Creamy Italian White Bean Skillet Meal (25 Minutes!)

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Fresh basil leaves over a pan of our creamy Italian white bean skillet meal

We have a NEW comforting, protein- and fiber-packed dish for your weekly meal plan! This creamy, garlicky skillet meal features white beans, burst cherry tomatoes, and greens cooked in a flavorful cashew cream sauce. Ready in 25 minutes with just 10 ingredients, it’s cozy weeknight perfection

Pair with pasta or toasted crusty bread for a satisfying meal that will WOW. Let’s make it happen!

Cashews, olive oil, white beans, tomatoes, spinach, garlic, white wine, red pepper flakes, salt, and shallot

This EASY, flavorful recipe starts with a base of sautéed shallot, cherry tomatoes, garlic, red pepper flakes, and sea salt. The mixture cooks down with white wine for flavor and the tomatoes burst open, becoming saucy and sweet.

Burst cherry tomatoes in a skillet

Next, we add white beans for protein and fiber (15 grams protein + 11 grams fiber per serving) and continue cooking so the beans soak up the flavors of the sauce. Once the mixture has thickened, cashew cream is added to lend its creamy goodness!

Pouring cashew cream over sautéed veggies and white beans

After a few more minutes, the thick, saucy, creamy mixture is ready for a boost of GREENS and herby fresh basil.

Vegan parmesan cheese sprinkled over a pan of creamy Italian white beans

We hope you LOVE this Italian white bean skillet meal! It’s:

Creamy
Savory
Satisfying
Quick & easy
Comforting
& SO delicious!

This dish has become an absolute favorite in our kitchens and we can’t wait for you to try it! It’s the perfect weeknight meal paired with pasta or toasted crusty bread! Or if you’re craving more greens or protein, it pairs well with our Garlicky Sautéed Greens, Crispy Baked Tofu with Italian Herbs, or Pesto “Parmesan” Turkey Meatballs.

More White Bean Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo @minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Toasted bread in a bowl with Italian white beans with cherry tomatoes and basil

Creamy Italian White Bean Skillet Meal (25 Minutes!)

Creamy vegan skillet meal with white beans, burst cherry tomatoes, and greens in a flavorful cashew sauce. An EASY, comforting meal made with just 10 ingredients in 25 minutes!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Creamy vegan skillet meal with white beans, burst cherry tomatoes, spinach, and fresh basil
4.95 from 88 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 (Servings)
Course Entrée
Cuisine Gluten-Free (optional), Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked
  • 1 ¼ cup water (plus more for soaking cashews)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, minced (1 shallot yields ~40 g or 1/4 cup)
  • 4 cups cherry tomatoes, left whole
  • 4-5 medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced (4-5 cloves garlic yield ~2 ½ Tbsp or 30g)
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (we like a lighter white like Sauvignon Blanc // or sub water)
  • 2 (15 oz.) cans white beans, drained and rinsed (we used cannellini // or sub ~3 cups homemade)
  • 4 cups baby spinach
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil

FOR SERVING optional

Instructions

  • SOAK CASHEWS: Add the cashews to a heatproof bowl and cover with hot water by at least 1-2 inches. Let them soak for ~15 minutes while you get started on the rest of your ingredients.
  • Heat a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once warmed, add the olive oil and minced shallot. Sauté for ~2-3 minutes until the shallot is translucent.
  • Add the whole cherry tomatoes, sliced garlic, red pepper flakes (optional), and sea salt. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the white wine (or water) and increase to medium-high heat. Cover the pan and let the tomatoes cook for 5-8 minutes. At this point, the skins on the tomatoes should have blistered. Remove the lid and turn the heat back down to medium. Use the back of your spoon or spatula to smash the tomatoes.
  • Add the drained and rinsed white beans and stir, letting them sauté (uncovered) with the tomatoes until most of the liquid has evaporated — about 5 minutes.
  • CASHEW CREAM: Meanwhile, drain the cashews and add them to a high-speed blender with the water. Blend on high until smooth and creamy.
  • Once the liquid has reduced from your tomatoes and beans, add the cashew cream and cook, stirring occasionally, until it’s a thick, saucy consistency.
  • Turn off the heat and stir in the baby spinach and basil. Let it wilt before serving over pasta or with a side of crusty bread (both optional)! Garnish with an optional sprinkling of vegan parmesan and black pepper! Enjoy hot.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Video

