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If you were asked if you would like some lima bean dip, you might be just like me and think, “uh, no thanks.”  Lima beans don’t get a lot of love. I think it has something to do with those frozen vegetable and lima bean medleys that used to be popular when a lot of us were kids.  Lima beans are a staple ingredient in Succotash, a Southern dish with corn and onions and other chopped summer vegetables.
If you’re not a big fan of lima beans today, I’m hoping this recipe can convert you (I know it certainly changed my perspective on them!).
I was given a menu to work off of that had lima bean dip as one of the snacks, and at first, I wasn’t expecting it to be a great dish.
Once I got started working on it though, it was surprisingly creamy and flavorful. Lima beans are also called “butter beans” because of their creamy and buttery texture. Combine that texture with some garlic, olive oil, lemon, and herbs, and you have a dip to be reckoned with.   Similar to garbanzo beans in hummus, they can take on whatever flavor of herbs and spices you want to throw in.

Lima Beans in Food Processor

This is great as a snack in the afternoon, or put it out at a party instead of regular hummus. I like to serve it with these gluten free crackers from Food Should Taste Good. Next time I make it, I want to play around with adding a little cooked bacon or sautéed shallots – feel free to try adding one of those options if you’re feeling adventurous and let me know how it turns out!


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Lima Bean Dip

Yummy Lima Bean Dip

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  • Author: Andrea Sprague
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups 1x


Elevate your snacking with this super creamy lima bean dip! Lima beans (also known as “butter beans”) give this an extra smooth texture that will rival your favorite hummus. Great for an afternoon snack, or a party dish.


  • 1 16-oz bag frozen baby lima beans
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Picked parsley leaves from 2 to 3 stems, about 1 Tbsp
  • Juice of ½ lemon, about 1 Tbsp
  • Zest of ½ lemon, about 1 tsp
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 34 Tbsp water (optional)


  1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add lima beans and garlic cloves, bring back to a boil and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  2. Place lima beans and garlic in a food processor, add the remaining ingredients except water and process until completely smooth. If the lima bean mix does not move smoothly add a tablespoon at a time of water until mixture is completely smooth. Taste and add more salt or lemon zest if desired.
  3. Place in serving bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, but 1 to 2 hours is best. Dip will get better as it sits, giving the flavors a chance to develop and starts to get colder, somewhere around room temp is a good place to serve it at.
  4. Serve with your favorite dippers like carrot sticks and crackers.


  • I reduced the amount of oil in this recipe and added some water instead to create a creamy consistency. I wanted to maintain the flavor of the lima beans instead of muddling it with the flavor of olive oil. You can add more oil if you like. Other additions that would be really good are cumin, cilantro instead of parsley, fresh dill or a little pesto instead of the water – feel free to get creative!

One Comment

  • Suzanne Kosmerl says:

    This was a nice surprise! We love hummus and other dips but I would never have thought to use lima beans! I put this out for my kids with some carrots and celery and they gobbled it up!

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