Hearty and healthy black beans get a savory flavor boost from garlic, smoked paprika, oregano and cumin. Freeze the extras or use them as a base for Huevos Rancheros.
Are you afraid to cook dry beans? Don’t be! This recipe couldn’t be easier – and tastier. In fact, these Easiest and Best Black Beans are so darn delicious that I talked Mr. EN into eating them tonight – and it isn’t even Meatless Monday!
Seriously, if you’ve only ever eaten canned and frozen beans, you’re in for a real treat. There’s just no way you can beat the texture of home-cooked dry beans. It’s far superior. And the seasonings in this recipe are perfect; they complement the earthy flavor of the beans without overshadowing them like some over-seasoned black bean recipes do.
These Easiest and Best Black Beans are…
- Hearty and full of fiber
- High in protein, without containing any meat
- High in iron, which helps you from feeling tired and/or low energy
- High in magnesium – which helps build and maintain strong bones
- Fat and cholesterol free
- Tender, smoky, sweet, and a teeny-tiny bit sour… in a good way…from the apple cider vinegar
- Do NOT BOIL the beans for more than a few minutes. Read the directions carefully. After you bring the beans to a boil, turn them down to a simmer. If you keep them at a boil they’ll blow apart and you’ll have bean skins everywhere. That’s not a deal breaker for eating them — and it’s fine if you want mashed or spreadable beans — but if you want them like they are in the photo –DON’T KEEP BOILING THEM.
- Salt in steps 4 and 7. Yes, they do need salt and salting them twice is the way to go. Taste first before you salt in step 7 and use only what you need/prefer.
- Be creative. Season your beans anyway you like. These spices are just a starting point. Branch out and see what amazing flavor combos you can create!
Have I convinced you yet? Are you finally ready to get over your fear of cooking dry beans from scratch? Today is YOUR DAY and this Easiest and Best Black Beans recipe is for you. Please let me know how it goes. 😊
Peace, love and good eats; from our empty nest to yours.
Trending in the EN Kitchen: Plain, 0% fat Greek yogurt, purchased at our local Aldi store.
Easiest and Best Black Beans
Yield 6-8 servings
- 1 pound (about 2 cups) dry black beans
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cups salt-free chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
- 2-3 fresh garlic cloves, minced, or 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Optional (pinch red pepper flakes)
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Salt and pepper
- Optional for garnish - Chopped green onions and/or cilantro, fresh lime juice, diced avocado, or plain Greek yogurt
- Examine the dry beans and discard any stems, pebbles, or debris. Rinse the beans and cover with water. Soak the beans overnight.
- The next day, drain and rinse the beans again. Place the rinsed beans and bay leaves in a pot and cover with the broth and water. Bring to a boil over high heat.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and add the olive oil. Add ½ teaspoon salt, cover and cook for 30 minutes. (Occasionally peek in the pot and skim off any foam.)
- Stir in the chopped onion, cover again, and simmer another 30 minutes.
- Add the granulated or fresh chopped garlic, cumin, oregano, smoked paprika and the red pepper flakes (if using). Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the bay leaves and stir in the brown sugar and vinegar. Taste before seasoning with additional salt and pepper.
- Optional: Top with a squeeze of fresh lime juice, chopped green onion and/or cilantro, diced avocado, and plain Greek yogurt.
- You can easily cut this recipe in half if you are cooking for one or two. If you do that use a smaller pot. I prefer to make a large batch of beans and freeze the extras or use them for other dishes later in the week.
- Food Safety Tip: Cooked beans keep 3-4 days in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer.