Bean question for Grainlady...

KatieCMarch 20, 2008

Grainlady, you mentioned on the grain mill thread that you mill pinto beans up and make bean flour for refried beans. How do you do it? Do you mill the raw beans? And if so, when you make them into refried beans, do they need to be cooked or just mixed with water? How fine do you mill them?

I've always cooked my pintos, mooshed them up, dehydrated them, and then I rehydrate and refry.

Just got my I want to see what it will do.

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Most of this information came from the Internet or books by Rita Bingham ("Country Beans" & "Natural Meals in Minutes"). In the "Country Beans" book you will find many recipes using bean flour.

- Creamy Cabbage Soup uses white bean flour.
- 3-Minute "Cream of Chicken" Sooup - white bean flour
- "Instant Pea Soup" - flour from green or yellow split peas
- Rita's Lentil Soup - lentil flour

Basic Bean Information:

1 c. whole, dried, pinto beans =
approximately 1 1/8 c. bean flour

1 c. water + 1/2 c. bean flour =
1 c. "instant" mashed beans (thick mixture)

2 c. water + 3/4 c. bean flour =
2-1/2 c. "fluffy" mashed beans

The thick mixture can be used in place of cooked, mashed beans in patties, loaves, casseroles, desserts, and other food products calling for mashed beans.

You can substitute pinto beans with black beans milled into black bean flour.

General Recipe:
Bring 2 c. water to a boil. Whisk in 1 c. bean flour. Cook and stir for 1 minute, until mixture thickens. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pan and cook 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. This produces a fairly stiff bean mixture that is similar to commercial canned refried beans.

Season to taste with your favorite seasonings including:
chili powder
meat or vegetable soup base
powdered seasoning mixes

For fluffy bean mixture:
This type of bean mixture is lighter and has a creamier texture which works well for dips, burrito and sandwich fillings.

Bring 2-1/2 c. water to boil, then whisk in 3/4 c. bean flour. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pan and cook 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.

You can add Picante sauce to the "instant" refried beans.

(source: Country Beans)

1-1/2 c. pinto or black bean flour
1-1/2 t. chili powder
1/8 t. garlic powder (optional)
1/2 t. cumin
1-1/2 t. salt
1 t. instant minced onions (optional

Mix and store in airtight container.

To prepare, whisk 3/4 c. above mixture into 2-1/2 c. boiling water. Cook, while stirring, over medium heat for 1 minute, until mixture thickens. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and cook 4 minutes.

Bean Flour Storage:

Store bean flour in an air tight container, preferably in the refrigerator or freezer. Bean flour keeps 6 months.

Other Uses:

To cook bean flour soups in a microwave - whisk bean flour into seasoned hot water in a large microwavable bowl. Cook at full power for 1 minute, or until mixture boils. Stir well, then cook an additional 2 minutes.

Bean flour soup in a pan - whisk navy bean flour into seasoned boiling water to make an almost instant soup or thickener in only 3 minutes.

Bean flour combined with wheat flour = complete protein. Bean flour can be used in a recipe calling for flour by replacing up to 25% of the wheat flour with any variety of bean flour.

Baby lima or small white beans are the mildest in flavor and the lightest in color and work well to increase the protein in baked goods if you need another use for bean flour.


    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 7:44PM
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Thanks. That's way less work than drying them. We ordered some new wheat to try (Prairie Gold - supposed to be versatile and has a 'natural golden color'). I see vegie burritos w/ fresh tortillas in our future. Like this weekend, lol.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 10:31PM
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Prairie Gold is my FAVORITE wheat. Wal-Mart was selling it late last summer and I hauled home as much as I could and now have hundreds of pounds in storage. If you need a bread recipe for 100% whole wheat bread, my friend in Missouri gave me a great one. The bread is light in color and a beautiful fluffy texture. I think using Prairie Gold makes the difference. -Grainlady

Here's a great tortilla recipe.

