White Bean Roasted Bell Pepper Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette is one of those salads that comes together quick (just in time for a summer gathering!), and is even better the next day (that is, if there’s any leftover).
Bean salads are some of my all-time favorite salads, and I find that they’re even better the next day after they’ve had time to marinate in the dressing overnight. I usually like to whip up a homemade vinaigrette to dress my salads because it only takes a couple of minutes, and it tastes so much better than anything bottled! (And bonus, it doesn’t have any preservatives or other unpronounceable ingredients that come in so many store-bought salad dressings.)
If you have time you can also roast up your own bell peppers (I used the baby bell peppers here), which is easy to do and can be done on a grill or under a broiler.
As far as beans go, if you don’t have time to cook up dried beans, go ahead and use canned! This isn’t a recipe that will suffer for using canned beans and it is a pretty big time saver.
Whip up this one for your next summer BBQ!
How to Roast Bell Peppers to Make Into Bell Pepper Salad
- Preheat a grill or boiler.
- If grilling, lightly brush each pepper with a neutral-flavored oil with a high smoke point. If broiling, arrange the peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet (no oil).
- Grill or broil until the skin is charred on both sides (watch carefully, it only takes about half the time on the second side).
- Transfer the charred peppers to a bowl, cover it, and let it sit for 15 minutes. Peel off each pepper’s skin (don’t run it under water, as this will remove the pepper’s smoky flavor).
- Enjoy - they're perfect for making a bell pepper salad!
How to Make Vinaigrette
If you haven’t made vinaigrette at home, you won’t believe how fast and easy it is. Everything just gets whisked or shaken together!
The Vinegar to Oil Ratio for Vinaigrette
In its most basic form, making a vinaigrette is as easy as mixing vinegar and oil! The biggest trick is to get the ratio of vinegar:oil correct so the flavor is balanced. Most people go with a ratio of about 1 part vinegar to 3 parts oil, and then add a good pinch of salt and black pepper for seasoning. I like my dressing with a little more tang, so depending on what kind of oil and vinegar I’m using, I usually do a 1:1 ratio.
What Kind of Vinegar and Oil to Use for Vinaigrette
The type of oil and vinegar to use is based on your own taste preferences. I usually pick a vinegar to complement the salad first, and then select an oil to complement the vinegar. For example, if I’m doing an heirloom tomato salad with fresh basil and mozzarella, I would probably choose balsamic vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil. If I’m making an apple salad with blue cheese and baby greens I might pick apple cider vinegar with a mix of walnut oil and olive oil.
Other Flavorings to Add to Vinaigrette
The sky is almost the limit when it comes to different ways you can flavor a vinaigrette! Here are a few of the more popular add-ins I like to use:
- Sweetener: Honey, maple syrup, or even jam (like in this recipe). This can help balance the tartness of vinegar and bitterness of some greens.
- Savory Aromatics: Garlic, shallot, onion, etc.
- Fruity Aromatics: Citrus zest
- Fresh Herbs: Thyme, rosemary, tarragon, dill, etc.
- Spices: Cinnamon (like this one), sumac, etc.
- Emulsifiers: Dijon mustard, egg yolk, mayo, etc. These are a good way to get a creamy dressing!
Other Summer Potluck Recipes
- Greek-Flavored Butter Bean Salad from An Edible Mosaic
- Buffalo Chicken Taco Salad from Peas and Crayons
- Tuna Pasta Salad with Celery and Egg from The Little Kitchen
- Antipasto Panzanella Salad from Frugal Foodie Mama
- Healthy Broccoli Salad from Rachel Cooks
- 12 oz (340 g) baby bell peppers, stems trimmed off (see Note)
- 1 (15 oz) can no-salt-added white beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 oz (57 g) feta cheese, cubed (see Note)
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ tablespoon soy sauce (or tamari or coconut aminos)
- 1 large clove garlic, crushed
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- To roast the peppers, preheat the broiler and line a large baking sheet with foil. Arrange the peppers on the prepared baking sheet. Broil until the skin is charred, about 5 minutes on the first side, and 2 minutes on the second side. Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover it, and let it sit for 15 minutes. Peel off the pepper’s skin (don’t run it under water, as this will remove the pepper’s smoky flavor). Coarsely chop the peppers (you should get about 1½ cups chopped). (The peppers can also be charred on the grill instead of under the broiler.)
- Whisk together all ingredients for the vinaigrette in a large bowl.
- Add the roasted pepper, beans, red onion, parsley, and feta, and gently toss to combine.
- Serve, or store covered in the fridge for up to 2 days.
Feta: Instead of crumbled feta, I like to use the feta that you buy in a block for this recipe so that it can be made ahead without the cheese getting mushy.
Make Ahead: If you use cubed feta (instead of crumbled), you can make this salad up to 2 days ahead. Keep it covered in the fridge until serving.