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Few people are aware of the culinary significance of navy beans. This leguminous treat appears in numerous dishes, particularly those from the American continent. Navy beans are extremely adaptable, simple to get, and quick to prepare.

Why the Name, ‘Navy Beans’?

If you’ve ever wondered why this bean was given the moniker Navy Beans, you’re not alone. And, if you made the predicted estimate that you felt was ridiculous, you were correct! The precise term for it is haricot beans, but since it became a common menu item for US Navy troops, it finally got the moniker we know today.

Navy Beans Health Benefits and Uses

Navy beans are very healthy, which explains why they became a regular meal for personnel in the Military Services. This amazing legume is high in potassium, manganese, copper, zinc, folate, and iron, in addition to being a good source of plant protein. It’s also high in fiber, which aids digestion and helps with constipation. It also has a gentle taste and silky texture, with equal amounts of creaminess and starchiness with a tinge of nutty appeal. And the white hue enhances its attractiveness and allows it to stand out on its own or in a variety of cuisines.

Navy beans are available in both dry and tinned form. Since navy beans are a common ingredient in many American cuisines, they may be found in a variety of meals and sweets, including:

  • Beans
  • Pudding with beans
  • Beans that have been baked
  • Garnish with navy beans
  • Soup with Navy Beans
  • Casseroles
  • Hicks of ham
  • Salads
  • Pate de Navy Beans

Navy Beans Nutrition Facts

Navy Beans Substitutes

If you run out of Navy beans, you may find suitable substitutions for them in a variety of dishes. This is due to the fact that most of them are identical in flavor, texture, and color, and hence blend in so well that you may not detect the difference. Here are a few of these excellent substitutes:

Great Northern Beans

Despite their size, they are the finest and closest alternatives for navy beans in any recipe. Additionally, great northern beans are abundant in protein, vitamins, and minerals, so you’ll receive almost the same nutritious value. The flavor may alter somewhat, but unless you’re preparing for the most discriminating palates, the difference is scarcely discernible. In dishes like beans and ham and even baked beans, great northern beans may be substituted in equal quantities for navy beans.

Cannellini Beans

Cannellini beans are a great replacement for Navy beans since they have a similar flavor and color. They are also known as White Kidney Beans and are well-known for their great nutritional value, since they are high in proteins, vitamins, and minerals such as zinc and potassium. Substitute Navy beans in salads, stews, and soups in the same quantities for almost identical results.

Flageolet Beans

Flageolets, which are identical to navy beans, are already popular in soups and casseroles. They also have a similar flavor, size, and color as navy beans and need around the same cooking time. Their nutritional properties are also extremely comparable; they are rich in potassium and may be substituted for haricot beans in the same proportions. But, keep in mind that the flavor may change significantly.

Tepary Beans

If you don’t mind the added sweetness with a touch of nuttiness, tepary beans are a simple substitution for Navy beans. Moreover, tepary beans are available in flour form, a concept that originated in the United States, making them an excellent substitute for Navy beans in flour-based dishes. The tiny flavor difference is the main difficulty with this alternative, but the nutritional content is just as great as navy beans, and theyre high in calcium, so you don’t miss out. Tepary beans work well in pates and purees that call for navy beans.


In most recipes, lentils may be used in place of Navy beans if no other white beans are available. Not only do lentils have the same amount of minerals as navy beans, but they also come in white varieties, so the difference is scarcely noticeable. They also work well in stews and salads with navy beans and are almost as flavorful. Lentils are also heavy in salt but high in magnesium and vitamin B6.

Extra Tips to Cooking Navy Bean Substitutes

When choosing a replacement for navy beans, keep cooking time in mind. Several replacements, such as Great Northern Beans, Cannellini Beans, Tepary Beans, and Flageolets, cool at about the same rate as navy beans. Lentils, on the other hand, cook quicker, taking an average of 45 minutes to prepare. If you’re using lentils, you’ll need to adjust the cooking time in the recipe to account for this. This feature also makes it ideal for foods that need to be brought to a boil faster than the recipe calls for.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Where do navy beans come from?

Navy beans originated in Peru, despite their popularity in American cuisine. It is a kind of common bean that is also known as white pea, or alubias chica in Spanish, in addition to haricot bean.

Are navy beans and pinto beans the same?

Despite they are both members of the bean family and are oval in form, they are not the same. Navy beans are smaller and white, while pinto beans are medium-sized and mottled tan and brown. In addition, navy beans have a milder flavor than pinto beans.

Can I substitute red beans for navy beans?

Yes, if you can ignore the color. Red beans, including kidney and adzuki beans, are the closest flavor replacement for navy beans.


Cooking with navy beans may seem to be a difficult task, but it is not. You may simply change any of these great substitutions in a recipe if necessary. These substitutes will provide you with the same nutritious benefit, so keep them in mind if you run out of navy beans.


What is similar to navy beans?

The 5 Greatest Navy Bean Substitutes
Great Northern Beans No. 1.
Cannellini beans, number two.
Kidney beans are number three on the list.
4 – Pinto Beans.
Chickpeas are number five.
Mar 5, 2023

What beans are the same as navy beans?

Some recipes only say “white beans.” This is a catch-all phrase for great northern beans, navy beans, cannellini beans, and other beans of a similar kind. Although they are all technically white beans, they are not the same.

Are navy beans and great northern beans the same?

What exactly are Great Northern Beans? Medium-sized beans that are larger than Navy beans but smaller than Cannellini beans. Great Northern beans have a moderate, nutty taste and solid body. They keep their form better than Navy beans in soups and stews.

Can I replace navy beans with pinto beans?

The two beans have a similar flavor. Both have a creamy, mild taste, with the navy bean being somewhat milder than the pinto. What exactly is this? Navy beans may be used in place of pinto beans if they aren’t the main taste of the recipe.

What is equivalent to white navy beans?

in place of navy beans

Great Northern Beans (bigger) OR White Kidney Beans (Canellini beans) OR Flageolet Beans may be used.

Are cannellini beans and navy beans the same?

Cannellini are white kidney beans that are medium in size. They are usually used in Tuscan minestrone and may be substituted with navy or Great Northern beans.

Can I substitute navy beans for Great Northern?

Navy beans are a good replacement for Great Northern beans since they have comparable textures and milder tastes. What exactly is this? Because of their mild taste, they are often used in baked bean dishes.

Can Northern beans be used for navy beans?

Navy beans, sometimes known as pea beans (because to their small round form), are one of many types of white beans. Great Northern, cannellini, fagioli, and lima are some other common white beans. Despite the fact that they grow differently and vary in size and form, all white beans may be used interchangeably in most recipes.

Are navy beans also called small white beans?

Navy beans, or little white beans, are oval-shaped, ivory-colored beans with a smooth external surface. A baked bean dish is one of the most typical methods to cook little white beans. There are, however, plenty additional ways to integrate this nutritious tiny bean into your diet.

Can I substitute cannellini beans for navy beans?

Despite their unusual form and size, they taste and texture similarly to cannellini beans. Navy beans may be cooked in the same manner as cannellini beans are. Cannellini beans may be replaced with navy beans.

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