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Fava Bean Salad with Fresh Sage and Lemon

Fava Bean Salad with Fresh Sage and Lemon

This month Ellen Brinks, a colleague of Paola’s, shares her fava bean recipe.

Here’s a recipe that features the wonderful taste of fresh sage and makes a delicious picnic or potluck offering, good fare on the hiking trail, or a main-dish at lunch. If you use canned fava beans, it can be made in minutes. Canned or dried fava beans can be found at natural foods stores, international markets, or stores specializing in middle-eastern foods. Here are the ingredients to make 8 servings:



  • 3 cups dried fava beans (or four 12-14 oz. cans, drained and rinsed)


  • juice of 2 large lemons


  • 1/2 cup olive oil


  • 2 cloves garlic, minced


  • 3 generous tablespoons fresh, chopped sage


  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste




If using dried fava beans, rinse and put in a large soup pot. Cover the beans with a few inches of water. Let stand overnight (or use the quick soak method: bring to a rapid boil for 2 minutes, turn off heat, and let soak at least an hour, preferably three or four). When you’re ready to cook the beans, drain the soaking water, cover with a few inches of fresh water, and cook until firm yet tender. It should take about two hours. Try not to overcook, or they’ll break easily when you mix them with the dressing. If you use canned beans, it’s much quicker. Simply drain and rinse the beans.



Put the cooked fava beans in a large bowl. Add the olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, and fresh sage. Stir gently but thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste. For the best flavor, let stand about an hour so the flavors meld.