Pinto beans, black beans, kidney beans and more are a great source of protein and a necessity in many dishes. It is so easy to run to the store and grab a few cans of beans, but as we see the prices increase we wonder if there is an easier way. We glance over at the cheaper bags of dried beans but then rush on with our convenient cans.
I do buy cans of beans for those days when dinner is in 15 minutes, and I am just starting on it. But I also buy dried beans and have learned that there are easy ways to cook them. Actually, if you can take a little time some afternoon, you can easily prepare your beans for several dishes all at once.
How to Prepare Dried Beans
- Rinse your dried beans in a colander and pick out any pieces of dried up plants or shriveled up beans.
- Place the beans in a big bowl of water and place in the refrigerator overnight.
- In the morning, rinse the beans. Put them into your slow cooker with water. For every cup of beans, add 3 cups of water.
- Cook the beans for about 4 hours in high, and then turn your slow cooker to low.
- Check the beans at 5 hours for the consistency of the beans. They may need to cook 6-8 hours, depending on how soft you like your beans.
- Drain the beans and use.
I always like to make more beans than I need as they freeze very well. Then I have several meals already prepared. If you want, you can even save the liquid from cooking the bean for a stock. So easy and the prep time is so minimal! Also, it feels great to save money!