We all love convenience and time savers, who doesn’t these days? And sure it’s really easy to grab a can of beans, drain them and toss them into your favorite recipe. But what most people don’t realize is that dried beans are fairly easy to prepare too, and the benefits of using dried beans – in my opinion – by far outweigh the ease of using canned beans.
So, here’s why I choose dried over canned…
- Dried beans are typically less expensive
- Most dried beans are free of added sodium and preservatives
- Cooking with dried beans, allows you to save not waste product because you can buy the exact amount of product you need.
- There are typically more varieties of dried beans than canned beans available, so you can be more creative with your dishes.
Here’s some simple tips for buying and storing your dried beans…
- Try to buy beans that are similar in shape, color and size
- Store your dried beans in a sealed container (zip-lock bag, canister, etc.) in a cool, dark place. These beans will stay fresh for up to one year.
- Your cooked beans can be stored, sealed, in the refrigerator for up to one week
And here’s how easy it is to cook these beans up…
- Pour your beans in a coriander & run water over them, picking out any stones, or shriveled beans.
- Place in a pot with a lid. Cover with cold, fresh water about 3” above the beams, and let them soak overnight for at least for 12-18 hours. I really do find that soaking them closer to 18 hours is better, because it yields a shorter cooking time and the beans tend to stay more intact during the cooking process.
- Once soaked, cook the beans in clean water, and cover the beans by 1”
- Bring to a boil, then immediately reduce heat to a simmer & cover for 30-40 minutes or until you can mash one easily with your finger.
- When done, add a little bit of salt and cook uncovered for 15 minutes.
Now What? Well, first, congrats on making your first batch of dried beans. There are tons of ways to use them, but here are just a few of my recipes to inspire you: