Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette — healthy, endlessly adaptable, and can be made in a flash with the easy basil vinaigrette recipe or your favorite pesto.

Healthy and endlessly adaptable Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette comes together in a flash thanks to my favorite basil vinaigrette — but your favorite pesto offers a quick fix all year round.

 

Sometimes, we just need a meal to come together FAST, and this fresh-tasting, protein- and veggie-rich salad does just that!

When I shared my Basil Vinaigrette recipe a few days ago, I talked about component cooking.  Quite simply, the term refers to making a big batch of something to use in a variety of ways throughout the week.

As I mentioned in that post, a truly useful component should be loaded with flavor (to perk up those tried-and-true pantry staples) and highly versatile (so we’re not eating the same thing all week).  Certainly, homemade sauces and dressings fit the bill!

Once the dressing component is on hand, the following salad whips up in a flash.  As such, I make it often.  Feel free to use your favorite pesto — another reliable “component” — if that’s what you have on hand.  The flavors are similar, and we’re aiming for convenience here!

The wholesome combination of beans, greens, and tomatoes pairs well with a simple grilled protein — I make it most often as an accompaniment to steak or chicken — but you could try stirring in some cooked and diced chicken, shrimp, or even canned tuna for a satisfying all-in-one meal.

Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette — healthy, endlessly adaptable, and can be made in a flash with the easy basil vinaigrette recipe or your favorite pesto.

I made this when we were visiting with my husband’s family several weeks ago, and its warm reception inspired me to share it here.  There was one small bowl remaining, so I figured I’d polish it off for lunch the next day.

As luck would have it, when I walked into the kitchen, my father-in-law was scraping the last bean out of the bowl.  There was plenty of other food to enjoy, and I was happy that he scrambled to claim the leftovers!

The salad really is perfect as a quick meatless lunch or light dinner.  Full disclaimer, the arugula does wilt if it sits overnight, but he didn’t seem to mind!  If you’re planning on leftovers, you may wish to add the fresh greens to the portion you are serving.

Basil Vinaigrette — This fresh-tasting vinaigrette is a streamlined option to pesto that can be used in much the same way.  Once you have a jar in your refrigerator, it will perk up all sorts of meals in the week ahead!

This fresh-tasting Basil Vinaigrette is a streamlined option to pesto that can be used in much the same way.  Once you have a jar in your refrigerator, it will perk up all sorts of meals in the week ahead!  For the sake of speed and/or a year-round alternative, your favorite pesto offers a quick fix.

Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette — healthy, endlessly adaptable, and can be made in a flash with the easy basil vinaigrette recipe or your favorite pesto.

Serve this healthy, satisfying salad as is, or doctor it up with a few optional extras if inclined.

Tomato & White Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette
Yield: 4-6 servings
This dish can lean towards a green salad or a heartier bean salad with a simple adjustment to the quantity of greens used.  It may be prepped an hour or two in advance; in that case stir in tender lettuces like arugula just before serving.
Ingredients
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and well drained
  • 2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, halved*
  • 1/4 cup slivered red onion
  • Arugula, baby spinach, or greens of choice (2-6 cups based on type of salad desired)
  • Basil Vinaigrette (may substitute your favorite pesto)
  • Optional extras: 1/4-1/2 cup crumbled feta; 1/4-1/3 cup sunflower seeds, pepitas, toasted and chopped walnuts, and/or almonds

 

Instructions

In a large bowl, combine the beans, tomatoes, onions, and greens.  (Use the lesser amount of greens as an accent for a heartier white bean and tomato salad.  Scale up for more of a tossed green salad feel.)

Drizzle with enough basil vinaigrette to lightly coat.  Toss in optional feta, nuts, and/or seeds, and serve.

Notes

*You may substitute any vine-ripened tomatoes of choice.  If they are large, you may wish to gently squeeze out some of the seeds before chopping, or place the chopped tomatoes in a colander for a few minutes while rounding up the other ingredients.  This will allow any excess liquid to drain off, thereby preventing a watered down salad.

The Fountain Avenue Kitchen https://fountainavenuekitchen.com/

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *