Why discard bean soaking water?


Is it necessary to toss out bean soaking water? Can you just cook the beans in the same water they were soaked in? We chat it up in this lively convo...





Recently, I found myself alone and having to now cook for myself.

Dried beans are an old favorite and I have stocked up on several types. I wanted to be sure I was doing it right (or not) when I cooked them so I have been looking on the Web.

All of the directions I see say to drain the soaked beans and rinse them before cooking. What I have always done is to soak them and then cook them right in the same pan and soaking water. Why is this not OK? Why would the soaking water not be better that fresh tap water? And lastly, would my beans improve in any way if I changed my method and discarded the soaking water, and used fresh water for cooking instead?

My beans (usually Pintos) are always very dark and taste great. Maybe they could be even better?

I understand that this is a minor issue but I am surprised that I cannot find the answer to this question. There MUST be a reason since all directions that soak, do it this way. Thanks for any help.

Signed: A lost old male cook.
Named: Larry C
Portsmouth, VA USA
*****

Hi Larry -- Very good question. Perhaps we should begin with WHY you are soaking the beans in the first place.

Firstly, soaking allows the beans to release indigestible sugars that make for some uncomfy gaseous situations, IF you know what I mean. ;O)

Soaking also makes the beans more digestible. It cleans them more thoroughly (since beans cannot be washed before being sold or they can turn moldy). Finally, soaking beans helps them to cook up in about half the time.

So after the beans have soaked for a while, the soaking water now contains these elements that you are trying to eliminate by soaking the beans in the first place.

And this is why the bean water is discarded. So it is best to drain the water and rinse the beans thoroughly before cooking.

By the way, you can feed this water to plants. They love it. :O)

Click here to learn more about beans, including selection, soaking, cooking, and creating recipes.

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Jun 10, 2010
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why discard soaking water
by: Anonymous

I haven't really found a definitive answer to this either. I cannot find it specifically stated that there is anything in the soaking water that could be harmful (except dirt - which you could easily wash off prior to soaking).
I know that it is said certain things are converted to other things - but I haven't read that anything is actually leached out of the beans into the water.

Nov 22, 2010
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The real reason is:
by: Joe

Because grandma always did it that way!

Of course when she bought them they cane in baskets and sometimes had stones and chunks of dirt and the occasional shriveled bean included -- which is why they needed to be picked over first.

I've been doing dried beans for 50 years now (but probably only a few times per year), and I think I've encountered 2 or 3 stones in that time -- and probably none in the past 30 years. On the other hand, I'm using store-bought packaged beans.

I've almost never discarded the water and rinsed the beans.

joe

Dec 08, 2010
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Simple answer -- don't discard it
by: Anonymous

There's no reason to discard soaking water. In fact, there's hardly any reason to soak.

Why? It's true that soaking decreases cooking time, but not significantly. At most, it may take 3 hours of slow simmering instead of 2 hours following an overnight soak. For some beans, the difference may only be 15-30 minutes.

But the other reason for soaking is supposedly to remove things that can cause gas. Recent research has shown these things fall into two categories -- one is easily soluble in water, and some percentage of it will be removed by slow soaking (not as much by a quick/hot soak). But the other stuff isn't removed significantly by soaking -- the only way to get rid of it in appreciable quantities is long, slow cooking which causes it to break down chemically.

So, soaking has no significant advantage here -- the long, slow simmer of unsoaked beans will get rid of about as much (if not more) gas-causing stuff as will discarding the soaking water.

Only the other hand, by discarding the soaking water, you not only get rid of a few gas-causing things, but also LOTS of water-soluble nutrients. The pretty color your soaking water turns is not due to the gas-causing stuff... it's lots of other GOOD stuff leaching out of your beans.

In short, don't discard the water. Instead, simply pick over the beans to remove stones and dirt, then rinse thoroughly -- I usually put them in water for 5-10 minutes, stirring them around a few times, then drain. And then rinse quickly with water and drain 2-3 more times to get as much dirt out as possible.

But then I go straight to cooking. Fill with cold water, put over a low flame, and by the time the water comes to a simmer, the beans will have soaked up enough to prevent later bursting, as long as a slow simmer is maintained.

Some recipes may benefit from the texture of pre-soaked beans, but I haven't soaked in a couple years, and honestly I think my beans taste better than ever.

Dec 09, 2010
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Thank you
by: Sassy

Big thank you to those of you who have shared your point of view regarding whether or not beans must be soaked before cooking.

