Cooking With Beans and Grains


Cooking With Beans
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Author: OncoLink Team
Beans are a wonderful way to add high-quality, plant-based protein to your diet. They are a good source of potassium, magnesium, folic acid and fiber. Store dried beans in a cool, dark place and they will keep for about one year.
  • Beans
  1. Rinse dried beans.
  2. Soak for six hours or overnight, with water covering about 4 inches higher than the beans. Small and medium-size beans may require less soaking – four hours.
  3. Drain and rinse the beans, discarding the soaking water. Note: Don’t worry, if you’ve forgotten to presoak the beans; you will just have to cook them a little longer than the times listed below.
  4. Place the beans in a heavy pot and add 3 to 4 cups fresh water.
  5. Bring to a full boil and skim off the foam.
  6. Cover, lower the temperature and simmer for the suggested time. Check beans 30 minutes before the minimum cooking time. Beans are done when the middle is soft and easy to squeeze.
  7. Cook until beans are tender.
<strong>All times are approximate.</strong> Cooking lengths depend on how the heat of the cooking water and how hard the water is. A general rule is that small beans cook for approximately 30 minutes, medium beans cook for approximately 60 minutes, and large beans cook for approximately 90 minutes. Be sure to taste the beans to see if they are fully cooked and tender.
1 cup dry beans

cooking time

adzuki 45-60 minutes
anasazi 60-90 minutes
black (turtle) 60-90 minutes
black-eyed peas 60 minutes
cannellini 90-120 minutes
chickpeas (garbanzos) 120-18 minutes
cranberry 60-90 minutes
fava 60-90 minutes
great northern 90-120 minutes
kidney 60-90 minutes
*lentils 30-45 minutes
lima beans 60-90 minutes
mung 60 minutes
navy 60-90 minutes
pinto 90 minutes
split peas 45-60 minutes

*do not require soaking


Cooking With Grains
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Author: OncoLink Team
Grains complete the protein provided by beans, which means that together they provide all the amino acids needed for muscle growth, hormone synthesis, and tissue repair. They are a good source of magnesium, selenium and zinc. Store dried grains in a cool, dark place and they will keep for about one year. Cooked grains will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  • Grains
  1. Measure the grain and rinse in cold water, using a fine mesh strainer.
  2. Optional: soak grains for one to eight hours to soften and increase digestibility. Drain grains and discard the soaking water.
  3. Add grains to recommended amount of water and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for the suggested amount of time.
All liquid measures and times are approximate. Cooking length depends on how hot the cooking water is. It’s a good idea, especially for beginners, to lift the lid and check the water level halfway through cooking and toward the end, making sure there is still enough water to not scorch the grains. Be sure to taste the grains to see if they are fully cooked or starting to burn.


1 cup grains


cooking time

Common grains:

Brown rice 2 cups 45-60 minutes
Buckwheat (aka kasha)* 2 cups 20-30 minutes
Oats (whole groats) ** 2-3 cups 15 – 30 minutes
Oatmeal (rolled oats) 2 cups 15 minutes

Alternative grains:

Amaranth 3 cups 30 minutes
Barley (pearled) 2-3 cups 60 minutes
Barley (hulled) 2-3 cups 90 minutes
Bulgur (cracked wheat) 2 cups 20 minutes
Cornmeal (aka polenta) 3 cups 20 minutes
Kamut 3 cups 90 minutes
Millet 2 cups 30 minutes
Quinoa 2 cups 15-20 minutes
Rye berries 3 cups 2 hours
Spelt 3 cups 2 hours
Wheat berries 3 cups 60 minutes
Wild rice 4 cups 60 minutes

* Do not add kasha to cold water, as it will not cook properly. Bring water to a boil before adding kasha.

** Cook with less water and for less time for al dente oats or longer with more water for a creamier consistency.

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