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Lemony Red Bean And Parsley Salad

Published by Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on Dec 8, 2021

Ready in mere minutes, a tangy lemon juice and olive oil vinaigrette dresses up this quick side salad of red beans with parsley

 

Fresh, healthy, and delicious are the trifecta of a winning combination food connoisseurs appreciate. This recipe with a Mediterranean flair, meets all three criteria. It’s packed with plant-protein, antioxidant rich veggies, and heart healthy olive oil. You’ll love its flavor appeal and tantalizing textures.  Whether served as a light lunch or an easy-to-put together dinner meal, it’s perfect when served with warm pita bread and fresh fruit. And it’s just as good (if not better) when served the next day.

The appeal of parsley

From the red beans to the avocadoes, each ingredient contributes to good health. But, parsley is the star of this show.  When used as an herb or garnish, parsley is often pushed to the side of the plate, uneaten. Instead, humble parsley is the chosen leafy green (not spinach or kale) adding the right touch of an unexpected enticing tastiness.

Often underrated as a leafy green, parsley was first cultivated by ancient Romans and Greeks as a medicinal food. It’s a rich source of vitamins A, C, and K, folate, potassium, iron, fiber and antioxidant compounds. Today, parsley is a widely cultivated flowering herb used prevalently in American, European, and Middle Eastern cuisine.

Two types of parsley

When shopping for parsley, you’ll notice it comes in two types – curly leaf parsley or flat leaf parsley.  Flat leaf parsley, also called Italian parsley, is the one to use for this recipe. It has a stronger flavor and is best in salads and cooked dishes. Curly leaf parsley, also called French parsley, is typically used as a garnish.

Health benefits of parsley

Because of its prolific nutritional profile, parsley has many health benefits including the following:

  • Cancer prevention –  A flavonoid called apigenin, is found in parsley with potential as an anticancer agent.
  • Bone health – Parsley contains a prevalent amount of fat-soluble Vitamin K. Vitamin K is linked to bone health, necessary for supporting bone growth and bone mineral density.
  • Eye health – Protect your eye health by including more parsley in your meals. Parsley contains vitamin A along with two antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin. Together, these nutrients help prevent age-related macular degeneration.

It’s time to see for yourself just how healthy and delicious this ‘fit for a king’ salad is! Check out the recipe below:

Lemony Red Bean And Parsley Salad – Serves 4, serving size – 1/2 cup

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Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD

Cheryl Mussatto MS, RD, LD is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and Institutional Management from Kansas State University. She is a clinical dietitian for Cotton O’Neil Clinics in Topeka and Osage City; an adjunct professor for Allen Community College, Burlingame, KS where she teaches Basic Nutrition; and is a freelance writer and blog contributor for Dr. David Samadi, Urologic Oncologist Expert and World Renowned Robotic Surgeon in New York City. Cheryl is also the author of The Nourished Brain, The Latest Science on Food’s Power for Protecting the Brain from Alzheimers and Dementia and The Prediabetes Action Plan and Cookbook, both available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback editions.

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