Batch Cooking Beans

I made the switch from canned beans to dry beans years ago, and now I am finding that it really pays off at the grocery store. 

The Price Comparison
A can of kidney beans is .80, if I can find it on sale.  A bag of dry kidney beans runs $1.10 on sale.  A can of beans contains 1.75 cups; a bag can easily yield 4 cans’ worth of beans when cooked, saving me $2.10.  That may seem like a small amount for the inconvenience of using dry beans, but over time, that adds up, especially with the current high price of groceries.

Batch Cooking to Make Dry Bean Usage More Convenient
Besides, I have found a way to take the inconvenience out of dry beans.  When I come home from the grocery store, I will pour an entire bag of dry beans in boiling water, let it boil for 2 minutes, and then let it sit for 60 minutes.  I can go about the rest of my day with very little hands on work preparing the beans.  Then I drain them and then put them back in water and simmer them for 60 to 90 minutes, until tender.  Again, very little time is required from me.

When the beans are cooled, I package them in 1.75 cup serving sizes in individual freezer baggies.  Then I just put them in the freezer.  The next time I am cooking and a recipe calls for canned beans, I just pull my beans from the freezer and am ready to continue cooking.  A $2.10 savings may not seem like a lot, but when so little effort is required to save the money, I have no problem using dry beans.  Works for me!

Comments

  1. I just did this with Black Beans in my pressure cooker, so easy and cost effective! I hadn’t froze them though, thanks for the tip!

  2. I needed to hear that. As silly as it sounds that I did, I did. We quit using canned anything. Trouble being that we used to eat a lot of canned beans. In theory, I soak my own beans but I made a really big deal out of it. I soaked them overnight, way overnight and too long. I cooked them too long or made way too much and didnt think about freezing them. Seeing it all thought out the way you did brings it back to its true simplicity with a loud DUH.

  3. Oh dear…here’s my confession: I hate beans! It’s actually the texture that I can’t seem to get past. Although, in the last two years, I have dallied with refried beans (as in my husband puts them on my plate when he cooks his yummy fajitas, and I take one bite–but they also have cheese on them).

    • Melissa says:

      You know, I hated the texture of beans for a long time too. There is nothing wrong with dousing them in cheese until you get more used to them. I also found that mixing them in soups and other things helps disguise the texture. I don’t mind them now, but it did take me a long time to get used to them.

  4. Funny how things work out. I came across this morning just as I was musing about preserving and cooking beans. I planted a whole mess of pole beans in the garden yesterday evening (Supermarconi variety). This is a newer, less effort-intensive way.

  5. I have been doing this method for a long time and it works really well. Not only is it cheaper but it also saves you on your sodium intake.

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