Cannellini Bean and Tuna Salad
This Cannellini Bean and Tuna Salad is a great change of pace from the usual mayonnaise-based version.
This is definitely the time of year for salads, isn’t it? After having a really mild, rainy summer we’ve been blessed with an abundance of sunshine and hot temperatures for a few days. And did I mention muggy? Whew. Some days it’s like a sauna out there. I try not to complain. The humid heat is why southern women have nice complexions, you know ;-)
Even so, there are certain days when only a salad will do. Something cool and refreshing but filling. I made this Cannellini Bean and Tuna Salad last Saturday for lunch and BeeBop and I both gave it a thumbs up! Hope you like it, too.
How to Make Cannellini Bean and Tuna Salad
Many times when I use raw onion or, in this case, shallots, in a recipe, I give them a little time to sit with some red wine vinegar before I drain them and toss them into the mix. It really mellows out the onion’s flavor and takes away a lot of its strong bite. This step is completely optional, but I highly recommend it. Combine the finely diced shallot in a small bowl with red wine vinegar. Allow it to sit while prepping the remainder of the vegetables for the salad. Drain and rinse the shallot discarding the vinegar.
In a large bowl, gently combine the rinsed, drained beans, celery, bell pepper, parsley, onions, tuna, and the drained diced shallot. Do be gentle with this step. You don’t want to break or mash the beans.
And please consider using tuna packed in oil for this recipe. It has such great flavor! I’ve never cared for the water packed tuna. It just tastes like…well…water. Tuna packed in oil is rich in flavor and delicious!
And truly, it’s not much higher in calories than the water packed especially if you drain off as much of the oil as possible. For a recipe like this, I try to find a good Italian tuna but any brand will work as long as it’s oil packed. Also, you can double the amount of tuna if you’d like a more “meaty” salad.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper for the dressing. Pour over the bean and tuna mixture and toss gently until everything is combined and coated with dressing. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Serve chilled. Makes 6 servings.
🧾 More Recipes You’ll Like
- Winter Shrimp Salad
- Mexican Style Corn Salad
- Layered Tortellini Salad
- Broccoli Salad
- Warm Vegetable Salad
- Black Bean and Corn Salad
HAVE YOU TRIED THIS RECIPE?
I’d LOVE to know what you thought!
Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked it!
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Cannellini Bean and Tuna Salad
- 1 large shallot finely diced
- 2-3 tblsp. red wine vinegar
- 2 cans cannellini white kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 ribs celery finely diced
- 1/2 large red bell pepper finely diced
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
- 2 green onions chopped
- 5 oz. can solid white tuna packed in oil drained
- 3 tblsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tblsp. red wine vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
- Combine the finely diced shallot in a small bowl with red wine vinegar. Allow to set while prepping the remainder of the vegetables for the salad. Drain the shallot and discard the vinegar.
- In a large bowl, gently combine the rinsed, drained beans, celery, bell pepper, parsley, onions, tuna, and the drained diced shallot.
- In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper for the dressing. Pour over the bean and tuna mixture and toss gently until everything is combined and coated with dressing.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Serve chilled.
Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.
More Bean Salad Recipes …
- Fresh Black Bean Salad from Cookie + Kate
- Pinto Bean Salad from Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Carrot, Dill and White Bean Salad from 101 Cookbooks
- Spring Fava Bean and Fennel Salad from Simply Recipes
- Herb Lemon White Bean Salad from Fifteen Spatulas
Love this light and healthy salad. A classic combination of tuna and beans. So easy to make and good for lunch (especially when you’re hungry and don’t want to spend time cooking). I’ve just remembered I didn’t like the salad when I tried it for the first time. After a while, I decided to give it a chance and found myself simply unable to stop eating. My mom is a big fan too and says it tastes even better the next day.
Thank you for sharing!
You have changed my thinking on all things canned tuna Lana!
Once you try the oil-packed, you’ll never go back to the packed in water type. I promise :-)
This looks great; unlike others I’ve not made it before. I recently did have a chance to try some Wild Planet tuna though…so worth every single cent; it was amazing. This is going to be made!
I know you’ll put your own interpretation on it, too, Barb! I’d love to know what you think once you’ve made it.
You know I LOVE beans – this is GREAT!
Thanks, Kristen. This recipe also works well with cooked ham or chicken (really…almost any protein) if you don’t care for tuna.
This looks yummy and I can’t wait to try it. Thanks for the onion tip. I love salads with onion but dislike the sometimes overpowering taste the raw onion can give to cold salads. I will definitely try this with other recipes I make too!
You’re welcome, Heidi. That few minutes with the vinegar makes so much difference. It takes that stinging bite away and really mellows out the taste.
So happy to see this recipe. It is one of my go to salads….I am pinning yours…
Thanks so much for pinning, Mona!
I have been making this salad for years but I think I will switch to your recipe.
Yes, it is a classic isn’t it? Hope you enjoy this version, Gloria!