Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably realize that beans aren’t just for chili anymore. Red kidney beans, along with the rest of the legume family, are so versatile you might consider making Meatless Monday last all week long.
Popular in Tex-Mex, Caribbean, and Creole dishes, kidney beans are named for their shape and provide a smooth taste and texture. They are available year-round and will absorb the flavors of the sauces and spice around them. The low cost of beans will save you money now, while their protein, fiber, and iron profile will save you on health care costs in the long run.
Dry or canned beans can be stored in an airtight container for up to one year. Fresh cooked beans should be stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 6 days
For overnight soak and quick soak methods, see our recipes
Bay leaf, cayenne, chili powder, cilantro, cumin, garlic, hot sauce, oregano, parsley, red pepper flakes
Nutrition: Boost Blood and Brain Capacity with Beans
Beans have been long known for their fiber content. The fiber of beans causes them to be digested slowly, providing stable energy while also regulating your blood sugars. But there are more to beans than just fiber.
A cup of beans provides 22% of your daily iron need. The iron in hemoglobin plays a role in red blood cell formation and the transport of oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body, including the muscles. Iron also works within the enzyme system to assist energy production and metabolism. This may be the key to having more daily energy.
Kidney beans also provide 23% of your daily Thiamin (Vitamin B1) which is critical in cognitive function. Thiamine helps synthesize acetylcholine, which is an important neurotransmitter for your memory function. And although you may not win a spot on Jeopardy, Thiamine may help decrease your risk for age-related mental impairment diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Fred Bisci, head of the Spartan Nutrition Board reminds us to “Remember the body is always changing for the better if you let it, so experiment with different fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, sprouts, juices, smoothies combinations and essential plant-based oils”
Athlete Nutrition: Plant-Powered Protein
Kidney beans for just makes sense for athletes. A one cup serving of them hits the mark on these key athletic components:
- 15gm of protein for muscle retention
- 45% of your daily fiber for insulin stability
- 38% manganese for energy production and antioxidant defense
- 22% of your daily iron for aid in oxygen transport to muscles
- 20% potassium for better blood pressure and heart rate
- Complex carbohydrate for stable energy
- Low saturated fat for reduced risk of Cardiovascular disease