Bush’s Beans: In the Kitchen!

Last weekend when Bush’s Beans sent me to Napa Valley, it was more than a wonderful weekend of learning and kitchen fun. I always knew that beans were healthy for you, but the meaning of the “bean” took on a whole new flavor for me as we created an array of recipes in the CIA’s William’s Center for Flavor Discovery Kitchen.

What caught my attention, having lost my Mother and recently my favorite Auntie to cancer, was that The American Institute for Cancer Research recommends a diet rich in a variety of plant-based foods and offers these tips for adding beans to your diet:

  • Keep canned beans in your pantry
  • Add a new-to-you bean to your diet once or twice a week
  • Make meatless meals by substituting beans for the meat in your favorite recipes
  • So keeping in mind that diets including beans may reduce risks of heart disease and certain cancers, I am truly going to try to implement this idea in my family’s diet. It only makes sense and in a way, it’s a wake-up call.

    Some nutrients in beans which may help fight cancer include: antioxidants, fiber, and phytochemicals. We have the information; it only makes sense to me to start using more beans!

    Back to the kitchen. As soon as we tied on our aprons and geared up for cooking, we got our hands dirty and the smells were tantalizing as Amy (She Wears Many Hats) and I made this incredible recipe that I am going to share with you today!

    I’ll even share our blunders! Yup, I drained the beans (when it called for undrained!) and then as we were dishing up, we realized we’d forgotten to add the spinach!

    We all make mistakes in the kitchen, right?

    Bush’s Chicken and Kidney Beans Spanish Stew
    2 tsp. olive oil
    1/2 cup Spanish chorizo, cut in 1/4″ chunks (peel it first)
    2 cups mushrooms, sliced or quartered
    1 1/2 cups onion, finely chopped
    1 tbsp. garlic, minced
    1 tsp. Spanish paprika (or regular, but I DID buy some at the CIA Store)
    1 cup canned tomatoes, chopped (I’ll be using my own garden roasted tomatoes!)
    3 cups chicken stock
    1 can Bush’s Red Kidney Beans, with liquid (Don’t drain like I did – oops! I had to ask Chef Andy what to do!)
    2 cups baby spinach, cleaned
    1 cup chicken, cooked, shredded
    1 tsp. sherry vinegar
    salt and pepper to taste

    Heat olive oil in large pan; add chorizo, cook for 1 minute.

    Add mushrooms, cook for 4 minutes.

    Actually, Connie Guttersen, R.D., PhD told us that the longer you cook the mushrooms, the tastier.

    Add onions, cook until caramelized, approximately 5 minutes. Add garlic and paprika, cook until aromatic.

    Add tomatoes, stock, beans and their liquid. Bring to simmer, cook for 20 minutes.

    Add spinach, chicken and vinegar. Cook until spinach wilts, approximately 4 minutes.

    Pour into a beautiful dish and serve. You can even serve with sour cream or plain yogurt on top.

    Delicious. I want to make it for my family this week because we LOVE red kidney beans.

    Would you mind sharing what bean you cook the most with?

    (Don’t forget about the beautiful oil Kelly Anderson Art GIVEAWAY going on right now … Winner announced on Monday! Bush’s Beans covered the costs of my Napa Valley trip, but I did not receive compensation for expressing my opinions shared on my blog. Oh, and that’s Aggie peeking into the kitchen above!)


    1. I love almost every bean! But as I have gotten older, I find that I don’t love kidney beans. So many of them are kind of tough. But I just substitute pintos for them in any recipe and it works. I will try this recipe that way!

    2. I call it Mexican soup!

      1 can rinsed black bean
      1 can fat free refried beans
      1 can corn, drained
      1 jar salsa
      1 1/2 cups chicken stock
      1 cooked and cut up chicken breast

      Mix and heat together! Very healthy with lots of fiber!
      .-= Kim´s last blog ..Simple Things =-.

    3. That looks delicious. What a fun “field” trip for Mom!
      I think the bean I cook most with would have to be the Pinto Bean. I make a lot of Mexican dishes that call for the Pinto. But I love them all.
      .-= Kim´s last blog ..I have a question. =-.

    4. Oh I loved this soup Sandy! Too funny about the spinach…I didn’t know! That is totally something I would do!
      I’m a fan of pretty much every bean….chickpeas for salads and hummus, red beans for soups and chilis, cannellinis for dips, pastas and soups…oh and of course Black Beans!! Gosh, beans are good! :)

    5. Sort of similar yet completely different than the Moorish Stew from the NPR How Low Can You Go? series. Looks like a sure-fire hit.
      .-= The Training Table´s last blog ..March 4th: National Pound Cake Day =-.

    6. Sounds wonderful. I will have to give it a try. Jackie
      .-= Jackie´s last blog ..Looking forward…… =-.

    7. Sandy,
      Thanks for the recipe.
      We cook with black beans (usually Bush’s) mostly. But use pintos often too. Hubby made a black bean, diced tomato and brown rice dish the other night — yummo. NO recipe for that one, he cooks experimentaly a lot :-)
      Lentils (are they beans?), are my hubby’s favorite so we have those frequently.
      Love the photos and the Spanish Stew recipe.

    8. That sounds so good. I’ve never used Chorizo. Might have to try it.

      I cook with beans quite a bit. The three I use the most are Red Kidney Beans, Great Northern Beans and Black beans. I make a yummy veggie chili, and other soups that I add lots of beans to. I’ve started using lentils (which I know are not a bean), and also have added chickpeas into my minestrone soup.

