How to Cook Black Beans

Black beans are beneficial for your body since they are loaded with fiber, micronutrients, protein and antioxidants. The nutritional content offered by black beans is equivalent to that of seafood, broccoli, spinach and poultry. Black beans pair well with rice, pasta, salads and soups. You can learn the ways to cook black beans to make the most of this wonderful legume.

How to Cook Black Beans

Step One: Sort the Beans

Remove all the damaged beans, stones and undesirable materials from the dry beans. Use a colander to wash your beans and add them to a pot.

Step Two: Wash and Rinse

Soak the beans in clean water for four to five hours. This breaks down the complex sugars on the beans that may result in bloating and also reduces the cooking time. Next, add them to a Dutch oven or big saucepan and rinse thoroughly.

Step Three: Boil the Beans

Add the beans to a pot containing water. The water needs to be at least one inch above the black beans. Cook them on medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon of kombu seaweed for reducing the flatulence effect produced by the beans. When the water boils, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the beans till they become soft.


  • To carry out the quick-soak method, cover your beans with water and boil them for five minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the beans for two hours. Drain the water and cook them in fresh water. However, this method breaks up the bean, so don’t use it when you want to use whole beans in relishes and salads.
  • Don’t add lemon, wine, vinegar, tomatoes or salt to the beans till they are completely cooked as early adding can toughen them.

If you want to learn how to cook black beans using a pressure cooker, do watch the following video.

  • How to Cook Canned Black Beans

Take a can of beans and cut a part of the lid to drain the brine. Completely remove the lid. Take out the beans in a bowl and rinse the beans if you want to reduce their sodium content. Rinsing also removes the muddy and goopy taste in canned beans. Pour the beans in a pot with water and bring to slow boil. Let them simmer till you get the desired softness.

  • How to Cook Black Beans Without Soaking

For cooking beans minus the soaking step, you should directly put the beans in a pot containing water. Slow boil them and simmer. Stir the beans every 20 to 30 minutes and check if they’re covered by water. Add 1/2 cup of water if needed and cook until the beans soften up.

  • How to Cook Mexican Black Beans

Pour oil in a saucepan and heat it on medium-high heat. Add jalapenos and onions when the oil becomes warm. Add in cumin and oregano, stirring them frequently for two minutes. Add a little water if the veggies stick to the pan. Add canned black beans to the saucepan when the veggies soften. Add in water and boil the beans. Then reduce heat and simmer for another 20 minutes so that the flavors blend well.

Tips for Cooking Black Beans

  • Always remove any stones or twigs from the beans when cleaning them.
  • Black beans normally take two hours to cook. The older the beans, the longer it takes to cook.
  • Refrigerate the beans when you soak them during the hot weather to prevent fermentation.
  • Add boiled water to the cooking beans when extra water is needed.
  • Herbs like epazote and summer savory can decrease the flatulence effect of beans.

Creative Ways to Enjoy Black Beans

If you are interested in how to cook black beans more creatively, here are some innovative ideas that you may have a try.

1. Black Bean Burgers

Saturated with proteins, black beans are perfect for burgers. Mash black beans, add in spices, coat them in a beaten egg and roll them in breadcrumbs. Grill the black bean patty and add it in between buns to make the burger.

2. Mashed Black Beans

Mashed black beans make perfect dinner sides and replacement of mashed potatoes. Mash up cooked beans and season them with salt, pepper, oregano and olive oil.

3. Black Bean Pizza

Looking for a healthy and low-calorie alternative to regular cheesy and calorie-rich pizza? Take warm tortillas and top them with avocados, tomatoes, mashed black beans and a little cheese. Bake them for ten minutes in a pre-heated oven and your delicious black bean pizza is ready.

4. Black Bean Brownies

Want to indulge in the pleasure of a chocolate brownie, but don’t want to increase your daily calorie intake? Black beans come to your rescue on this one. Swap flour with mashed black beans in your regular brownie recipe and enjoy a low calorie version of regular brownies.

5. Black Bean Smoothies

How to cook black bean smoothies? Add black beans to your chocolate and berry smoothies to increase the thick and creamy texture while boosting their protein content.

6. Black Bean Dip

Black bean dip is perfect to be used with breads and it makes a great snack option as well. Mix drained beans with minced garlic, chopped onions, lime juice, salt, pepper, oregano and chopped cilantro to prepare a delicious dip. Chia seeds and unsalted nuts make great toppings for this dip.