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Gigantes Plaki sto Fourno (Baked Giant Beans)

I feel embarrassed that I have never posted this dish before.  Although this is a staple dish in all Greek households and I cook it very often, I have somehow forgotten to post about it.

Fassolia (phaseolus lunatus) gigantes, meaning “giant” are similar to elephant beans, lima beans or butter beans, but if you can find Greek beans from Kozani they are the best Greek variety.

This vegetarian dish is baked in a delicious tomato sauce until the beans absorb all the juices and flavour.  It can be cooked in advanced and it only improves with time.  Leftovers can be served as an appetizer.

The traditional way of cooking them in Greece are in deep, round, fired clay or earthenware casserole pots, called gastra.   However, they can also be cooked  in any casserole dish, a sauting pan with a lid suitable for the oven, a Dutch oven, a crock-pot or even in a baking tin covered with aluminium foil.

If you ever visit Greece, this is a dish you should not miss as you can easily find it in most restaurants.

When I found out about the event Kopiaste to AWED: Greek, hosted by Experiments, Emotions, Experiences with food, and created by DK of Chef in You,  I took a look at the recipes I have not posted yet and I thought this is the most characteristic Greek dish I could participate at this event.

Fassolia Gigantes Plaki sto Fourno (Giant Baked Beans)

Preparation time: 30 minutes

Cooking time:1 hour 30 mnts boiling / 1 hour 30 mnts in the oven

Serves: 4 – 5


  • 300 grams Kozani gigantes beans
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 medium red onions, finely chopped
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil
  • 6 ripe tomatoes, peeled and blended or 1 can of whole tomatoes (500 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup white dry wine (optional)
  • 1 cup of parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 -2 stalks celery ribs, finely chopped
  • 3 big carrots, finely chopped
  • 1 big potato (cubed) optional
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon thyme honey (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon of chilli pepper (optional)
  • 2 cups water


  1. Soak beans in plenty of water, overnight.
  2. Drain and add fresh water and bring to a boil and remove any froth with a slotted ladle.  Drain them again and add fresh water and bay leaves and bring to a boil, add salt,  lower heat and simmer until almost cooked (about 1 hour and 30 minutes) and then drain and discard the bay leaves.
  3. Preheat oven to 200o C / 400o F.
  4. Heat olive oil in a sautéing pan and sauté onions and garlic until translucent.
  5. Add chopped celery, carrots, potato, fresh oregano and beans and mix.
  6. Add wine, honey, tomato, salt and pepper and water and mix.  Simmer for 5 minutes.
  7. Cover the sautéing pan and place in the oven or transfer into a casserole dish with a lid and bake  for about 1.30 – 2 hours, until the beans are soft and the sauce is thick, mixing once, after an hour has passed.  
  8. Remove from the oven and mix in the parsley.

Fassolia gigantes plaki



You can find my Greek recipes in my cookbooks «More Than A Greek Salad», and«Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!» both available on all Amazon stores. Read more here.


Other related Recipes:

Gigantes me spanaki kai Makaronaki (Black giant beans with spinach and pasta)



Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,

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25 Responses

  1. This meal is so good looking! I would love to sit in front of that plate and gobble your disg greedily!

  2. I will have to try your recipe. I've never used wine or honey in my gigantes. I'm sure it's wonderful!

  3. Aren’t gigantes just the best? I love the way you have served them with olives and pickled peppers! This is my favourite kind of Greek eating. Simple and uncomplicated. Thank you for sharing Ivy!

  4. I love this kind of dishes! This is truly comfort food!!!!!I love, love beans.

  5. Better late than never..the gigantes have made hungry desoite having just ate breakfast.

  6. wow.. looks really fantastic.. thxs for sharing..

  7. Giganrtes plaki is one of my favorite dishes. I really love the flavors especially when I add big slices of horiatiko loukaniko in.

  8. Hearty Thanks for the hearty and authentic dish..It looks perfect.

  9. The bean dish looks very comforting!

  10. I'm looking forward to trying this delicious dish! My daughter will definitely like this!

  11. Ooooh, I want to try this! Beans and tomatoes, two of my favorites! Hope you’re having a lovely day, Ivy!

  12. i love beans and more if they are giant !!

  13. This has to be one of my favourite Greek dishes and maybe one of the first I learnt from my Mother in Law. I can never say no to a good plate of gigantes!

  14. Je n'ai encore jamais cuisiné de haricots géants.
    Le plat de haricots blancs est pour moi le plat de l'hiver par excellence et celui de la convivialité.
    A bientôt et bon weekend.

  15. Ivy, thanks for making this meal to show us. I know that I would never get tired of eat this.

  16. I agree with Peter, simple uncomplicated example of excellent Greek food!

  17. Ivy
    Love that dish even though i have never tasted it; love the addition of honey and oregano to it! Yum!

  18. This looks so hearty and flavorful! A super comfort meal!

  19. I really need to look for this kind of beans: they look so appetizing. Plus, I have never baked beans, and I think it's time I tried. Such an inviting presentation!

  20. i love your way to make beans,ivy!delicious and full of flavours!

  21. Another perfect dish. I haven't had Gigantes for a while, but now I have a craving.

  22. What a tasty meal! I just recently tried a baked gigantes dish and really enjoyed it.

  23. Mmmmm! This dish is delicious., I had once at a Greek Restaurant and loved it. Thanks for the recipe. 🙂

  24. Elaine Goldman

    Where can I find these beans to plant in Palo Alto, CA.?
    They really are delicious and I would love to grow them.

    • Ivy

      Unfortunately, I cannot help you.