pam anderson’s cassoulet-style italian sausages and white beans

There are two cooks in my house. My husband was the original cook, the one who got us through my four years of medical school and a good portion of my residency. If it weren’t for him, I would have survived on bowls of cereal, canned soup, and takeout Chinese. Instead, he kept us well fed with a steady repertoire of grilled chicken dishes, beans, rice, and pasta. He’s not a recipe-reading type, and he prefers making meals that are intuitive and require less than 30 minutes.

When I started cooking back in 2003, it took me a while to get comfortable in the kitchen. I’m still quite the novice home cook, but I’m no longer afraid to work with raw meat or tackle a recipe with multiple steps. I’m not afraid of cooking anymore.

Wow. That feels good to say.

While my husband is more of the open-a-box-of-pasta-and-a-jar-of-sauce type of cook, I try to make our meals from scratch, as much as I can. I’m not at Jennie’s level, but I’m working on it [and she makes it seem SO easy]. These days, I look for a challenge in the kitchen, a new recipe that I can make my own, food I can play around with. I rarely make the same recipe twice.

Except this one. I’ve now made this twice in one week.

This Cassoulet-style Italian Sausages and White Beans comes from Pam Anderson’s new cookbook, Perfect One-Dish Dinners: All You Need for Easy Get-Togethers. After hearing all of the wonderful things said about her book, and after getting to know Pam and her daughters, Maggy and Sharon, through their blog, Three Many Cooks, I bought it as a gift for myself. The book is filled with recipes that appeal both to cooks like me, and also to cooks like my husband.

For working parents like my husband and me, this is a great resource. It’s filled with many ideas for simple menus filled with great ingredients and robust flavor. Like this recipe.

I served this dinner to my parents this Sunday night. Paired with a simple green salad and slices of crusty baguette for dipping, it was a wonderful Sunday dinner. It took no more than an hour to make, and only ten minutes or so of prep time. A glass of Zinfandel would have paired lovely with it, had I remembered.

One more thing I love about this recipe? It makes people think I’m a much better cook than I really am.

Yield: 8 servings.

Cassoulet-Style Italian Sausages and White Beans

Special thanks to Pam Anderson for sharing this amazing recipe from her book, Perfect One-Dish Dinners: All You Need for Easy Get-Togethers. I made the recipe almost exactly as it is written, with the exception of a couple of modifications in line with my family's preferences. I decreased the amount of tomatoes to 2 pints, and I added a 4th can of white beans. Serve this with a nice green salad and some crusty bread


2 1/2 pounds sweet Italian sausage links
3 pints cherry tomatoes
1 medium-large onion, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks [I used one large Vidalia onion.]
4 large garlic cloves, sliced
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons dried thyme
3 bay leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cans (about 16 ounces each) cannellini beans, undrained


Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 425°F.

Mix sausages, tomatoes, onion, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, thyme, bay leaves, and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper in a large heavy roasting pan or dutch oven. Set pan in oven and roast until sausages are brown and tomatoes have reduced to a thick sauce, about 45 minutes. Remove from oven, stir in beans, and continue to roast until casserole has heated through, about 10 minutes longer. Remove bay leaves and serve.

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33 Responses to “pam anderson’s cassoulet-style italian sausages and white beans”

  1. 1
    JenniferA — January 10, 2011 @ 4:17 pm

    I love this recipe too and this book. I was never much of a sausage person but I recently joined a grass-fed meat CSA and now I usually receive at least a little sausage each month and this recipe is now my go-to.

    • 1.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 10, 2011 @ 4:42 pm

      It’s great, isn’t it? I’m going to try it with different sausages next.

  2. 2
    JoAnn — January 10, 2011 @ 4:37 pm

    Great blog…. I’m your newest follower.

    • 2.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 10, 2011 @ 4:42 pm

      Thanks! How did you find me? I’m always curious about where people stumble in from. 🙂

  3. 3
    Kath — January 10, 2011 @ 5:02 pm

    This recipe is right up my alley! Perfect for casual entertaining (which is the only way I entertain!). One of my local supermarkets has fabulous house-made spicy lamb sausages. I’m thinking they would be perfect in this cassoulet!

    • 3.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 10, 2011 @ 6:30 pm

      Lamb sausages! What a great idea!

  4. 4
    kateiscooking — January 10, 2011 @ 5:06 pm

    This sounds like a total winner. I love Kath’s idea of the lamb sausage too.

