Pasta with Sausage, White Beans, and Greens

by Jan 12, 2017


I refused a complementary Bon Appetit subscription several years back when my beloved Gourmet went belly up.  As if!


Bon Appétit was my first food magazine.  I liked it a lot, back in the 80’s–especially Thanksgiving turkey-cover time!  But I was a homesick pre-med student who was not having a good time in organic chemistry.  During my yuppie period, magazines stacked up, waiting for free time.   Years passed.   Eventually, I married, and then we had two Bon Appétit subscriptions.  All was happy and good until something changed.  It started to look different, feel different. When I did pick it up, I wasn’t inspired to cook anything.  They lost me.  Down the road, the Gourmet thing added insult to injury.


Well, thank goodness for their new editor.  Actually, he’s six years into the job, but Adam Rapoport has made me a subscriber again.  There are times the new Bon Appétit is a bit “too cool for school”, but with recipes as good as this one, I’ll play along.


The beauty of this dish, is how some of the beans are used to create a velvety sauce and some remain plump and whole.  Adapted from  “Sausage, Greens, and Beans Pasta” published in Bon Appétit, October 2016.

Pasta with Sausage, White Beans, and Greens

Yield: 4-6 servings


  • 8 - 12 oz. pasta (Rustichella d'Abruzzo, if you can find it)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 links (8 oz. total) Italian sausage, removed from casings
  • 1/4 cup white wine or vermouth
  • 2 cups cooked white beans (home-cooked Rancho Gordo beans or one 15 oz. can, drained and rinsed)
  • 2 bunches winter greens (escarole, chard, or kale), stems removed, leaves torn into pieces
  • 3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese (preferably parmigiano-reggiano), divided
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • flaky salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Pasta: Start large pot of water boiling for pasta.
  2. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage pieces and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove sausage to a plate and set aside.
  3. Pasta: Add salt to the pasta water and drop the pasta. Cook until al dente and save 1 cup cooking water.
  4. With pan off heat, add the wine, return to heat and deglaze (bubble and scrape up the sausage drippings with a wooden spoon). Add the beans and continue to cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove about half of the beans and set aside with the sausage.
  5. Add the greens to the beans in the pan with about 1/4 cup pasta cooking water. Steam and cook until greens are tender (about 10 minutes for kale, less for chard and even less for escarole).
  6. Transfer cooked pasta into the beans and greens, add butter, 1/2 cup cheese, and enough reserved pasta cooking water to make a velvety sauce (about 1/2 - 3/4 cup). Return the reserved sausage and beans to the pan and heat through. Ready to serve! Pass additional parmesan, s&p.

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