21 May 2017

Recipe: White Bean Salad with Apricots and Pistachios


I was babysitting for a friend’s kids once and decided to make a bean salad for lunch. I let the kids pick some of the ingredients, and this is what we came up with. It is still a favorite of mine—and theirs.

Serves 4 - Vegan
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans white beans, rinsed and drained, or 3 cups cooked white beans (see Tip)
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 3/4 cup dried unsulfured apricots, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup toasted pistachios
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • Juice of 2 oranges
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt, to taste
Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


  • Any white beans will work in this recipe—Great Northern, cannellini, or navy—so use whatever you have on hand.
  • You can use this recipe as a template for different bean salads. Try different beans, different dried or fresh fruits, and different herbs like basil, cilantro, or tarragon. If you are not a fan of beans, substitute 4 cups cooked brown rice or cooked quinoa.
  • You might be tempted to skip the orange zest in this dish or to use bottled orange juice or lemon juice in place of fresh juice, but the fresh juice has much better flavor than the bottled. Have fun at home and do your own taste test to see which your family likes better.

You can toast nuts in the oven or on the stovetop. I prefer the oven method because it is a little more forgiving if I happen to walk away from the kitchen and leave them unattended. On the stovetop, nuts quickly go from toasted to burned, so you have to stay with them to avoid burning.

  • Oven method: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coarsely chop the nuts and spread them out on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the nuts until fragrant and lightly browned, 7 to 8 minutes.
  • Stovetop method: Coarsely chop the nuts and toast them in a skillet over medium-low heat, shaking the pan frequently, until fragrant and lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of The China Study Family Cookbook.
Chef Del Sroufe is co-owner and Executive Chef of Wellness Forum Foods. He is the author of Forks Over Knives-The Cookbook, The China Study Quick & Easy Cookbook, The China Study Family Cookbook, and Better Than Vegan, the story of his struggle with weight loss and gain, and how he managed to lose over 200 pounds on a low fat, plant based diet. Del teaches cooking classes and helps people transition to a plant-based diet. Learn more at chefdelsroufe.com.