Three cheers for comforting soupy beans!
Nutrient rich, cheap, and shelf-stable – dried beans will transform how you shop and cook this fall. A humble crockpot full of beans can save the day at 7 o’clock when hunger strikes.
Cooking dried beans is precise but not at all fussy. You can throw all the ingredients for these Greek flavored beans into the crockpot or soak them first and proceed to simmer, then bake until meltingly tender.
I’ve been inspired by light Greek flavors this week and really felt satisfied combining this bean dish with some Spicy Greek Feta Dip (so GOOD). Crusty bread, as usual, rounded out the meal – leaving everyone satisfied.
How to Cook Dry Beans – Crockpot or Stovetop
I chose dried great northern beans for this recipe because I wanted to slowly develop the flavors of tomato, herbs, and aromatics. Traditionally, this Greek-style dish is made with gigantes (really creamy, gigantic beans), but they can be quite difficult to find here. So, if you can find gigantes, I highly recommend them for their richness.
Can I substitute canned northern beans?
Sure can! To make this Greek dish with canned beans, I’d sweat the vegetables, and simmer the tomatoes in a pot for 30 minutes, adding the beans last just to warm through.
I don’t own a slow cooker (crockpot), can I bake these instead?
Actually, this Greek bean dish is traditionally baked, so no problem. You want to soak the beans in water overnight though. Next, you simmer in a pot of water until cooked (about 25 minutes). You can sweat the vegetables in a skillet until tender, add the rest of the ingredients (including 2 cups of the bean cooking liquid) – bake everything at 350F for 1 hour (covered with foil).
How to Make Greek Beans with Dried Great Northern Beans
To prep this dish, you will need to chop the vegetables and add everything into a slow cooker (crockpot). The dry beans will cook on low for up to 8 hours and there will be plenty of liquid and steam (try not to lift the lid).
I used 4 tomatoes in this dish (1 pound), but I encourage you to use high quality crushed tomatoes if tomatoes aren’t in season when you make this.
Best Pro Tip: Since the seasonality of tomatoes makes or breaks the flavor of this dish, use 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes (preferably San Marzano) for guaranteed results.
Assemble this dish by serving the beans in their broth with crunchy bread for dunking. You can also sprinkle extra parsley or dill on top for freshness.
Remove the beans from the hot crockpot and store in containers. You will have a lot of leftovers! Enjoy cooked beans within a couple of days.
More Delicious Vegetarian Recipes You Might Like
If you’ve tried this bean recipe or any other recipe on the blog, please let me know how it turned out in the comments below. I love hearing from you!
Crockpot Great Northern Beans
- 1 pound dried great northern beans, or dried gigantes beans
- 2 bay leaves
- 3/4 cup olive oil, extra virgin
- 2 onions, chopped
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 pound ripe tomatoes, finely chopped, or 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tbsp honey, optional
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 3 oz parsley leaves, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp dill, chopped
- 3 cups filtered water
- salt and pepper
- Add all the ingredients to the crockpot and set to low for 8 hours. I recommend adding 1 Tablespoon salt in the beginning and adding more to taste at the end.
- The dried beans will hydrate and cook as the vegetables release steam and the flavors marry. Do not open the lid too often or the steam will escape. Serve the beans with feta or fresh herbs and crusty bread.
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