White Beans Italiano - close up

White Beans Italiano

White Beans Italiano - side view

I’m trying to remember when I first started making these White Beans Italiano. Maybe it was after a trip to Italy. Maybe I came home and tried to emulate some I had at a restaurant. I’m not sure. But, I do know these are a staple in my home and they have been for a very long time. They’re a quick and easy side dish. Or, they’re a satisfying appetizer that I like equally well, hot or cold.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. I hope they help you savour it all.


White Beans Italiano

White Beans Italiano - overhead shot


I often cook these soft and creamy white cannellini beans as a side to steaks and hope for leftovers to use as a dip another day. Their mild flavour and fluffy texture are enhanced by the caramelized onions and hint of rosemary and garlic. Enjoy!

  • Author: Karen Anderson
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups
  • Category: appetizer
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian


2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 onions, sliced in rings or cut in half and sliced across

2 cloves garlic, minced 

1 Tablespoon rosemary (fresh or dried), minced

2 cans white cannellini beans, rinsed and drained


  1. Heat a skillet on medium high and add the olive oil followed by the onions.
  2. Cover with a lid and “sweat” the onions, allowing them to cook until golden brown (caramelized) – approximately 15 – 20 minutes.
  3. Stir in the garlic and rosemary and cook until the garlic is softened and the rosemary is fragrant.
  4. Stir in the beans, mashing them a bit, until thoroughly combined with the onions and heated through.
  5. Enjoy as a side with grilled meats or as a warm or cold dip with pita chips or crudités (that’s a fancy French word for veggies).


Keywords: White Beans Italiano

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