Rich Butter Bean Stew with Saffron Rice & Toasted Almonds

Butter beans have a really lovely, soft texture, and a mild flavour that lends itself nicely to — well, literally anything. Saffron-infused rice helps transform simple ingredients into a gorgeous, hearty meal.

Preparation time Prep: 15 mins
cook 30 mins
Skill level Easy Peasy

You will need:

  • 1 cup rice, washed and drained
  • 7 strands saffron
  • 50ml boiling water
  • 50g sliced almonds roasted
For the stew
  • 40ml vegetable oil
  • 2 lemons (strips of zest only)
  • 3 long dry chillies
  • 2 brown onions, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 tins butter beans, reserve 1 tin liquid
  • 100g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 10 green beans, halved
  • Salt and pepper
Recipe: Simon Toohey


  • 1Boil the water and add to the saffron. (if you can grind the saffron to a powder and add the water, but not essential).
  • 2Put the rice in a pan and add water to the rice so it is a knuckle over the rice, pour in the saffron water. Place the lid on high heat, bring to a boil, turn down to low and let simmer until the rice is cooked. If there is too much liquid and the rice is looking too wet, take the lid off.
  • 3Add the oil to a pan on medium heat. Place in the lemon strips, bay leaf and dried chilli and cook briefly until the zest starts bubbling. Place in the onion and cook until softened and translucent, add the garlic and cook for another minute.
  • 4Add chilli powder, cumin seeds and coriander seeds and butter beans. Stir through and allow the sauce to thicken slightly for a few minutes.
  • 5Reduce the heat and add the cherry tomatoes and beans, warm though for 5 minutes.
  • 6Serve the rice and bean stew with a squeeze of lemon juice, a pinch of salt and sliced almonds.
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