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How to cook black beans

How to Cook Black Beans (on the Stove)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: Overnight
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 44 minute
  • Yield: 6 cups beans (4 15-ounce cans) 1x


Here’s how to cook black beans! It’s so easy to cook them from dried: they’re cheaper and taste so much better than canned. Got a pressure cooker? Go to Instant Pot Black Beans.


  • 1 pound dry black beans
  • Kosher salt
  • Optional add ins: 1 white onion, peeled and quartered, 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed, 1 strip kombu seaweed (adds big savory flavor), other herbs as desired


  1. Soak the beans overnight*: Place the beans in a large container with a cover with 2 inches of room temperature water and stir in 1 tablespoon kosher salt. Cover and allow to soak at room temperature.
  2. When ready to cook, drain the beans from the soaking liquid. Place them in a pot and cover with 2 inches of water. Add 1 teaspoon kosher salt and bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. If using, add onion, garlic, or herbs for additional flavor.
  3. Simmer uncovered for 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours until the beans are tender (taste test as you cook; the exact timing will depend on the age and brand of beans). Add a bit of water if necessary to keep the beans covered with water while cooking. Drain the water.
  4. Storage: Store refrigerated for 3 to 5 days, or frozen for up to 8 months. To freeze the beans, place the drained beans into a sealable storage container: we like to use mason jars. It’s helpful to freeze them in 1 1/2 cup increments, which equals 1 15-ounce can of beans.


*If you don’t think ahead, you can skip the soaking step. You’ll simply have to cook the beans a little longer. Or use our Instant Pot Black Beans method: it doesn’t require soaking!

  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Beans
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: How to cook black beans