Can You Freeze Black Beans?

Black beans have excellent nutritional benefits.  They are an affordable source of protein, fiber, antioxidants, and many vitamins. They are popular in Mexican dishes and can be added to chili con carne, to enchiladas, burritos, and soup.

They are also used in North American dishes such as rice and beans, vegan burgers, and salads. In addition, black bean sauce is used in Asian dishes such as chicken with black bean sauce and noodles with black bean sauce. 

However, dried black beans take time to prepare so can you prepare them in bulk and freeze some? The simple answer is yes, and in this article, we will tell you how to freeze black beans.

How To Freeze Black Beans

You can freeze black beans either cooked or uncooked. 

How To Freeze Uncooked Black Beans

1. Soak the dried beans overnight.

2. Rinse the black beans in cool water.

3. Dry the black beans.

Get a baking sheet and lay out the black beans. Ensure they are not touching each other as this can lengthen the drying process. However, it can still take up to a day for the black beans to dry. They need to be dry because if you put them in the freezer while they are still wet, ice crystals will form and when you come to use the beans, they will probably end up mushy. 

4. Put the black beans in freezer bags.

Divide the black beans into meal-size portions and put them in freezer bags. Make sure that you squeeze as much air as possible out of the freezer bags so that freezer burn doesn’t occur. While the beans will still be safe to eat, they will lose taste, texture, and color. Put a label on each bag with the date frozen and the contents. 

5. Put the bags in the freezer.

How To Freeze Cooked Black Beans

1. Soak the black beans overnight.

2. Cook the black beans.

Cook the beans for between an hour and an hour and a half.

3. Drain and cool the black beans.

To speed up the process of cooling down the beans, drain them and transfer them to a cold bowl. They should be cold within two hours. If you keep them out for longer, bacteria can start to develop. You also don’t want to put the black beans in the freezer if they are still warm as it can bring up the temperature. Other food can start to defrost and then refreeze, again a recipe for bacteria forming.

4. Put the black beans in freezer bags.

Separate the beans into meal-size portions so that you only defrost as many beans as you need. Squeeze out the air from the bags to stop freezer burn from happening. Put a label on each bag with the date frozen and the contents.

5. Put the bags in the freezer.

Tips For Freezing Black Beans

  1. Squeeze out the air from the freezer bags to stop freezer burn from happening.
  2. If you are freezing cooked black beans, reduce the cooking time by a quarter of an hour.  You want the beans to be al dente. If they are completely soft, they will probably be mushy when you come to defrost them. 
  3. If you open a can of black beans and have some leftovers, you can freeze the beans. However, don’t open a can just to freeze the beans as cans of beans have a longer shelf life than that of black beans in the freezer.
  4. Buy a big bag of black beans. You will then be able to freeze enough for many meals. It also helps you to save money.
  5. We think that black beans are one of the best beans to freeze as they are small and don’t often fall apart. Larger beans, such as butter beans, have a tendency to split.

For How Long Can You Freeze Black Beans?

You can freeze black beans for up to three months. After this time, the taste and texture of the beans will deteriorate. 

How Do You Defrost Black Beans?

The good news is that you don’t need to defrost black beans. You can add them straight to your dish. However, if you do want to defrost them, there’s nothing stopping you. Thaw them in the fridge overnight.

Can You Refreeze Black Beans?

Many foods can’t be refrozen but you’ll be pleased to know that it is safe to refreeze black beans. However, make sure that they are dry otherwise when you come to defrost them again, they will turn out mushy. We still think that it is better to freeze black beans in meal-size portions so that you just defrost as many beans as you need for your dish. 

Is It a Good Idea To Freeze Black Beans?

Yes, we think it is. Black beans are small and don’t usually fall apart when taken out of the freezer. The only thing to remember is to make sure the beans are dry when you put them in the freezer. If they’re not, they will be mushy when defrosted.

Frequently Asked Questions

Hopefully, you now know all there is to know about freezing black beans but in case you want to know more about freezing black beans or black beans in general, we have answered a few questions here.

Can I freeze refried black beans?

Refried beans are usually made with kidney beans but there is nothing stopping you from making refried beans with black beans. The good news is that you can freeze refried black beans. Mix in a little oil or water to stop the beans from thickening too much. In addition, leave some room in the container or freezer bag as the beans may expand.

Can I freeze black bean soup?

Most soups can be frozen and black bean soup is no exception. It is best to freeze it in airtight containers as freezer bags may split and make a mess in your freezer. 

Can I freeze black bean enchiladas?

Enchiladas freeze very well. If you have cooked too many black bean enchiladas, allow them to cool down to room temperature. Then put them in an airtight container or foil container. Make sure there is enough space in the container for the enchiladas to expand.  You can do the same with black bean burritos.

Can I freeze vegan black bean burgers?

Yes, you can. Put a piece of parchment paper in between each burger so that they don’t stick together. You can then remove just as many burgers as you want for the meal. 

Can I freeze black bean sauce?

Black bean sauce is very popular in Asian cookery. You will be pleased to hear that you can make it in bulk and freeze what you don’t use. The best method to use is the ice cube method. Put the black bean sauce in the slots of the ice cube tray. Make sure that you don’t fill the slots up to the top as the sauce will expand. The great thing about this method is that you can just take out as many cubes as you need and toss them straight into your dish. The sauce is great in a beef or pork stir fry or in a vegan dish with tofu and noodles. 

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