How to Freeze Black Beans

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Want to freeze a super food? Black beans contain small amounts of omega-3 fats, three times as much as other legumes (NY Times).They make terrific quick meals, such as black bean and corn quesadillas and black bean casserole. Toss them in your next taco, pizza, nachos, or salad to add extra protein. Make your own convenience form from dried beans,  which is almost as easy as opening a can. You save between six and eight dollars overall by taking a couple of easy hours to soak and simmer two pounds of dried black beans. This recipe yields 7 bags or 7 cans of beans at approximately 32 cents per bag. You thaw the bags 24 hours and replace one bag for one 14 oz. can of black beans in recipes.

Black beans are sold in 1 pound bags, so buy two. Look over your beans as you pour them into a stock pot. Make sure there are no small twigs or stones. Soak 2 pounds in a large stock pot overnight.

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Your beans will absorb the water by morning.

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Drain beans in a colander.

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Cover with clean water and bring to a boil. Simmer covered forty-five minutes to one hour until tender.

Alternately, the soaked beans can cook in a crock pot for four hours on high or six hours on low.

Remove from heat. Add a tablespoon of kosher salt if desired. Uncover and cool the beans for one hour or longer. Go run an errand and come back. Periodically stir to release heat.

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Prepare 7 quart size freezer bags labeled with date and contents. Set upright in two flat baskets or plastic shoebox for support. Use a 1-cup measure and dip twice placing nearly 2-cups in each bag. This is approximate to one 14oz. can if you measure a little less than one cup for each dip. I leave some liquid in each cup, but not soupy. Allow the bag to stay open until the warm beans have cooled completely for about thirty minutes to one hour or you can refrigerate to speed up this process.

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Seal the bags, gently squeezing air out and lay flat. I stack mine in the shoe box and freeze until semi-solid, about an hour and then store flat in freezer. Alternately, they will stack in the freezer without transferring them from the shoebox.

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Add this item to your freezer inventory. Thaw 24 hours prior to using. Make black bean and corn salsa, refried black beans, black bean and corn quesadillas, baked santa fe eggrolls, black beans and rice or your own family favorite using convenient black beans without any preservatives and save yourself about eight to ten dollars in the long run.

Have you ever tried freezing black beans? All beans are freezer friendly. Try pinto for refried beans or garbanzo (chick peas) for salads.

What’s your favorite black bean recipe?