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Canned vs Dry Beans

September 27th, 2006 at 07:09 pm

I made up a bag (1 pound) of dry black eyed peas the other day - soaked overnight in water (the quick soak method I find can lead to not soft enough beans), then the next day cooked for about an hour. They turned out perfectly. Soft but not mushy.

Did some research. You can freeze cooked beans and a drained can equals approximately 1.5 cups of cooked beans.

So for 97 cents I have the equivalent of 4 cans of beans. I have no idea if I looked if i could find a pound of black eyed peas (dried) for less than that - probably.

I find it very hard to find cans of beans for 25 cents or less each. At times I've spent $1 per can though around 70cents is more common.

7 Responses to “Canned vs Dry Beans”

  1. MoneyHoney Says:

    Your success with dried beans has inspired me to try them again. I never seem to get them soft enough.

    Besides the thrifty price, the dried version takes up so much less shelf space.

  2. mountainmist Says:

    I like using both kinds, dried and canned -- I figure that they are so much less expensive than meat, and so very much healthier, that either way they are a big PLUS.

    If you are still hesitant about using dried beans, let me give you a couple hints.

    FIRST off, is that the time required to cook the beans is specific to the specific batch of beans you are cooking -- do NOT rely on the cookbook, as there are too many variables, such as how old are the beans, are the dried beans so dry as to almost be mummified, requiring extensive soaking?

    I frequently add a small quantity of beans to whatever homemade veggie soup we are eating - we always have homemade soup in our refrigerator: ALWAYS.

    So I usually only use maybe 1/3 to 1/2 cup of beans at a time, but I have all kinds of legumes.

    I start soaking them the day beforehand, usually in the afternoon.

    So with a third cup of beans, I probably cover with a cup of water.

    IMPORTANT:::Approximately every other hour I rinse the beans and re-cover with fresh water.

    The next morning I have TWO pans of boiling water.

    After very carefully rinsing the beans one last time, I VERY slowly pour the beans into one pot of boiling water - you add them SO slowly that the water never stops boiling.

    I reduce the heat only a TINY bit so that the water is still bubbling, but it's not a super hard boil, but more than a simmer.

    After about 3 minutes, I quickly pour out the beans & boiling water through a sieve and IMMEDIATELY, as fast as can, dump the beans into the other pot of already boiling water. The idea here is to get those beans into that boiling water while they are still boiling hot.

    After dumping the beans into the second pot of boiling water, I make sure that it is boiling HARD, and then I wil reduce the heat so that the beans will simmer until done.

    How long do you simmer them?

    Until they are done -- cooking time fluctuates. Some beans will be done in half an hour, and others require closer to two hours before they are ready to eat.

    If your beans don't turn out using this method of extensive soaking coupled with many rinses, and then the two pot boiling water, then throw them away --- beans are "finicky" but so inexpensive, that really, it's only through cooking them OFTEN that you finally get the knack of having them turn out properly.

    ANOTHER THING -- always cook the beans in PLAIN WATER to which NOTHING, absolutely nothing else is added, at least for the first half hour - keep the rest of the soup fixins in another soup pot, to which you can add the almost fully cooked beans, MAKING SURE, of course, that they did cook up properly and are not hard little rocks resistant to all your cooking efforts.



  3. yummy64 Says:

    I agree the overnight soak is a must. I am not so religious about changing my water. I usally ony change the soak water once or twice. I always cook them in fresh water when I do bring them to the boil.. but I really don't fuss. Start them off cold and get them to boiling then down to a simmer. Cook for a while and check.. then decide what to do more cooking or drain.

    Plain water - yup a must.

    I think we all have different methods of exactly how. The only one I'd not recommend is the quick soak method. Too often that leads to hard beans.

  4. mountainmist Says:

    I didn't used to change the water so frequently in years past, but nowadays, with all the new "designer bugs" and various "stealth viruses" - I am constantly changing the rinse water until their final overnight soak.

    Many people do not realize that the legume is a SEED, and it must be soaked long enough to start the actual sprouting process, or otherwise it simply is not digestible.

    The reason for the two pots of boiling water and dumping out their first water is that way too many cooks through the generations have stated that this is the way to help remove some of the chemicals that create gas ---- maybe scientists disagree, but I'll go with the previous generations who lived on legumes, LOL.

    And the reason to sprinkle the uncooked beans into the boiling water, without ever letting the water go below the boiling point is that way too many people have told me that this is the way to make certain that the bean cooks to softened consistency desired, something about "popping/cracking" the kernal of the bean.



  5. LuxLiving Says:

    Okay OKAY...really old black beans are soaking! Will rinse and repeat soaking today and leave in frig soaking overnight and will cook them tomorrow. How depends on how soft they feel in the morning I suppose. Maybe crock them maybe boil them.

  6. princessperky Says:

    Huh, I gave up on beans (for the third time) last month, but changing rinse water? will that really help? And two pots of water? seems like a lot of work, I wouldn't mind if it worked, but....dunno, been burned by beans a lot....

  7. mountainmist Says:

    Yep, get those two pots boiling, and be sure that when you first pour the soaked beans into the pot that you merely slowly sprinkle them in -- do NOT pour so quicky that the water ever stops boiling.

    Once all the beans are in the boiling water, then count to 200.

    Be certain the water in the second pot is boiling.

    Have your strainer ready at the sink, dump out the water & beans into the strainer, and as quickly as possible get those beans into the second pot.

    And as soon as the water WITH beans returns to a boil, then you reduce the heat to a simmer - until the beans are done.

    If your beans are several years old, it may not work.

    That might require soaking them until they show signs of actual sprouting. Then if you catch them in time, you can cook, as above.

    Elsewise, keep on rinsing them for several days, leaving them OUT of water, in a dark place.

    Garbanzo beans and sunflower seeds taste particularly good and are very crunchy when sprouted. Other legumes are "edible," but I won't comment upon their taste.

    Fenugreek seeds sprouted are really strong.

    Sprouted beans & sprouted seeds are great additions to most salads, except in the case of the sprouted garbanzos or sunflower seeds, they usually taste so very good, they won't last the length of time needed to prepare a salad.

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