As we have learned, there is more than one way to look at this topic. So I recommend we all do a bit of experimentation in our own kitchens...

For a week or two, soak your beans before cooking them. For the next week or two, skip the soaking before cooking.

How do they taste to you? Any difference to your intestinal comfort? Did the beans take much longer to cook unsoaked?

Would love to hear how your experiments go out there in your kitchen laboratories. ;O) xo

Dec 09, 2010
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Add Seaweed to your beans to make them cook quicker
by: Matt

I find that if you soak your beans in kombu seaweed overnight your beans will cook more than half the time (from 2-3 hours to 45 minutes - 1 hour. It also makes a great broth to the beans and adds nutrition. Try it out, it's delicious.

Mar 14, 2011
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I don't discard
by: Barb

My 93-yr old mother in our home wants beans and cornbread all the time. I fix a pot about once a week but insist she eats lots of other healthy foods also. I think if you don't throw out your soaking water, it may cause intestinal discomfort at first but after weeks of eating beans, your body adjusts. Now we just clean and cook and love the flavor.

Mar 14, 2011
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Thanks!
by: Sassy

Thank you Matt and Barb for sharing your bean stories with us. :)

So you are saying that you cook your beans in the water you also soak them in, is that correct? xo

Apr 25, 2011
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I keep the water
by: Claudette

I had always discarded the soaking water, because that is what I was told to do. Then I noticed that the flavor went with it. I don't discard anymore, they taste better, and there are no gaseous symptoms. I say keep the water-and the nutrients.

Aug 04, 2011
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My development of the beans
by: LarryC the OP

Thanks to you all for your thoughts. Claudette, I am with you. I tried throwing out the soaking water and the beans tasted so flat. The great flavor was gone and the broth looked and tasted like water, by comparison.

Update: My favorite way to cook and eat them now (Red Kidneys are what I use) is to cook a pot of brown rice (1.5 cups dry/6 servings) and a pound of chopped collards (6 servings) with the pound of red kidney beans (6 servings). NOT TOGETHER, lol.

I pick and wash the dry beans and then bring them to a boil with the added ingredients below, boil a few minutes then turn off heat (covered). Let them set for an hour or two. Then I cook the 1.5 C brown rice with 3 C water. While it simmers for 50 minutes, the beans boil very low, same time, 50 min.. After 50 min., I heat up (to boiling) a pound of frozen chopped collards in a corning ware bowl in the microwave, with 3/4 C water and 1/4 C vinegar.

A bowl, one meal is made as follows and I eat one every day. Makes 6 meals.:

From fridge (beginning on second meal) I put one serving 1/6 of total) of the brown rice in the bowl. Then one serving (again, 1/6) collards on top. Add a few tablespoons of ketchup, salt and, Original Juan's 100% Pain hot sauce. Microwave for 1:40 min. Then cover with beans (1/6 total) and microwave again for 2:40 min. That's it. Six great meals. Yummy!

Also, when I cook the beans, I add 2 big red onions chopped, a handful of ground Cayenne, black pepper and garlic powder (maybe 1/3 cup or more ea.). Also a tablespoon of olive or Canola oil to prevent foaming over.

BTW, I do not have more gas that normal. Maybe I am just used to this wonderful creation, lol.

Extremely nutritious and just gets better with age up to the 6th day. :) I plan to try tomato paste instaed of the ketchup next time. What a cook I have become! LOL :)

Aug 06, 2011
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Go Larry!
by: Sassy

Thanks, Larry, for sharing your easy recipes with us. I love the bold flavors you use as well. Although the sound of the 100% Pain hot sauce is making me wince slightly. ;)

Aug 06, 2011
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An afterthought...
by: LarryC

Yes, Sassy, the flavors are indeed fantastic and I have never tired of them. I used to put a bit of brown sugar in with the collards and that was awesome but, I quit doing that for I felt too guilty. And, I AM a heart patient.

