A good, basic instructional recipe for cooking dry beans. Cooked beans are a great way to get more iron and fiber and can be eaten alone or added to salads and side dishes.
- 1 cup dried beans
- 10 cups water
- Sort: Before soaking beans, pick them over and remove any damaged beans, small stones or dirt.
- Soak: Most beans will rehydrate to triple their dry size, so be sure to start with a large enough pot. Choose one of the following ways to soak your beans:
- Hot Soak: Hot soaking helps reduce intestinal gas. For each pound of dry beans, add 10 cups hot water; heat to boiling and let boil 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and set aside for up to 4 hours.
- Quick Soak: For each pound of dry beans, add 10 cups hot water; heat to boiling and let boil 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and set aside for at least one hour.
- Overnight Soak: For each pound (2 cups) dry beans, add 10 cups cold water and let soak overnight, or at least 8 hours.
- Cook: Drain soaking water and rinse beans. Cover beans with fresh water. Simmer for 1-1/2 to 2 hours until tender.
- To avoid broken or mushy beans, boil gently and stir very little.
- Taste-test beans often for desired tenderness.
- Foods containing acid such as tomatoes, chili sauce, lemon juice, vinegar or catsup will slow the cooking and softening of the beans. Add these items last so they will not add to the cooking time.
- Any of the following can be added during the last half hour of cooking: minced onion, garlic or green pepper, diced carrots or celery, chopped tomatoes or cooked meat.