If you’ve been following my blog, you already know that I think beans are the BOMB. I mean they are the source of some of the worst jokes, funniest experiences and are just plain awesome. I love them. When I eat them, I feel great! For real!!!
If you want more information about the health benefits of beans, check out my Homemade Chili (linked) post. I go into a good bit of detail about how to cook beans and why they make me feel so good. But, to summarize that post, cooking beans requires some time (not hands-on time), but it’s totally worth the savings and the health benefits. Canned beans are processed at super high temps, which kills many of the enzymes and antioxidant properties.
The night before, rinse the beans and pick out any broken beans, stones or twigs. Put the beans in a pot and bring to a boil for a couple minutes, then let them soak all night. This helps remove most of the gassy properties, and it is the most effective method of degassing. The next morning, rinse them again and put in a diced onion and a jalapeño and enough water to cover the beans in a slow cooker and turn it on low. When you come home, voila! The beans are ready to be finished. Do not cook the beans with any other ingredients aside from the onion and the pepper. Salt, broths and tomatoes interfere with the bean’s ability to cook and they will remain crunchy! Yuck! I recently made batch of my Homemade Chili and ended up with plenty of crunch from trying to shortcut!
In restaurants where I’ve worked, black bean soup was popular. It’s typically served with rice (here’s the recipe for Garlic Basmati Rice) in the bottom of the bowl, melted jack cheese on top – and I added a dollop of homemade salsa. It is spicy, so good and tastes spectacular served with a cheese quesadilla.
This recipe makes a ton of beans, which you can then recycle into lunch the next day, black bean and rice wraps and burritos, topping for salads (the extra protein will keep your belly full longer) and all for . . . say. . . $3. Yep. I’ve said it before, but I’ve got to say it again . . . Let’s have beans for every meal!
Black bean soup works well for meal planners - the beans are awesome in burritos, wraps and are a great addition to salads, too. Plus, beans are loaded with protein, fiber and iron, antioxidants and enzymes.
- black beans - 1 bag, 2 lbs, rinsed and soaked
- onion - 1 large, diced
- jalapeno - 1 large, diced
- chicken or vegetable broth - 2 - 3 cups
- chili powder - 3 Tbsp
- cumin - 2 Tbsp
- black pepper - 2 tsp
- salt - 2 tsp
- garlic basmati rice - 3 - 4 cups, cooked
- shredded jack cheese - for garnish
- salsa - for garnish
Rinse and pick through beans, removing any debris.
Bring the beans to a boil on the stovetop and boil for about 2 - 3 minutes. Cover and soak overnight.
Rinse the beans well, and put them in the slow cooker, cover with water by about an inch or so. Toss in the diced onion and jalapeño. Cook on low for 7 -9 hours or high for 4 - 5 hours. Stovetop for 2 - 3 hours.
When the beans are tender, add the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, other spices and the chicken broth and stir until combined. Cook for about a half hour longer on high and serve over garlic basmati rice with melted cheese and salsa. Delicious with cheese quesadillas!