A typical bowl/meal is a bit over 300 calories as I make it. Not bad. My last lab (blood) was perfect and I lost enough weight to please the doctor and look good again. He said I really did a good job. Point being, I owe it all (nearly) to the 'famous' beans, lol. And, it all started here! Thank you! :)

Aug 07, 2011
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YES!!
by: Sassy

Wow! Fantastic, Larry!!! You must be so proud of yourself. I am certainly cheering for you over here and am very happy that you took things into your own hands and made some amazing changes to your health. And proven the old rhyme is true, beans ARE good for your heart. :)

B.R.A.V.O.! xo

Feb 27, 2012
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Don't water the plants
by: Rod Flash

After reading the post we soaked some kidney beans, and then watered our plants with the soak water. We cut the soak water 1 to 1 with fresh water. The plants may or may not love it (remains to be seen), but we don't the whole house reeks now. It's been 24 hours, we've had the doors open and the fan on in 50 degree weather, and still can barely stand it. Maybe if we'd cut it 20 to one or something it wouldn't have been so bad. Just a word to the wise.

Mar 05, 2012
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WOW!
by: Sassy

ROD! That's a crazy story! Poor thing! Hope the house has aired out by now. ;)

I used to use my soak water all the time for watering plants, but never noticed any strange smells.

Wonder what the difference is? :-/

Apr 29, 2012
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How about after the beans are cooked?
by: Kris in Tacoma

I've taken to following Deborah Madison's pressure cooker garbanzos with onions, garlic, parsley, and asafoetida. Recently, I thought, why not use the bean water as stock? Any thoughts?

Apr 30, 2012
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Yes! :)
by: Sassy

Hi Kris!

Do you mean the bean cooking water? Yes, use it! It's filled with nutrients and VERY tasty. Soak your beans in the bean cooking liquid to store your beans in the fridge. You can use this liquid when reheating your beans, or in any way you'd like. Highly recommend. :) xo

Apr 30, 2012
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Musical fruit juices seemed non-musical
by: Kris in Tacoma

Thanks Sassy! We tried it yesterday and suffered no apparent (ahem) ill effects.

May 01, 2012
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The evolution
by: Larry

Hi to all, my old question about soaking is kind of moot now. Oh, I am still on the beans and love them dearly, every day. What I have been doing for a long time now follows:

Wash 1lb. Red Kidneys add to pot of water, 2 cut up Red onions, 1- 12 oz. can tomato paste, a half-handfull of Black pepper, garlic powder, ground Cayenne pepper (for the blood), ea.

Add some Oregano Leaves and Italian seasoning (just a little ea.), and some Canola oil (for the heart and to get the good fats). Note: The oil keeps the pot from foaming over too.

Add some Chili powder and vinegar (vinegar adds a wonderful flavor and makes it acidic-bateriostatic).

Stir as it heats to a boil. When it boils, I reduce the heat to a slow boil and cook/stir another minute. Then cover and cook another 2 or 3 minutes. Cover, turn off heat and leave on stove for about an hour.
Bring back to a boil (never open lid). Then I stir one time and reduce the heat to a very slow boil and cook for another hour (min.) or two. Just before removing from stove, add 1- 15 oz. can diced Tomatoes (do not cook them so they have some body). Add 1- lb. of chopped collards (frozen is easiest). I like the collards just heated so they too 'have some body'.
Lastly, add cooked Long-grain Brown rice, 1 1/2 C. dry (with 3 - cups water). Done!

This makes the best beans in the world (imho). And, it is still yet evolving, lol. Keep covered in the fridge and it lasts me about 9 days (1 serving/day). Just nuke a bowl full (2 cup or 20 oz.) each day from the cold pot. Takes my nuker 3.5 minutes. Yummo! :) BTW, maybe it is just me, and adaptation, but there is little to no gas. :)

May 01, 2012
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Love the update!
by: Sassy

LARRY! How awesome to hear from you. Thank you for sharing your latest bean-cooking technique. I'm sure it will be helpful to all who read it.

Just a little FYI - I don't recommend using a microwave because I'm not sure they're entirely safe to use.

Giant hugs to you! xo

Jun 18, 2012
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Soak and discard the water
by: Anonymous

This helps to remove the inhibitors of iron absorption (phytic acid) that are part of the beans.

So soak overnight in warm water, drain and cook in fresh water.

Jul 26, 2012
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COOKING MIXED BEANS
by: GoodCarbLover

I just discovered your site while looking up bean storage and I am delighted with it.

My first question: When I cook beans, any beans, and store them in the freezer, I find, when I defrost them, that they are not exactly very appetizing looking. The "skins" have come off half of them, and they taste rather mushy. How do I fix that issue?

Second question: I like to cook up a batch of beans to use all week long. I like a mix that renders the whole with an overall fiber content of 5 mg per serving at least, as high fiber is my goal.

