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How to cook fresh borlotti beans like an Italian.

Learn how Italians cook delicious fresh borlotti beans just with garlic and bay leaves.

cooked borlotti beans in mason jar
shelled borlotti beans in a pot with water

When you find borlotti beans that are fresh, still in the pod, catch them before they’re gone: cooking fresh borlotti beans is a life experience. First of all, because of the time you spend shelling them: for some, it is a waste of time, for me, it is kitchen meditation. Second, because it’s an opportunity to learn how to cook fresh borlotti beans like an Italian.
A very easy recipe, by the way.

fresh borlotti beans, garlic and bay leaves
single borlotti bean out of the pod

Italian recipes, travel, and culture

Simposio is an independent magazine about Italy. It aims to narrate Italy, the authentic one, describing it through its cuisine, places, lifestyle, and culture.

Each issue relates to an Italian city or region, to capture its essence and immense socio-cultural heritage.

how to cook fresh borlotti beans

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 2
Author Claudia Rinaldi


  • 1.5 cups fresh borlotti beans
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 bay leaves
  • salt to taste


  1. Shell the beans and place them in a pot with the garlic clove (no need to peel it) and the bay leaves.
  2. Cover entirely with water and turn on the heat to medium.
  3. Cook, lid on, but leaving a little opening, about 40 minutes, or until fork-tender.

  4. Every now and then, check and add water if necessary.
  5. When thoroughly cooked, salt beans to your taste.

Enjoy your borlotti beans, and if you are into veggies cooked the Italian way, check the super healthy black kale recipe here!

cooked kale on a white and blue vintage plate


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