The comforting flavors of this Creamy Tomato White Bean Stew make the perfect easy lunch or dinner. This plant-based recipe is packed with wholesome ingredients, like protein-packed white beans, cherry tomatoes, and nutrient-dense greens. Learn how to make this easy and satisfying vegan stew in just 25 minutes.

I love an easy vegan lunch recipe that’s ready in under 30 minutes and loaded with fresh, nourishing veggies and plant-powered protein. It’s the perfect formula to get something nourishing into your body without taking up too much time in the middle of the day (you can also skip the mid-day prep and make this one ahead of time).

Need a 5 minute lunch instead? These 5-Minute Creamy Peanut Noodles are my quickest go-to meal!

This one-pan creamy vegan stew hits all those notes. It will warm your belly and is the perfect easy meatless Monday meal. It is just all the things you want in an simple vegan meal:

  • Ready in 25 minutes
  • Using canned beans makes it simple!
  • Vegan, gluten-free & nut-free
  • Loaded with plant-protein
  • 287 calories per serving (half the recipe!)
  • Filling & nourishing
  • Made in just one pan
  • Loaded with garlic, tomato & basil flavor!

What are the types of white beans?

White beans are a type of legume that are classified based on their similar color and generally mild, buttery flavor. They are one of my favorite groups of plant-based proteins, and pair well in so many delicious recipes, like this pesto white bean pasta, this herby marinated white bean salad and my favorite white bean & kale soup.

These beans are all available to buy canned (except the royal corona beans) or dried. Dried beans give you more control over the firmness and

I used canned cannellini beans to simplify this recipe. However, any of your favorite white beans will work, whether they’re canned or made from scratch. Each will lend their own flavor and texture to the recipe, but each will be delicious.

  • Cannellini Beans: also known as white kidney beans, cannellini beans are large and have a creamy texture, nutty flavor, and hold their shape well. They are commonly used in Italian cuisine. I love using them in my recipes, like this white bean pesto pasta and my vegan creamed spinach and white bean stuffed delicata squash.
  • Great Northern Beans: they are medium-size with a mild, delicate flavor. They have a creamy texture and are commonly used in soups, stews, and casseroles, like this kale & white bean soup.
  • Navy Beans: they are small, oval-shaped beans that have a mild flavor and a smooth texture when cooked.
  • Butter Beans: when lima beans are harvested young, they are referred to as “butter beans” and can be creamy white. As the name implies, they have a buttery texture and a slightly sweet flavor.
  • Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas): generally not considered to be a white bean, since they’re a little firmer, but garbanzo beans would still be great in this recipe.
  • Royal Corona Beans: these are a speciality bean, sold by Rancho Gordo beans – a fantastic bean company that is for the truly bean obsessed. These beans are GIANT, super creamy, and soak up flavor so well. If you can get your hands on some, you’ll find plenty of places to use them, like this creamy tomato white bean stew or this herby marinated white bean salad.

Ingredients for tomato white beans

  • Yellow Onion: you can also use a white onion or two shallots.
  • Cherry Tomatoes: one large chopped heirloom tomato will also work, but I prefer the bite of each cherry tomato.
  • Garlic: I prefer large four cloves of fresh garlic, but the frozen cubes work great when you’re in a pinch (perfect for mid-day lunch time). I usually add an extra one or two when I use those to boost the flavor.
  • Sun-dried Tomatoes: I prefer the dry sun-dried tomatoes as opposed to the ones packed in oil.
  • Tomato Paste: this adds an extra depth of tomato flavor, especially since we cook it with the onions and garlic to concentrate the flavor and enhance the umami!
  • White Beans: I used canned cannellini beans for their ease and creaminess. See above for my other favorite beans to use in this recipe!
  • Vegetable Broth: I prefer to use low-sodium to control the amount of salt in the dish.
  • Starch: arrowroot starch, tapioca starch, or cornstarch all work well in this recipe to help thicken the broth and add extra creaminess.
  • Baby Greens: I love packing in as many greens as I can! Baby kale, spinach, or any other of your favorite greens wilt into beautifully in this recipe.
  • Vegan Cream Cheese: this is optional, but adds lots of extra creaminess. If you prefer, you can replace it with coconut cream or cashew cream.
  • Lemon: the tanginess really brightens things up and adds extra dimension to the flavor.
  • Basil: I love garnishing this dish with herby basil. Any other herbs you love, or micro-greens, are great too.

