This week we look at the pros and cons of both dry beans and canned beans. Beans, whether dry or canned, make up many of our favorite go to meals but which one is really the best option? Keep on reading to see the benefits of both and which option we prefer when it comes to our beans.
Unprepared beans, or dry beans, provide several advantages over their prepared counterparts. In these less than stellar economic times the dry bean provides the most for the least amount of money. When it comes to taste, dry beans offer the most versatility because YOU choose how to season your beans. Canned beans may come with a salt content that is much too high or an unappetizing taste. With these faults the can does have the advantage of quick and easy eating. If you are also worried about BPA (studies have found BPA to have negative effects on the brain) leaking into your food, cans may not be the best option.
Dry beans do take more work to prepare but this does provide the advantage of being able to properly season your dry beans to the flavor of your liking. Canned beans may have unwanted preservatives or high amounts of sodium. Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of both dry beans and canned beans, dry beans are the clear winner. Dry beans provide the financial and flavor benefit their canned counterparts can not match with. Purchasing your dry beans in bulk can provide even more financial benefit thanks to their incredible shelf life.
Before we cook our dry beans we must remember the soak is the most important part. A long soak of up to 24 hours with the appropriate amount of salt will provide the best flavor and most nutritional benefits. If you can not soak for that long an 8 hour soak overnight will do just fine for your dry beans. I soak my dry beans right in the croc pot so it is easy to cook them right after they are done with their soak. Once done soaking you should boil for about 10-15 minutes then let settle on lower heat for about one to two hours until the beans are tender. When storing your beans always try and use glass containers, if available, to prevent consuming BPA from plastics.