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A bean salad in a serving bowl.

Simple White Bean Salad

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5 from 28 reviews


Adapted from a recipe my friend Sandy sent to me.


  • Beans: As recommended by my friend Sandy, I’ve been buying small white beans, often labeled as habichuelas blancas — they’re smaller than Great Northern, Cannellini, and some varieties of Navy beans (as far as I can tell). 
  • Salt: I use Diamond Crystal. If you are using Morton, you may need to use less. Start with 1 teaspoon, and add more to taste. 
  • Cheese: The original recipe calls for diced Manchego cheese, but I find I like it just as much without any cheese. If you like the idea of cheese here, however, add 1/2 to 1 cup of small-diced cubes of Manchego or other cheese. 


  • 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, oil-packed, finely diced + 2 tablespoons of the oil from the jar
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced or grated on a microplane
  • kosher salt, see notes
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
  • two 15-oz cans of small white beans, see notes, drained and rinsed
  • 2 ears corns, shucked
  • 1 small zucchini, finely diced to yield 2 cups
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red onion
  • 3 to 4 scallions, thinly sliced to yield 1 cup
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced, optional
  • fresh basil or parsley, finely chopped to yield 1/2 to 1 cup


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, and vinegar with a pinch of salt. Add the olive oil and the 2 tablespoons of sun-dried tomato oil and whisk to combine. 
  2. Add the drained and rinsed white beans and season with 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. 
  3. Strip the kernels from the cob: Line a large, wide bowl with a kitchen towel. Use one hand to hold an ear of corn in place upright atop the kitchen towel, and with your other hand, use a chef’s knife to cut off two to three rows of kernels at a time by sliding the knife down the cob. 
  4. Add the corn to the bowl along with the zucchini, red onion, scallions, and jalapeño, if using. Toss to combine. Taste and adjust with more salt and vinegar to taste. I consistently have been adding another tablespoon of vinegar and a pinch more salt, too. 
  5. Add the fresh herbs, toss one last time, and serve immediately or pack into storage containers. Store in the fridge for up to 1 week. 
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: No-cook
  • Cuisine: American