We like to go old school and cook beans in a dutch oven on the stove top. But, whether you fancy and instapot or some other method of cooking your beans, it's often a good idea to cook up more beans than you think you will need for any single meal so that you can have beans readily on hand when you want them. Here are a few tips to storing and freezing cooked beans:
Storing cooked beans in the refrigerator
Store your beans in an airtight container. We recommend using a glass container or something other than metal. Metal can impact the taste. Cover the beans with their cooking liquid or water so that they don't dry out. Beans stay well in the fridge for 3-5 days.
Storing cooked beans in the freezer
Beans can stay in the freezer for up to 3 months. To freeze cooked beans, store them in an airtight container (not metal). Cover the beans with water so that they don’t dry out and leave enough space to accommodate for the expansion of the beans.
Here are a few extra tips:
- Slightly undercook the beans: If you know you’re going to freeze your beans, undercook them a bit so that when you thaw them and reheat that will reach your desired consistency.
- Store them in 1 or 2 cup containers: It makes life easier to know that you can just grab a single container for a single recipe, when needed. This way you can thaw the exact portion that you want for your cooking purposes and won’t thaw more beans than necessary.
- Label your containers: Label your containers with item name + date of storage, so that items don’t get lost in the vortex of freezer space!
Thawing and cooking beans from the freezer
Take your beans from the freezer and place them in the fridge to thaw overnight. If you want a quicker method, you can also thaw at room temperature for a few hours or place the sealed container in a pot of warm water for about an hour. Once the beans can be removed from their storage container, heat them in a saucepan. Bring the beans to a slow simmer and cook for 20 minutes or so. How long you simmer will depend on how well cooked they were before freezing.
Good luck cooking, saving, and storing. Once you're going about cooking a batch of beans, you might as well load up. Enjoy!