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How to Cook Great Northern Beans

How to cook great northern beans from dry on the stove, cooking beans in Instant Pot or slow cooker is here. Dry beans to tender is easier than you think!

How to Cook Great Northern Beans

Cooking northern beans from scratch turn out great. Of course you can buy them canned and already softened but this way you can adjust the seasonings and make sure there aren’t any preservatives used. Below we will focus on an easy Crockpot recipe for this but will also cover other methods. (affiliate links present)

How to Cook Dry Beans in a Slow Cooker

Recently we shared a simple mayocoba beans recipe made the same way. I hadn’t heard of these but saw them at the store and was curious. Once you get the hang of how this is done you can do the same. Soak for a bit, or overnight is best, drain and cook all afternoon until done.

Why would we bother cooking dry beans to tender this way?? Well we are always trying to eat healthier and if you start from the very beginning you know exactly what is in your food. Period. Another plus are the seasonings. Want to make a spicy side dish? You can do just that with some red pepper flakes and/or chili powder.

How to Cook Dry Beans in a Slow Cooker

How Long to Soak Dried Beans

This is the question of the day right?? Do you have to soak from dry or can you get away without it? You can, but soaking is a bit better, and some have sensitive guts if this step is skipped. With our slow cooker ham hock and beans I used pinto and skipped it entirely. It worked well but took literally all day to get to the right texture.

If I had put them into a bowl filled with water overnight the cook time would’ve been cut in half. It didn’t matter to me at the time because time wasn’t an issue, and I wanted to experiment. That is my take on the whole issue at hand anyway….. You’ll need:

Beyond that you can add whatever seasonings you know you will want to include in the flavor profile. Dry Sriracha is a great choice for heat as well if you want that. Use with caution though you only need 1/4 tsp or so.

how long to soak dry beans

How to Cook Dried Beans

Below instructions in the recipe card is for cooking dry beans in a slow cooker. That will of course take much longer but handy if you put everything together in the morning hours and have to leave all day.

If you would rather use a large pot dry beans on your stovetop you would follow the below timing after soaking for a good hour or longer. Because beans vary in size, people prefer different tendernesses, and burners vary there is a range.

  • Small beans – like black eyed peas or navy beans = 50-90 minutes to boil
  • Medium dry beans – like Great Northern, Pinto beans or Garbanzo = 1-2 hours
  • Larger beans – lima or butter beans = 1.5-2.5 hours to get tender when boiling in a pot

You still want to do this low and slow, even in a pot with a lid on it. You need to be patient with this type of food. Even in a pressure cooker it isn’t super fast but can be done well, will share that below too.

slow cooker northern beans

How Long to Cook Dry Beans in Instant Pot

I have done three that we really enjoy in this type of high pressure pot. I started with Instant Pot baked beans which weren’t soaked. There are two steps to this, getting them tender and then adding the sauce and cooking again to soak that all in.

Instant Pot black beans are a great side dish for taco Tuesdays for sure. Only one step is necessary for that one as well as cooking pinto beans the same way. Now I have used canned great Northern beans to make something quick when I don’t have a lot of time too like our Instant Pot ham and beans.

Slow Cooker Northern Beans

You’re going to make these similar to our Crockpot black beans were. You can do the whole thing in one day or set in a bowl with water overnight, that won’t hurt anything either.

  • Rinse beans and add into a large bowl, fill with water 3″ above the beans and let it sit on your countertop for at least 1 hour.
    • (if you skip this step add 30 min-1 hour longer on to cook time)
  • Drain that water and pour your soaked beans into your slow cooker. Pour in chicken broth (or water) and cover.
  • Cook white beans on high heat for 4-6 hours until they are fork tender. Drain liquid, season and enjoy.

If you wanted to add a lot of flavor I would set a ham hock in the center when boiling. Diced ham works well too to add some yum to it or when making a bean soup of sorts out of it.

crockpot northern beans

How to Cook Dry Northern Beans Fast

You would need to make this great northern beans recipe in an Instant Pot for quick. Setting in water for several hours beforehand will get them tender faster when they are boiled as well. I will include a printable with pressure cooking dry beans timing below so you can refer to that. All use high pressure with a natural release at the end.

From there you’ll have the confidence to cook dried lima beans, black, kidney and others from there. You can jump to recipe below and try them in your slow cooker or follow steps for the stovetop above.

instant pot cooking times for beans

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Great Northern Beans
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How to Cook Great Northern Beans

How to cook great northern beans from dry on the stove, Instant Pot or slow cooker is here. Dry beans to tender is easier than you think!
Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword crockpot, dry beans, northern beans, slow cooker
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 5 hours
Servings 8
Calories 63kcal
Author The Typical Mom

Equipment

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Pour beans into a large bowl, fill with water 3" above the beans and let it sit on your countertop for at least 1 hour. (if you skip this step add 30 min-1 hour longer on to cook time)
  • Drain that water and pour your soaked beans into your slow cooker. Pour in chicken broth (or water) and cover.
  • Cook on high heat for 4-6 hours until they are fork tender. Drain liquid, season and enjoy.

Video

Nutrition Facts
How to Cook Great Northern Beans
Amount Per Serving (1 oz)
Calories 63 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 4mg1%
Sodium 655mg28%
Potassium 205mg6%
Carbohydrates 10g3%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 4IU0%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 37mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Rating




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