As we all try to reduce our food waste, freezing cooked food can be the perfect solution as you get to enjoy whatever it is you cooked on a different occasion, too. Plus, you get to cut down the cooking time considerably. So, can you freeze black beans?
Beans are notorious for absorbing all the water around them, but there has to be a way to freeze them up so they can be tasty a second time around.
Can You Freeze Black Beans?
Black beans are a favorite for many people. One of our readers sent us a message regarding black beans, so let’s see what they wrote:
I cooked up a big batch of black beans this weekend, and now I have some leftover. I know that beans are inexpensive, but I still don’t like to throw away good food.
I’ve eaten as much of the beans as I’m going to eat for a while, but would like to be able to keep the leftovers for a later date. I’ve never frozen black beans before, because I’ve heard that freezing makes them dry, tasteless, and just kind of gross overall.
I don’t want to go through the effort if they won’t be edible once they’re thawed. Can you freeze black beans?
Yes, you can freeze black beans. They do have a tendency to dry out a bit during the freezing process, but there are ways to minimize how much they dry out. Frozen black beans can still look and taste great, with a little bit of effort on your part. You didn’t mention whether the black beans were whole or refried, so I’ll provide suggestions for both.
How to Freeze Black Beans?
To freeze whole cooked black beans, you need to take a few steps:
- It’s important to freeze them as quickly as possible after cooking to maintain freshness.
- Allow the beans to cool, and then pour the beans, along with any cooking liquid, into freezer bags.
- Minimize mess by standing the freezer bag in a bowl and folding the top over the edge. Make sure to leave some room at the top for expansion.
- Squeeze out the excess air, and then seal the bag.
- Label and date the beans.
- Beans can be stored in the freezer by laying the bags flat. Be sure not to rest anything heavy on the bags.
Refried black beans (or pureed beans) should also be frozen quickly to maintain freshness:
- Scoop beans into a freezer-safe container.
- Place a layer of plastic wrap over the beans, and then seal the lid.
- Label and date the container.
- Frozen beans should be eaten within about two months for best results.
How to Keep Black Beans for Longer?
If you want to keep your black beans for longer, you can use a vacuum sealer. These appliances can suck out the air from the bags and seal them perfectly.
While we do have a bunch of vacuum sealers on our list, we particularly like the FoodSaver V4840 2-in-1 Vacuum Sealer Machine as it works with both freezer bags and containers of different sizes. Thus, it will help you save both smaller portions and whole dishes.
How to Thaw Black Beans?
If it’s already time to eat the next portion of black beans, you need to think ahead as you’ll have to thaw it out.
- When thawing beans, place the container in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
- Whole black beans in liquid will simply need to be reheated in a saucepot over low heat on the stove.
- Refried beans are more likely to have dried out a bit. Start by giving the beans a good stir, and then add a small amount of cooking oil to the beans when reheating. Taste beans and season as needed.
Black Bean Recipes
If you’re unsure what black beans recipes to take on next, we have a bunch of them available for you:
If you want to try out a black beans burger, we have a really great recipe that you should definitely test.
Ingredients for black beans burger:
- 1 brown onion
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 2 15oz cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 100g/3/4 cup dry breadcrumbs (not fresh)
- small handful of fresh cilantro
- 1 large egg
- salt and pepper
- olive oil for frying
- six burger buns
- cheese slices (I like extra mature cheddar or smoked Applewood)
- sour cream
- sliced avocado
- sliced tomato
Get all the instructions on how to make your black beans burgers.
Ingredients for mushroom meatballs with black bean and pasta:
- 1/4 cup flaxseeds meal + 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 white onion, roughly chopped
- 4 oz crimini mushrooms, roughly chopped
- 2 teaspoons avocado oil, separated
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon liquid aminos OR gluten free soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups gluten-free quick oats
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 celeriac, peeled
- 1 jar of your favorite tomato sauce