Soaking Beans Shortcut

Hi! I was supposed to soak beans overnight and I didn’t! Is there a shortcut? I have an afternoon, so I’m hoping it could be okay to soak for 6 hours? Help!

  • Posted by: Suphada
  • March 12, 2019


Sharon March 17, 2019
You don't HAVE to soak beans at all. I'm from a family with deep Southern roots on one side, and beans are a definite staple. NO ONE in my lineage ever soaked their beans and I have never done so either. We don't get flatulence and have never had any trouble digesting them, and I've cooked them at least twice a month all my life. What I have noticed is that people who grew up in a family that soaked their beans, then they will do it, too (not necessarily knowing why). The only possible reason I can think of is, way back in the day when beans might have been stored for a very long time in open bins or containers, they could dry out, therefore, taking longer to cook. So, overnight soaking would rehydrate them and help shorten cooking time. But, since the 20th century and the age of supermarkets and high product turnover, young beans are always at out fingertips
Smaug March 12, 2019
The common fast soak (1 the time usually given) is to boil some water, put the beans in and return to boil, turn off beans and soak for 1 hr. The will be less likely to fall apart if you change to cool water after 30 min. or so. I think that soaking (and draining) beans is important not only for the way they cook- the non digestable proteins that cause flatulence are much more water soluble than the nutritional proteins, so you can lose much of them in the soaking process.
Nancy March 12, 2019
Or don't soak at all. Russ Parsons longtime LA Times writer advised a few yr ago that unsoaked are better. Dont have link handy.
Nancy March 13, 2019
Here's the Parsons article (2104). Including claims that soaking doesn't reduce the flatulence cased by beans.
Smaug March 13, 2019
It is a controversy that seems nowhere near resolution. My primary source- other than my own experience- for the advantage of soaking beans is nutritionist Dr. Ed Blonz, who certainly has impeccable credentials (by the way, it's oligosaccharides, not proteins, my mistake) and has written on the subject in several newspaper columns (sorry, I don't do inks). The Parsons article cites some admittedly unscientific tests, and ends by claiming that people who eat large amounts of beans seldom complain of flatulence, which may be true- he mentions that their digestions may adjust some, which seems likely, but also populations that depend heavily on beans tend to be poor, and aside from maybe not being big complainers, often perform hard physical labor outdoors for long periods of time on a regular basis. All in all, we're still dependent on our own experience, and mine is that soaking and rinsing helps a lot.
Nancy March 13, 2019
Smaug -
I agree it's an unresolved issue.
ust wanted to put Parsons' argument out there for those interested/willing to try unsoaked beans.
On an tangential & anecdotal level (again), I find cooking them in a rice cooker results in better, more tender cooked beans than usual boiling in a pot.
inpatskitchen March 12, 2019
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