I've found that some beans cook a heck of a lot faster than others. Can you tell me the best mix possible to get a final high fiber count with all--or almost all-of the beans still having a healthy "tooth" rather than a mushy texture?

Again, I love this site. So much good information in such a friendly and caring atmosphere with apparently NO ONE berating anyone else for stupidity. Rare indeed.

Jul 29, 2012
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Bean Fiber Content
by: Sassy

Hey there!

If your beans are coming out of the freezer mushy and with the skins coming off, it sounds like you are overcooking them. Might this be the case? The freezing process has never caused my bean skins to fall off or get mushy.

I wonder though -- what are you putting your beans in to freeze them? And how are you defrosting them? I recommend vacuum sealing if you can. If you put the beans and bean cooking water in a container, be sure to leave about an inch of room at the top of the container to allow for the liquid expansion.) I also recommend defrosting in the fridge for 24-48 hours.

As to your other question, I guess it confuses me a little bit. Why are you measuring your bean fiber in this way? Do you know that beans are one of the highest fiber foods out there? And as long as you are eating beans, veggies, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and fruit that you are sure to get all the fiber you need?

It might be helpful to know that some of the longer cooking beans include black, kidney, and garbanzo beans, and some of the quicker cooking beans are pinto, anasazi, lima, and aduki. And of course don't forget about lentils, super great source of fiber and cook very quickly.

Perhaps I missed something, and if I am not understanding your note clearly, please restate your question. Thank you so much, and above all glad you're eating your beans. :) xo

Aug 31, 2012
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Watering Plants
by: Maria

I am so glad I found your website. I am fairly new at cooking dried beans. For the last month and a half, I have been draining my beans and using it to water my plants no ill effects to date.


Sep 01, 2012
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OK to drink cooking (not soaking) water?
by: Jane

I do discard the soaking water from beans, for all the reasons stated in this column. I refill the pot with fresh water to cook the beans in. After the beans are cooked, I like to drink the water as it is sweet and delicious, like soup. No gas problems, especially if I use a small piece of sea vegetable to cook the beans with.

Nov 17, 2012
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Yes Organic, no GMO, NO microwaves
by: Anonymous

I am not a vegan but love my beans! What bothers me about a lot of the comments is: no one talked about buying organic beans, and other items. There is still microwaves is use.....google an article titled, "The Hidden Hazards of Microwave Cooking", and pitch your microwave! Also soybeans and canola are often GMO, so be very careful with the oil you use....organic olive and grapeseed are my favorites, and always buy food products in glass! Toxins from plastic containers leach terribly in oil based foods, and tin cans are lined with a particularly bad plastic! Just saying..........

Dec 11, 2012
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Just my point of view
by: Anonymous

Recently I came across a website on the internet that warns against the high levels of chemical pesticides in various foods and dried beans were at the top of the list. Supposedly dried beans are heavily treated with a chemical pesticide called sulfuryl fluoride, actually most dried foods are (unless organic). So, I think you should discard the water that you soak them in seeing that it probably contains high levels of this toxic chemical.

Jul 12, 2013
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bean soak info
by: Daniele

Thanks for the info and plant water tip! You look like a girl I met in a office skills class 22 years ago in Scranton?

Jul 13, 2013
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ha!
by: Sassy

Daniele - Wasn't me. But struck me funny because my mom used to work in Scranton back in the early '70s. :)
xo
p.s. You're welcome!

Feb 17, 2014
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To soak or not to soak and are they really organic
by: Stormy

If the toxins are in the beans and soak water, they are still in the beans even if you pour the water off. Organic, I question that because of the years of pesticides remains dormant in the soil. Where does organic growers find unpolluted, non fluoridated run off water and such. How does that work ? Today, I am cooking in the soak water to see if I can tell the difference. I have been pouring off for years. But then tap water for cleaning, soaking, and cooking takes a person back to square one. I am not being sarcastic but I do think this is a legitimate question. I do not season my beans until they are done, I like a lot of broth in mine. If beans are watery just keep cooking them until you get gravy . Delish !!

Apr 08, 2014
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after soaking
by: Anonymous

Hi there,

After I soaked the lima beans overnight and cooked them in the first water for 20 or so minutes, they turned black, why?
Thanks for the comments that are very helpful.

