19 Protein-Packed Recipes that Start with Canned Beans
We keep at least a few cans of beans stocked in our pantry at all times. Beans are an excellent source of protein, fiber, and B vitamins, not to mention that they’re highly accessible: You can find canned beans at pretty much any grocery store, often for less than a dollar per can. In comparison to other primary protein sources (like ground beef or chicken), beans cost very little, last a long while, and require no refrigeration. Economically and environmentally friendly, beans form the backbone of many vegetarian meals. If you simply want to reduce your meat intake but want to ensure you’re still getting all your nutrients, swapping meat for beans every once in a while is a great option (or you can double down with the all-star combination of beef and beans).
Beans have long played a solid supporting role in Southern cooking (red rice and beans, anybody?), so we’ve collected 19 of our favorite dinners that start with a can of beans. Whether you’re working with black beans, pinto beans, garbanzo beans, or white beans, we have a recipe that will satisfy the whole family. No matter whether beans play the starring or supporting role in these dishes, we can guarantee that you’ll be saving these fuss-free bean recipes for years to come.
Recipe: Baked Beans
This from-scratch Baked Beans recipe starts with 4 cans of pork and beans in tomato sauce, which then gets infused with flavor from dry mustard and molasses.
Okra and Chickpeas in Fresh Tomato Sauce
We always keep canned chickpeas stocked in our pantry, and this recipe transforms the beans into a stunning fresh dinner.
Pressure-Cooker Beef-and-Bean Chili
With the help of your pressure cooker, this hearty dinner will be ready in just under an hour.
Easy Taco Casserole
Recipe: Easy Taco Casserole
Mix it up for taco night this week with this casserole version of the Tex-Mex classic.
Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
Recipe: Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
Great Northern beans form the creamy backbone of this white chili.
Cheesy Chili Hash Brown Bake
Recipe: Cheesy Chili Hash Brown Bake
A cross between chili and a casserole, this Cheesy Chili Hash Brown Bake is the best of both worlds.
Sheet Pan Nachos
Recipe: Sheet Pan Nachos
Pinto beans sprinkled atop these Sheet Pan Nachos take them to the next level.
Recipe: Vegan Chili
With kidney beans, pinto beans, and chickpeas, this Vegan Chili is a triple-threat.
Black Bean and Corn Salsa
Recipe: Black Bean and Corn Salsa
This salsa doesn’t require much dressing up—it’s a perfect snack for gameday or to enjoy alongside a taco dinner.
Smoked Chicken Tortilla Soup
Recipe: Smoked Chicken Tortilla Soup
Top this soup with fried tortilla strips for crunch, then load on all the extra toppings you'd like.
Beef Tamale Pie
Recipe: Beef Tamale Pie
With a stunning cornbread topping, this Beef Tamale Pie is sure to satisfy the whole family.
Sheet Pan Nachos with Chorizo and Refried Beans Recipe
Refried beans bring a creamy texture to otherwise crunchy, meaty nachos.
Thyme-Scented White Bean and Sausage Stew
Once you start simmering this stew, the lovely, herbaceous perfume of thyme, white beans, and sausage will fill your kitchen.
Pulled Pork Nachos
Recipe: Pulled Pork Nachos
Have some leftover shredded smoked pork? Toss it on these simple oven-baked nachos.
Brisket-and-Black Bean Chili with Cilantro-Lime Crema
Serve this warming chili in campfire mugs to channel the spirit of breezy summer evenings.
Chicken Chili Pot Pie
Recipe: Chicken Chili Pot Pie
You can serve this crowd-pleaser in individual ramekins or family-style in a skillet. Either way, it’s guaranteed to impress.
Recipe: Cowboy Casserole
Topped with a layer of tater tots, this extravagant meal will win highly praise from the little ones.
Smoky White Bean Soup
Recipe: Smoky White Bean Soup
Looking for a quick-fix supper? This Smoky White Bean Soup comes together in just 25 minutes.
Easy Skillet Tacos
Recipe: Easy Skillet Tacos
Winner winner, skillet taco dinner! We swap the traditional black beans for pinto beans in this weeknight recipe.