Have no fear, dried beans are here! … 4 Ways to Cook Dried Beans

We are often asked how to cook dried beans and are always surprised by how many people are intimidated by the idea of cooking them.  In our eyes you really have to try hard to mess up beans.  Once you have cooked beans the possibilities are endless and they keep well in the fridge for up to a week.

Everyone seems to have their own way of cooking beans so we’ve offered up a number of different methods that work well.  It’s up to you which method suits your needs best.  They are arranged in order of shortest to longest preparation time (including soak time for some methods).

**Have a method you love and don’t see it below?  Share it with us!**

Before you cook your beans you should always sort your beans and wash them in a colander.

No Soak and Bake:

This method frees up the stove top, gives relatively fast results, and produces delicious beans that, like all bean recipes, seem to get better after sitting in the fridge for a day or two.

Preheat over to 275 degrees F.  Measure the amount of dried beans you’d like to cook into an dutch oven stove top-safe and oven-safe pot.  Cover with more than 2 times the amount of water than beans.  The beans should be completely covered with water with at least an inch of water covering them.  Cover pot with lid, turn on stove and bring water to a boil.  Turn off heat and transfer pot to preheated oven.  Bake (covered) for 60-80 minutes, checking after 40 minutes to see if they may need more water at which point you can add boiling water.  The beans should be plump and creamy in texture.  Now your beans are ready to season with salt and/or use in your next recipe.

Warm Soak and Cook:

This method takes considerably less time than the overnight soak; the heat jump starts the otherwise long soak associated with the cold soak, so if you are shorter on time this’ll save you a little.

Measure the amount of dried beans you’d like to cook into a pot.  Cover with more than 2 times the amount of water than beans.  The beans should be completely covered with water with at least an inch of water covering them.  Cover pot with lid, turn on stove and bring water to a boil. Turn heat off, remove pot from heat and let the pot sit (covered) for 2-3 hours. Once the beans are done soaking, drain them, discarding soaking liquid, and rinse the beans well. Rinse the pot out, put the soaked beans back in, and cover with 3 times the amount of water than beans. If desired, add bouquet garni and/or spices and  bring to a boil and then lower heat to achieve a simmer (boiling the beans will cause them to break apart) and cook for 45 mins to 2 hours.  The cooking length depends on the age and size of the bean so make sure to start testing your beans after 45 minutes.  They should be plump and creamy in texture.  Now your beans are ready to season with salt and/or use in your next recipe.

Cold Soak and Cook:

This is a nice option for those who like to prep ahead.  The long soak allows the beans enough time to absorb as much liquid as possible before cooking.

Measure the amount of dried beans you’d like to cook into a pot.  Cover with more than 2 times the amount of water than beans.  The beans should be completely covered with water with at least an inch of water covering them.  Cover with lid and refrigerate  overnight or for 6-8 hours.  Once the beans are done soaking, drain them, discarding soaking liquid, and rinse the beans well.  Rinse the pot out, put the soaked beans back in, and cover with 3 times the amount of water than beans.  If desired, add bouquet garni and/or spices and then bring to a boil.  Lower heat to achieve a simmer (boiling the beans will cause them to break apart) and cook for 45 mins to 2 hours.  The cooking length depends on the age and size of the bean so make sure to start testing your beans after 45 minutes of cooking.  They should be plump and creamy in texture.  Now your beans are ready to season with salt and/or use in your next recipe.

Slow Cooker:

This is a great way to cook beans if you have some time because the best beans are those cooked slowly over consistently low heat to give them enough time to absorb the liquidA slow cooker is a good way to maintain steady heat.  The beans need to actually come to a boil (gentle) so make sure that your cooker will reach 212 degrees Fahrenheit and look for it bubbling very lightly.

Measure the amount of dried beans you’d like to cook into a large container.  Cover with more than 2 times the amount of water than beans.  The beans should be completely covered with water with at least an inch of water covering them.  Cover with lid and refrigerate overnight or for 6-8 hours.  Once the beans are done soaking, drain them, discarding soaking liquid, and rinse the beans well.  Put the soaked beans into the slow cooker, and cover with 3 times the amount of water than beans.  If desired, add bouquet garni and/or spices and then cook on high heat for 5 hours or until beans are done.

 

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4 Responses to Have no fear, dried beans are here! … 4 Ways to Cook Dried Beans

  1. Nettie says:

    After I bought your beans and brought them home, I was very disappointed to see that there was not a basic recipe for soaking and cooking the beans on the package. Instead I had to go to your website for instructions- which is a real pain.

    Next time, I will buy beans that have basic instructions on the package.

    • Catherine Meng says:

      Hi Nettie,

      Sorry for the inconvenience. We have heard similar comments from other customers and are planning a redesign of our bean label to resolve this. We were rather green when we started out in regards to package design, but customer feedback has been a huge help & and we have learned a lot. So thank you for taking the time to comment.
      We apologize again & hope you’ll give us another shot some time in the future.

  2. Judy says:

    While doing the soaking, the skins of the beans wrinkle and many are shedding the skin. Should I remove all the skins? Is it okay if the shed skins are cooked with the beans? I’m making slow-cooker beans with ham hocks, so they will cook a long time. Thanks! Judy

    • Catherine Meng says:

      Hi Judy,

      The wrinkles usually disappear after the beans have soaked long enough. As for shedding skins, if they are floating you may as well remove them although but its not necessary.