Soaking Beans Overnight, Do You Refrigerate? You may have heard that you should refrigerate beans while soaking them overnight. But is this necessary? And if so, do different types of beans need different care?
In this article, I will answer your questions about refrigerating beans while soaking so you can get them right for dinner.
I have been refrigeration beans when soaking them overnight for the longest time. But actually, this is not necessary.
Soaking Beans Overnight, Do You Refrigerate?
You don’t need to refrigerate beans while soaking them overnight. Keep them at room temperature and let them soak for 12 hours. The cooking process would destroy any bacteria. Only after cooking will you refrigerate any leftover beans due to the chance of bacteria forming.
Why Do People Soak Beans Overnight?
Beans have been around since ancient times, and it didn’t take long for humans to figure out that when you soak beans, it makes them much faster and easier to cook.
Beans have a tough outer shell called “bran.” This bran protects the bean from predators but also makes it very difficult for us to digest.
Soaking beans overnight helps break down the bran and makes them more tender when cooked, which can be much healthier for you, according to Clinical Trials.
Nowadays, people still soak beans overnight for two main reasons: to reduce cooking time and to make them more digestible. Soaking beans also helps to remove some of the indigestible sugars that can cause gas.
When you soak beans, the water helps break down the exterior shell, and the inner part absorbs the water, making the bean softer.
When you take the beans out of the cold water and throw them into a pot of boiling water, they start to break down quicker, and it takes less time to cook them fully.
You get a combination of beans that cook much faster and are easier to digest and flow through your system without causing digestive issues.
Why Don’t Beans Need to Be In the Refrigerator?
The reason most foods spoil is that harmful bacteria start to grow. These bacteria need warmth and moisture to thrive, so you refrigerate most foods.
According to Food Safety and Inspection Service, the “Danger Zone” is a temperature range in which bacteria thrive, and the longer your food is put in this zone, the bigger potential for health risks.
You shouldn’t leave your food in the danger zone any longer than 2 hours before you can expect it to start to go bad.
This is true of most foods, but beans don’t have to worry about bacteria because they don’t contain the moisture they need to grow.
They are too dry for bacteria to form, so they can be left on the shelf for a long time.
You introduce a more susceptible environment when you soak beans in the water. Still, even then, you don’t have to worry about them growing bacteria because they will ferment instead.
When Would You Put Soaking Beans In The Fridge?
The main reason you’d want to put your soaking beans in the fridge is if you live in very hot temperatures and don’t have adequate air conditioning to keep your home cool.
The hotter the temperatures are, the more quickly bacteria can grow, which will speed up the fermentation process.
The beans will start to ferment, and the taste will become altered if it is too hot and they aren’t put in the fridge.
You should always rinse off your beans after letting them soak to eliminate any unwanted taste and residue from the soaking process.
You should also refrigerate any cooked beans you don’t plan to eat immediately. It’s always best to eat them within two days but they will be safe for up to a week if stored properly in the fridge.
Why Do Soaked Beans Start To Fizz?
When beans are soaked in water, they release a gas called carbon dioxide. This is why bubbles form on the water’s surface when soaking beans.
The fizzing is just the gas escaping from the beans into the air. It’s perfectly normal and doesn’t mean your beans have gone bad.
This is part of a fermenting process; many different ingredients use this process to create unique flavors and sides. Kimchi is a popular ferment with a unique taste created through fermenting.
You can still cook and eat beans that have started to fizz. You might want to rinse them off first to get rid of any unwanted changes from the fizzing process.
Do Different Bean Types Require Different Soaking Methods?
Generally, you won’t have to worry about different bean types when soaking them. All beans can be soaked in the same way with no issues.
The only time you might have to adjust your soaking method is if you are cooking a large batch of beans, some of which take longer to cook than others.
You can soak your beans for different lengths depending on how long you want them to cook. The longer you soak them, the less time they will need to cook.
You can also soak your beans in different liquids to change the flavor. Soaking them in broth or adding spices to the water can give your beans a different flavor profile.
Many factors can affect how long it takes for your beans to cook. The size and type of bean will affect how long it takes to cook.
Other factors like the hardness of your water and how old the beans are can also affect cooking time.
If you have trouble getting your beans to cook evenly, you might need to adjust your soaking method.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should you discard bean-soaking water?
You can save some of the bean-soaking water to throw in a dish you might be making that calls for more liquids. The added flavor will help integrate the beans into your dish and create a blend of flavors.
Do you soak beans overnight in cold or hot water?
You should soak beans in room temperature water to help them absorb the water and start the breaking down process. Soaking beans in hot water will cook them faster but won’t have as much flavor.
Should I rinse the beans after soaking?
You should always rinse your beans after soaking them to remove unwanted residue. This will also help remove any excess gas that might be released from the beans.
Soaking Beans Overnight
It won’t make much difference to refrigerate your soaking beans if you cook them soon after removing them from the water. If you live in a hot climate, it’s best to refrigerate them so they don’t start to ferment. Otherwise, just make sure you rinse them off before cooking.