Lima Bean Puree

prep time: 10
cook time: 15


  • 5 (1 1/4 cups) packages frozen baby lima beans
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half plus additional for thinning
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


Simmer lima beans in water with 1teaspoon salt in a 1 1/4 gallons pot, covered, until just tender, about 15 minutes.

Puré,e beans with cooking liquid in batches in a food processor until smooth, then force puré,e through a medium-mesh sieve or a food mill fitted with fine disk into a large bowl.

Heat half-and-half and butter in a small saucepan over moderate heat until butter is melted, then stir into bean puré,e along with cayenne, black pepper, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt. If puré,e is too thick, thin to desired consistency with additional half-and-half.

Cooks' note:

Puré,e can be made 3 days ahead and chilled, covered. Reheat, thinning with half-and-half as needed, before serving.