Click here for the printable version
BUYING AND STORAGE TIPS:
Choose organically grown beans that have smooth surfaces and bright colors. Avoid buying beans with too many splits and cracks. Store dry beans in an airtight container in a cool dry place out of direct sunlight. Use within 6 months.
Cooked beans can be stored for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.
Beans are a great source of Vitamins A and C, B vitamins, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, folic acid and iron.
One cup of cooked beans contains 5 to 7 grams of usable protein and less than 1 gram of fat (except soybeans which are much higher in fat).
Beans are one of the best sources of soluble fiber, which has been shown to stabilize blood sugar and lower serum cholesterol.
Beans contain many cancer fighting agents.
Right from the beginning, beans may be cooked with onion, garlic, digestive spices (bay leaf, cumin, epazote) and the sea vegetable kombu. For best flavor, save the majority of spicing until 30 minutes before beans are done.
Don’t add salt (including miso, tamari, or shoyu), sweeteners or acidic ingredients (including tomatoes, vinegar, wine and lemon) until beans are soft.
Use about 3 cups water per cup of dried beans. Beans must be covered completely to cook evenly. Don’t fill cooker up more than halfway.
The cooking time above is for soaked beans cooked under high pressure. Allow an additional 10 minutes or so for cooker to release pressure naturally.
To help prevent foaming, add 1 T. oil per cup of dried beans.
Discard soaking water and rinse beans before cooking to help reduce complex carbohydrates.
Add a 3-inch strip of the sea vegetable kombu while beans cook.
Digestive spices to add while cooking: garlic, bay leaf, cumin, epazote, ginger, fennel, coriander.
1 cup of dry beans usually yields 1 1⁄2 to 2 1⁄2 cups cooked beans.
Unless puréeing, remove fava bean skins.
Remove loose lima and soybean skins before pressure cooking.
One of the most digestible beans, this
small burgundy Japanese bean is very
low in fat and mildly sweet. Good for the
kidneys. Excellent with rice, millet, winter
squash and Southwestern and Latin dishes.
An ancient heirloom bean, this relative
of pinto and kidney beans is red and white
speckled, has a sweet, smoky flavor and is
great in Latin cuisine. It is easier to digest
than other beans.
Also known as turtle beans, these small
round purple-black beans are an Asian and
Latin staple. Black beans are very low in fat
and high in magnesium and fiber. They have
a slightly sweet, earthy flavor. Use in soups,
salads, chili, burritos and enchiladas.
This small, creamy-white legume relative
with an “eye” is quick cooking, easily
digested with a sweet, nutty flavor and
a good source of selenium. Traditional is
Southern cooking, good in casseroles
These white kidney beans are smooth and
nutty to the taste. Add to minestrone,
bean salads, and soups. Popular in Italian,
French and Greek cuisine.
Also known as garbanzos, these tan, round
robust beans are a good source of protein
and iron. Excellent for stews, soups, and
especially the traditional Middle Eastern
dip hummus as well as East Indian and
Also known as broad beans, these huge,
flat Mediterranean beans have a tough
outer skin (peel after soaking) and are
creamy with a subtle nutty taste when
cooked. Good in soups, salads and patés.
This medium sized white bean is common
in Southern cooking. Use in baked dishes as
well as soups, stews and casseroles.
This kidney-shaped deep red bean is rich
and sweet. Good in Latin and Southwestern
dishes, especially chili. Great in marinated
bean salads and minestrone.
Most common in East Indian cuisine, this small
disk-shaped legume is quick-cooking. The
brown/green variety has a hearty flavor and is
good in salads, casseroles and soups. Red lentils
are excellent in curries, soups and spreads.
Buttery flavored and starchy, these large or
small flat white beans are good for hearty
soups, stews and especially delicious with
corn and aromatic herbs.
Easy to digest with rich flavor, these tiny armygreen
beans are great in soups as well as East
Indian dals and curries. Great for sprouting.
Also known as pea beans, these small
cream-colored beans are ideal for baked
beans. Good in soups, salads and casseroles.
Available in green or yellow (milder, nuttier
flavor), these small, sweet peas can be used
either whole or split. Split peas are excellent
for purees and making rich, thick soups.
Traditionally used for refried beans, these
splotched light pink beans have an earthy,
full bodied flavor. Great for chilis, soups,
salads and patés.
These small kidney beans are a staple of
Mexican cooking. Great with rice.
These sweet, nutty beans are the only bean
with complete protein, containing all 8
essential amino acids. 38% of their calories are
from fat (about 5% from fat for most beans).
Use in stir-fries, soups, salads and stews.