Cardamom-Lime Chicken and White Beans

Another winner from Milk Street, Cardamom-Lime Chicken and White Beans. Their inspiration for this hearty braise was a chive and white bean soup from “Cooking In Iran” with some simplifications. They swapped canned white beans for the dried which saved tons of time. And substituting fresh lime zest in place of hard-to-find Persian limes saves your sanity.

Four bunches of scallions? I’m an allium lover and that even threw me for a loop. The scallions infuse every bit with pungency while also lending the recipe color. Not necessary to make them perfectly uniform in size, but they must be sliced thin. Remember to keep the white parts separate from the green as they are added at different times.

Don’t forget to save the liquid when draining the beans. It adds both body and flavor to the dish. If you do accidentally discard it, simply increase the chicken broth to 2⅓ cups. The braising liquid will be thinner, but the dish will still be tasty.

In many cases, I tend to increase the amount of meat/protein. Here, because our package of defrosting chicken thighs weighed only one pound, I decided to increase the white beans to two 19-once cans. If desired, you can serve the stew with rice, roasted potatoes or warmed flatbread. We enjoyed it without any accompaniments.


Cardamom-Lime Chicken and White Beans

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 1½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp. salted butter
  • 4 bunches scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts reserved separately
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp. garam masala
  • 1½ tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 2 15½-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tsp. grated lime zest
  • ¼ cup lime juice


  1. Season the chicken with 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high, melt the butter. Add the chicken and scallion whites, then cook, stirring once or twice, until both the chicken and scallions begin to turn golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the tomato paste, garam masala, cardamom, turmeric, 1½ teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon pepper.Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds.
  4. Add the bean liquid, broth, and lime zest and juice, then bring to a boil. Reduce to medium and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat as needed to maintain a simmer, until the chicken is opaque when cut into, 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Stir in the scallion greens and the beans, then cook until the beans are heated through, another 2 minutes.
  6. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Adapted from a recipe by Julia Krakow from Milk Street

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