Try Dr. Desmonds spicy baked beans & sweet potato farls recipe

Looking for lunch inspo? Dr. Alan Desmond’s new cookbook has you covered! This ‘Spicy Baked Beans & Sweet Potato Farls’ recipe is quick to whip up, super tasty and healthy and totally plant-based!

This recipe can be found on page 78 of Dr. Desmond’s cookbook ‘'The Plant-Based Diet Revolution: 28 Days to a Happier Gut and A Healthier You', published by Yellow Kite, which can be bought here or here.

Dr. Desmond, a consultant gastroenterologist says, ‘It’s time to take baked beans to a whole new level! Beans are the absolute hallmark of a healthy diet. Packed with fibre, folate, iron, B vitamins and plant-based protein, you already know that beans of all sorts feature regularly on my plate.’

His new cookbook is the essential step-by-step guide to discovering the true power of a plant-based diet for yourself.


Spicy Baked Beans

1 red onion (sliced)

Extra virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove finely chopped

1 x 440g can haricot beans, drained and rinsed

300g passata

1tbsp harissa

1tbsp balsamic vinegar

1tbsp tamari or soy sauce

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Small handful of freshly chopped parsley


For Potato Farls

300g sweet potatoes peeled and diced

50g wholemeal flour

Extra virgin olive oil


Step 1. Place the sweet potato for the farls in a saucepan of cold water and bring to boil. Simmer until completely tender, about 15 minutes or so, then drain.

Step 2. Meanwhile, put the onion in a large saucepan with ½ a tablespoon of olive oil or water and fry for 10 minutes, until soft and starting to caramelise. If they look like catching or burning, add an extra dash of water every so often to help them along.

Step 3. Add the garlic to the onions and cook for 2 more minutes, then tip in the beans, harissa and passata, vinegar and tamari. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook gently for 15 minutes until the sauce is rich and thick.

Step 4. While the beans cook, roughly mash the sweet potato and season lightly with salt and pepper. Fold in the flour until the mixture forms a rough dough; you might need to add more flour if it feels sticky.

Step 5. Put a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. A rub of olive oil will help to prevent sticking. Put the dough into the pan and press it into a flat circle about 5mm thick. Use a spatula to divide it into quarters. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side until nicely coloured and piping hot.

Step 6. Taste the beans and tweak the harissa to your liking. If you want a thicker texture, whizz a quarter of the beans in a blender until smooth, then mix them back into a pan.

Step 7. Serve each person 3 farls generously topped with beans and a scattering of parsley to finish.