I recently saw a photo of a cast iron pan full of beans in a cheesy tomato sauce. It looked delicious but the picture has no recipe attached. So I went to my kitchen and created this dish with what I had on hand. This Butter Bean Casserole With Tomato and Cheese is super easy to make, and was a warm and comforting lunch.
My inspiration picture used cannellini beans, but I didn’t have any in the house. I used butter beans instead which I think worked perfectly. I think cannellini beans could work as well. So use whatever you have at the moment.
My other ingredients included turnip tops, tomato paste, ricotta cheese, some spices, and a light shredding of Fontina cheese to melt on top. I served this butter bean casserole with crusty Italian flatbread.
Butter Bean Casserole
- 2 14.5-ounce cans butter beans drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup chopped turnip tops
- 1/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/4 teaspoon dried Italian herb blend
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup Fontina cheese shredded
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- Preheat oven to 385 degrees F.
- In a medium stock pot, warm the beans up over a low heat.
- Add the tomato paste and a splash of water. Stir gently until combined, careful not to break up the beans. You don't need to cook it at this stage. I just warm it up so that the tomato paste can break down.
- Add the turnip tops, ricotta cheese, Italian herbs, and red pepper flakes, and stir to combine.
- Transfer the mixture to a casserole dish. I used a square dish about 8"x8"
- Sprinkle the top with Fontina cheese and oregano.
- Bake in the oven uncovered for 10-15 minutes until the cheese melts. I put the broiler on for just a few seconds to make the top brown and bubbly.
- I served this casserole with crusty Italian bread drizzled with extra virgin olive oil