Simple beans are just the thing for those days when life is anything but…

Simple Adzuki Beans from Healthy Green Kitchen

This easy aduki beans recipe is adapted from Ree Drummond’s first cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl. Ree’s recipe features pinto beans. Those would certainly be the more standard sort to use in this dish, but I’m not a standard sort of person (plus I had no pinto beans on hand), so I used what I did have: aduki beans.

Adzuki Beans from Healthy Green Kitchen

Aduki beans (aka adzuki beans) are small red beans that are most typically used in Japanese cooking. They are often featured in sweet recipes such as red bean paste. Aduki beans also make an appearance in macrobiotic cooking.

I like aduki beans because they do not require soaking and because they don’t take all that long to cook compared to other bean varieties. If you can’t find them, though, feel free to use pinto or another type of beans instead.

If you’ve never cooked dried beans before and you are accustomed to just opening up a can when you want beans, here are some facts that might make you want to rethink that strategy:

-Canned beans are very high in salt
-Canned beans are pressure cooked, which may cause excessive gas in some individuals
-Cans can be a source of heavy metals, which can leach into the beans and then get into your body
-Cans are a form of packaging that can be avoided if you buy in bulk

Plus, I mean it when I say this recipe is simple…

Recipe for Simple Seasoned Aduki Beans

Yield: Serves 8-10

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 95 minutes

Total Time: 100 minutes

Ingredients:

*4 cups dried aduki beans (you can buy them here, or use pinto or another type of beans)
*4 slices organic uncured bacon, sliced into 1 inch pieces- optional; bacon lends a nice smoky saltiness but you can leave out for vegetarian beans
*filtered water
*1 teaspoon course sea salt or to taste
*1 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
*1 teaspoon garlic powder or to taste
*1 teaspoon chili powder or to taste

Directions:

1. If not using aduki beans, it's best to soak your beans overnight in a large pot covered with water. After they have soaked, drain them and rinse several times. If you are using the aduki beans, just go ahead and rinse them.

2. Place rinsed beans and bacon in a large pot on the stove. Pour water over the beans to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer.

3. Skim any foam that might rise to the top while cooking, and add additional water (or stock), if there does not seem to be enough liquid.

4. Cook until the beans are tender, about 1 1/2 hours (or as long as 3 hours for pinto and other beans).

5. Add the sea salt (don't add too much if you've used stock) and pepper, plus the seasonings I mentioned (or others that you like) to taste. You can serve these in whole wheat or corn tortillas with the toppings of your choice: think grated raw cheese, fresh salsa, guacamole, organic sour cream, etc. Or have some in a bowl with a side of cornbread (I made a pretty good gluten-free one that you can see in the top picture). Fresh chopped tomato, cucumber, red pepper, and sliced avocado are also wonderful additions.

6. My favorite healthy way to eat these, though, is this: chop some collard greens very fine, add some olive oil and fresh lime juice, and mix with the beans, veggies, and salsa. Top with some green onions and minced cilantro- yum yum yum!

Simple Seasoned Aduki Beans from Healthy Green Kitchen

This bean recipe is my contribution to Weekend Herb Blogging.

WHB was founded by Kalyn of Kalyn’s Kitchen and it is currently managed by Haalo of Cook Almost Anything.
Anna from Anna’s Cool Finds is the host this week!


 

15 Comments

  1. 1

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  2. 2

    Barbara Hunter — January 22, 2010 @ 5:03 pm

    So the collards are raw? I am from the south, where we cook collards to death! lol.

    I am learning to eat healthy, and the recipe sounds great!

    I am glad to have found your blog. I added it to my blogroll and will check back often.

  3. 3

    drwinnie — January 22, 2010 @ 6:11 pm

    Barbara- yep they are raw. Chopped very fine and mixed in with everything else is a good way to get some raw greens into your diet! Hope you like it…let me know!

  4. 4

    Barbara Bakes — January 22, 2010 @ 9:45 pm

    I would love to eat the beans that way too.It looks delicious! I’ve never used dry beans, but you make a great case for starting to.

  5. 5

    PJ — January 23, 2010 @ 10:20 am

    Aduki beans are new to me, but they sure look delicious and yes, no soaking is definitely a plus! I am guessing I might find them at online stores or whole foods? Love all your preparations and this one (with the tomato, avocado salad) just fits right up my alley, thanks for sharing!

  6. 6

    drwinnie — January 24, 2010 @ 1:02 pm

    Barbara- thanks so much!

    PJ…thanks and you can definitely find them online. Also check an Asian/Japanese market. Not sure about Whole Foods…

  7. 7

    Angele — July 5, 2011 @ 7:49 pm

    Can’t wait to try try this out. I’ve been looking for a simple adzuki bean recipe.

  8. 8

    Stephanie — July 6, 2011 @ 5:53 pm

    Hi thanks so much for this. I live in Asia and here the adzuki bean is mainly used for desserts but I’ve always loved their flavor – it’s nice to have some tasty alternatives.
    Great blog btw!

  9. 9

    Pete — February 5, 2013 @ 6:59 pm

    Wish I had some bacon right now but i’m flat broke! hence why i’m busting the red beans out. PS. thankful I live in Chicago we can get anything we want here, I got a 4# bag for 4 bucks in a Vietnamese grocer store.

  10. 10

    Barbara — February 10, 2013 @ 8:04 pm

    Do you drain beans and then add spices

    You never say

    Keep the water? Since you dont say to drain, I guess keep it watery?

    • Winnie replied: — February 10th, 2013 @ 9:38 pm

      Thee water cooks off, so it shouldn’t be watery when the beans are tender.

  11. 11

    Healthy Living Challenge: Day 12 – New Flavours | Mama's Haven — February 27, 2013 @ 3:18 pm

    [...] My verdict on the three new things I tried today? I am slightly disappointed with the millet, I will have to add some moisture back into my salad tomorrow by slicing a juicy tomato and some cucumber. I LOVED the harissa, my fish was moist and flavoursome, definitely a winner. I am not convinced I did the aduki beans justice by adding them to the millet, next time I will use them on their on, like in this recipe. [...]

  12. 12

    laurasmess — April 17, 2013 @ 12:46 am

    I hadn’t heard of an aduki bean before reading this post… though I have eaten red bean paste before so I guess I’ve probably consumed them! I love beans; both for their nutritional content and taste. I admit that I probably use canned beans more than cooked though, just due to the ease of preparation. Love the fact that these beans don’t require soaking! Yay! Perfect for an often-disorganised and always spontaneous cook like me!

  13. 13

    Veganman — June 2, 2013 @ 10:32 am

    I omitted the bacon and used raw red chard (no collards at the farmer’s market this week). Regardless, this was AWESOME.

  14. 14

    Lee Garverick — June 15, 2013 @ 6:37 pm

    Thank you! I will try this. I found your site when I Googled “what are aduki beans?” because they were listed in another recipe.