Photo: Diana Bauman (Flickr)
Delicious, But Full Of BPA
I used to buy many cans of beans every week. They were quick and easy. But then I learned about Bisphenol A (BPA), an industrial chemical that is used to make certain plastics and resins. Plastics and resins made with BPA, which line the insides of most cans, can leach into the contained food and this acts as an environmental estrogen.
Once ingested, it effects our brain, disrupting proper hormone functioning. BPA alters genes and interferes with normal physical and behavioral development. You can imagine why this is particularly damaging to fetuses, infants and children.
BPA usage in food storage has been controversial for some time and many companies are starting to go BPA-free.
Count Your Pennies
Unfortunately, BPA-free cans of beans can be quite expensive and difficult to find. A can of BPA-free beans from Eden Organics costs almost $2, which is not frugal by any means.
But really, why even worry about BPA when you can cook dried beans in batches and freeze them at home to quickly use throughout the week?
Making your own canned beans in batches is very frugal. You can buy a small bag of beans, equal to 2 cups, for $2. For smaller sized beans like pinto or black, this equals to about 4 to 5 pints (cans) of beans when cooked. For larger sized beans like kidney, this equals to 5 pints (cans) of beans when cooked.
That’s a huge savings and quite an incentive to make your own BPA-free cans of beans.
To Season Or Not To Season
This is where your preference comes in: some season, some don’t.
I usually don’t since I add my seasonings, including salt, to the beans when I use them in particular dishes. These are just my quick, go-to beans.
Some people, however, will add some olive oil and saute some onions and seasonings in their stockpot before adding the beans and water to cook. Experiment, have fun!