This is another super useful (and easy!) method that I learned from Budget Bytes.
There is something super satisfying about buying a bag of plain old dry beans, and turning them into a useful ingredient to keep stocked in your freezer or fridge. You can save a lot of money (she calculated that cooked beans from dry are about half the cost of canned), but I think the real savings comes in the fact that you can freeze in containers for whatever size you will need for a future meal. So, if you have a small family that won't use an entire can, you won't find yourself wasting (or overeating to finish it up) just because the cans are always one standard size.
(I made a double-batch of the original recipe, because the beans I bought came in a 2-pound bag. These ingredients and pictures represent the two pounds of beans.)
- A bag of dry black beans. (I used a 2 pound bag)
- 6 cups of water per pound of beans
- Spread the beans out on a big tray or cookie sheet to weed out any stones or debris.
- Rinse the beans in a colander.
- Put beans in slow cooker and add 6 cups of water per pound of beans.
- Set slow cooker to high and let cook for about 6 hours.
- When beans are soft, put in a colander and rinse a bit.
- Divide into meal-size containers and freeze. Use them just like canned beans in any recipe.
I forgot to take a picture of the full bag of beans. So here's the emptied bag, with the couple bad ones that I pulled out.
Rinsing the dry beans in a colander.
The rinsed beans in the slow cooker.
Measure 6 cups of water for each pound of beans. Since made two pounds of beans, I filled this giant measuring cup (a Pampered Chef mixing bowl, actually) to the 6-cup line twice.
Add the water to the slow cooker.
After about 6 hours, the beans are nice and soft.
Put them back in the colander and give one more quick rinse.
Now, just fill containers with the beans for future meals!
I picked up this handy little bag rack from Amazon. Much easier to fill a bag without spilling!
My two pounds filled 4 quart-size bags, and a pretty big rubbermaid container.
The beans in the container were used for black bean quesadillas the same day, so I didn't freeze them. The four bags went right into the freezer, most likely for future black bean burgers! (I have some planned for later this week.)