Greek Gigantes

Greek Gigantes are, not surprisingly, GIANT beans! In this recipe, the gigantes are slow cooked in a rich tomato sauce until perfectly creamy and tender. Serve over toasted crusty bread for an easy vegetarian meal!

Individual bowl of gigante beans.

How fun are these gigante beans!? I’m obsessed with these large white beans. I remember eating these big beans on my trip to Athens, but I didn’t know the name and it took be a few years to remember them and look them up.

Okay, so about the Greek gigantes, otherwise known as gigantes plaki, is a popular Mediterranean dish. The beans are a type of large white bean that is both huge in size, and huge in flavor. You can find them on Amazon, or substitute in Lima beans.

I’m super lazy about beans, so I decided to make this a slow cooker recipe. Just throw everything in, turn it on, and walk away. SO EASY.

This is an intensely comforting and satisfying dish. It’s also incredibly versatile. You can serve it as a stew-like main course, as a side dish, or even as part of a spread of small plates or appetizers. Check out my collection of Greek recipes if you need some pairing ideas.

How to make Greek Gigantes

Assemble your ingredients. For exact amounts see the recipe card below.

Ingredients for Greek gigantes.

Next, soak the beans overnight. (If you forget this step see my tips below on how to work around that)

Beans soaking in water in a bowl.

Next, drain the beans and place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a large slow cooker. Cook for 4-6 hours on high, or 8-10 hours on low. Taste and add more salt as needed.

Ingredients for Greek gigantes in a slow cooker

Finally serve, top with freshly ground black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil and enjoy!

Greek Gigantes beans in an individual bowl with toast on the side.

I also love to serve these beans by placing a slice of toasted crusty bread in the bottom of a bowl and then ladle the beans and sauce in on top. Or have a bowl of beans and spoon some on top of toasted bread to add in a little crunch!

Tips for cooking this recipe

I soaked my beans overnight, but I frequently forget to do this while slow cooking beans. If this is the case, you can usually get away with adding an extra hour (on high) or two (on low) to the cook time.

Cooking these Greek beans on low produces a better result, in my opinion, as it doesn’t aggressively boil the beans which can cause a lot of bean-skin separation. Not a huge deal by any means, but that’s totally up to you! If you’re a work-outside-the-home type of person, throw these in before work and let them simmer all day.

Bowls of Greek beans.

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FAQs

What do gigante beans taste like?

These beans have a creamy texture and a slightly nutty flavor, which makes them a great addition to almost any savory dish.

Do you have to soak the beans overnight?

I highly recommend soaking these beans overnight. This allows them to soften so they are the perfect texture when they are ready. If you forget I would recommend adding an extra hour (on high) or two (on low) to the cook time.

Storage and reheating

You can store these Greek Gigantes, in an airtight container in your fridge for 3-5 days. You can also freeze these beans in an airtight container for up to 2 months!

To reheat from the fridge you can transfer them to a saucepan over medium-high heat and cook until everything has warmed through. You can also place the dish in a microwave safe bowl and heat until everything has warmed through. If you are reheating from the freezer be sure to let the dish thaw in the fridge or at room temperature before reheating.

More delicious Bean recipes you will love:

 

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Greek Gigantes Recipe

Discover the wonders of Greek Gigantes – giant beans that transform into a culinary delight! Slow-cooked in a luscious tomato sauce, these creamy, tender beans pair perfectly with toasted crusty bread. Definitely, a sumptuous vegetarian feast!
4.4 from 527 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Side Dishes
Cuisine: Greek
Diet: Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 342kcal
Author: Linda
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Ingredients

  • 1 pound dry gigantes beans - soaked overnight
  • 2 medium yellow onions - peeled and chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic - peeled and smashed
  • 2 14.5-ounce cans no-salt-added diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups vegetarian chicken broth - or water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Crusty bread - black pepper, and more olive oil for serving

Instructions

  • Soak the beans overnight. (If you forget this step, see my tips below on how to work around that).
  • Next, drain the beans and place all the ingredients in the bowl of a large slow cooker. Cook for 4-6 hours on high or 8-10 hours on low. Taste and add more salt, if needed.
  • Finally, serve with toasted crusty bread. Garnish with freshly ground black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. I also love serving these beans by placing a slice of toasted crusty bread in the bottom of a bowl and then ladling the beans and sauce on top. Alternatively, have a bowl of beans and spoon some on top of toasted bread to add a little crunch!

VIDEO

NOTES

Storage Info:
Greek Gigantes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. They freeze well too; place them in a freezer-safe container, and they will keep for about 3 months. To reheat, simply thaw in the fridge if frozen and then warm in a saucepan over medium heat. Then, add a little water or broth if needed to maintain consistency. Alternatively, you can reheat them in the microwave, stirring occasionally to ensure even warming.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 342kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 912mg | Potassium: 1683mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 364IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 244mg | Iron: 10mg
Greek Gigantes are, not surprisingly, GIANT beans! In this recipe, the gigantes are slow cooked in a rich tomato sauce until perfectly creamy and tender. Serve over toasted crusty bread for an easy vegetarian meal!

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Comments:

  1. I can’t wait to try your recipe, it looks so delicious. I was wondering if I
    could use Chicken broth instead of vegetarian chicken broth?
    Thanks much ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Can’t wait to try this recipe!! My family of 7 loves Greek/Mediterranean food!!

    Did you know….gigantes beans are the same as butter beans or large lima beans??

    The recipe would probably even work with baby limas….however with the long cook time, probably a waste of the tender, more expensive babies ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. I had a similar dish in Athens and have wanted to recreate it ever since! The recipe I had finished the beans off with shrimp and feta. Not sure what else was added but it was divine! Iโ€™m going to try this and see how it goes. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Hi Ariatna,

      Yes, you can freeze this recipe for up to 3 months in an airtight bag or container.

      – Linda