A fantastic, one-pan, vegetarian winter warmer

I love this fennel and borlotti bean cassoulet.

  • SERVES: 4
  • PREP TIME: 5 mins
  • COOK TIME: 45 mins
  • DIFFICULTY: easy
  • IDEAL FOR: vegetarian, meat-free meal, family meal, side dish

What are borlotti beans

Borlotti beans are deliciously creamy and rich.

They are a kind of mix of kidney beans and cannellini beans. 

You’ll find them used a lot in Italian and Portuguese cooking


If you can’t find borlotti beans, try dark and light kidney beans, cannellini beans or pinto beans

Fennel and borlotti bean cassoulet recipe

I discovered this recipe on Great British Chefs.

However, instead of using dried borlotti beans, I used tinned borlotti beans.

It just speeds up the dish a little more as you don’t need to remember to soak them the night before.

Or cook as long.

Having said that, if you find a bag of dried beans to keep in your cupboard, it’s great to have them there.

And when you cook them in the stock and wine, they do carry on absorbing the flavours.


  • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 leek, sliced
  • 1 banana shallot (or onion), sliced
  • 3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 large fennel bulb, fronds removed and cut into 6-8 wedges
  • 2 x 400g tinned borlotti beans (or 150g dried beans, soaked in cold water overnight)
  • 250ml of white wine
  • 1l stock, vegetable or chicken
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 tsp sea salt


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large, wide pan and add the fennel seeds and coriander seeds. Let them sizzle for a few seconds, then add the shallot, leek, garlic and fennel wedges with a teaspoon of salt. Cook for about 8 minutes, so the vegetables soften and start to caramelise a little
  2. Drain the soaked beans and add them, followed by the white wine. Let the wine reduce by half then add the stock and tarragon sprigs and turn down the heat to a slow simmer
  3. Simmer the cassoulet, covered, for 45–60 minutes (or until the dried beans – if you use them – are cooked through)
  4. Taste and season with salt and lemon zest
Fennel and borlotti bean cassoulet

For more vegetarian, recipes, visit here.

References: Spruce eats