How to make easy white bean stew

Does it get better than a gluten-free & plant-based lunch recipe that you can make in one-pan in just 25 minutes?

Saute the onion and cherry tomatoes. Heat oil in your pan and add the onions, cooking until softened, before adding the cherry tomatoes and cooking a few minutes more.

Add the garlic, tomato paste, and sun-dried tomatoes. Cook until fragrant and the tomato paste has darkened.

Stir in the broth and beans. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes, until warmed and slightly thickened.

Add in the vegan cream cheese, greens, & lemon. Mix it all in, and then add salt and pepper, and lemon to taste.

Spoon into a bowl and serve! Don’t forget to add the basil on top to garnish.

How to serve

My favorite way to serve this plant-based tomato white bean stew is how you see it pictured: scooped up with crusty bread! It’s such a delicious vegan comfort food recipe.

I always use slices of my homemade gluten-free bread to scoop and soak up all the delicious flavors.

My homemade gluten-free flatbreads or these roasted garlic rosemary sourdough rolls would also be amazing served with this tomato stew!

You can also serve it over rice, quinoa, or your favorite greens.

To garnish, I love adding basil (or your other favorite herbs) and a drizzle of olive oil. You could also add a swirl of pesto.

How to store leftovers

These vegan tomato white beans will stay good in an airtight container in the fridge for about 4 days.

To reheat, add the bean stew to a pan over the stove on low-medium heat and stir frequently until the beans are warm. If needed, add a splash of water or broth while the stew reheats.

Want more simple, nourishing plant-based recipes?

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Creamy Tomato White Bean Stew

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 6 reviews
  • Author: Rachel Conners
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Lunch
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Healthy
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The rich and comforting flavors of this Creamy Vegan Tomato White Bean Stew make the perfect easy lunch or dinner. This dairy-free & plant-based recipe is packed with wholesome ingredients, like protein-packed white beans, cherry tomatoes, and nutrient-dense greens. Learn how to make this easy and satisfying vegan stew in just 25 minutes.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 small yellow onion, sliced
  • 8 oz. cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 (15 oz) can cannelini beans, or other white beans of choice, drained and rinsed
  • 1¼ cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot starch, tapioca starch, or cornstarch
  • 2 cups baby greens, like baby arugula or spinach
  • ¼ cup vegan cream cheese (you can also replace with coconut cream or cashew cream)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 small lemon, juiced
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, sliced, to garnish

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon avocado or olive oil. Add the onion, and saute for 3 minutes. Add the cherry tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes or so, until softened, stirring frequently.
  2. Add the garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and tomato paste, and cook, stirring constantly, for one minute, or until fragrant and the tomato paste has darkened in color.
  3. In a separate small bowl, whisk the arrowroot starch with a splash of broth, then mix that into the rest of the vegetable broth.
  4. Pour the broth into the pan and add the beans. Cook for 5 minutes at a low simmer, until slightly thickened and warmed through.
  5. Stir in the cream cheese and stir until it’s melted into the stew. Mix in the greens and cook until wilted, about 1 minute, and then mix in the lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top with basil.
  6. Enjoy over rice, quinoa, greens, with toast, or all on its own.

Notes

Storing leftovers: this stew will stay good in an airtight container in the fridge for about 4 days.

To reheat: add the bean stew to a pan over the stove on low-medium heat, stirring frequently until the beans are warmed through. If needed, add a splash of water or broth while the stew reheats.

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