Walnut and Kidney Bean Spread

by on June 30, 2014
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This tangy vegan kidney bean spread tastes great stuffed into a pita or spread on bread. Load it up with lots of fresh veggies for a great sandwich.

Walnut and Kidney Bean Spread (Lobio)

I like hummus as much as or more than the next vegan. After all, I have between ten and twelve hummus recipes on this blog, depending on what you count as hummus. But lately I’ve been thinking that I eat too many chickpeas and need a little variety in my bean dips, so I’ve been doing a little experimenting with other types of beans.

This red bean-based spread is a variation on Lobio, a popular dish in the former Soviet republic of Georgia. I adapted a recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, Madhur Jaffrey’s World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking, by reducing the amount of walnuts, increasing the amount of beans, and omitting the olive oil. The original recipe kept the kidney beans whole so that it was more of a salad than a spread, but I wanted to stuff it into pita bread and make it into sandwiches so I slightly mashed the beans along with the walnut dressing. The results were a tangy spread that tastes great packed into a pita with a lot of vegetables or spread on French bread piled high with lettuce, tomato, and sliced radishes. My recipe makes a lot, but the good news is it keeps well in the fridge for at least a week.

Walnut and Kidney Bean Spread (Lobio)

This would be a great base for sandwiches for your next picnic or 4th of July celebration. If you need more ideas for the 4th, check out my Vegan 4th of July Pinterest board, where I’ve been pinning everything from burgers to “ribz” to salads to red-white-and-blue desserts.

Walnut and Kidney Bean Spread
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Makes a delicious spread or dip or a filling for sandwiches or pita bread. If you’d like to serve it as a salad instead of a spread, keep the beans whole and toss the dressing with them.
Serves: 10
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons vegetable broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • Generous grating black pepper
  • 2 15-ounce cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 3 tablespoons finely sliced green onions
  1. Put the walnuts and garlic in a food processor and process until finely chopped, stopping machine and scraping down sides as necessary. Add the vinegar, 2 tablespoons broth, salt, cayenne and black pepper and process until it forms a chunky paste. Add additional broth if necessary.
  2. Add the well-drained beans to the processor and pulse about 6 to 8 times, enough to crush most of the beans but not puree them.
  3. Scrape the mixture into a large container and stir in half of the parsley and green onions. Sprinkle the rest on top. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow flavors to blend. (The flavor improves with age, so if you have time, let it chill for several hours or overnight.) Check seasonings and add more vinegar, pepper, or salt to taste.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/10 of recipe Calories: 102 Fat: 2.9g Carbohydrates: 14.6g Sugar: 1.8g Sodium: 291.9mg Fiber: 5.1g Protein: 5.3g

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This tangy vegan kidney bean spread tastes great stuffed into a pita or spread on bread. Load it up with lots of fresh veggies for a great sandwich.

Enjoy your independence (day)!


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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Daniel June 30, 2014 at 4:00 pm

This looks fantastic. You constantly inspire me with your variety and simplicity – thank you for your recipe shares.


2 Sue June 30, 2014 at 4:17 pm

I just love recipes that use beans in different ways as they are so nutricious and delicious. I will be trying out your recipe and will let you know how it went. Just thought you might like this recipe that I made — its my own variation of a few that I found out there and its oil/fat free and its absolutely addictive on crackers or hard bread or as a veggie or chip dip!

-5 to 6 limes juiced plus the grated zest of 1 lime (6 if smaller limes, 5 larger)
-6 large, 8 medium or 12 small cloves garlic
-1 tsp Celtic Sea Salt
-1 tsp curry powder
-4 tbspn cashew nut butter
Combine above ingredients in your blender or processor and begin on low speed. When thoroughly blended, start adding small handfuls of the rinsed kidney beans. When blender slows, stir in the rest of the beans into the blender and blend on medium high speed., until creamy. (The kidney bean skins will be in small pieces when its done. )
-1 can Primo (19 oz = 2 cups after liquid removed) rinsed & drained well.
Excellent way to get your source of raw garlic!
Thanks Susan,


3 Sue June 30, 2014 at 4:18 pm

Sorry – I meant to say that the above dip is olive oil free. The cashew butter obviously has fat…


4 Small Footprints June 30, 2014 at 5:16 pm

Mmm … this looks yummy! I like the use of walnuts … they are so healthy. And the red beans give the dip a lovely color. I also like that you use vegetable broth instead of oil! One question … I typically make beans from scratch. I’m assuming that each can of beans holds about 2 cups so, since dried beans triple in volume, I could use 1 1/3 cups dried. Does that sound about right?


5 moonwatcher June 30, 2014 at 7:16 pm

This sounds delicious Susan–I bet it makes a really good hearty sandwich, and is delicious with those radishes, parsley and fresh tomatoes. To my palette, it’s a definite improvement on a McDougall red bean spread that used sweet pickle relish. This is far more appealing to me–walnuts and green onion and red wine vinegar–yum!! I bet it’s nice with romaine, too.




6 leslirn June 30, 2014 at 9:30 pm

Just made this today and can’t wait to try it! I think the walnuts will give it a pate like consistency, and would even serve this at a party!!


7 Helyn July 1, 2014 at 7:19 am

Beautiful photos, as always! Thanks for this great idea, Susan!!


