By Kate Vaynshteyn at www.babaganosh.org

What says summer like a Caprese salad? The combination of tomatoes, basil and mozzarella are so iconic, bright and delicious. How could it possibly be improved? With beans, of course!

Our food blogger Kate whipped up the perfect bean salad for summer with her unique take on Caprese salad – Randall Beans style.

Instead of just using basil, as it is regularly used in Caprese salads, Kate incorporates pesto to heighten and enhance that rich basil flavor. Try using your own favorite pesto recipe, using store-bought pesto sauce or using the recipe below! Pesto is really easy to make, just combine all the ingredients in a food processor.

The combination of green beans, kidney beans and great northern beans adds a wonderful variety of flavors, textures. Green beans give the dish a wonderful crunch while kidney and great northern beans are hearty and creamy – the perfect balance to the acidity of the tomatoes and pesto.

We really love this recipe because it’s so simple and easy to make. You can toss this three bean Caprese salad together in about 10 minutes for a last-minute occasion or make it the night before. It will stay well in the fridge for a day or so if you cover it well, making it good leftovers!

This Caprese salad is the perfect side dish for any cookout and is a great pairing with grilled chicken or a juicy burger (or even better a veggie burger!) or a meal all by itself. Makes 6-10 servings, depending on serving sizes.

Three Bean Pesto Caprese Salad

Three Bean Pesto Caprese Salad

Ingredients

    Three Bean Salad:
  • 1/2 lb. green beans, chopped into 2 inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 1 14-oz. jar Randall Beans Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 14-oz. jar Randall Beans Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 lb. fresh mozzarella balls (about 1 rounded cup), or fresh mozzarella chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup basil pesto sauce (store-bought, or see recipe below)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 1 Tbsp.)
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish
  • Pesto:
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves (from 1 large bunch)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 1 Tbsp.)
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. For the Pesto: Combine all the ingredients in a small food processor, and pulse for a few seconds until well combined. Taste and see if more salt or lemon juice is needed.
  2. For the Salad: Cook the chopped green beans in the microwave for 2-3 minutes, or until cooked to your liking. Rinse under cold water to stop the cooking and retain their bright green color.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the cooked green beans, Kidney Beans, Great Northern Beans, halved tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella. Add 1/2 cup pesto sauce and the lemon juice. Stir well. Season with salt and pepper, if desired, and stir again. Garnish with fresh basil.
  4. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Any leftover salad should be placed in the refrigerator in a container with a tight fitting lit and eaten within 2 days.
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Grab the Spring Salads Cookbook!

Want more refreshing and delicious bean salads to include at your spring and summer outdoor cookouts and get-togethers? Don’t miss our Spring Salads cookbook below. This free collection has bean salad recipes perfect for cookouts, barbecues, picnics or any occasion where good food, friends and family come together.

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