Making this white bean salad with prosciutto and arugula at home could not be any easier. This Mediterranean inspired bean salad has creamy white beans, salty prosciutto, parmesan cheese, peppery arugula, and a punchy lemon dressing. Jump to the Lemony White Bean Salad Recipe or read on to see our tips for making it.
Adam and I eat quite a lot of beans so we are always on the lookout for new and exciting ways to serve them. This quick and easy white bean salad has to be one of our favorites.
You can use canned beans or beans that you’ve cooked yourself. In our photos, we’ve used small white beans, but other beans like cannellini, great northern, white kidney or even garbanzo beans will work beautifully. I’ve even made the salad without beans and spooned it on top of some warmed homemade refried beans.
What You’ll Need to Make Our Bean Salad
The ingredients for this salad are simple. Here’s a quick rundown of what we add. You can get the full recipe by scrolling down.
- Beans — try small white beans, cannellini, great northern, white kidney or garbanzo beans
- Arugula or another favorite salad green
- Prosciutto or other dry cured ham like serrano ham or Ibérico ham
- Crusty bread or croutons add crunch. You can leave this out if you prefer. Click here to see how we make homemade croutons.
- Punchy lemon dressing made from Dijon mustard, fresh lemon juice, olive oil, parlsey, salt and pepper.
How to Make the Salad
If you have 15 minutes to spare, you can make this easy bean salad. Here’s how we do it.
Step 1, Make the dressing. As I mentioned above the dressing is simple with a combination of Dijon mustard, fresh lemon juice, olive oil, parlsey, salt, and pepper. I just whisk everything together in the bottom of a large bowl. This way, I can toss the rest of the salad ingredients right in.
Step 2, Add the beans, parmesan cheese, and parsley. I like tossing the beans around in the dressing before adding the salad greens (in our photos, we’ve used arugula). You can actually follow the salad recipe through this step and then set the bowl aside until you are ready to eat.
Step 3, Add the greens. Just before serving, I gently toss the greens into the beans. This way the greens are perfectly dressed and since we are doing it just before eating, they won’t turn soggy.
Step 4, Serve with prosciutto and croutons. I like to divide the salad between salad plates/bowls, and then nestle the prosciutto and croutons in. This makes the salad beautiful to look at and anyone you are serving has an idea of what’s in there. When I’m making this for others, I also love adding a few lemon slices for color (you don’t need to eat them, they are just there for presentation and a little extra lemon juice).
Make Ahead Tips
When making this white bean salad in advance, follow our recipe below through the step where we toss the beans, parmesan, and parsley with the dressing. Cover the bowl, and then store in the fridge until you plan to serve the salad. You can store this in the fridge up to 3 days (maybe a day more), but keep in mind that the olive oil might thicken. If this happens, take the salad out of the fridge 30 minutes to an hour before serving so that the oil returns to a liquid state.
More Easy Salad Recipes
- Herby Cauliflower Salad with Chickpeas — Thanks to a light lemony dressing and lots of fresh herbs, this simple cauliflower salad tastes surprisingly delicious and lasts in the fridge for days.
- Very Best Avocado Salad — I could eat this avocado salad with crunchy cucumbers every day. The salad could not be simpler to make and can be enjoyed all by itself, as a side, as a chunky salsa or spooned on top of larger salads.
- Seriously Good Quinoa Salad — Our ultra-flavorful and satisfying quinoa salad recipe is packed with superfoods. It’s vegan, easy to make, and tastes incredible.
- Kale and Bean Salad Recipe with Tahini Dressing and Walnuts — This easy kale and bean salad is packed with good for you ingredients, is crave-worthy and can be made in advance.
- Green Bean Salad with Crispy Shallots — This flavorful, crunchy cold green bean salad is one of our favorite ways to enjoy green beans.
- Black Bean and Quinoa Salad — Thanks to lots of vegetables and quinoa, this easy black bean salad is ultra satisfying, hearty, and absolutely delicious.
- Ridiculously Easy Bean Salad — This classic bean salad is perfect for picnics, barbecues and make ahead meals.
Lemony White Bean Salad with Prosciutto
This lemony bean salad has creamy white beans, salty prosciutto, parmesan cheese, peppery arugula, and a punchy lemon dressing. Both canned beans and home cooked beans work beautifully in this salad.
You Will NeedBean Salad
1 (15-ounce) can white beans, drained and rinsed or use 1 1/2 cups cooked beans
1/4 cup parlsey leaves, chopped
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
6 heaping cups arugula
8 thin slices prosciutto or other dry cured ham, torn into smaller pieces
Handful of croutons, optional, see notesLemon Dressing
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Juice from 1 large lemon (about 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon honey, optional
1Make the dressing. Whisk the mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and honey in the bottom of a large bowl until creamy.
2Add the beans, parsley, and parmesan to the bowl with dressing. Gently toss until well coated. If making ahead, cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.
3Add arugula and gently toss until dressed. Divide the salad between four salad plates, and then tuck the prosciutto and croutons into the salad. Serve.
Adam and Joanne's Tips
- Make ahead tip: Follow the recipe through adding the beans, cheese, and parsley. Cover, and then store in the fridge up to 3 days (maybe a day more), but keep in mind that the olive oil might thicken. If this happens, take the salad out of the fridge 30 minutes to an hour before serving so that the oil returns to a liquid state.
- Croutons: Some stores sell fresh croutons made in store, which are usually much better than those sold in boxes near the salad dressings. You can also make them yourself. Here’s a salad recipe we shared a while back with homemade croutons so you can see how to make them.
- Nutrition Facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA database to calculate approximate values.
If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste
This was so good! Very light & fresh. Easy to make & beans were even better after sitting for a day. Will definitely be making again.
This salad is a recent find and an instant favorite for us! It’s quick to prepare, and absolutely delicious. We’ve made it every week for the past month! Perfect for the summer too
This is fantastic! I used a mesclun/arugula mix and cut the oil down by half.
This was excellent. can’t wait to make again.
Love this salad! Have made it multiple times!
SO GOOD! This salad will be in rotation from now on.
So yummy! The dressing is fantastic. Definitely don’t add the dressing too early to the salad – it will wilt those leaves. We made the dressing ahead of time and the beans absorbed so much flavor! Deeeeelish!
I’m drooling and salads don’t usually make me drool so I’m pinning it to my favourites to make ASAP. Thanks guys!