At Beekman 1802, we love an underdog and we think lima beans are the underdogs of the legume world. They are such an underdog, in fact, that when we were looking through our photos to use for this recipe, we actually used a picture of their more famous cousins, broad beans.

When broad beans and lima beans are freshly shelled, they look pretty similar. Lima beans are naturally green until they are dried, then they turn white. Shelled broad beans have a thin green-colored layer on the outside that can be peeled off. So how can you tell the difference between the two? Broad beans have a small slit in the green layer (you use this slit to peel the bean) and lima beans don’t.

Our apologies go out to anyone who was confused by an earlier version of this recipe that had the wrong photo and to lima beans in general. Lima beans, we love you. You go so flawlessly with parsley, thyme, and butter. You don’t deserve to be looked over or confused with other beans. With a little education, maybe the world can finally give lima beans the spotlight they deserve.


  • 2 pounds fresh lima bean pods
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Additional Information

  • Cook Time: 20m


With a paring knife, cut along the inner, curved side of the bean pods. Open the pods and pull out the beans. Place the beans in a medium saucepan and add cold water to cover by 1 inch. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter, the thyme and the salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered until the beans are tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes.

Remove from the heat and swirl in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the parsley.

This recipe can be found in our Beekman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook.


by Josh and Brent

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Butter beans …love them. A staple along with green beans in my North Carolina home growing up with a bit of bacon fat. Now that we don’t eat meat products we can still enjoy buttter beans…