Chipotle White Beans


  • 1/2 pound of large, dried white beans, rinsed, picked over and soaked overnight – or up to 24 hours.

Chipotle-tomato sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 big pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 of a 14-ounce can of tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo, minced

Cilantro Pesto:

  • 1 medium clove of garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
  •  3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • big pinch of salt


  • 1/3 cup kale or chard, washed, de-stemmed, and very finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup queso fresco or feta cheese
  • 3/4 cup whole-grain breadcrumbs, toasted in a skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil

Drain and rinse the beans after their overnight soak. Then place them in a large saucepan and cover with an inch or two of water. Bring to a boil and simmer until the beans are cooked through and just tender. This can take anywhere from an hour to two hours (potentially more) depending on your beans. Remove from heat, salt the beans (still in bean broth) with about a tablespoon of salt – enough that the bean liquid is tasty but on the salty side. Let the beans sit like this for ten minutes or so before draining and setting the beans aside.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Make your tomato sauce. Crush the tomatoes by hand or pulse briefly in a food processor. Place the olive oil, red pepper flakes, couple pinches of salt, and chopped garlic into a cold medium saucepan. Stir while you heat the saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute just 45 seconds or so until everything is fragrant – you don’t want the garlic to brown. Stir in the tomatoes and the oregano and heat to a gentle simmer, this takes just a couple minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the adobo sauce, adjust seasonings to taste

In an 8×8 baking pan (or large oven-proof casserole/dutch oven) toss the beans with the tomato sauce and the kale. Sprinkle with the cheese and bake in the top-third of the oven for roughly twenty-five (if you’re using queso fresco) to forty minutes, until the cheese starts browning and any visible beans to get a bit crusty. Remove from oven and let sit for about ten minutes.

Make the cilantro pesto by combining the clove of garlic and cilantro in a food processor. Pulse while you drizzle in the olive oil – alternately, you could do this by hand. Season with a bit of salt. Top the beans with the breadcrumbs and just before serving drizzle with the cilantro pesto.

Serves 3. From 101 Cookbooks


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