The Time-Saving, Weight-Loss Hack That Only Requires a Slow Cooker

It feels sacreligious to say this, but I've been a vegetarian for 25 years and have never once made my own beans. I know, right?! It's not that I don't like beans — I eat them seven days a week, at least twice a day. So what kind of legume-loving vegetarian am I? The lazy, can-opening one. But ever since I tried making dried beans in a slow cooker, I feel like a born-again vegetarian and am a forever believer that making your own beans is the only way to go.

POPSUGAR Photography | Jenny Sugar

Aside from avoiding BPA that line many of the cans beans are packaged in, you will save a crap ton of money. If I buy a can of organic pinto beans, it's $2.99 for a 15-ounce can, which is only about 1 3/4 cups. For $1.99, I bought a one-pound bag of orgainic dried pinto beans and it made six cups! And I made these in the same amount of time it would take me to open a can. No joke.

POPSUGAR Photography | Jenny Sugar

If saving on both BPA and money doesn't convince you, the taste will put you over the edge. Bye-bye, canned beans. Hello home-cooked, soft, so-much-more-flavorful bean goodness.

POPSUGAR Photography | Jenny Sugar

Get out your slow cooker, buy some organic dried beans, and for two minutes of prep, you'll have the best tasting beans to warm your heart all week long, and then some! Packed with fiber and protein, beans are a must if you're trying to lose weight. So add them to smoothies, soups, salads, cooked whole grains, and pasta dishes, give them away to your buddies (who doesn't want free beans?), or freeze them for later.

Slow-Cooker Pinto Beans

Cook Time9 hours
Yield12 half-cup servings

From Jenny Sugar, POPSUGAR


    • 1 pound dry pinto beans
    • 7 1/2 cups cold water
    • 2 teaspoons sea salt


    1. Add dry beans to a collander and rinse well with cool water. Pick out any weird looking beans or stones.

    2. Add the beans, water, and salt to the slow cooker.

    3. Secure the lid and cook on low 8 to 9 1/2 hours. Cooking time depends on the age of your beans and how soft you like them.

    4. When they're done, there will still be lots of liquid left. Just drain and use in your favorite recipes.