I love it here in Tennessee, but I miss my family and friends in Louisiana. I miss certain cyclical times of the year when things happen and they just don’t up here.  I miss my mama’s New Orleans traditions. She made beans A LOT! Red beans and rice, butter beans, split pea soup, black-eyed peas, navy beans. Oh man, my mouth is watering. I still have to make those things even if not everybody up here eats creamy beans, they like “soup beans”. I’m going to introduce them.

Let me tell you ’bout the butter beans.

The beans are large limas also known as butter beans. I always thought it was because I put a stick of butter in them to cook, but it is actually a real nickname for that type of bean. I use one kind of bean and that is Camelia beans. I am a bean snob. Camelia beans are far superior to other beans. Every time I use a different bean something goes wrong.
This time was no different.

I couldn’t find Camelia beans here on the time crunch I was on. I was craving them you see. Next time I will be more prepared and get my Camelia butter beans. I have just learned I can get these at our local Publix and am super stoked. I also used the electric pressure cooker (instant pot) for the very first time on my last batch of butter beans. They were done in 20 minutes. Can you believe that? My inexperience with the instant pot may have contributed to why a handful of my beans were hard. I blame it on not being Camelia though.

Next time I will probably stick to the way I know and love. In a pot on a stove with Camelia butter beans. Either way it is a very inexpensive meal and feeds a large number of people. Eight people ate on those butter beans the first go round and I had nearly that same amount leftover. It came out to roughly $1.08 per person. Probably left because I was being liberal with the ham serving size. Hope you like these and choose them as a frugal food staple.

Butter Beans
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  • 16 oz large lima beans - use Camelia
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 medium onion
  • 6 oz boneless ham
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 bay leaf to be removed before eating
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Soak beans overnight with enough water to cover them. Drain the water. Use one tbs of butter to saute onion and ham until onion is translucent. Add beans to pot and enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cook for an hour at a boil. Add remaining butter and ingredients and simmer for 1.5 hours or until beans are soft. Keep water level above beans. Remove bay leaf before serving and serve over rice.

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