Have you ever considered cooking dried beans instead of buying canned beans? Today, I’m sharing with you how easy and inexpensive it can be to do just that! Choosing to cook dried beans is not only budget-friendly but the end result are beans that taste awesome (and I love that you can control the amount of added sodium!). With the rising cost of meat, beans are such a frugal way to incorporate low fat protein and fiber into recipes.
Need more motivation to learn to cook dried beans? Check out the cost comparison in the image below! A can of beans averages about $1.29 and produces just 1.5 cups. In contrast, you can prepare about 6 cups of cooked beans for an average cost of $1.39. That is a HUGE savings!
How to Soak and Cook Dried Beans
Pour beans on a baking sheet and pull out any cracked, yucky looking ones, or even possible stones and dirt. Put beans into a colander and rinse well.
Soak beans overnight in a 5 quart sauce pan. Make sure to pour several inches of water in the pan because the beans will expand quite a bit. If your kitchen remains fairly cool in temperature, you can leave the beans out on the counter. If your kitchen is on the warm-side (or it’s summer time!), you may want to leave the beans in the fridge overnight.
In the morning, drain the beans and add fresh water. Place the pan on the stove and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat and let simmer, covered with a lid for about one and two hours until they become tender (do not overcook or the beans can become too mushy). Season with salt and pepper.
Let the beans cool in the water and then drain and transfer to freezer bags if desired. I measured about a cup and a half per bag so each freezer bag is equivalent to a can of beans. The beans can be kept in the fridge for up to four days or in the freezer for up to six months.