Freezer Cooking-Beans

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I love freezer cooking. It saves me so much time and money on those days when it is 5:00 already and I don’t feel like cooking dinner. This week I am pre-cooking black beans.

I soak them overnight (12- 18 hours) with about 2 Tablespoons of  white vinegar or lemon juice to break down the fibers in the beans and reduce the phytic acid (these acids inhibit digestion). The next morning, I rinse them and cook them in a stock pot.


When they have finished cooking, I let them cool and then place them in freezer zipper bags.

I’ve learned the hard way that it’s better to put fewer beans in each bag so that I can break off half a bag if I need a smaller amount. You could also use quart size freezer bags to store 1 or 2 cup servings so you have an exact measurement.

I can now easily and quickly put together some of our favorite recipes:  Spicy Chicken and Black Bean Soup, Black Beans and Rice, BBQ Black Bean Tostadas or Black Bean Salsa. Saving money and time in the kitchen is always a good idea!


*NOTE: For kidney beans, you do not have to add lemon juice or vinegar. Simply soak them for 12 hours.

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  • Linda

    Can u use this same method for pinto beans?? I’ve never froze beans before but it looks easy enough and will save time later. Thanks

    • Kimberlee

      Linda I’m sure it would work. The only issue I can see with pinto beans is not cooking them so much that they are mushy (if you want to use them later in something other than refried beans!)

  • Kelly

    We freeze our beans all the time. I have started to drain them and then freeze them on a cookie sheet. When they are frozen I removed them and add them to a Ziploc. Now they are separated and not frozen in a large clump. Think frozen corn. This saves a ton of time so I don’t have to defrost.

    • Kimberlee

      That is a REALLY great idea Kelly. Thanks!

  • Lynnea

    How long do you cook the beans in the stock pot? We eat a lot of canned black beans and would love to save money preparing my own!

    • Kimberlee

      It takes about 1 1/2 to 2 hours on low. I bring the beans to a hard boil and then turn the temp. down to low.

    • Wendy Keegan

      Sorry to sound stupid. Is this formula for one (or more) bag of beans? TYVM

      • Kimberlee

        Hi Wendy! I should have been more clear. I soak a 16 ounce (1 pound) bag of dry black beans in a pot with the beans covered in water. I add 1-2 tablespoons of white vinegar to the water and beans and stir them. After 12 hours, I drain the beans in a metal collander, rinse them in cold water and return them to the pot. I cover the beans with water (about an inch above the top of the beans in the pot), add about 1 1/2 tablespoons salt and any other seasoning I want to use. I bring them to a boil and then turn the stove on low and cook them until tender, usually about 3 hours. :)

  • Molly

    Do you freeze them in the liquid or drained? I had seen a blog freeze with the liquid but my beans turned into a horrible fermented mush! Thanks!

    • Kimberlee

      I usually drain some of the liquid, but leave a little so that the beans aren’t completely dry. Of course you should do what works best for you. :)

  • Barbara

    I have been reading all parts of your series for a few months- you are an inspiration. I too eat lots of canned black beans, I have never tried to make my own – but now I will. I like the idea of laying them on a sheet to freeze individually but since I like to eat black bean soup I will also freeze some in a container with liquid. Keep up your great work! God bless you!

    • Kimberlee

      Thanks for your encouragement Barbara! Let me know how you like the beans. :)

  • Margaret Hitt

    Kimberlee thank you. So many young wives haven’t been taught to cook. You are doing a great service for them and therefore for all of us. “You can feed a man or teach him to fish and he’ll feed himself”. I am 66 years old and still looking for more ways to save and be economical. I found you on Face Book and enjoy reading your site and ideas from other women.

    • Kimberlee

      Thanks so much for your encouraging words Margaret. My heart’s desire is to help women be all that they can be, so I appreciate hearing that you think that I am having an impact.