Alex

Apr 11, 2014
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Strange!
by: Sassy

Hi Alex --

Sorry, my darling, I don't know. That has never happened to me. Maybe someone else will hop on and enlighten both of us. :) xo

Apr 14, 2014
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A comment relating too organic beans, microwave, etc
by: cassandra

In response to your comments, I understand the white plastic in the metal cans that you refer to is one of the most carcenogentic substances that is being used in food products.
I have wondered if that is reason for high incidence of cancer in cats and dogs. So many of the most costly pet meals come in little cans with the inside coated with the substance.
I love everyone's "bean" stories. Cassandra

Apr 14, 2014
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Soaking water is delicious
by: Anonymous

My original question about using the soaking water has certainly bloomed here. I guess I should say that my experience applies only to red kidney beans, which I eat every day. It has been interesting to see everyone's stories. A simple test will put "the proof in the pudding". Cook a pot with the soaking water and one without. I find the one with the soaking water to have much more flavor and a stronger body that is delicious. Happy cooking to all. :)

Apr 16, 2014
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Soak, Ferment, And Discard - Contains High Phytic Acid, Amylase Inhibitors, etc.
by: Thomas Meli

There are numerous indigestible compounds in beans that are only neutralized through the fermentation process that soaking starts. It has nothing to do with cooking time - it has to do with chemical processing.

Remember that beans are a seed, and seeds do not want to be eaten and digested. If they are eaten, they want to pass through the digestive tracts of animals so they can be planted in the soil and grow again as plants.

Plants are very intelligent and have loaded seed coats with all sorts of compounds, anti-nutrients, and defensive agents that make even edible beans, grains, and seeds not such a great idea to eat without soaking first.

The # of these compounds in different varieties of beans and seeds is astounding. Amylase inhibitors, Phytic Acid, Lipase Inhibitors, Protease Inhibitors, Oxalic Acid, Trypsin Inhibitors, Lectins, and a bunch of others as well.

If you plan to eat beans, seeds, and whole grains often (and I highly suggest you do because they are phenomenally healthy) Fermentation is necessary.

Simply soak them in a huge jar or bowl the night before you plan to cook them, rinse them the next day, and then cook for the whole week.

This is an ancient tradition that every society that ate regular legumes, seeds, and grains did. Its a beautiful honor to carry it forward today.

Enjoy!
-Thomas Meli
http://www.thrivefromwithin.com

Apr 17, 2014
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Love it! :)
by: Sassy

Well done, Thomas. Thanks for sharing. :)

Apr 17, 2014
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Thanks
by: Larry OP

Thanks, Thomas. And thanks to everyone for sharing your thoughts and experiences. This has been a very interesting thread.

Jun 04, 2014
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Phytic Acid
by: Anonymous

Thomas Meli,
Does the phytic acid stay in the soaking water? That's one reason why the water must be changed?
Or is the phytic acid completely neutralized and it is safe to use the same soaking water to cook the beans/legumes?

Jun 05, 2014
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Soaking = Fermentation ?
by: Anonymous

I was taught to soak the beans overnight in a container inside refrigerator. Otherwise bacteria grows or something. Is that a good thing ? Should I be soaking them overnight at room temperature?

Jun 07, 2014
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Refrigerating soaking beans?
by: Sassy

Well, we've been soaking our beans overnight out on the counter (covered) for years and years and we're still here to talk about it. :)

I think it would work either way. Give it a try both ways and see if there's a difference you can detect. xo!

Aug 31, 2014
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Use jarred tomato paste in Larry's recipe
by: Wholly Hale

Larry's bean recipe is awesome! Just please use tomato paste from a jar. Any canned tomato products are not good for our bodies - whether the cans are BPA free, organic, or otherwise. All canned foods are lined with a petroleum based liner. Acidic foods, like tomatoes, will chemically react with the coating. Then you eat the coating. This is not good because you are giving your body some really strong estrogens to contend with. I use jarred tomato products. The lids are still costed but the surface area of exposure to the contents is significantly less.


Sep 22, 2014
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why does the color of the liquid in pinto beans change drastically?
by: Anonymous

why does the liquid of cooked pinto beans turn from a nice bright brown color to a dark brown color after the beans sit in the liquid for a while. I like the beautiful color when they have just cooked but then later the liquid looks real dark in color.

Nov 09, 2014
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Residue in the Remaining water?
by: shawnjohn

Correct me if I'm wrong but if the beans aren't organic and there is any pesticide residue, wouldn't that mean the remaining water is unfit for consumption?

