Main navigation

Persian String Bean Stew with Lamb Shanks (Khorest-e Loobia Sabz)

Persian String Bean Stew with Lamb Shanks (Khorest-e Loobia Sabz)

String Bean Stew is a staple dish in the Persian household, combining string beans and tomatoes with beef, lamb or chicken. Recipe by Laura Bashar of Family Spice



  1. In a large Dutch oven over medium high heat add:
    • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
  2. When oil is hot, stir in:
    • 1 large onion , diced
  3. Sauté until soft, then stir in:
    • 3/4 tsp turmeric, dried
  4. Place on a plate:
    • 4 large lamb shank
  5. Season lamb shanks with:
    • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
    • 1/8 tsp black pepper, ground
  6. Add seasoned lamb shanks to the onions in batches, two at a time.
  7. Brown lamb shanks evenly on all sides, remove and brown remaining two lamb shanks.
  8. Return lamb shanks to the pot and stir in:
    • 1 cup beef broth
    • 1 cup water
    • 4 limes, dried
  9. Reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook until meat starts to soften and retract from the bone, about 1-1 1/2 hours. Rotate the lamb shanks every 30 minutes or so as it cooks.
  10. Wash and pinch the stems from:
    • 2 lb green beans, fresh
  11. Cut string beans to desired length, 1-2 inches long.
  12. In a large pan, over medium-high heat add:
    • 1 TBS extra virgin olive oil
  13. Sauté string beans for about 5-7 minutes, until color starts to darken.
  14. Transfer string beans to the pot with the lamb shanks along with:
    • 28 oz diced tomatoes, canned
    • 3 TBS tomato paste
    • 3 TBS lemon juice
    • 1/4 tsp cinnamon, ground
  15. Stir to combine everything in the pot and continue to cook one more hour for flavors to meld together.

Persian String Bean Stew with Lamb Shanks (Khorest-e Loobia Sabz) Detail

Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 3 hours

Difficulty: Easy
Servings: 6
Serving Size: 2 cups

Serving Suggestions: Serve over a bed of basmati rice. Persian stews taste even better the next day. The longer it cooks at low temperature, the softer the meat will become. You can also freeze the stew and eat another day!

Cooking Tips: You can substitute the lamb shanks with 2-pounds of boneless beef stew meat. You can use frozen string beans instead of fresh. They will take less time to cook, so add towards the last 20-30 minutes of cooking time.