“I was determined to know beans.”— Henry David Thoreau, The Bean-Field
How about you? How well do you know beans?
Creamy cannellinis, meaty garbanzos, sweet adzuki, tender pintos, and so many more – beans are one of the most high protein vegetables & nutrient-dense plant foods around.
Consider this: Beans are packed with tons of fiber, as well as plenty of iron and protein. They are rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients. They are low in calories. Plus, studies have found them to lower risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.
In fact, beans are the cornerstone of every longevity diet in the world, according to Dan Buettner, a National Geographic fellow and best-selling author who has spent the past 13 years studying the world’s so-called Blue Zones, places where people live remarkably long lives and face much lower rates of Alzheimer’s.
What To Do With These High Protein Vegetables
Many people avoid beans because they just don’t know what to do with them. Are you one of them? if so, I got you:
- Toss beans and diced veggies (such as celery, shallots, red peppers) with vinaigrette for a quick bean salad.
- Blend cooked beans with tomatoes, onions, and your favorite seasonings to create a yummy bean soup or pasta sauce (this is one of fave things!).
- Top a green salad with 1/3 cup of your favorite bean.
- Puree beans with a bit of olive oil, a garlic clove, salt, and your favorite seasonings. Voila! A fast dip or sandwich spread.
- Include 1/3 cup of beans with your other favorite toppings next time you make stuffed baked potatoes or sweet potatoes.
- Add 1/4 cup pureed beans to your favorite pancake, waffle, muffin, or cake recipe. You’ll be surprised at how moist and springy baked goods are when baked with beans.
- If you’re new to cooking with beans, try these tips for delicious and well-cooked beans.
- Be sure to wash and clean the beans first.
- Soak dried beans for 8-12 hours before cooking. After soaking, rinse, fill pot with fresh water, bring to a boil, then skim off the foam. (Or, boil for 2 minutes, then remove from heat & let sit for 2 hours.)
- To aid digestion, add kombu, bay leaf, cumin, anise, or fennel to the water
- Remember: Only add salt or peppers at the end of cooking (about 10 minutes before the beans are done) or it will interfere with the cooking process.
Do you have any questions or feedback? Drop a comment!