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Creamy Red Pesto Butter Beans

This simple and delicious creamy red pesto butter beans recipe are another easy one-pot vegetarian dinner idea that is high in protein and big on flavor. Serve with crusty bread, a scoop of soft cheese, and roasted Mediterranean vegetables for a delicious and balanced meal. This meal is ready in under 15 minutes from start to finish.

a casserole dish of red pesto butter beans topped with garlic & herb cream cheese and fresh basil

You’ll all know by now that I am well and truly on the bean-hype train. Big bowls of beautiful beans are seriously trending right now, and it’s clear to see why: these types of dishes are quick, easy, and extremely versatile.

Other bean dishes you might like aside from this red pesto beans recipe include this creamy green pesto bean bowl, these cheesy leeks and beans, butter bean stew, and my viral creamy butter beans recipe.

Ingredient Notes

The exact quantities of the ingredients you need for this recipe are included in the recipe card at the bottom of this post. Here, I’ve added a few notes on the ingredients you need, plus a few potential substitutions you could make if you can’t eat/find a certain ingredient.

  • Butter beans
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Capers
  • Fresh tomatoes
  • Tomato pesto
  • Seasonings: Paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne chili pepper, Italian seasoning
  • Soft cheese
  • Basil

How To Make This Red Pesto Butter Beans Recipe

Again, the exact step-by-step instructions and ingredient quantities will be in the recipe card at the bottom of this page. 

Below is an overview of making this recipe, plus some process shots to help you visualize how this recipe should turn out.

Step 1) Saute Onion & Garlic

Heat your oil in your saucepan, and add your diced onion. Once you’ve sauteed it for 3-4 minutes, add your minced garlic.

Step 2) Add the fresh tomatoes, pesto, and seasonings

Tip in your fresh tomatoes, seasonings, and red pesto, stirring everything together.

Step 3) Add the butter beans and simmer

Add your butter beans (I use jarred butter beans and use the stock from the jar. If you’d rather drain the beans and rinse them, you could add about 150ml of water or vegetable stock instead). Cover the pan and let the beans simmer for 10 minutes, stirring every now and then so they don’t stick.

Step 4) Serve with soft cheese and basil

Serve the red pesto beans with a scoop of soft cheese (I used a garlic and herb cream cheese which was delicious!) and plenty of fresh basil.

What To Serve Your Red Pesto Butter Beans With


  • Refrigerator: Store any leftover red pesto beans in an airtight container for up to 3-5 days. Reheat and make sure the leftovers are piping hot before serving.
  • Freezer: Freeze your beans in an airtight container for up to three months. Defrost the beans in the refrigerator overnight before serving – and be sure to eat any leftovers within 24 hours of defrosting,


Can I Use Dried Beans?

Yes, you could definitely use dried beans instead use tinned or jarred beans. You’ll need to factor the time it takes to soak and cook your beans into this recipe, though.

Are Butter Beans The Same As Lima Beans?

Yes, butter beans and lima beans are the same thing.

Can I Use A Different Bean For This Recipe?

Yes, cannellini beans and haricot beans would also work in this recipe.

red pesto butter beans

Red Pesto Butter Beans

Yield: 2-3 portions
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

These delicious red pesto butter beans are ready in less than 15 minutes and the perfect low-effort vegetarian one-pot dinner.


  • 1 x 700g jarred butter beans
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp capers,
  • 2 large fresh tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tbsp red pesto
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp Soft cheese
  • 10g fresh basil


  1. Heat your olive oil in a pan, then add the diced onion and saute for 3-4 minutes. Add your minced garlic and cook for another minute.
  2. Add the fresh diced tomatoes, seasonings, red pesto, and capers to the pan and stir. Then add the butter beans along with the stock from the jar (or 150ml water/vegetable stock instead).
  3. Stir the ingredients together and cover the pan, allowing the dish to simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Serve with the soft cheese on top and the chopped fresh basil.
  5. This recipe is delicious served with crusty bread, rice, on a jacket potato, or just eaten straight from the spoon!


To make this dish extra creamy, you could also add 50ml of double cream. For a touch of spice, add a tsp a red chili flakes.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 418Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 952mgCarbohydrates: 60gFiber: 19gSugar: 12gProtein: 22g

Did you make this recipe?

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Monday 20th of May 2024

The Creamy Red Pesto Butter Beans are 5-star! Full of flavour and just delicious with crusty bread on a cold winter’s day. Will be making again and again.

By The Forkful

Wednesday 22nd of May 2024

Oh so happy you think so!

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