Summer Butter Bean Salad

You know how when you're a little kid and you think certain foods, especially certain vegetables, are so disgusting?  That's how I felt about butter beans my entire childhood.  But I came around eventually and now I love them, made this way, in my Butter Bean Salad!

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Butter beans are a Summer staple here in Southeastern North Carolina so they were hard to escape in my family.  Chances are if you were ever fortunate enough to put your feet beneath my Grandma Virda's table, there was a peach lustreware bowl full of butter beans on it. This is her actual bowl, courtesy of my Mom who made butter beans and chicken salad for me just for this post!

Grandma would buy butter beans by the bushels every Summer and it was often my job to help her shell and freeze them to cook throughout the year. That part was fun, but not so much the eating for me. But as I grew up, butter beans grew on me. The way Grandma served them was unlike anyone else I've ever seen. She peeled and diced up a giant vine ripe tomato and added apple cider vinegar, lots of black pepper and a little salt and sugar to make a topping for the beans. It's the only way I would eat them.  Now years later I've made the recipe my own and I'd love to share it with you! 

If you can't find fresh butter beans, try the freezer section of your grocery store. If all else fails you can substitute baby lima beans.


1 lb butter beans
water to cover beans in pot
2 large vine ripe tomatoes, diced
1/2 large vidalia sweet onion, diced 
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper 
3 teaspoons sugar


Put the beans in a medium sized pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil on high heat and then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until the beans are tender.

In the meantime, in a large bowl, whisk the vinegar, salt, pepper, and sugar.  Add the tomatoes and onion.

Once the beans are done, drain them, let them cool in the refrigerator a little bit, and then add them to the bowl. Toss the mixture gently to completely mix.  

Refrigerate for 30 minutes, but it's even better the next day if you can wait that long!  Make sure to stir it well before you serve. 

Also, this is heavy on the black pepper because that's how Grandma did it so if you aren't a huge fan you may want to reduce it a little.

This little 6" chef's knife is my favorite!  It super lightweight and easy on the wrist!

Let me know if you try this one! It's special to me and I hope you can enjoy it too!

And you can see more of this Summer outdoor dinner in our cabin garden here!