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Delicious Dishes: 5 BEST Substitutes for Lima Beans

Lima beans aren’t everyone’s cup of tea.

We’ve got you covered with some killer swaps that’ll keep your meals exciting.

Finding the perfect substitute can be a game-changer in cooking.

Edamame, for example, brings a vibrant green pop and a buttery texture that can elevate any dish.

Cannellini beans are another fantastic option, offering a nutty flavor that blends seamlessly into soups and salads.

And if you’re after that hearty feel, chickpeas are your go-to, adding both substance and crunch.

Who knew ditching Lima beans could open up such a treasure trove of flavors?

We’re here to guide you through each choice, making sure you won’t miss those Limas.

Stick with us, and your meals are about to get a whole lot more interesting.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lima Beans

If you’re looking for a substitute for lima beans, there are several options you can try. Here are five of the best choices:

1 – Fava Beans

fava beans

Fava beans are a type of bean native to Mediterranean countries, but they are now grown in many other regions of the world.

They’re known for their dark green color and slightly nutty flavor, which makes them delicious when eaten raw or cooked.

Favas contain protein, fiber, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), folate (folic acid), potassium, and magnesium, among other nutrients that make them a good food source for vegetarians who want to add more nutrition into their diets without having to sacrifice taste or convenience.

They can be used with any meal, whether preparing dinner at home or attending an important event such as a business meeting, so don’t hesitate if you’d like something more exotic than lima beans on hand.

2 – Butter Beans

butter beans

Butter beans are a great substitute for lima beans in taste and texture.

You can use them in place of lima beans in recipes that call for lima beans or substitute them for one pound of dried butter beans.

The difference between these two types of beans is that butter bean pods are not edible — they’re used as storage pods for young seedlings growing up inside the pod itself.

In contrast, the outer skin on lima bean pods is edible (although often bitter) and makes a tasty addition to salads or side dishes like stir-frys or soups.

3 – Great Northern Beans

great northern beans

Great Northern beans are a type of white bean that is similar in appearance to navy beans.

They’re also called cannellini beans, which is a type of white kidney bean.

Great Northern beans are commonly used in soups and stews because they have a mild flavor, but they can be substituted for lima or navy beans if you prefer them.

When cooked, Great Northern beans take on a creamy color and texture similar to that of navy beans.

In fact, they’re often used as a substitute for cannellini beans in Italian dishes like minestrone or baked bean casseroles.

4 – Edamame Beans

edamame beans

Edamame beans are immature soybeans that are harvested just before they reach full maturity.

Like lima beans, edamame beans contain folate (vitamin B9), magnesium, and potassium.

They’re a great source of protein and fiber, with about 6 grams of protein per cup and 8 grams of dietary fiber.

As with other legumes such as chickpeas or lentils, edamame beans can be prepared in many different ways—smashed into salads; used in stir-fries or soups; steamed whole; added to mung bean sprouts for something extra crunchy on top.

5 – Red Kidney Beans

red kidney beans

Red kidney beans are a good substitute for lima beans.

The red color comes from anthocyanins—the same antioxidant that gives blueberries health benefits.

They’re high in protein and iron and have fiber, folate, and vitamins A, B, and C.

Red kidney beans are also available year-round at most grocery stores—and they’re often cheaper than green or yellow varieties (which aren’t as nutritious).

Not only are they great in chili and soup, but they’re also delicious when added to salads or made into burgers.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lima Beans

Looking to swap out lima beans for something else? We've got you covered with our list of the 5 best substitutes for lima beans. Whether you're looking for similar texture or flavor, these alternatives will seamlessly fit into your recipes, ensuring delicious results every time.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 1 Serving


  • Fava Beans
  • Butter Beans
  • Great Northern Beans
  • Edamame Beans
  • Red Kidney Beans


  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword substitutes for lima beans
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