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    Top 5 Substitutes for Lima Beans

    If you are searching for lima bean substitutes, here are some options that might be helpful for you.

    Many recipes that include beans are likely to be everyone’s favourite. Lima beans make the dish great in both taste and texture. Other beans like fava beans, soybeans, or edamame beans are also considered good replacements in case lima beans are hard to find.  

    This blog will tell you about the top 5 lima bean substitutes with their benefits and proper use. 

    But first, let us enlighten you about lima beans because many people do not know what they are or where they are grown.

    Things to Know about Lima Beans

    Lima beans are a kind of legume that is used in different types of dishes. They come in wide shapes and give a soft texture and mild buttery flavour, mostly used in soups, casseroles, stews, and vegetarian dishes. 

    It contains protein, iron, and fiber, which benefits health, especially for those with diabetes. Also, it helps control blood sugar levels.

    Also, many people know lima beans as butter beans or sieva beans. These are the other names for lima beans. It was named after the capital of Peru, i.e., Lima. 

    5 Best Substitutes for Lima Beans 

    If lima beans are unavailable at the stores near your place, you can easily find some good replacements. Flavours may vary, but still, they are good to go with and can be used in your recipes as lima beans.

    Here are the following lima beans substitutes:

    1. Fava Beans 

    Fava Beans

    Fava beans—also known as horse beans, are a green-colored legume with a nutty flavour that is suitable for all kinds of dishes whether you use it canned or fresh. These are great substitutes for lima beans.

    But you should know that fava beans are slightly bitter, so the taste may vary. So you can manage the recipe according to your preference. 

    You can use fava beans in many dishes like pasta, soup, stew, and salad, or eat them with vegetables like tomato or smashed potato after boiling them well in warm water. 

    You may also like: best air fryer fingerling potatoes recipe

    Health Benefits

    Daily intake of fava beans may help in the following:

    • Improving high blood pressure
    • Lowering cholesterol 
    • Aiding weight loss
    • Boosting immune system

    Moreover, they are also beneficial for bone health, and you can easily add them to your diet. 

    2. Soy Beans

    soy beans

    Soybeans are a good replacement for lima beans as they both are mild and nutty in flavour. The taste may turn out the same, but in texture, soybeans are likely to be unpleasant to some people as compared to lima beans. 

    If you are concerned about protein intake in your diet, soybeans are the best lima bean substitute because soybeans contain a lot of protein.

    You can add soybean to many recipes, such as rice, pasta, salad, soup, chowder, baked dishes, etc. 

    Health Benefits

    Adding soybeans to your diet can also help in reducing the risk of:

    • Cancer
    • Stroke
    • Heart diseases

    3. Edamame Beans

    edamame beans

    Edamame beans are the garden-fresh form of soybeans. They can easily be used as a replacement for lima beans. 

    You can use them in your dishes like salads, salsas, or stir-fries. Note that the flavour is a bit sweeter than lima so the taste might differ. But still, they are delicious to add to your recipes.

    Important: Do not cook edamame beans too much because they are already soft and gooey. Try to check them by fork while cooking so they do not turn out sloppy.

    Health Benefits

    Edamame beans are also beneficial for health. Some of the benefits are:

    • Great in minerals and vitamins.
    • It may lower cholesterol levels.
    • High in protein
    • Advanced healthy blood sugar control
    • Good for bone health 
    • Reduces the risk of breast cancer

    4. Couscous 

    Couscous beans

    Couscous can be a good substitute for lima beans in many dishes. It comes in a starch form, made of wheat, and it’s mostly used in pasta. 

    You can also use it in recipes like salads or stews, but it might not be suitable for soups as its soft and firm texture will be lost.

    Also, the cooking time couscous takes is less than lima beans. It can get ready in just a few minutes, so always read the instructions on the package.

    Health Benefits:

    Couscous is said to be a good root of fiber which can help in:

    • Lowering the risk of cancer
    • Controlling blood sugar level
    • Preventing heart diseases
    • Reducing cholesterol 

    5. Quinoa


    Quinoa is a kind of seed grown from its plant called quinoa. It is not the category of beans but still can be used as an alternative for lima beans in all recipes. It is highly recommended for those who are allergic to legumes.

    Quinoa is best used for salads such as Southern Macaroni salad, stews, patties, pancakes, stuffed peppers, roasted vegetables, etc. 

    But it might not deliver the same taste in soup as lima beans because quinoa soaks up liquid. Its texture and flavour may vary, but the difference in taste will do its job in your recipes. 

    Because of its grainy texture, people avoid using it in proper meals and more in snacks.

    Health Benefits

    Quinoa contains many nutrients, like fiber, protein, iron, magnesium, etc., that keep your stomach full. When in fact, it has some health benefits, such as:

    • It is gluten-free (the best option for those who avoid gluten in food).
    • Wider in vitamins, minerals, and proteins.
    • It may help in managing your body weight.
    • It also helps in controlling blood sugar levels.
    • Easy to add to your diet.


    There are several options available to substitute lima beans in your recipes. Fava beans, soybeans, and edamame beans will do a great job. Try to keep in mind that the taste expectations may disappoint you because of the difference in flavour. But still, they will complement your food anyway.

    Those who are looking for substitutes for lima beans that are not a part of legume can go with couscous or quinoa easily. All the replacements mentioned above will be useful in recipes that call for lima beans. Must try!

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