Nov 27, 2014
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Washing dried beans lentils etc
by: Anonymous

They should be washed thoroughly and water discarded if they're not organic as all dried legumes are chemically treated . It is better to throw the water out after the first soak. Hour this helps. :)

Feb 08, 2015
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I don't discard the water
by: Evie

But, I do add a whole jalapeno to cooking/simmering pinto beans. It adds great flavor..

Feb 25, 2015
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Vegetable Broth and Beer?
by: Steven

Hello everyone, this has been a great read, ;-). I was googling around trying to find out about ditching the soaking water and read that someone was ditching the cooking water too... because of indigestible carbs I think... anyway I was curious and I ended up on this site. Oh wow! I just looked up and saw that it is a vegan site so I will not mention all the things in my recipe but I am curious about a few things. I should also mention that I am from Louisiana and we do things a little different there too... Anyway I usually soak my beans over night and then drain them... I think now I will use that water to water some of my outside plants, ;-), good idea. Then I replace that water with about half chicken broth (or vegetable broth) and half beer in a slow cooker on low. I usually also add a bunch of chopped onions, garlic, bell peppers, jalapenos, green onions, etc... and lots of spices... everything but salt. I add salt, usually in the form of Tony's Chachere's Spice n' Herbs, the blue top, not his cajun seasoning with the red top although it is good too... just not as good, ;-). I add some other things too that will remain unsaid... since I am posting on a vegan site... By the way, my dad just started eating vegan recently because of his heart and he immediately started seeing results, I may follow eventually...
Anyway, has anyone else tried replacing their soaking water with vegetable broth and or beer? What is there opinion?
Oh, and sorry if I offended anyone but I really enjoyed everyone's comments and didn't notice what site I was on until I started adding a comment.

Feb 25, 2015
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oh yeah... bean gravy
by: Steven

One thing I also like to do is take about 1/4 or 1/3 of my cooked beans and broth and blend them up and add them back... I love the bean gravy especially over rice of cornbread, ;-)

Feb 26, 2015
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Why?
by: DJ

I've seen comments on this post that talks about reducing the gaseous effect of beans. But why would you want to do that?? That's what makes it fun! That's the whole reason for eating beans in the first place... Right???

Feb 27, 2015
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Cooking beans in veggie broth...
by: Sassy

Hi Steven --

I love your post -- really made me smile. I think others who come across it will appreciate your kind sensitivity to those of us embracing the vegan diet.

Such an interesting idea, cooking your beans in veggie broth. My only hesitation would be the most veg broth contains salt, and salt slows down the cooking of MOST beans.

There are some exceptions where you would want the salt there to keep the delicate bean skins intact (such as with lima beans or black soybeans); but again these are the exception, not the rule.

So a fun idea to experiment with, but I would suggest no-salt veg broth.

Thanks for sharing!
xo
p.s. DJ -- to each his own! Have fun!    ;)

Feb 28, 2015
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Soaked beans started in boiling water ok?
by: Claudia

I need to know if it is okay to put ones soaked beans in already hot stock or water. I know it is a total error to stop beans cooking mid way as they will not cook when re-heated, or so goes the tradition, but I don't know if they should be started always with cold water or not.
Any help?

Mar 02, 2015
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Yes :)
by: Sassy

You absolutely can add your pre-soaked beans to hot stock or water to cook them.

Hope this helps. xo!

Mar 28, 2015
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Kudos, all!
by: Joshua

Great comments! I was googling around to see whether I ought to discard my hot soaked beans (3 hours). I had rinsed them before soaking. I think I will not discard and see what happens. Lovely commenters, how refreshing to see people celebrating life's joys such as good food.

Apr 04, 2015
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discarding the water
by: Denise

Just a quick question:
I'm worried about toxins in non-organic beans (namely glyphosphate- aka roundup). Would discarding the soaking and boiling water help to get rid of any glyphosphate that is in the beans. It is supposed to be water -soluble.

Hard to find organic dried beans where I live.

Apr 07, 2015
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Here's an idea for organic beans shipped to you
by: Sassy

Hi Denise!

I'm not exactly sure what to tell you. I just don't know if pre-soaking and boiling would have any effect on the glyphosphate.

My inkling is it would have NO effect because the plants actually take in the pesticide so it becomes an inherent part of the plant itself; thus, it would be difficult to separate the two.

If anyone else has further thoughts on this topic, I would love to hear from you. :)

In the meantime, Denise, I did a little searching around and found this source for organic dried beans (Purcell Mountain Farms) -- and the MOST you will be charged for shipping is (at least as of the writing of this) $15.95. So the more you order, the better the deal.

