How to Properly Prepare Beans

Have you ever experienced bloating or gas following a meal with beans? That is often because the beans are not prepared properly. Soaking beans overnight helps break down some of the starch that can lead to gas.

Soaking also provides the added benefit of more bioavailable minerals since it helps reduce the phytic acid content. Phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc in the intestinal tract and block their absorption.

Easy Bean Soaking:
-Cover 1 package of dried beans with filtered water.
-Add ¼-1/3 cup raw apple cider vinegar.
-Cover with a thin cloth or towel and let sit overnight or a minimum of 7 hours or up to 24 hours.
-Drain the next day and then cook on the stove top (follow instructions on package) or use a pressure cooker like an Instantpot. Cook on manual high pressure. The amount of time varies based on the type of bean:
-Black beans: 9-12 minutes
-Cannellini beans: 9-12 minutes
-Chickpeas: 12-15 minutes
-Kidney beans: 9-11 minutes
-Lima beans: 7-9 minutes
-Pinto beans: 4-6 minutes

I store mine in mason jars in the fridge or freezer. I typically freeze half of the beans I prep if I’m not going to use them all for a recipe. It’s so nice having them already prepped in the future!

If you are still experiencing some bloating or gas from beans, you can consider adding Kombu, a type of seaweed, to your beans when you cook them. It can break down raffinose sugars and starch in the beans even more. It adds a good savory flavor too!

Want to learn more about hormone-supportive foods? Check out my podcast episode how to eat to support your hormones and nourishing nutrition foundation.

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Amanda Montalvo

Amanda Montalvo is a women's health dietitian who helps women find the root cause of hormone imbalances and regain healthy menstrual cycles.

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