Beans are a staple pantry item but how long is too long to keep them? Unopened canned beans store well in a cool, dry place for up to one year or until the best before date on the can. Store dry beans in a tightly covered container in a cool, dry place. If exposed to light, beans tend to lose their colour, but flavour, nutrition and texture will not be affected as long as they are tightly sealed. It is best to use dry beans within one year of purchase. The older beans are, the longer they take to cook and eventually they will remain tough and chewy no matter how long you cook them for.
Cooked beans can be stored in the freezer for up to 6 months. Separate cooked beans into 1 or 2 cup (250 or 500 ml) portions, pat dry, and lay flat in freezer bags or small containers.
Steps to Storing Beans
- Prep dry or canned beans: If you plan on using the leftover beans within 1 to 3 days proceed to step 2. If the remaining beans are not in your foreseeable dinner future, proceed to step 3.
- Storage: Store cooled, cooked beans in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for 1 to 3 days
- Prep for freezing: Cool cooked beans, pat dry to remove any excess moisture before freezing.
- Measure: Measure out 1 to 2 cups of beans and place in a freezer safe container. Freeze until ready to use.
- When adding frozen beans to recipes such as soups, stews and chilis the trick is to add at the simmer stage to avoid splitting.
- Cooked beans may be stored in the freezer for approximately 6 months. When ready to use, place beans in sealed bag in warm water to thaw more quickly.
How To Store Beans
Watch how to store beans!