    9. Sandy – AWESOME!!! What a trip. I am so happy for you!! And I am going to make that stew…. Looks incredibly delicious and healthy.

    10. How fun! The soup looks amazing too!

    11. Mmmm, that looks delicious! How fun for you! :) I love beans, and we use them in one of our favorite get-together recipes — Calico Beans. It calls for red beans, lima beans & butterbeans & baked beans. It’s yummy! Thanks for sharing this recipe!
      .-= Stacey @ The Blessed Nest´s last blog ..Fun Find — Restaurant Dishes =-.

    12. Oh, yummy! This looks really good.

      I love all kinds of beans, especially pinto beans, great northern beans, and black beans. For chili I like to use red kidney beans. For baked beans, I like Bush’s baked beans–whatever those beans are! I “doctor” the baked beans with additional sauces and spices, but Bush’s baked beans are really very good.

      It looks like you girls had a wonderful time!
      .-= Richella´s last blog ..English teacher on trial =-.

    13. The bean we eat most often is either Pinto’s or Great Northern Beans. They are really cheap when bought Dry and so good for you.

    14. Ok, since everyone else is being too polite. What do you do if beans don’t like you? I love the flavor and texture of beans, all beans,—–but I don’t use them often. We pay a high cost in suffering it if we eat them. My husband especially suffers digestionally from them——-Beano and Gas-X really don’t help.

    15. I haven’t been really cooking with beans, I need to start. Oh I do cook mung beans sometimes. Your recipe looks good!..Christine

    16. Sandy-
      It was good to meet you in Napa. Aggie speaks highly of you and I look forward to checking out your blogs! Cheers!

      Heidi, Aggie Goodman’s Friend from Napa

    17. Thanks for the recipe. Looks like you had fun!!

    18. Sandy, I am tickled to death to have you visit my little blog and that you left a comment. Thanks for your nice words about my tablescape. I was a lurker follower for quite awhile until you moved and then I lost you! I will take care of that! :)

      I do use Bush Beans a lot of times.


    19. Since we don’t eat meat beans are pretty important thing around our house! Our favorites are cannellini and black, but we’re really not too partial. We love tacos made with lentils, or veggie paties with garbanzo beans. My favorite is tomato braised cannellini beans-so easy and yet so yummy. You just saute garlic in olive oil with a little bit of thyme, add in a can of petite diced tomatoes, cook until the liquids are almost gone then add one drained and rinsed can of cannellini (white) beans. It’s super good, we serve it over polenta. Better go make dinner…I think I’m getting hungry!
      .-= Gina´s last blog ..Right Now…… =-.

    20. I love bush’s beans.. your soup looks yummy. thanks for coming to visit me. Do you have authentic cuban black bean and rice recipe you’d be willing to share..
      ~ Sonny ~

    21. Oh this looks wonderful! We really enjoy bean soups in the winter months (and early spring as well) Thanks for sharing — also thanks for stopping by my tablescape and your kind comments!

    22. Hi!

      OOh , that sounds delish! And it sounds like you had lots of fun at “The Bushes”. :)
      .-= Diann @ the Thrifty Groove´s last blog ..So Did We Eat Dinner on the "Groovy Retro Tablescape"? =-.

    23. I use a dried 15-bean mix most often, but supplement with [cheaper] Great Northern and kidney beans. Rinse them, and put them in your crockpot with 2-3 inches of water covering them and some salt. Cook on low all day (put a piece of aluminum foil over the crockpot before the lid. That traps in the moisture). Then–here’s the must–serve them with chopped fresh onion and sour cream. I did not even like beans until we had them this way!

      Save the leftovers, and put them in your blender with cumin, chili powder, and garlic. Saute some onions, and add the blended beans. Voila–healthy refried beans! Mmmm…burritos, here we come! :)

      Love the bean posts you’ve been writing :)

    24. We use almost every bean there is but probably use black beans the most frequently. DH makes a killer pot of black beans himself but I use canned beans in recipes that call or a cup of beans or so. I have a great crock pot chicken recipe somewhere that uses canned black beans. Shall I find it for you?


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    26. I love beans! Black beans are my favorite. Everyone in my house enjoys the Cuban classic black beans and rice.

      When I make Hamburger Helper, I usually use just half pound of meat, one can of beans (whatever I have on hand) and an extra handful of my own pasta. It makes that one little box feed so many more
      .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Tasty Cake =-.

    27. Chorizo, beans, and Spanish paprika…heaven!
      .-= Striving Bean´s last blog ..Chipotle Bean Enchiladas =-.

    28. Since I usually drain and rinse cans of beans, I would like to know what Chef Andy told you to do when you drained the beans. Also what was the the reason not to drain? Thanks,Carole

    29. Hi, I just went to make your recipe and realized you left out the amount for the onions…I’m going to guess 1 cup cuz I’m already to go…but I’d like to know…am I right?

    30. I had to scroll down to read this post, since I grew up on Bush’s beans. We have a Bush’s canning factory in the town where I live, so I didn’t even know there were any kind of baked beans in a can until I was an adult! This recipe looks delicious! laurie
      .-= Laurie´s last blog ..FROM THRIFTY TO FANCY SMANCY =-.

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    34. beans are a definite mainstay of my food budget …. in the warm weather in salads and in the colder months in soups and chili … so versatile, frugal and healthy …. whats not to love

    35. That recipe sounds great. Although, I would have to take out the chorizo. Otherwise this recipe sounds great.

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