Cooking for Wellness

Tuscan Beans and Greens

Mar. 5, 2018

This classic Italian entrée comes together quickly for a hearty and nutrient-dense meal. Serve with cooked farro or barley for a complete dinner. Traditionally, escarole is the leafy green used in this recipe. Escarole is part of the chicory family and has a slightly bitter taste. For best flavor, sauté or add escarole to soups and balance its bitterness with a small amount of acid.

Tuscan beans and greensServes:

  • 4


  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp Italian seasoning
  • 8 cups stemmed and chopped escarole (can substitute rainbow chard, kale, collard greens)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup water or vegetable broth
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 can (15 oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning and sauté until the garlic is lightly golden, about 20 seconds.
  2. Add the greens to the pan, along with a pinch of salt. Sauté until the greens are wilted, about 4 minutes. You may need to add the greens in two or three batches, waiting until one batch wilts down before adding the next.
  3. Stir in the water (or broth), tomato paste and cannellini beans.  Cover, and simmer until the greens are tender but still green, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Taste; adjust seasonings as desired.

Serve topped with Parmesan cheese or a drizzle of olive oil.