Beans may get a bad wrap for their gaseous qualities, but when soaked overnight the nutrients are more bio-available, gastrointestinal effects are subtle, and you can cook them in less time (saving energy and, thus, money). Preparing ahead, try freezing extra beans with the broth in one-meal-size quantities to incorporate into a wide range of recipes – from Mexican- and Caribbean-style meals, to hummus and soups!
A 1.5 lb. (24 oz) bag of organic, dried beans from our local Buhl farmers at Agrarian Harvest costs $3.00. Cooking the entire package yields 7.5-9 cups of cooked beans, which may be incorporated into 5-8 meals. Contrarily, a 12-oz can (1.5 cups) of prepared, organic beans costs $1.99; it would take five of these cans to equal 7.5 cups of cooked beans, or $9.95 – a difference of $6.95.
FRUGAL-FOODIE TIP: Buy beans at the farmers market, and spend the extra $7 on seasonal fruit!
Jamie Truppi, MSN, is a clinical nutritionist focusing on integrative health. She loves talking about the gastrointestinal tract, functional foods, and recipe experiments.