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DROPCONE Posts: 1,592
4/27/12 3:48 P

I like black beans with brown rice, in tortillas with salsa and a little cheese, sort of Chipotle style but without all the salt!

I put peas in tuna & mac & cheese casserole.

I made a spaghetti dish where I was able to successfully hide white (navy) beans from my husband.

Bean chili is also a fave around here!

LOVE4KITTIES Posts: 4,690
4/27/12 3:39 P

Homemade refried beans are really easy. Just soak dried pinto beans overnight, drain, cook until tender (adding water as needed during the cooking process). Then, remove the excess water and mash them up (you may have to add back some of the water as you are mashing). I use a stick blender. I don't add any salt to mine, but I do add some no-sodium chicken bullion (to taste). I like to use them for things like burritos or as a side dish.

It's also easy to make a low-fat, low-sodium homemade chili. Here's my recipe:
1/2 lb dried pinto beans
1 lb ground beef (93% lean)
.5 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
.25 tsp sugar
1 tsp vinegar
15 oz tomato sauce

I cook up the pinto beans (as above, leaving them whole). When they are done, I brown the hamburger meat/onion with the flour. Then, I add it to the pinto beans along with the spices and tomato sauce. Sometimes, I reduce the amount of meat to 1/2 lb and use a few more beans instead. How thick or thin it ends up being depends on the amount of water that you leave in the beans. I usually remove most of the water from the beans when they are done cooking and then add back what I need to make the chili the consistency that I want.

Homemade split pea soup is also easy and you do not have to soak the split peas overnight. Kids might not like split pea soup, though!

Edited by: LOVE4KITTIES at: 4/27/2012 (15:44)
BEEISH Posts: 171
4/27/12 3:04 P

Check out Chocolate-Covered Katie's healthy desert blog (, she makes blondies, cookies, and brownies all with chickpeas or black beans! And they're actually good!

Also, there are a few kidney bean veggie burger recipes floating around, which are awesome (usually they call for beans, oats, mustard, ketchup, and an egg). If you're not a vegetarian, you can make normal (ground meat) burgers, but sub half the meat with beans instead.

4/27/12 2:49 P

chili is one way to incorporate beans. soups are another. but if you want to sneak them to your kids without them really knowing, you can mash them in with potatoes. all kids like mashed potatoes, right? and they'll never know.

SLASALLE SparkPoints: (278,559)
Fitness Minutes: (105,129)
Posts: 12,062
4/27/12 1:16 P

Oh, and I forgot ... you can make bean dips that are smooth by running them through a blender (chickpeas can turn into hummus, search SparkRecipes for their yummy black bean hummus), then when they're smooth, you can add them to bread for sandwiches, dip veggies in them ...

SLASALLE SparkPoints: (278,559)
Fitness Minutes: (105,129)
Posts: 12,062
4/27/12 1:14 P

There are so many varieties of beans that you can usually find ways to incorporate them pretty easily. Do you do any casseroles? If so, throw some beans in. Also in soups, especially vegetable soups. You can add a few on top of salads.

You also might try some new and different varieties of beans. There are so many to choose from and some might be more for your taste than others.

Have you tried butter beans? Yum!!! And they're REALLY easy to sneak into things!!

Beans are truly a super food with SO MANY great things. I didn't know until last year that they count as BOTH vegetable AND protein.

Good luck ... keep trying and don't forget it often takes kids MANY attempts before they learn to like new foods!!!

YISMET Posts: 364
4/27/12 12:35 P

I have been working to trying to add more beans to my's some recipes I've tried (and liked) so far!

One of the easiest beans to incorporate into your diet is lentils. They are much easier to cook than regular beans because you don't need to do the whole soaking/boiling forever thing. Plus, they don't taste quite so "beany." One of my favorite lentil recipes is this one (I do it on the stovetop and cut the oil in half)

If you really, really hate the taste of beans, then red lentils are the way to go. They are a really great addition to things like soups and pasta sauce. There are a million red lentil soup recipes, most of them Middle-Eastern. I really like this Turkish version (though it is a little spicy)

I made veggie burgers from red lentils the other day, and they turned out pretty yummy. (This one might be a little too much for kids, though...)

I don't have any recipes off the top of my head, but stuffed peppers are a pretty good way to throw in some beans.

Finally, Mexican food tends to be pretty kid friendly. Adding black beans/low fat refried beans to burritos, enchiladas, and tortilla casseroles is always good. You can make it a fun create-your-own-burrito night!

JMM413 SparkPoints: (3,966)
Fitness Minutes: (2,301)
Posts: 74
4/27/12 11:46 A

I am trying to find ways to incorporate beans into my diet (and my kids) so that it is easier to meet our protein and fiber goals. None of us are overly fond of them but I'd love some ideas or recipes you would be willing to share.....what are your favorites? How do you prepare them? How do you 'sneak' them in recipes?

Thanks for your input!!

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