  5. 5
    Macaroni Mama — January 10, 2011 @ 6:39 pm

    Oh yes, your father and I went back for seconds; however, I suggest you put more sausage in it. And that dipping soup…DELICIOUS!

  6. 6
    Jennifer (Savor) — January 10, 2011 @ 9:41 pm

    Love her book but have yet to make this – so comforting looking

  7. 7

    What a comforting dish and perfect for the chilly temps we are having in the SF Bay Area right now. Love the idea of beans and sausage together – both favorites! Happy New Year!!

    • 7.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 11, 2011 @ 1:52 pm

      Happy new year to you, too, Lisa!

  8. 8
    Jason Phelps — January 11, 2011 @ 9:43 am

    When I read Pam Anderson, I thought to myself. “Pam Anderson cooks? That ought to be interesting.” Then I found out it was a different Pam Anderson that can really cook. Way better!

    This dish screams winter for me. When we did our Ribera del Duero post in 2010 we made a Spanish version and loved it!


    • 8.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 11, 2011 @ 1:51 pm

      Ha ha! Yes, this is definitely a different Pam Anderson. 🙂

  9. 9
    Carrie — January 11, 2011 @ 9:58 am

    This looks fabulous and right up my alley! So great for winter time, and I love one pot dishes like this.

  10. 10
    Winnie — January 11, 2011 @ 12:33 pm

    I was looking at the video for the book on amazon last night and saw Pam making this recipe. Looks so wonderful and so easy…will be trying it soon for sure.

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  12. 11
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — January 11, 2011 @ 4:47 pm

    I have been eying up this recipe in Pam’s book for a while… After seeing yours, I just have to make it!!

  13. 12
    Paula - bell'alimento — January 11, 2011 @ 4:53 pm

    This is one my favorite recipes from their cookbook. It’s incredibly flavorful and SO EASY : )

  14. 13
    Velva — January 11, 2011 @ 7:52 pm

    Cheers to you husband and you for sharing a passion for the kitchen. No matter that your styles may be different.
    Your cassoulet is beautiful. It’s a delicious, hearty meal for cold weather.


  15. 14
    Nancy@acommunaltable — January 11, 2011 @ 9:55 pm

    I love dishes like this – easy to put together, bursting with flavor and minimal dishes involved!!!

    Best part is you could really mix this one up!! Lovely photos MJ!!!

    • 14.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 13, 2011 @ 8:51 am

      Thanks so much, Nancy!

  16. 15
    Cooks_Books — January 11, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    I so need to try this — and I even have the cookbook! 🙂 Thanks for the suggestion and inspiration, as always.

  17. 16
    saltyseattle — January 13, 2011 @ 1:36 pm

    you’re so damn humble when describing your clearly *beyond* culinary abilities. oh, and i could put those sausages in my mouth every day of the week!

  18. 17
    Jen — January 14, 2011 @ 7:50 am

    I am going to try this one for this weekend- may have some friends coming over and this looks perfect!

  19. 18
    Jen — January 15, 2011 @ 10:38 pm

    Made this tonight for friends. Got tons of compliments and it was so easy. Thanks for sharing

    • 18.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 17, 2011 @ 7:19 pm

      Jen – Thanks for that feedback!

  20. 19
    Kate @ Savour Fare — January 19, 2011 @ 2:34 pm

    This is so going into the meal plan for next week. My kid loves both sausage and beans, so it’s perfect.

    • 19.1
      mj (merry gourmet)
      mj (merry gourmet) — January 20, 2011 @ 8:24 am

      My kids loved it, Kate. I hope yours do too!

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  22. 20
    Sonia Quinones — November 7, 2011 @ 10:13 pm

    Oh yea! I just ran across your site/recipe when I came home tonight insanely hungry and wanting to make something with italian sausages, cherry tomatoes & white beans. Score! Am so excited. It’s already cooking and the apt. smells great. The hardest part is waiting for it to be done.

    Thank you!

  23. 21
    Ana Maria — February 20, 2014 @ 3:47 pm

    This seems to be a French version if the Spanish “Fabada” and “Caldo Gallego” from the Spanish northern regions of Asturias and Galicia respectively. I make it with dried beans that soak overnight and add several different sausages including chorizo. In my family we like to soak up the sauce with bread but many like to serve white rice on the side for that delicious sauce.

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