If you’re interested in cooking dry beans in a crock pot, use this super simple method that takes less than four hours. No need to soak overnight!
Normally, I think owning a crock pot is a sign of growing up. Especially if you’re asking for one as a gift for a holiday or birthday.
But then other times, crock pots are a means of letting your youth truly shine through. Let me explain.
I work with a guy who just got a crock pot…maybe at Christmas. Maybe he bought one himself. Not really sure. But he’s found a way for the crock pot to be even more functional than a normal adult would ever imagine. Not only does he use it to cook delicious, budget friendly meals—but he also uses it as a space heater for his bedroom.
This is real life.
Apparently he keeps his apartment at 50 degrees, so cooking a pot roast in his bedroom seemed to make sense to not only have dinner prepared all week long, but warm up his room so he can save money on utilities and not turn the heat on any higher. I really can’t tell if this is a borderline adulting method employed to save money and pay off debt, a youthful way to save money in one place only to spend on other frivolous things even though you’re probably suffering, or pure genius.
Personally, I can remember a time in my life (though I was younger than 26, like this guy) where I may have ‘practically’ saved money on something, only to impractically spend it in other places (aka at the liquor store and Taco Bell). At this point in my life, I know for certain that I’d spend an extra $50 on an electric bill to feel comfortable in my own home. And to not have my stomach growling from the aroma of chicken every time I went to bed.
I felt this was a good story for today’s post, since it really is all about saving money. Oh, and time! It saves you a LOT of time, too. I know that canned beans don’t seem too expensive. They’re around $0.80–$1.00 at the grocery. Seems cheap, right? Well, if you know how to cook dry beans, you’ll find out it is a lot more cost effective than buying canned beans. Like, twice as much, if I’ve done my math right. The other benefit of cooking dried beans? Less sodium! Canned goods typically come with a super inflated amount of sodium in order to preserve their shelf life. You can cook dried beans without all the extra salt instead.
I’ve tried to cook dry beans on the stove several times, and failed miserably almost every time. I can recall one instance when I successfully made beans that were cooked to perfection, but every other time they were crunchy, no matter how long I seemed to boil them or soak them or whatever. It made NO SENSE to me because I felt like I did it the same way every time. And then I discovered the crock pot method and never went back! Typically when you cook beans on the stove, you need to soak them overnight. Which means a lot more planning for when you want to use beans in a recipe. I really don’t need to remember any extra steps 10–12 hours ahead of time. The crockpot eliminates this step, and cooks them even faster.
Get excited, because this tip for cooking dry beans in a crockpot is going to change your life! If you like to eat beans, anyway.
How to Cook Dry Beans in a Crock Pot
- Dried beans of choice
- Pour the amount of beans you want to cook in a strainer. Remember that 2 cups of dried beans makes approximately 6 cups of cooked beans. Rinse thoroughly.
- Pick through any broken beans and discard, if desired.
- Add beans to a crockpot.
- Cover beans with water, about 1.5 inches above the level of the beans. You may need to knock beans down to the bottom, as some of them will tend to float.
- Set your crockpot to cook on high for 3.5 hours. Check your beans at this point, and if they aren’t done, add an additional 30 minutes or so.
- You’ll likely have some leftover water, so strain your beans again. Let cool and use as desired!