Any white beans can be substituted for Great Northern beans. These include Cannellini beans and navy beans. All of these beans have a mild and slightly nutty flavor.
Great Northern beans resemble lima beans but are white. The beans can be used in soups and salads. Great Northern beans can also be pureed or used to make a ragout. Recipes such as white chili, ham and beans, and stewed beans with peppers call for Great Northern beans. The beans can also be cooked with squash and greens to create a hearty soup. Great Northern beans are high in fiber and iron, and are a significant source of protein and calcium.