Beans Simplified (With 3+ Easy Recipes)

Crock Pot Fajitas

We have always enjoyed eating beans at our house.  I have not always enjoyed cooking beans.  I think I have a disease or other condition that impedes me from cooking dry beans correctly.  I usually went with the cans ... and then felt bad because they cost so much more per pound that the dry beans.

Or I did.

Until we got a pressure cooker and canner.  Now I can buy dry beans in bulk, soak and precook them in a matter of an hour or so, freeze them in can size amounts, and pull them out  for recipes when I need them.

My love of beans has returned.

Since I love them so much, I want you to love them too so when you come over to my house for supper I can serve them to you.  (Since you are all coming over to my house for supper very soon, I am sure.)

Here are some ways my family loves to eat beans.  All recipes serve 5 of us with leftovers.

Lentil Sloppy Jo's

1 bag of dried lentils, soaked & rinsed
1 bottle of your favorite (GF) BBQ sauce
1 Cup (or so) diced carrots

Throw all of this in the crock pot on low in the morning with some extra water and viola!  Serve on buns or not.  It is pretty much awesome by the spoonful!

Black Bean Fajitas (pictured above)

2-3 sliced bell peppers (any color is fine)
1 medium onion sliced
2-3 Cups black beans, soaked and ready to go (I use my precooked straight from the freezer)
1 standard size can of diced tomatoes (w/ liquid)
1/4 Cup of (GF) soy sauce
Lots of fresh cracked black pepper
Dash of vinegar (we always use rice vinegar)

Throw all of this in the crock pot for 6-8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.  Serve with rice, tortillas (corn or wheat), cheese, sour cream (or your homemade yogurt), and lettuce.  (The fajita pictured was for Kylee, she doesn't like all the extras.  I maintain I am not a food photographer in any way.)

Enchilada Casserole

2-3 Cups of black beans, soaked and precooked
2-3 Cups of kidney beans, soaked and precooked
4-5 Cups of cooked rice
1 Lg. can of Enchilada sauce (or make your own if you prefer that)
Cajun seasoning (optional)
Mozzarella Cheese for top

Mix top four ingredients together and pour into a 9x13 greased casserole.  Top with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.  The kids really like this as is.  We add some cajun seasoning directly to our portions, but it could be added during the mixing phase instead if your family likes spicier foods!  The leftovers are great rolled up into a tortilla for an instant enchilada.

Don't forget our old standby Garbanzo Burgers (which we really like rolled into *meat* balls and topped with marinara) or the Taco Pasta Bake with 1-2 cups of black beans added instead of the meat.


Lisa said...

Thanks for those recipes Heidi! I am always looking for great ways to use beans. A friend of mine makes up regular taco meat but always adds black beans to them. Oh, and she tried freezing but didn't like them much that way so she soaks them overnight, and then cans them. I think it was 3 1/2 cups per quart jar and a 1/2 cup of water. Can at 15 lbs pressure for 10-15 minutes. She said it's just like canned beans. FYI for ya! And, you can cook the beans in your crockpot all day after soaking too making them oh so easy. I've made bean soup like that (the bag of beans ready to go). I don't even soak, just through in the crockpot and 8-10 hours later, wonderfully soft bean soup. :)

Heidi said...

I was wondering about canning our own. I will have to try that. I have never had good luck with the all day crock pot method. Seriously- I was not kidding that I have a deficiency in cooking dry beans!

The 15 bean soup bagged mix has gluten in it. Not in the beans, but the seasoning packet so I don't like to buy that because it seems like a waste when I can season it myself :)

Cheryl @ On the Old Path said...

Hi Heidi you won! Email me at ontheoldpath(at)hotmail(dot)com.