White Bean Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes

I spotted this white bean salad with sun dried tomatoes when I was shopping.  It sounded delicious: beans, sun dried tomatoes, olive oil, spinach.  Healthy and tasty!

The price was a bit of a turn off though: $8.00 a pound?! For beans?  Nope.  I had dry beans at home, but it was too hot to start cooking them. So, I trotted over to the canned beans section. Instead of $8.00 a pound, I got a whole can of beans for 88 cents (on sale!).  Score!

The rest was easy (and no cooking needed on a hot day).

Just soak the sun dried tomatoes, pour the beans into a bowl, roughly chop the spinach, chop some onion, and let it sit for a while to let the flavor develop.




Substitutions and Variations for White Bean Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes

  • Add some olives and mozzarella cheese
  • Substitute fresh basil for the dried oregano
  • Make it a dip: roast some garlic, add that to the salad, and put it in your mini-chopper or blender. Or, do this with the remaining beans.
  • Use different colored beans or several different kinds. Put the rest of the can(s) in soup or chili.

More Bean Recipes

black beans and rice recipe one personBlack Beans and Rice Recipe for One Person

A meal that’s budget and pantry-friendly, that somehow feels indulgent.  Simmer the beans with garlic, onions, and two surprise ingredients for a rich, delicious meal. Cook it less for soup, longer for a side dish/entree.

moroccan bean and chicken soupMoroccan Chicken and Bean Soup

Adapted from a popular Ramadan recipe, this soup was a surprise.  It was supposed to be lamb and lentils, but I didn’t have any. So, I improvised. Delicious either way.

 

tuna cannellini bean saladTuna Cannellini Bean Salad Recipe for One

Open a couple of cans, add a few standard ingredients, and you’ve got a meal. No cooking needed.

 

Brazilian chicken paprika stewBrazilian Chicken Paprika Stew

Essentially Brazilian chicken paprikash, but with a South American twist. The cream is gone, and replaced with beans and sausage. It’s rich and satisfying, even without the cream. One pot meal!

 




Penne with Feta Cheese Sun-dried Tomatoes and Olives

This penne with feta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and olives recipe is fairly hands-off, simple, and delicious. And, of course, it’s just one serving!

It also allowed me to make some progress using the enormous jar of sun-dried tomatoes that’s been in the back of my fridge forever! Add some pasta, a bit of feta cheese, olives, and a few leaves of fresh basil, and you get a tasty lunch with only a few minutes of real work. (I have a basil plant growing in my window, so that basil was really fresh).

The feta was leftover from making a feta and spinach omelette, so it also helps toward my goal of not wasting anything. I just hate having a couple of tablespoons of sauce, or a few random bits of fruit or vegetables turning into a science experiment.

Now, on to more tasty mental pictures.

Since the tomatoes are dried, you’ll have to start by heating them and softening them up a bit.  You can do this overnight (if you’re organized), or just start them a few minutes before you start boiling the water for the pasta.

Once the tomatoes are soaked and the pasta is cooked, the rest of the recipe takes only a few minutes to prepare.  Just cook the garlic, toss the remaining ingredients in the saucepan you used to cook the penne and heat them up with the pasta.

Since the entire meal only uses one pot, it’s also easy to clean up afterwards. I don’t have a dishwasher, so easy cleanup is good!




 

Substitutions and Variations for Penne with Feta Cheese, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Olives

  • add a handful of fresh spinach (maybe half a cup of torn leaves) at the end, after you drain the pasta; cooking it just a minute or two until it wilts
  • put in some leftover cooked chicken, this makes it more substantial and suitable for dinner
  • add some cooked mushrooms (if you have dried mushrooms, throw them in the hot water when you’re rehydrating the sun-dried tomatoes)

Ingredients and Tools for This Recipe

Roland Sun-Dried Tomatoes

The nice thing about sun-dried tomatoes is that they do last a long time (if you happen to have bought a giant jar because the price was great).  In addition to pasta, you can toss them on pizza, mix them in with eggs, add them to pesto, or put them in meatloaf.

 

Divina Castelvetrano Olives 10.2 oz jar
Divina Castelvetrano Olives 10.2 oz jar

My mom only eats black olives and my dad only likes green ones. I never really liked olives of any kind that much until I tried these. They were set out as a bar snack (of all things). They are bright green, mild, and don’t taste sour or briny like most olives do. They’re great with this pasta dish, and also marinated in olive oil with slivers of garlic and rosemary (which is how the bar served them). Delicious and great for a wine and cheese cocktail hour (either just for you or for company).

More Single Serving Feta Cheese Recipes

strawberry spinach salad balsamic dressing feta cheeseStrawberry Spinach Salad with Balsamic Dressing and Feta Cheese

Perfect for long, hot summer days, this recipe requires no actual cooking. Crisp, refreshing, salty, and sweet, all at once.

feta brined roast chickenFeta Brined Roast Chicken Recipe for One

Easy enough for a weekend, fancy enough for company. The feta brine helps keep the chicken moist and adds flavor too.

 

summer pasta olives and fetaSummer Pasta with Green Olives and Feta Cheese

Sweet, juicy tomatoes, plus salty olives and feta, equals an easy summer meal. The feta cheese and olives are slightly salty, while the tomatoes add sweetness. Works either hot as dinner, or cool as a pasta salad.

 

spinach and feta cheese omeletteSpinach and Feta Cheese Omelette

Spinach and feta pie flavors, with a lot less effort. Make this for breakfast, brunch, or lunch.