Corn and Butter Bean (or Lima Bean) Casserole

This post is linked to A Gluten-Free HolidayFood on Fridays, Foodie Friday, Fight Back Friday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, and Real Food Weekly. 

It’s week 4 of our Gluten-Free Holiday event and the continuation of my 25 Days of Christmas! Diane (The W.H.O.L.E. Gang) is hosting A Gluten-Free Holiday with Christmas and Hanukkah Favorites—entrees and side dishes. She is sharing Chipolatas. Never heard of Chipolatas? I hadn’t either, but they’re made of one of Diane’s very favorite “food groups.” (Hint: It’s a four-letter word that rhymes with fork.) Check Diane’s Chipolatas out here, plus share your favorite recipe in this category and enter the current cookbook/book giveaway. See a listing below of all the great ones you can win (giveaway runs through Wednesday, December 8).

One copy of Gluten-Free Girl : How I Found the Food That Loves Me Back … and You Can Too by Shauna James Ahern:

One copy of Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef by Shauna James Ahern and Daniel Ahern.

One copy of Sweet Freedom by Ricki Heller:

And, three e-book trios (includes one copy of Sweet Freedom, one copy of Desserts without Compromise, one copy of Anti-Candida Feast Book) from Ricki Heller:

Now let’s get to the recipe I’m sharing for this week’s event. As I stated when I shared my “Candy” Carrot Coins recipe, veggies often get the short end of the stick when it comes to holiday meals. So I do try to make up for that as much as possible by including an irresistible salad and a vegetable dish that does not involve potatoes. Don’t get me wrong; I love potatoes, but the latter always gets the glory for holiday meals, although there are other tasty choices.

Years ago (decades, actually) when flipping through a cookbook that belonged to my future mother-in-law, I came across this recipe for Corn and Butter Bean Casserole. It’s become a family favorite, even after several adaptations over the years. Even my picky brother in law eats this casserole and enjoys it. After the first time he sampled it, he complimented me on the recipe, admitting that he was surprised by how good it tasted. It’s a dish that’s creamy and flavorful without being too heavy or sleep inducing—an often common factor for holiday casseroles. Still, this recipe serves many as a small serving is really all one needs.

Corn and Butter Bean (or Lima Bean) Casserole
(Click here for a printable version of this recipe.)

¼ cup butter (dairy or non-dairy)

¼ cup gluten-free flour mix (see notes)

1 ½ cup milk (dairy or non-dairy)

½ cup finely chopped onion

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional–see notes; dairy or Daiya)

1 can white shoepeg corn, drained (11 ounces or more; or equivalent cooked from frozen corn, if available)

about 8 ounces or so of frozen Lima beans or butter beans, cooked

1 cup of crunchy topping (almond flour mixed with olive oil and browned, stuffing, crushed potato chips, or similar; see notes)

In a double boiler, make sauce of butter, flour, and milk. Stir fairly often until mixture, thickens into a sauce (about 15 minutes).

Add onion and cheese (if used).

Layer 2-quart casserole dish as follows (I use a Pyrex glass loaf pan), half of shoepeg corn, half of beans, and half of sauce. Repeat. Top with your crunchy topping of choice; see notes.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 375 degrees for another 5 minutes or so if additional browning of casserole top is needed.

Shirley’s Notes: I used 1 1/2 cups of baby lima beans when making the casserole shown in the photo. Shoepeg corn is sweet and mild, but if you can’t find it you can use any corn. I hate the fact that the canned corn now contains sugar, but since you drain the liquid, I figure for this one recipe, it can’t be too bad for you. The original recipe called for a 17-ounce can of corn; the can is now 11 ounces in my store! That’s definitely a sign of the times, but 11 ounces still is plenty. If you omit the cheese, you will probably need to reduce your milk amount slightly to ensure that your sauce thickens enough. Sweet rice flour is great for thickening (e.g., gravy) and could be probably be used in place of the gluten-free flour mix. I used my standard gluten-free flour mix of 3 parts Asian white rice flour and 2 parts cornstarch. (I make this flour mix in large batches and measure out as I need it.) The original recipe called for a topping of Pepperidge Farm stuffing mixed with 1 to 1 ½ sticks of butter. Obviously, that’s not gluten free, or even a particularly healthy topping. Usually I mix almond flour with a little olive oil or butter, broil about a minute (literally) until brown, and then sprinkle over the top of the casserole. You can skip the broiling step, but I like the browned look it adds. If you make stuffing a day ahead of your meal, you can reserve some for topping this casserole. Other topping possibilities are gluten-free bread crumbs or crushed gluten-free crackers. Crushed potato chips or tortilla chips can also be used. Sometimes choosing one of those latter toppings can make this recipe more appealing to children. You can omit the onion for those who hate them, but the small amount of onion really makes this recipe in my opinion.  And, even non-onion-loving Son enjoys this recipe. Last, as always, if you are not eating gluten free, you can use any flour you choose. I’d still recommend a lighter, finer flour.

