black beans, cash crone, budget, food, grocery, cheap, easyEating Well For Less - and Other Kitchen Charms 

Beans, Beans, the Magical Fruit

Mom used to make a big pot of ham and beans in the winter. Dad loved it, and so did my sister. But I just couldn’t bring myself to eat more than the obligatory spoonful that answered Mom’s “just try a little” request. Blech. But can black beans help my budget?

Last year, Cash Crone had a food budget challenge – to use up, make do, and save on groceries. I budgeted for one and one half people last year, as Bill Spaid and I lived in separate households.

But this year is different. We are now under one roof, so the food budget includes two whole people full-time. So we’re looking at ways to enjoy cooking at home, have plenty to keep Bill full, lots of snacks to keep Bill happy, and easy recipes to keep our kitchen duties to a minimum.

That’s a tall order. Last year helped us get into a routine, with regular pantry cleansing and very little food-wasting. So this year, we’re focusing on creative ways to save money on the food budget.

Today I bought a gigantic bag of black turtle beans in the ethnic section of the grocery. Five pounds of dried beans – for approximately $2.00.

Although I do not like navy beans or pinto beans, I am a fan of black beans. Somehow, they transcend the bean family. Better. Faster. Smarter. Ok, I’m exaggerating. They are still beans. But they are beans I will eat. So I have experimented in the past with black bean burger recipes, and liked most of them. However, I used canned black beans, so I’ll have an extra step of cooking the dried ones.

But that is only one recipe. My challenge is to make some new, exciting bean recipes that will make this purchase worth it.

I found a black bean quesadilla recipe that looks good. And I can definitely add the beans to brown rice. I am also going to try black bean brownies – that would make me a black bean fan forever. And I’ve heard you can substitute beans for other ingredients in things like muffins and breads. I’ll try out a few and post the winners here.


And please leave your personal favorites in the comments!


Feature photo courtesy artverau of Pixabay

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