8 Dina July 1, 2014 at 7:25 am

… Hi Susan … this recipe sounds amazing … soon you will get a report … & how are mr. Jazzy … mr. Leo & young mr. adventurous Loki … does mr. Milo still jump over to your side for a visit … just went back to “Loki Unleashed” & smiled all the way … i liked the growling dog too … i really hope it’s just an act he puts on … love & peace to all … God Bless … : )


9 Sandy July 1, 2014 at 7:38 pm

I have an allergy to nuts. What would be a good substitute?


10 nicole July 3, 2014 at 8:46 pm

Hi Susan, How big are your 10 servings of this? And do you think this recipe would work if cut in half? I’m single, so I mainly cook just for myself, that’s why I ask. Thanks! 🙂


11 Larissa July 4, 2014 at 4:59 pm

This spread is awesome!!! I just made it for my family and we devoured practically the whole thing in one sitting! Another fabulous recipe, Susan! Thanks for sharing 🙂


12 Renard Moreau July 5, 2014 at 12:44 pm

[ Smiles ] Susan, this is lovely. I wasn’t aware that a person can make a recipe that contained both kidney beans and walnuts.


13 elizabeth July 5, 2014 at 3:54 pm

I’m going to make this as soon as I get kidney beans.
I’ve been making a variation of this hummus quite often,
Buffalo Hummus, http://ohsheglows.com/2013/10/04/no-meat-athlete-buffalo-hummus-recipe/


14 Christine (The Raw Project) July 6, 2014 at 10:20 am

Wow, this recipe looks simple, delicious, and elegant – thanks! Like the idea of pairing walnuts with kidney beans for the texture too.


15 Vegan Nigerian July 6, 2014 at 4:12 pm

Sounds delicious!!


16 Laura July 6, 2014 at 7:08 pm

Made it today and came home and made a second batch! DS let me know dips/spreads are more loved than hummus. Thanks!


17 Kristin Eggen July 7, 2014 at 12:29 am

I love your blog, Susan! When I need inspiration, I look up your blog and there it is. What I like the most, is that your servings arent’t made for neither dieting or let alone starvation. The Australian weekly mag “i feel good” is great, but if you stick to them, you’ll go hungry and my husband will shrink before my very eyes.


18 Catherine July 7, 2014 at 11:29 am

I fixed this a few days ago, and it was great. Thanks for the recipe!


19 Bobbi July 19, 2014 at 5:38 pm


Thanks for once again giving me a FAMILY recipe! Everybody from the Grandparents (Tim & me) to the children to the grandchildren love this! We have used it for a sandwich spread w/lettuce, cucumbers etc., dip w/chips, and as a layer in a spanish rice, salsa, shredded cabbage (again, another etc.) taco/burrito. Just made Another batch to take to a family brunch tomorrow.
Peace to you and yours!


20 Marta @ What should I eat for breakfast today July 23, 2014 at 12:42 pm

This is a truly nice idea for a spread.


21 Holly August 5, 2014 at 6:24 pm

I’ve made this twice since you posted. Absolutely delicious and unique, yet so easy to prep. Putting it in my lunch rotation for this school year.


22 Corrin Radd August 11, 2014 at 12:38 pm

We put this on sandwiches with sliced tomato for lunch. Delicious!


23 John B. August 30, 2014 at 4:36 am

I’m in love with these recipes. They are very easy to make, especially for a hard working guy who just needs to prepare a snack for his next day. I think I have stumbled upon it in some of our local raw restaurants, but there was a bit of lime and even a zest in it. It is also great to read about it being originally a Georgian recipe. This is the second thing I know from Georgia after Stalin. I would just replace the canned version of red kidney beans for soaked normal ones. I’m not a big fan of canned food..


24 Jill December 18, 2014 at 2:57 pm

I’m serving this on Xmas Eve – it’ll be a great spread for those tiny rye toasts and Triscuits.


25 Joe January 26, 2015 at 8:59 pm

I don’t like it when people tell me if the food is good or bad, please let me decide for myself. I saw this recipe: simple, fast, cheap and yes, healthy. So, I tried it. I even mistakenly used only one can of beans. Thank you, thank you for the recipe. My family and I love it. Now I have something else healthy to eat. Lunches for me at work are particularly boring, this recipe is more valuable to me than you know.


26 Nannette November 18, 2015 at 1:26 pm

Wow! This is amazing! my family and I are new at trying to choose 100% plant foods and cutting out oils in one fell swoop so the learning curve has been pretty steep. Having been dissapointed in so many things that I have tried I had begun to doubt my ability to pick out a good recipe so, I only made half a batch of this…
That was a mistake!! Especially funny too, as my DH immediately asked if I had made a lot of it! LOL! I baked a “legal” thinly sliced bagel in a 300 degree oven to make us some “crackers” and we all felt very happy munching away yesterday after school! Thanks so much for your wonderful blog and all the delicious sounding recipes, especially this one, I really needed that! I am off now to find dinner for tonight! 👍


27 Louanne June 28, 2016 at 8:52 pm

What a pretty color! I just made some gf pita bread and I wish I had your dip to make a sandwich. Picking up kidney beans tomorrow. 😀


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