Don’t Be Afraid of the Little Green Bean!

— Written By and last updated by

If you are in the group of folks who look at the word edamame and say “eda-what”, then you may be in the majority who are just discovering this little green bean. Never fear edamame is just a fancy name for boiled green soybeans — and the real secret is that they are much yummier than they sound.

No matter where you stand on the benefits of soy; any way you slice it, the edamame is a star legume! Just ½ cup of them a day really punches up the fiber, protein and vitamin/mineral content of your diet.

One half-cup serving of shelled edamame (or 1⅛ cup edamame in the pods) boasts the following nutritional value:  Calories 120, Fiber 9 g., Fat 2.5 g., Protein 11 g., Carbohydrates 13 g., Sodium 15 mg.

That little serving of edamame provides 9 grams of fiber, about the same amount you’ll find in 4 slices of whole-wheat bread or 4 cups of steamed zucchini. It has almost as much protein as it does carbohydrate. It contains around 10% of the Daily Value for two key antioxidants; vitamins C and A. And for a plant food, it’s quite high in iron; it has about as much as a 4-ounce roasted chicken breast.

Pasta Edamame

Ingredients

  • ½ pound bow tie pasta
  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 cup leftover Sautéed Edamame
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan, optional

Directions

  1. Cook pasta according to box instructions.
  2. While pasta is cooking sauté bacon in a medium skillet over medium-low heat until bacon is brown and crispy. Pour off half the excess bacon fat from the pan. Add the leftover soybeans and sauté for 2 minutes. Add cooked pasta, season with salt and pepper and stir so that the pasta is thoroughly coated with the bacon fat.
  3. Transfer to serving bowl and top with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Crispy Edamame

Ingredients

  • 1 (12 ounce) package frozen shelled edamame (green soybeans)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400° F (200°C).
  2. Place the edamame into a colander and rinse under cold water to thaw. Drain. Spread the edamame beans into the bottom of a 9 × 13 inch baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle cheese over the top and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until the cheese is crispy and golden, about 15 minutes.

Honey Soy Grilled Salmon with Edamame

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup packed cilantro leaves
  • 2 scallions
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 center cut skin-on wild salmon fillets, about 6 ounces each
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • ¼ teaspoon black sesame seeds
  • 1⅓ cups cooked edamame
  • Lime wedges, optional garnish

Directions

  1. Preheat the grill over medium-high direct heat. Oil the grill grates. Finely chop the cilantro and scallion and mix in the oil and ginger. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Cut two 3-inch long slits through the skin lengthwise on the bottom of the salmon fillets, going about halfway into the salmon. Evenly stuff the slits with the herb mixture. Season the fish with salt and pepper.
  3. Stir together the lime juice, soy and honey until smooth. Place the salmon, skin side up, on the grill and cook until well marked, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the salmon and continue to cook, brushing the tops with the sauce, until the fish is cooked through, about another 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle the tops with the sesame seeds. Serve with edamame and lime wedges.
  4. Broiler directions: Position an oven rack so that a baking sheet set on the rack is about 4-inches below the heat source. Preheat the broiler. Prepare the salmon as above and place the fillets, skin down, on a foil lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Broil, basting 3 to 4 times with the sauce, until just cooked through, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Each serving contains Calories 345; Fat 15g  Protein 39g; Carb 10g; Fiber 3g; Cholesterol 93.5mg; Sodium 306mg.

Chicken and Edamame Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 8-ounce boneless skinless chicken breast, trimmed
  • ¼ cup red-wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 8 ounces frozen shelled edamame (about 1½ cups), thawed
  • 8 cups chopped romaine (about 2 romaine hearts)
  • 1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
  • ½ European cucumber, sliced
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • ¼ cup slivered fresh basil
  • ¼ cup sliced Kalamata olives
  • ¼ cup slivered red onion

Directions

  1. Place chicken in a medium saucepan and add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the chicken registers 165° F, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board and let cool for 5 minutes; shred or chop into bite-size pieces.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk vinegar, oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add edamame, romaine, tomatoes, cucumber, feta, basil, olives, onion and the chicken; toss to coat.

Make Ahead Tip: Refrigerate cooked chicken (Step 1) for up to 3 days.

Serves 4. Each serving contains Calories 336, Fat 22 g., Fiber 6 g., Carbohydrates 14 g., Protein 22 g., Cholesterol 48 mg., Sodium 513 mg.

General Tso’s Cauliflower

Ingredients

  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 cups small cauliflower florets
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup frozen shelled edamame, thawed
  • Crushed red pepper (optional)

Directions

  1. Combine water, hoisin, soy sauce (or tamari), rice wine (or sherry), rice vinegar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Add scallions and garlic; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add edamame; cook, stirring often, until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk the reserved sauce and add it to the pan; cook, stirring, until thick and coating the cauliflower, about 1 minute.
  3. Serve sprinkled with crushed red pepper, if desired.

Serves 4. Each serving contains Calories 206, Fat 13 g., Fiber 5 g., Carbohydrates 17 g., Protein 7 g., Cholesterol 0 mg., Sodium 354 mg.