• Maggie Gilbert

How to cook dried beans

Updated: Mar 10, 2020

Why eat beans? They are vegetarian, gluten free and full of nutrients and fiber and a good low fat source of protein. They are a great source of iron, copper, phosphorus, manganese, and magnesium. Did you know they also have thiamine, folic acid, riboflavin and vitamin B6? I feel healthier just thinking about it!

First thing: Inspect and rinse. We spend a lot of time sorting our beans but sometimes a little pebble might get through. Remember they are a natural product.

Soak: You can soak your beans to make them cook faster. Place beans in a bowl and cover with water that is 3 inches above the beans. Soak over night or at least 8 hours.

Stove Top Method: Put beans in a saucepan and cover with water until the water is about two inches above the beans. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer, and cook for 1-2 hours until the beans become tender. Check them often as I noticed our beans cook faster than other beans you might buy at the store. All varieties are a little different, but they are all delicious. One pound makes a lot of beans. If you don't use them all, you can refrigerate for 5 - 7 days or freeze in freezer bags or containers. I like to freeze in 1 & 1/2 cup batches which makes it easy to switch a bag for a can of beans.

Oven Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add 2 cups of dried beans and 6 cups of water to a Dutch oven. Bring to a boil on the stove top. After the water boils, cover and place in the preheated oven. cook the beans for 1 - 3 hours depending on size and age. Older beans take longer to cook in all cooking methods. Check every 45 minutes to see whether more water is needed and if the beans are tender.

Slow Cooker Method: You can cook beans in the slow cooker but be aware that kidney beans can have a toxin and need to boiled for ten minutes. This is not needed for other types of beans. Add the beans to the slow cooker and cover the beans. Cook on low for 6 - 9 hours. It is a very easy way to cook beans.

Insta Pot: A friend of mine swears by this method but I have never tried it. Follow the directions on the unit.

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