Saturday, March 5, 2011

Five Bean Salad

I've been feeling a bit groggy in the afternoons recently.

My go-to fix is a second (or third) cup of coffee, which I know isn't the greatest choice. It rarely gets me out of my fog and more often than not, it just gives me a bad case of jitters. I did a bit of research (aka Googling), and it finally dawned on me that the high number of carbs in the sandwich and fruit that I usually eat for lunch may be contributing to that sleepiness later. Maybe steering more towards a high-protein lunch could be the solution I need.

So I started looking for lunch ideas of the high-protein variety, and found this one. I love that it's so versatile. You can certainly switch up the varieties of bean you use, or skip any if you don't like them. Definitely tasty, and definitely healthy!

Five Bean Salad

2 cups of black beans
2 cups of pinto beans
2 cups of navy beans
2 cups of garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
2 cups of kidney beans

1 package of frozen white corn
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 medium white onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon of minced garlic

3 Tablespoons of olive oil
3 Tablespoons of red wine vinegar (I ended up using a bit more)

salt and ground pepper to taste

Directions: Cook frozen corn, and then mix all of the beans and vegetables. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar topping, salt and pepper to taste, and stir to combine. Enjoy!

(This is a great base recipe, and I've been adding lots of different things for more flavor- I've tried feta cheese, cilantro, cooked shredded chicken breast, and a can of tuna. All of those mix-ins have turned out well. I also love the extra boost of protein some meat or cheese brings in.) 

Adapted from SparkPeople, original recipe here.