Barbounia yiahni

Barbounia yiahni with Primary Beans Cranberry beans


Creator notes

Also called handres or hantres, barbounia is Greek for cranberry beans. If you like gigantes plaki (baked giant beans), you’ll love barbounia yiahni. In Greece, it’s common to find fresh cranberry beans in the market, which you shell yourself. You can also find them both frozen and dried. I like this as a vegan main course, which is how you’d find it served in a Greek home, alongside your favorite salad and lots of good bread for mopping up the sauce.

– Diana Moutsopoulos (@greek_recipes)

Print recipe here



  • 1 lb Primary Beans Cranberry beans
  • 1 lb (450g) beefsteak tomatoes
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, grated
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Good bread, good feta, and a green salad, for serving



Prepare dried beans according to the Primary Beans cooking guide. If using a pressure cooker, set time to 36 minutes instead of the recommended 42 minutes. If cooking on the stovetop, cook beans until just al dente, about 15-20 minutes less than you would normally cook them. Drain beans and keep ½ cup of broth. Reserve the remaining broth for another use.

Prepare tomatoes by halving each, then grating the cut side over a bowl using the largest holes of a box grater. Once you have grated all the flesh, discard the skin. Repeat with all remaining tomato halves.

In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat and add onion and garlic. Cook gently until softened but not browned.

Add drained beans to the onion and oil mixture and stir gently to coat the beans in the oil. Add grated tomato, tomato paste, parsley, and reserved broth. Stir well and add salt and pepper to taste.

Bring to a simmer and cook, partially covered, until beans are fully tender and the sauce has reduced and thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. The end result should not be soup-like, but rather a luscious, thick sauce. You can cook uncovered to reduce further, if needed.

Serve a plateful of beans as a main dish with bread, feta, and a green salad to share.

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