I hope this helps! xo


May 05, 2015
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Discarding soak waters?
by: Anonymous

Bread, cookies, etc.,had the same question and after reading only found "watering plants with" so,had to use my own brain and although haven't tried it yet I say it will work! Great site,love the comments.

Jul 12, 2015
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I GOT A BEAN THEORY !!!
by: Johnny

Not so much a theory as an observation. I don't discard the soaking water and I'm talking about for good ol' red beans and rice, though I use quinoa, instead of rice and I mix black beans with the red. Beautiful color and some freshly ground turmeric ( added close to the end) creates another beautiful color! Very healthful, too, without altering the flavor too much. I used to discard the soaking water but I noticed thicker "water" toward the bottom going down the drain. In my opinion, discarding the water makes my red beans less smooth; less creamy. And I often go by my gut feeling and my gut feeling tells me there's nutrients being washed away if you discard. Just make sure you rinse very well and you'll be fine ... although, no harm in eating a little dirt now and then. LOL!

Jul 20, 2015
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uneven absorption of soaking water? solutions or remedies?
by: Anonymous

I have occasionally purchased beans grown in other countries that do not cook evenly. I soak, then cook for the recommended time and some of the beans are cooked and some are still tough and crunchy. (My guess is that they experienced some sub-optimal storage or handling somewhere en route.) Recently I found myself stuck with a lot of black beans that have this problem. Being hungry after cooking a big batch, I hand picked out the small, crunchy beans to re-cook, and they eventually softened though they tasted a little burnt. Does anyone have a suggestion for a less time-consuming way to get them to absorb more water or cook faster? I have been soaking 2C of these black beans for about 36 hours now and some are light pink-purple and some are still very dark black. I could cull all of them like I did before, but that is no fun. Does anyone have a suggestion for any way to get them to absorb more water or cook faster?

Thank you in advance for any tips you may have!

Aug 17, 2015
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Why do we need to soak beans
by: raine1200

That water is dirty, I have found stones soil and plant fiber in dry beans, we don't want to eat that.

Aug 28, 2015
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ALWAYS throw out the soak water!
by: Anonymous

You ALWAYS throw out the soak water. You always soak the beans in water for 24 hours like grandma alway did. WHY? Because beans made people sick for thousands of years if they didn't soak them. They didn't know why. But they learned how to prepare them so they wouldn't get sick. The traditions were handed down. Now we know beans, and grains have poisonous lectins in them that damage the intestines and cause other serious health issues.

It is best to soak the beans, throw out the water, soak them again. Do this a number of times in 24 hours. The lectins disolve into the water. You do not want to drink the poison water.

You cook the beans for a long time also. Why? This further reduces the amount of poisonous lectins.

Aug 28, 2015
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Why food is cooked
by: Anonymous

Why it is best to saute' (quick fry), steam, boil or otherwise cook food. All foods that we eat have lectins in them. Many lectins are the plant's natural pesticides that keep insects and animals from eating them all gone. Many lectins are poisonous to insects, animals and humans - even in all of the food we eat. Cooking reduces the amount of harmful lectins. Some "food" doesn't need as much preparation before we eat it. Potatoes and beans need to be cooked longer to reduce the amount of lectins. Soaking beans, nuts and seeds in water disolves very much lectins out and into the water. That is why you always throw out the water. You don't want to drink the POISON! Depending on the amount of lectins in the beans ("food") determines how long you soak and change the water before cooking. Some beans like kidney and black beans have alot of lectins. You never eat CASTOR beans because they WILL KILL you even if you soak and cook them. You NEVER eat beans or grains raw because they will damage your intestines and cause other serious health problems. Some will kill you if you eat too many raw. Many will cause damage and make you sick. Raw is another name for "more poisonous." Cooked is another name for less poisonous. Depending on the amount of lectins also determines how long you cook the "food." Grains, beans, nuts (all of which are seeds) contain poisonous lectins. This keeps insects, animals and humans from eating too many of them or they get sick and harmed. This ensures that some seeds survive to reproduce the plant species. Properly prepare and cook your food.