(source: Natural Meals in Minutes - by Rita Bingham)

2 c. whole wheat flour
3 T. dry milk powder
1/3 c. sesame seeds
extra flour for the board
2 T. butter or applesauce (if you want a low-fat version)
1/2 t. salt
2 T. yogurt
1/2 c. lukewarm water

Combine dry ingredients. Use hand or electric beaters to cut in butter or applesauce until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Slowly pour in water and yogurt, mixing lightly with a fork. On a floured board, knead dough until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Shape into a ball, cover and let stand for 10 minutes.

divide and shape dough into 8 balls. Cover, removing one ball at a time and roll paper-thin on floured board. Place on heavy, hot, ungreased skillet, over medium-high heat. Blisters should appear right away. Brown on one side and turn. Cook about 30 seconds. Makes eight 9-inch tortillas.

Calories-255, Fat-5.2g, Carb.-38g, Fiber-4g.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 6:25AM
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I am going to try this recipe also. I have recently purchased a nutrimill and use it to grind wheat for bread. I would like to grind other things as well - beans for instance.

Grainlady - can you recommend some books with recipes that use grinding so I can use the mill more. Thanks..

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 11:07AM
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Recommended books....

1. Flour Power - The complete guide to 3-minute home flour milling - by Marleeta F. Basey

Newer version: Flour Power - A Guide To Modern Home Grain Milling

2. Deaf Smith Country Cookbook - by Majorie Winn Ford, Susal Hillyard, Mary Faulk Koock

3. Uprisings - The Whole Grain Bakers' Book - Published by The Mother Earth News, Inc - Cooperative Whole Grain Educational Association

4. "Country Beans", as well as "Natural Meals in Minutes" - by Rita Bingham

5. War Eagle Mill Wholegrain & Honey Cookbook - by Zoe Medlin Caywood

6. Recipes from the Old Mill (Baking with Whole Grains) by Sarah E. Myers and Mary Beth Lind

7. The Spelt Cookbook - by Helga Hughes

8. Wheat Cookin' Made Easy - by Pam Crockett

9. An Introduction to WHOLE GRAIN BAKING ...with Blender Batter Baking & the Two-Stage Process - by Sue Gregg

10. The Pleasure of Whole-Grain Breads - by Heth Hensperger

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 11:49AM
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Thanks Grainlady! You always amaze me!!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 12:15PM
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Dear Grainlady and friends,

I just bought the book Country Beans and had a question. We are almost always asked to soak, wash, and drain the dried beans to remove the particles that causes gas or something sort of toxins.

If we simply grind them then cook them, do you think its fine skipping on that step where we soak and drain?

Thank you much.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2013 at 2:01PM
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How amazing you found such an old thread!!! :-)

I assume you are referencing the normal procedure to soak beans overnight before cooking. In the case of bean flour, as noted in Rita Bingham's book, "Country Beans", the beans are milled whole, like you would mill wheat, rye, and other whole grains into flour. The bean flour, as does the wholegrain flour, will still contain phytates and enzyme inhibitors, which doesn't concern most people. However, if this is something you are trying to avoid, check out the method I use now - although I milled lots of beans in the past without processing them first.

I now sprout beans, dehydrate them, then mill into flour in order to neutralize phytic acid, enzyme inhibitors, and it also breaks down difficult-to-digest complex sugars, if that is a concern you need/want to address.

This process goes beyond the overnight soak commonly done for cooking beans. The overnight soak merely hydrates and softens the beans to allow them to cook quicker. The phytates and enzyme inhibitors are NOT deactivated by ordinary soaking or cooking, but it is if you sprout them first.

If this is something you want to eliminate from beans and still be able to make "bean flour", you will need to sprout and dehydrate the beans first before milling into bean flour. I also sprout beans before cooking them (without dehydrating). Sprouting cuts the cooking time considerably, makes them easier to digest, increases the nutritional profile, increases the protein and decreases the carbohydrate count. Good news for those of us who are carb conscious and use a lot of beans as a meat alternative.

Hope that helps you out....


This post was edited by grainlady on Fri, Jul 12, 13 at 15:14

    Bookmark   July 12, 2013 at 3:11PM
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Thank you for your response. Based on your reply, I learned that it's no big deal if i don't soak and drain, since that step doesn't even eliminate the phytates and enzyme inhibitors anyway. and i have no special condition so I won't be worrying about them.

What i like the most is that by grinding the beans, i can save water from the "soak and drain" method as well as save fuel since ground beans cook faster.


    Bookmark   July 15, 2013 at 3:21PM
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