flavours you enjoy.
So having said that, I thought I would share with you a delicious Italian mixed bean salad which has some rich flavours, including fennel, basil, red onion and olives. Yummo!
- 1 drained can of mixed beans
- 1 large fennel bulb, chopped finely
- 1 cups of tomatoes chopped (I enjoy using a variety of tomatoes to keep it colourful and full of flavour!)
- 1 small red onion chopped finely
- ¼ cup pitted and chopped Kalamata olives
- 6 large basil leaves, chopped finely
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- pinch of salt and pepper to taste
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well, making sure that the vinegar and oil are well spread throughout the salad
- Enjoy on the side of another dish, or just as is!