Jan 17, 2016
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Not just to get rid of gas
by: Theresa

I've wondered too if this was just one of those modern silly conveniences but sounds like tossing the water improves overall nutrient available once cooked. I learned to trust the research summaries found on WHFoods:
http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodtip&dbid=209

Jan 18, 2016
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Excellent
by: Sassy

Thanks, Theresa! That is super helpful. I love that website. I'm linked to it throughout my entire website practically! Such a wealth of information. :) xo!

Mar 11, 2016
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Bean Water
by: Dawn Acero

We discard the soaking water and keep the cooking water. My husband likes to drink it warm. Once in awhile I join him. I once read of a woman who used her cooking bean water to make her morning oatmeal. We tried this and did not care for it. And now, thanks to Sassy, we know to share it with the plants. Thank you.

Mar 12, 2016
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What To Do With Soaking Water
by: Trish

I love this discussion and the wide variety of answers! Vegan Coach is my go-to place for so many things! One of the things I love is that there is no one right way to do things. We are all on an adventure!
I have always used bean soaking water (and the water I use to wash veggies) to water my plants (both indoors and out). In the winter, it kills me to toss it when my plants are well-watered and I have more soaking water than I know what to do with! (I suppose this is a good problem to have?) I have never noticed odors from my plants, BTW. I always buy organic, and am of the belief that a little dirt can't hurt us, but still choose not to save this water for cooking, as I always heard that the gas-causing enzymes were leached into the water. Although I've been eating beans for so long, I doubt gas would be an issue for me, so maybe this is a moot point. Hmm...Food for thought, I suppose:)
[Sassy, is there a way to have the dates appear on the comments?]

Mar 29, 2016
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Pressure cooking beans in 10 minutes
by: Sonali

Hi all,

There is no need to discard water used for soaking or cooking beans as it has all the water soluble nutrients- vitamins, minerals, besides the oligosaccharides that may cause some discomfort. There are ways to take care of the discomfort by using spice powders or spices! :) However, if the discomfort is unbearable then, yeah, throw away the water, but do not rinse the beans again to save some nutrients.

Also, pressure cooking significantly reduces cooking time. Beans can be cooked within 10 minutes. More in my book to come.. :) I am a Public Health Nutritionist trained at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Hope this helps you all & makes eating beans easier. Happy Cooking! :)

May 16, 2016
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Why Discard bean Soak Water = GAS!
by: China Mike

The reason is as stated here, by pouring off the bean soak water, even though it has now a color similar to the beans, and also is fragrant, it contains those elements that give beans the gassy attribute, as well as releasing elements that will make them digest well. We don't have a second or third or fourth stomach as some animals do, so we digest less elegantly then many other mammals.

If you doubt this, compare how gassy you are from beans you cooked in the soak water vs fresh.

Jun 29, 2016
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slightly fermenting beans beneficial
by: Melinda

I soak my beans for 48 hours or until I see tiny bubbles forming on the surface of the bowl. I believe the natural fermentation improves the nutrient availability of the soak water. I do not pour off this water but cook the beans in it adding more water if necessary. The extra soak also helps to wake the beans up to let them know they are either going to be planted or eaten. Sprouting just this small amount improves digestabiity. I believe.

I use the Ringing Cedars/Anastasia method of adding some of my saliva DNA essence to the soak water so as to give the beans some information about my nutritional deficiencies and requirements. Just a small bit of spit will do. When I check the soaking beans I will stir them with my clean hand to add more information. Anastasia would hold the seeds in her mouth for several minutes before planting so as to impart this information, walk barefoot in her garden and use her hand and foot wash water to her watering can.

Since I have begun gardening I have grown a large stand of pole beans and allowed them to go to seed. Harvest and shuck in the fall. These organic fresh dried beans rehydrate much faster. Dry beans may be on the shelf and in storage for years allowing them to go in to deep hibernation. They may not rehydrate evenly. The fresh dried beans are very flavorful and if there is no time to soak and ferment can be cooked and on the table in an hour. The are also quite beautiful and fun to play with.

Aug 01, 2016
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More reasons for soaking beans
by: Anonymous

Soaking increases serving size. You can serve more people with less money.

Sep 23, 2016
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Thank you!
by: Anonymous

I thought this was a great forum for getting quality information and a range of perspectives. Thanks!

Sep 23, 2016
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Soak and cook with baking soda water
by: Anonymous

If a person soaks beans with baking soda and you forget to rinse and then cook with same water will baking powder change flavor or hurt them in anyway ?

Sep 23, 2016
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Baking soda
by: Anonymous

This is the last question ...I mean baking soda......not powder did not want to confuse!

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