Notes

*Inspired by Gimme Some Oven’s Salmon with Burst Tomato Sauce and Ahead of Thyme’s Creamy Tuscan Shrimp.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 375 Carbohydrates: 41.3 g Protein: 15.1 g Fat: 15.9 g Saturated Fat: 2.3 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 2.2 g Monounsaturated Fat: 8.8 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 538 mg Potassium: 985 mg Fiber: 11.1 g Sugar: 6.4 g Vitamin A: 638 IU Vitamin C: 25 mg Calcium: 125 mg Iron: 5.4 mg

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  1. Vera says

    I just made this again, and it turned out fantastic. I love this recipe so very much, I have cooked this so often I can’t count. It is important to use tasty tomatoes, I use datterinis, it is also important to use a good white wine, the quality and taste of the ingredients make a difference ( as always). For my taste the vegan parmesan and black pepper are important. This Italian white bean skillet reminds me several favourite Italian dishes I loved before I went vegan 10 years ago! So happy about this recipe!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Amazing! We’re so glad this one is on repeat in your kitchen, Vera. Thank you for the lovely review and for sharing your helpful tips! xo

  2. Alysta says

    I was looking forward to this. It was healthy, but also a bit bland so we didn’t enjoy it as much as other recipes of yours. I did like learning the quick way to add “creamy” to a sauce.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so sorry it wasn’t what you were hoping for, Alysta. This is usually a reader favorite! If you have any left, we’d suggest adding more salt to see if that enhances the flavor.

  3. Italian girl says

    It says to drain the cashews and then add water to blend them. Is it different water or is it the cashew water? Thanks much.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We like using fresh water to blend rather than the cashew water! Hope you enjoy. xo

  4. Rache says

    Just made this last night and it was incredible!! I didn’t have basil so I made it without and it was perfect. Ate it over a baked potato and I can’t wait to have the leftovers again today. Will definitely be adding this to my rotation. Thank you for another awesome recipe! :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! We’re so glad you enjoyed it and that you’re looking forward to the leftovers. Thank you for the lovely review! xo

  5. Melissa Jensen says

    This will be my new addiction—definitely putting it into my rotation. So simple yet tastes rich and decadent. Very little prep.

  6. Lorelle says

    OMG! I made this for the first time last night, and have just had some leftovers for lunch today. What a winner! I love this recipe. Quick, easy and not too much washing up! I usually use mushrooms in everything I cook, but forgot to put them in last night. To be honest, I’m glad I didn’t as I think the recipe is great without them.. Thanks for all the recipes you bring to us every week. Cheers.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, thank you so much for your kind words and lovely review, Lorelle! We’re so glad you enjoy our recipes! xoxo

  7. Alice says

    I love this recipe – a welcome change from heavy tomato based stews & sauces. The basil gives it such a delicious flavour. Have you tried blending this once cooked to make a pasta sauce?

  8. Loraine says

    Please clarify step 5. How can you drain the cashews and add it with the water? Which water? The water that I just drained from the cashews?

  9. Marcella says

    Added dashes of herbs de Provence, turmeric, cayenne pepper, and some sliced ginger. Subbed the tomatoes for 1 8 oz package of tomatoes and a 1 drained can of diced fire roasted tomatoes. Used 1 can of white kidney beans and 1 can of butter beans.
    It turned out to be THE BEST vegan Alfredo sauce served over angel hair pasta! This will become a staple in our house! Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Amazing! We’re so glad to hear it, Marcella. Thank you for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications! xo