beans in the prepper's pantry

Honeville quick cook black beans in #10 can
Beans in the prepper's pantry
Planning a variety of bean dishes for preparedness

Dried beans are an ideal, shelf-stable protein source for preppers.
Beans are ultra versatile as you can grind them into flour and
even sprout them! Of course they are tasty refried or as part of
chilis soups and stews.

But are beans the best food for preppers? Certainly beans are
good to have, but when dried they take a long time to
reconstitute and cook; moreover, they are not a complete protein
without the addition of rice!

To fight food fatigue with beans, we've developed this tasty list
of options to add to your long term food storage menu plans. It's
important for Happy Preppers to pack a variety of kinds of beans
(and not just for a Mexican Food Storage)! Think Italian cannellini
beans and Mediterranean garbanzo hummus. Here are some
unusual finds for Preppers along with some great finds in the
usual favorites:

  • Thrive dried Pinto Beans. According to the manufacturer,
    "By combining cooked beans with a variety of spices, meats,
    and vegetables, you'll quite literally have an endless supply
    of possible meals at your fingertips." Be sure to pack Pinto
    Bean seasoning!

    Pinto beans can come canned, dehydrated and dried. At the
    top of the page are pinto beans from Thrive locked in a food
    grade bucket and are a typical prepper staple; however, an
    unusual find is the bucket from Emergency Food Supply of
    precooked Dehydrated Pinto Beans. This will save valuable
    time and fuel! With a 20-year shelf life, this 5-gallon bucket
    comes packaged in convenient 8 serving foil pouches inside.
    You get 64 servings that are ready to eat in less than 6
    minutes.

  • Frijoles (re-fried beans). Mexican style beans are a South
    Western staple you'll love. Frijoles can be made from pinto
    beans or black beans. Traditionally made with tomatoes and
    salt pork, pinto beans are fried into a delicious side-dish and
    topped with cheese. You can create a prepper's version by
    cooking your dried pinto beans with canned bacon or even
    bacon bits!

    Serve your frijoles with hand-made corn tortillas and your
    cast-iron tortilla press. Home-made corn tortillas are made
    with Masa Harina flour. Spanish for "dough," masa is the
    flour of finely ground maize, hominy or corn. It's basically
    been dried, cooked, ground, soaked in lime and then dried
    again. It reconstitutes easily with warm water to make corn
    tortillas, empanadas, pupusas and tamales.

  • Cannellini Beans: Try cannellini beans with pasta, tuna and
    cannellini beans, or pasta fagioli soup! The recipes are in
    The Prepper's Pantry, a comprehensive guide to making food
    from items in your long term storage pantry, by Anne Lange.
    Such versatile Italian white beans have a delicate texture
    with a mild flavor. Beans have the "al dente" texture
    necessary to be used in soups or sautés. Above, the
    Cannellini Beans from Carmelina are ready from the can, and
    free of preservatives. They're around $1 a can.

  • Chili: Armed with a variety of cans of beans (or dried beans
    that you stew), plus some chili powder, cayenne pepper and
    ketchup, you'll have the fixing for a hearty chili. Add some
    freeze dried hamburger and you're in for a post apocalyptic
    treat!

  • Chili-Mac: While the origins of Chili-mac is unclear*, legend
    has it that someone in hard times combined their chili and
    beans with macaroni to stretch their food and the result was
    the creation of a new American tradition. Don't stop with
    macaroni noodles! Your favorite chili fixings will be equally
    delicious with linguine noodles and you may end up with a
    new family favorite. Garnish with freeze dried cheese! And
    freeze dried sour cream!

    * Chili Mac is often credited with Hard Times Café in
    Alexandria, VA, yet chili is a SouthWestern tradition.

  • Pork and beans:  The salty goodness of pork combined with
    beans in a savory tomato sauce provide a comforting
    combination of baked beans. Traditionally, they are an
    accompaniment to a chicken barbecue or served cowboy
    style with franks or sausages. Here are ways to serve this
    classic cowboy protein.

  • Add Boston Brown Bread in a can to your pork and
    beans and you can enjoy a New England favorite.
    Pictured right, the B&M Brown Bread slices into hearty
    rounds.
  • Pork and beans is wonderful with cornbread, too! If
    you're lucky enough to have your own vegetable garden
    when SHTF, then you can serve a side salad.

  • Red Beans and Rice: Cajun style beans and rice usually has
    a Cajun spice and accents of sausage. Preppers can use
    freeze dried Sausage Crumbles from Provident Pantry.

  • Hummus: Hummus is a middle eastern dish of mashed chick
    peas (also called garbanzo beans), combined with lemon
    juice and olive oil and sometimes also garlic or other
    flavorings and tahini (a sesame seed paste).
  • The typical accompaniment to this dip is pita bread or
    pita chips.
  • You might also serve a tabouleh (wheat salad) or
    couscous with the meal.

  • Three bean salad: While you can mix any beans to make a
    bean salad, typically the three bean salad includes green
    beans, red beans and chickpeas. You can drain canned
    beans or serve cold beans that were previously cooked, then
    marinate them in Italian dressing or your favorite oil and
    vinegar dressing. Spice up your bean salad with onions,
    celery and carrots.  You'll also find some commercially
    available bean salads on the market, such as from Read (a
    four bean salad). This recipe is essentially a three-bean
    salad, including green beans, white beans, garbanzo beans
    and kidney beans.

Other ways to cook with beans:
  • Beans will add a hearty source of protein in your vegetable
    soup.
  • Beans can be ground into flour, use your grain mill!
  • Caribbean beans and rice are available ready made in a can,
    immediate right
  • Combine different beans (the list of beans is endless):
  1. Aduki beans
  2. Black beans
  3. Black eyed peas
  4. Butter beans
  5. Caneloni beans
  6. Edamame (soy beans) buy only organic or you will risk
    having GMO beans.
  7. Fava beans
  8. Garbanzo beans - great for making hummus an ancient
    prepper food.
  9. Green beans
  10. Kidney beans - ideal for chili
  11. Lima beans
  12. Lentils
  13. Navy beans
  14. Pinto beans - staple for chili
  15. Red beans
  16. White beans

Recipes with Beans

  • Dried pinto bean tip: Instead of soaking your beans in the
    refrigerator in plain tap water, do this: soak 1 pound beans
    for 8 hours or overnight covered with 4 quarts water and 3
    tbsp salt and put your pot of beans on the counter (not in
    the refrigerator). Then drain, and add fresh water to cover
    before cooking for your recipe. Your beans will come out
    perfect.

Happy endings...
Dried beans offer an inexpensive
protein for preppers and are
very easy to store, and they are most definitely the staple in
every prepper's pantry because of their long shelf-life.Beans are
an excellent protein source for preppers (when combined with rice
to make a complete protein). Just be sure to pack some meat as
well.

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