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Cassoulet Vert (White Bean Casserole)

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Cassoulet Vert (White Bean Casserole)

A modernized, white bean stew called Cassoulet Vert with a lemony kale pesto that is meat-free and can be made in an Instant Pot. Fast, healthy and delicious? (Dry white bean soaking time 8 hours- or use canned beans on the stove.)

Prep Time: 9 hours (bean soak)
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 9 hours 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 pound dry white beans (soaked 8-24 hours, or used canned- see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, rough chopped
  • 4 cups veggie or chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoon herbs de Provence (or use dried thyme or rosemary)

This will make 5 cups cooked beans (or use canned, you will need about 3 cans).

Lemony Kale:

  • 2 cups kale (lacinato is a good variety), packed (about 1 small bunch, small tender stems ok)
  • ½ bunch Italian parsley or basil (about 1 cup packed, thins stems ok) or a combo of both
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • zest and juice from one medium lemon
  • ¼ cup nuts (optional) - like toasted sliced almonds, cashews, toasted pinenuts
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup water (or more, just to get this into a thick “paste”)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Garnish: garlicky bread crumbs, shaved pecorino cheese or parmesan, or try a soft poached egg, avocado, or crumbled goat cheese.

Serve with – rustic bread and simple arugula salad.


  1. If using dry white beans, soak 8-24 hours in salted water. Drain. (see note for un-soaked beans, or canned beans)
  2. Set instant pot to sauté function and heat oil. Add onions and sauté 4-5 minutes, stirring. Add garlic, sauté for 2 minutes.
  3. Add stock or broth, water, white beans, salt, pepper, bay leaves, herbs, give a stir and set instant pot to High Pressure for 25 minutes. Naturally release.
  4. Make the Lemony Kale Pesto. Place the kale, parsley and garlic in a food processor or blender. Pulse until chopped. Add the remaining ingredients- zest, lemon juice, oil, water, salt, nuts (if using). Pulse until well combined but not too smooth. Scrape down sides, pulse again.
  5. When the beans are done, ladle out any excess broth, reserving it.
  6. Stir in the kale pesto, gently incorporating. Add back some hot bean water back into the pot to loosen if needed, to make it a stewy consistency. You don’t want this too soupy, or too dry. Let this sit at warm setting 5-10 minutes to allow flavors to meld a bit.
  7. Taste for salt and lemon. Add both if desired. You want this lemony and slightly salty! Leave on this on warm setting for 15-20 minutes longer, and it will get better and better as the flavors meld.

You can cook the beans without presoaking if in a pinch. Follow the same directions, increasing the water by 2 cups. (Add 2 cups more water, so 3 cups total) Let naturally release, strain beans, reserving liquid. Continue following the recipe.

CANNED BEANS: Make this on the stovetop with canned beans. Heat oil, sauté onion and garlic until fragrant and golden. Add drained beans (2 cans), 1 cup broth or stock, and reduce salt to 1 teaspoon, add pepper, bay leaves, herbs de Provence and bring to a gentle simmer for 15 minutes, adding more stock or water if needed to keep that stew-like consistency. Stir the kale pesto into the beans, simmer 5-10 more minutes; adjust salt and lemon.

PRESSED FOR TIME? Trader Joes and other stores carry (vegan) kale pesto. You can try this, though fresh is preferred for vibrancy and taste.

SO VERSATILE: This simple base recipe can be repurposed into other dishes during the week. Pan-sear a piece of fish or chicken and serve it over top, or let the beans be the base of your next buddha bowl. Have some for breakfast with an egg and toast. Turn it into bruschetta. Toss the cold beans into a salad. You get the idea.

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