Fresh and Easy Three Bean Salad

Fresh and Easy Three Bean Salad is packed with goodness and a lightened up apple cider dressing that’s sweetened with maple syrup.  It’s the perfect side for picnics and barbecues!

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The NBA Finals are giving me an ulcer you guys, and if you’re a basketball fan, you know what I’m talking about.  We’re huge Warriors fans living in the SF Bay Area, and having our team get to the finals after 40 years is beyond exciting.  The Warriors and Cavaliers are one of the best match-ups ever, and every game has been a nail biter so far.  The worst part is that I can’t help but root for Matthew Dellavadova on the Cavs because we watched him play every year he played at Saint Mary’s College before he went pro.  We love him, but he’s a complete thorn in our side right now.  I guess all I can say now is Go Warriors! 💙💛

There…I feel better for getting that off of my chest. 🙂

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Now I have a food-related question for you — when it comes to picnics and barbecues, what is your go to side dish?  I love so many, and the funny thing is that I’d forgotten about three bean salad until I saw one on the menu at a cafe recently.  It was made with fresh beans, along with chopped veggies, herbs, etc.  It was such a great reminder, and I made this version at home within a few days.

Since it’s green bean season, I used fresh green beans.  I used canned chickpeas and kidney beans, then added tons of freshness and crunch with red and yellow bell pepper, red onion, and chopped flat leaf parsley.  And all the colors….those get me every time. 🙂

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What I always remember about three bean salad is the dressing, which is usually high on apple cider vinegar and sugar.  I’m fine with it being high on vinegar, but I used just enough sweetener here (I chose maple syrup as usual) to make this dressing just sweet enough.  If you like yours sweeter, simply add more.

This salad is perfect because it can be made way ahead as it soaks up the flavor from the dressing and gets better over time.  It’s not super perishable, either, so being out in the heat for an extended period isn’t going to result in someone getting sick like mayo based salad.  And yes — you can whip this up in mere minutes and it feeds a crowd!

Talking about this salad was a nice distraction from my basketball stress….thank you for listening. 🙂 #warriorspleasewingame4

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Fresh and Easy Three Bean Salad
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Fresh and Easy Three Bean Salad is packed with goodness and a lightened up apple cider dressing that's sweetened with maple syrup. It's the perfect side for picnics and barbecues!
Author:
Serves: 6-8 servings
Ingredients
For the salad:
  • 8 ounces fresh green beans, washed and trimmed*
  • (1) 15 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • (1) 15 ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 medium bell pepper, seeded and chopped fine (I used half red bell pepper and half yellow)
  • ½ medium red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
For the dressing:
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3T pure maple syrup or your favorite sweetener*
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the green beans and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer 3-4 minutes or until they reach the desired doneness. Place in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking, then set aside to drain and cool. Once cool enough, cut into ½" pieces.
  2. Place the green beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, bell pepper, red onion, and parsley in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, maple syrup, salt and pepper, to taste until combined. Whisking constantly, add the canola oil in steady a stream. Taste and add more sweetener, salt and pepper, if desired.
  4. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat -- I used all of it. The salad is best made ahead so the flavors can meld. Serve cold or at room temperature, and enjoy!
Notes
*Feel free to substitute the fresh green beans with canned if they're out of season or your pressed for time.
*I don't like my dressing too terribly sweet, so if you like yours on the sweeter side, add 1-2 tablespoons more of the sweetener you choose.
Store leftover salad in the fridge in an airtight container.
Recipe by Flavor the Moments.