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Spanish Gigante Bean Salad overhead shot

Spanish Gigante Bean Salad

  • Author: Nicole Gaffney (
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 40 minutes



  • 1/2 lb dried gigante beans, butter beans, or giant lima beans, soaked overnight in salted water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 4 cloves garlic, divided, 2 smashed and 2 sliced
  • 2 medium shallots, divided, one left whole and one minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 heaping tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon mild smoked paprika
  • 4 stalks celery, thinly sliced plus 2 tablespoons celery leaves
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves


  1. Drain the soaked beans and place in a large saucepan and cover with water. Add the bay leaf, thyme, whole shallot, smashed cloves of garlic, and a generous amount of salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Bring up to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer and cook until the beans are just tender, about 30-45 minutes. Be sure to test more than one bean to be sure they are all cooked through. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a pan and saute the minced garlic and shallot until they just start to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and smoked paprika and cook for another minute or two until fragrant. Add the beans, celery, vinegar and remaining 5 tablespoons olive oil, then turn off the heat. Stir until everything is coated and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm, or let marinate in the fridge for a few days.


  • This dish is great served as a salad or side dish, but also works fabulously as an appetizer served with crusty slices of bread.
  • To speed things up a bit, you can use 2 cans of beans in place of the dried beans and omit the step of cooking them. Just be sure to thoroughly drain and rinse the beans before using.


  • Serving Size: 4