White Beans, 3 Ways

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Even the most humble ingredients can be delicious with a little love and creativity.  Here's how to dress up some basic white beans.

Start by making or buying white beans.  Canned beans work just fine but if you have some extra time dried beans do taste better and hold up well when re-using.  Try these slow-cooker beans if you decide to make dried beans. 

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Tuscan Beans with Kale & Chicken Sausage

Ingredients (serves 4, save leftovers if you plan to make the second meal featured here as well):

1 TBSP olive oil; 2 tomatoes, chopped; 1 bell pepper, chopped; 2 cloves garlic, chopped; 1 pinch of dried thyme or 1 teaspoon fresh; 1 pinch of dried oregano or 1 teaspoon fresh; 2 cups chopped kale; 2 cooked chicken sausages ; 2 cups cooked beans; salt and pepper to taste; 1 TBSP chopped fresh basil; juice from 1/2 lemon (optional)

Directions:

Heat olive oil in large skillet.  Add tomatoes, peppers, and a pinch of salt.  Cook for about eight minutes or until the tomatoes start to break down and lose some liquid.  Add garlic, cook for another minute or two.  Add in a pinch of thyme and another of oregano.  Add the cooked beans and kale.  Cook for another five minutes or until the beans are warm and the kale is wilted.  Push the beans and kale to one side of the pan and heat sliced cooked chicken sausage until hot.  Top with fresh basil and a little lemon juice if you have them. 

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Tuscan Bean "Hot Pocket"

Ingredients: 3/4 cup leftover Tuscan beans with Kale and Chicken Sausage, 1 whole grain wrap, a small handful of shredded cheese (white cheddar, provolone, mozzarella, parmesan)

Directions:  Add leftover Tuscan Beans with Kale and Chicken sausage to a whole grain wrap.  Top with cheese.  Warm in the oven, microwave, or toaster oven.  Enjoy!

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White Bean Fiesta Salad

Ingredients: 2 cups white beans, 1 tomato, chopped, 2 scallions, chopped, 1/2 red or orange bell pepper, chopped, 1 lime, 2 TBSP chopped cilantro, 1 TBSP olive oil , salt and pepper

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together and enjoy on it's on or over greens.