How to cook with beans

If you haven’t cooked or eaten many beans in the past, don’t fret! Since you don’t want to miss out on the numerous benefits of adding beans to meals, we have the solutions to get you off to a successful start:

Store beans properly

Beans should be stored in airtight containers in a cool, dry location. Also, keeping beans out of the direct sunlight will prevent discoloration and a change in flavor.

Cook with a variety of beans

No need to stick to a single type of bean. Michigan Beans varieties offer different tastes, textures and package of nutrients so variety helps you reap more health benefits from your beans.

Minimize the gas:

We’ve all heard the song… “Beans, beans, the magic fruit…”

Yes, beans sometimes cause gas because of natural chemicals called oligosaccharides. These are sugar molecules are often difficult for humans to digest and they are passed to the lower intestine without being broken down. It is there that they can have gas-producing effects. You can however, minimize these effects by following some very simple steps:

  • Always soak and drain your dry beans first. The longer the beans are soaked, the more oligosaccharides are released into the soaking water. Drain and rinse the beans before cooking, always discarding the water used to soak.

  • Commercial natural enzyme products, such as Beano, break down the complex sugars in beans making them easier to digest.

  • The main thing is to start slowly. If you haven’t been eating a lot of beans start by adding them into just one meal at a time so your digestive system gets used to the added fiber. Swap baked beans for potatoes as a side dish, top your green salad with cooked beans or add them to your soup or chili. You can also pair beans with easy-to-digest foods like pasta or rice. The more you eat the less issues you should have.

Cooking Dry Edible Beans – Soak & Simmer

To bring out their natural goodness and flavor, dry beans need to be soaked before cooking with this method. The process is simple and ensures great taste and beautiful beans! There are two methods for soaking beans:

The Traditional Method of Soaking: In a large pot, add 3 cups of cold water to each cup of beans (or 6 cups for each pound.) Soak 8 hours or overnight in the refrigerator. Drain and rinse the beans.

The Quick Method of Soaking: In a large pot, add 3 cups of hot water to each cup of beans (or 6 cups for each pound.) Bring to a boil and cook the beans at medium heat for 2 minutes. Cover the pot and let the beans stand for 1 hour. Drain and rinse the beans.

Time to Cook: After either method of soaking, simmer beans about 1 to 2 hours or until tender. To prevent foam or froth while cooking, add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to simmering water.