We have all heard the little ditty… “Beans, beans the musical fruit the more you eat the more you toot.” Not everyone wants to consume foods that will make their tummies speak for them though. Thankfully there are some great tips out there to make beans less gassy, helping to silence the musical fruit.
Dried beans are actually quite wonderful for you. Nutritionally speaking they are high fiber, protein, and even packed full of antioxidants.
Studies have shown that people who consume more legumes technically have a higher quality diet overall. In fact, consuming beans can help to reduce risk factors for some diseases and help you to control your weight.
While beans come with some great benefits, they can also be the source of rather intense digestive issues, causing quite a large amount of gas. There are ways to enjoy them however, without having to worry about the intense gas that comes with them.
Beans and Gut Health
A healthy gut is the key to ensuring that your body is getting the proper nutrition that you need from your food.
If you have trouble properly digesting the things you eat then your body isn’t able to use the nutrients from them. While things like probiotics can help, preparing your foods the right way can also help to aid in proper digestion.
Knowing things like how to make beans less gassy can be incredibly helpful to your gut health.
While the song that goes along with eating beans can be somewhat funny, the reality of it all has to ability not to be.
What Makes Beans So Gassy?
When it comes to degassing beans it is rather important to understand what cases the issue in the first place. Beans contain oligosaccharides, including raffinose.
These big and somewhat daunting words mean that beans contain rather large molecules of sugar that can’t be digested or properly broken down within the small intestine.
The sugar then passes undigested through the colon. This is where it becomes fermented by the “good” bacteria that your colon contains and produces gas as a by-product.
How to Make Beans Less Gassy
Pressure Cooking The Beans
If you own a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, using one to make beans less gassy is a possibility. This is because they can help to break down the sugars within the beans to eliminate the unwanted side effects.
Step 1: To use a pressure cooker to degas your beans, you will want to start by soaking them for 4-8 hours. Once the beans have been properly soaked, drain them well and give them a quick rinse.
Step 2: Once properly rinsed, place them in the pot of your pressure cooker and add water. You will want the water to be at least 2 inches above the beans.
Step 3: Set the pressure to high or the highest cooking method based on your appliance and cok for 10 – 12 minutes. Once done, perform a natural pressure release. You could use rapid release but you don’t want to end up with a foamy mess, so just allow them to release on their own.
Step 4: Simply drain and rinse them and they are ready to use in your favorite recipe.
Soaking for an Extended Time
This is the easiest method to use to de-gas your beans. In fact, it is so simple that you will probably choose this one. It does however take quite a bit of time, so if you are stuck for that, the pressure cooker method is probably the best one.
Step 1: Place your dried beans into a large container.
Step 2: Cover the beans with water and allow them to soak. They will need to soak for at least 8 to 12 hours.
Step 3: Keep in mind that the key to ensuring that the gas is eliminated is to rinse and drain the beans every 3 hours. Drain, and rinse every 3 hours ensuring to discard the water frequently. This will get rid of the excess sugar starch. Do not skip this step.
Use Baking Soda
Adding a little baking soda to your recipe can help to decrease the gas beans produce. This is because it can help to break down some of those pesky, gas producing sugars.
Step 1: Add a teaspoon of baking soda to about 3.5 Liters of water. Stir in your dried beans and bring them to a boil over high heat.
Step 2: Turn the heat off and allow the beans to soak for 4-5 hours.
Step 3: Drain and rinse several times.
Step 4: Use them in your favorite recipes.
Add in a Strip of Kombu
My friend Darcie from Your Pathway to Happiness caught my attention when she was cooking beans and added a strip of kombu. She mentioned in her stories the list of benefits and that included taking away the gas effect of beans.
Whether you are cooking your beans on the stovetop or in your slow cooker, adding in a strip of Kombu can aid in digestion and reduce the gas associated with eating beans.
This is because it minimizes the gas-producing effects that beans can have on people, especially those that struggle with frequent intestinal gas.
This gas and bloating are often produced because the individual is missing the enzymes that are required to break down the raffinose sugars that beans contain.
Kombu contains digestive enzymes and certain amino acids that can offer a more comfortable experience when consuming beans, allowing them to be digested much easier.
When it comes to beans, they certainly can be a healthy addition to your diet. If you want to avoid the gaseous side effects, there are several ways to do so.
Unless you have dietary issues, excluding beans from your diet is not a good idea as they have many great benefits.
Use the method of de-gassing your beans that works for you and you will find those musical fruits aren’t so musical anymore.
Bean filled recipes to try:
- Healthy Turkey Chili in the Ninja Foodi [Stovetop and Pressure Cooker options]
- Butternut Squash Chili Recipe
- Turkey Taco Skillet
- Mexican Quinoa Salad Recipe