Easy Tuscan White Bean Dip (Vegan!)
This creamy white bean dip recipe is a cinch to make and is the perfect appetizer or healthy snack. Fragrant with garlic, rosemary and lemon, it’ll transport you straight to the Tuscan countryside. Serve it with crackers or sliced vegetables for dipping, or spread it on toasted baguette slices for white bean crostini (see the Notes below). Cooking the aromatics in the olive oil blooms the herbs and softens the garlic, resulting in a richer, smoother flavor. You can remove the garlic before blending the dip, or you can leave it in for a slightly stronger flavor.
Servings: 1 ¼ cups
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, smashed and peeled
- 2 rosemary sprigs (4-6 inches)
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 15-ounce can cannellini or navy beans, drained and rinsed
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- Juice of ½ lemon, plus more to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons water
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Put the olive oil, garlic clove, rosemary sprigs, dried oregano and red pepper flakes in a small skillet or pot, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is golden in spots, about 4-6 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Discard the rosemary sprigs or save them for garnish.
In a food processor, combine the cannellini beans, lemon zest, lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of water. Add 3 tablespoons of the oil from the pan (be sure to get some of the dried herbs too), along with the cooked garlic clove if you’d like (you can omit the garlic clove for a slightly milder flavor—it’s still delicious!). Season with salt and pepper.
Process until smooth, scraping down the sides once or twice. Taste and season with more salt, pepper and/or lemon juice, if needed. If you prefer a thinner dip, blend in another tablespoon of water.
Transfer the dip to a bowl and drizzle with some of the remaining oil. Serve with veggies and crackers, or spread the dip over toasted crostini.
Do Ahead: The dip can be refrigerated for up to 5 days. Bring it to room temperature before serving.
- If you don’t have a food processor you can use a high-speed blender such as a Vitamix to make the dip.
- If you’re sensitive to garlic, cook it in the oil but don’t add the cooked clove to the dip (it will still flavor the oil and taste amazing!).
- To make white bean crostini, spread the bean dip over toasted baguette slices (see how to make crostini in this whipped ricotta post). To take the crostini over the top, layer them with sautéed spinach and shavings of Parmesan cheese (if you’d like).