Adapted from a recipe from one of my mother-in-law’s cookbooks; exact source is unknown

If you are still looking for holiday entrees, side dishes, and appetizers, please consider the following gfe recipes:

Corn Pudding

Crab Ball

Crab Casserole

Deviled Eggs

POM’d Pork

Special Turkey Breast

and Tortilla Chip Stuffing (made famous by Endless Simmer and Huffington Post!)

Finally, check out the previous 25 Days of Christmas posts:

Day 1 – Gluten-Free Holiday Giveaway Galore x 10—Giveaway of the new book, Mommy, What is Celiac Disease?, plus gluten-free treats and fun stuff. Open through December 15.

Day 2 — Guest Post from Debi Smith (Hunter’s Lyonesse)—My Journey Back to Healthy Living

Not just gf, but gfe!

Full Disclosure/Disclaimer: This post may contain one or more affiliate links. If you purchase through them, your cost will always be the same, but I will receive a small commission. Thanks for the support! Read the full disclaimer here.


31 Responses to “Corn and Butter Bean (or Lima Bean) Casserole”

  1. Diane @thewholegang on December 3rd, 2010 1:49 pm

    Wow is that comfort food or what! Thank you for sharing it with a Gluten-Free Holiday!

    • Shirley on December 4th, 2010 9:25 pm

      Hi Diane–Yes, comfort food! :-) Other than tasting it right after taking photos, I haven’t had the appetite to eat it any more. Darn cold! I’m looking forward to eating some though. Mr. GFE has sure been enjoying it. ;-)


  2. Linda on December 3rd, 2010 5:14 pm

    I love a good casserole, but you won’t catch me putting lima beans in anything! lol! I’m sure it’s good with butter beans.

    • Shirley on December 4th, 2010 9:27 pm

      Hi Linda–Ha ha on the lima beans … there are definitely some bad lima beans out there. I like good lima beans or butter beans in this casserole, but usually it’s delightful little butter beans. ;-)


  3. therese on December 4th, 2010 2:19 pm

    Oh, that looks wonderful! Warm, creamy, cheesy, with a crunchy topping! Reminds me of homemade macaroni and cheese or any delicious vegetable gratin. The corn must add a lovely sweetness. I’m going to try it with lima beans!

    • Shirley on December 4th, 2010 9:29 pm

      Hi therese–Thanks for taking the time to leave such a lovely comment! :-) Yes, it’s very much as you’ve described, but not as heavy. Really, it’s one of our favorites. Hope you like it! Of course, since you are not gluten free, you could make it with the original topping–a half bag of Pepperidge Farm stuffing moistened with a stick of melted butter … wowsers! (It sure was good that way, too, though. LOL)


  4. Kahri Lynn on December 4th, 2010 2:27 pm

    Looks scrumptious!! Definitely will be trying this!

    • Shirley on December 4th, 2010 9:29 pm

      Hi Kahri–I sooo appreciate you taking the time to leave such a sweet comment. :-) I hope you and your family enjoy it, dear!


  5. Maggie on December 4th, 2010 10:41 pm

    Sounds great Shirley! You never cease to amaze me! Thanks for listing all of the dairy-free options too!

    • Shirley on December 5th, 2010 12:24 pm

      Thanks so much, Maggie! :-) I’d put you on the gfe payroll if I had one. LOL You’re the best, dear! Hope your wonderful 12 Days of Cookies event is going well. There have certainly been some great ones featured so far. ;-)


  6. Sea on December 4th, 2010 11:29 pm

    Thank you for the lovely comments on my adoption post. :) I went a little crazy, but it was fun and delicious.

    This recipe looks wonderful! Can I pleeeeease come to dinner at your house? Please? Sounds so tasty! Ah well, if nothing else I can at least make your recipes at home!


    • Shirley on December 5th, 2010 12:27 pm

      Hey Sea–Sometimes it’s fun to go a little crazy! I’m sure your readers and Elana will appreciate your very thorough review. :-)

      LOL on your “begging”! Of course, you’re welcome any time! Until then, I’ll look forward to a Yum version of this casserole in the future. ;-)


  7. Alta on December 5th, 2010 10:31 am

    Shirley, I have never heard of this recipe, but it sounds yum! Creamy and with that crusty topping, I’m sure it’s a hit!

    • Shirley on December 5th, 2010 12:44 pm

      Hi Alta–I know I found it in an old cookbook of my MIL’s and did look online for it. I found it only on one recipe compilation site, but don’t know the original source. We do love it though, for just the factors you mentioned. :-)


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