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White Bean and Cherry Tomato Salad

White bean and cherry tomato salad with a dressing of rosemary infused olive oil, garlic, Parmesan, anchovies, and lemon.

White Bean Tomato Salad
Elise Bauer

If you've ever grown cherry or plum tomatoes in your garden, you know how wonderfully prolific they can be in summer months. What to do with all those tomatoes?

We found this salad recipe years ago in Fine Cooking magazine (probably my favorite cooking magazine of all time).

The salad beautifully combines the sweetness of summer cherry tomatoes with white beans and parsley.

White Bean Tomato Salad
Elise Bauer

The secret sauce is the dressing, which includes garlic and rosemary infused olive oil, and a paste made of garlic, lemon, Parmesan and anchovies.

If you want a vegetarian option, omit the anchovies, if not, by all means include them. Or, if you don't have access to anchovies, add a dash or two of Worcestershire sauce.

Want to make your beans from scratch? Here's how to make them on the stovetop or in a pressure cooker.

White Bean and Cherry Tomato Salad

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 15-ounce cans of white beans, such as Great Northern or cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pint cherry or plum tomatoes, halved
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped parsley
  • Dressing ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 3-inch sprig of fresh rosemary
  • 3 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped (omit for vegetarian option)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice

Method

  1. Infuse rosemary in olive oil:

    Place the garlic and sprig of rosemary in the olive oil in a small saucepan. Heat the oil on medium until the rosemary begins to sizzle.

    white-bean-tomato-salad-method-1
    Elise Bauer

    Remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 20 minutes, allowing the rosemary and garlic to infuse in the oil.

  2. Make the dressing:

    Remove rosemary sprig from the oil, discard. Remove the garlic from the oil, reserving the oil.

    Add the garlic, anchovies (omit for vegetarian option), Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, lemon zest, and lemon juice to a food processor or mini chopper. Pulse until smooth.

    white-bean-tomato-salad-method-2
    Elise Bauer
  3. Mix dressing with beans:

    In a medium bowl, gently mix the garlic Parmesan lemon mixture in with the beans until the beans are well coated.

    Let the beans sit for a few minutes so they absorb some of the dressing.

    white-bean-tomato-salad-method-3
    Elise Bauer
  4. Gently mix in the reserved olive oil, tomatoes, and parsley
    white-bean-tomato-salad-method-5
    Elise Bauer