Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans (Vegan!)

Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans

Looking for a tasty, protein-packed vegan meal that’s perfect for meal prep? This creamy garlicky butterbeans dish is sure to satisfy! Made with a rich, savoury vegan cream cheese, tender butterbeans (also called lima beans), aromatic garlic, juicy tomatoes, fresh basil and nutrient-dense spinach. It’s a wholesome, plant-based meal that comes together in around 15 minutes and will be a firm addition to your weekly rotation!

I can say with a huge amount of confidence that this creamy garlicky butterbean recipe is probably my favourite ‘go-to’ meal at the moment. We probably eat it 2-3 times a week as a family. And there’s good reason for that! It’s incredibly easy to put together, is nutritious, and is ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!

Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans

Ingredients You’ll Need…

If you’re going to make my Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans, you’re going to need the following 8 ingredients…

Olive Oil: Olive oil provides a base for sautéing the garlic and aromatics. It also helps to bring out the flavours of the other ingredients.

Butterbeans: These creamy and buttery legumes are the star of the dish, providing a rich texture and nutty flavour. Using them undrained, in their juices, adds extra creaminess and flavour to the dish.

Garlic: Garlic is a flavourful aromatic that adds depth and savoury notes to the butterbeans. When minced, it releases a lot more of its pungent aroma! I’ve attached a video below on how to correctly mince garlic.

Cherry Tomatoes: The cherry tomatoes provide a burst of fresh, tangy flavour and a pop of colour to the dish. Their natural sweetness and acidity help to balance the richness of the butterbeans and cream cheese. Don’t skimp on the cherry tomatoes – you want nice sweet ones! Poor choice of tomatoes can spoil the whole recipe!

Vegan Cream Cheese: This plant-based cream cheese adds a luxurious creaminess to the dish, creating a rich and velvety texture. It also adds a subtle tanginess that complements the other flavours.

TOP TIP: I’ve trialled LOTS of different vegan cream cheeses for this recipe. The best one (in the UK) is the Philadelphia Vegan Cream Cheese. You’ll have to trial with vegan cream cheeses near you!

Spinach: The addition of fresh spinach not only provides a nutritional boost but also adds a vibrant green colour and a slightly bitter flavour that contrasts nicely with the creaminess of the dish.

Fresh Basil: Fresh basil leaves contribute a bright, herbaceous flavour that pairs beautifully with the garlic and tomatoes. The chopped basil also adds a pop of colour and freshness to the dish.

Lemon Juice: The lemon juice adds some ‘tanginess’ that helps to balance the richness of the dish and brighten the flavours. It also helps to cut through the creaminess, preventing the dish from feeling too heavy.

TOP TIP: I highly recommend using jarred beans as opposed to tinned in this recipe (tins are fine – but jarred are worth the extra investment – especially Brindisa’s!

Brindisa Chickpea

How to Make This Vegan Garlicky Butterbean Recipe…

First up, let’s heat a large pan over a medium heat and add that lovely olive oil!

After a couple of minutes, once the oil has heated up, add the minced garlic and let it cook, stirring regularly, for 2-3 minutes.

Add in the tomatoes and stir regularly for 5 minutes so that the tomatoes soften (you can squash them down gently with the back of a fork to squeeze some of the juices out of them).

Once the tomatoes have softened, pour in the butterbeans (with their juices) and bring to a boil – then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes.

Stir in the vegan cream cheese so a creamy sauce forms.

TOP TIP: You can adjust the consistency to your liking by simply adding more (or less) cream cheese – I personally prefer it very creamy – so I throw a LOT in

Add in the salt, pepper, lemon juice, chopped basil and spinach leaves.

When the spinach has wilted, get ready to tuck in!

How to Mince Garlic

Take 45 seconds to learn how to mince garlic properly. Trust me, your future recipes will thank you for it!

TOP TIP: Top this butterbean recipe with crispy fried breadcrumbs for some added flavour and crunch.

Garlic Butterbeans (Lima Beans)

Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans

Creamy Garlicky Butterbeans

Georgina Burgess
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Servings 4 people


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 700 g butterbeans (pre-drained weight) undrained/in their juices (I recommend using the jarred kind)
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 450 g cherry tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp vegan cream cheese
  • Large handful spinach
  • Handful fresh basil chopped
  • Juice of 1 small lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Heat a large pan over a medium heat and add the oil
  • Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add in the tomatoes and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes so that the tomatoes soften (you can squash them down gently with the back of a fork to help this).
  • Pour in butterbeans (with their juices) and bring to a boil before reducing to a simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the vegan cream cheese so a creamy sauce forms.
  • Add in the salt, pepper, lemon juice, basil and spinach. Once the spinach has wilted, it's ready to serve! If meal prepping, this will keep in a container in the fridge for upto 3 days.

Storing Your Creamy Butterbeans

If you’re planning on meal prepping these, then you’re in luck – you can!

It will keep in a container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

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High Protein Cheesy Butterbeans
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Check out this recipe
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