Creamy Slow Cooker Beans Curry
One pot beans curry with, easy to find, pantry ingredients!
Ditch the delivery and come home to fragrance of, made from scratch, slow cooked Beans Curry for an easy and comforting Indian Dinner! These creamy beans are packed with nutrients, have delicious curry flavor, and are perfect to serve with steamed rice, for a healthy weekday meal!
Oh - and there is not even a TOUCH of cream or stock in here! #vegan #glutenfree
To keep things simple, this Beans Curry recipe needs, only a few pantry ingredients: good old onion, garlic, tomatoes ...... and some curry powder!!
Also, sharing, important notes on cooking, Fresh Dried Beans, in Slow Cooker!!
Before slow cooker, I'm all about pressure cooker!
You know, in Indian homes, pressure cooker is part and parcel of our everyday Indian Cooking. And really, it makes cooking much much faster. We eat lots of lentils and beans curries and if we don't have pressure cooker, it will be SO difficult to manage. I mean, I wonder, in old days when pressure cooker was not available in India, how people use to cook lentils or beans?! Seriously, it needs hell lot of time to boil dried legumes on stove!
No wonder, everyone here addicted to convenience of canned beans. However, as of year 2015, canned beans are not so common in Indian Cooking........ everything is started from scratch. Even today, if my recipe calls for cooked beans, I actually soak beans overnight and cook them fresh to use in recipe, unless it is absolutely necessary to use canned version. Hence, Pressure Cooker!
Initially, I was skeptical about buying a slow cooker..... when I bought one, I fell in love with it just like my old friend, Pressure Cooker! Even though pressure cooker cooking is quick, easier, and preserves nutrients. Slow cooker cooking may not be quick, but it certainly is convenient, preserves nutrients, and also slow cooked food has lots of flavor due to no contact with extreme high heat!
It is safe to say, I love both of these cooking methods. I don't know if I shared this with you before:
1) I choose to cook in Pressure Cooker when I'm in hurry and have not planned anything.
2) I choose to cook in Slow Cooker when I have planned in advance and know that I want to come home to fragrance of already cooked meal.... as if someone cooked it for me!
That, my friends, is a nostalgic feeling.... reminds me of Parent's home!
I always wanted to cook fresh beans, from scratch, in slow cooker too. But, it took me few attempts to perfect this recipe!
First Attempt: Dried Beans
In my first attempt, I used dried beans. Crockpot picture with ingredients, I took, in first attempt.
I think, I was too greedy in leaving everything to slow cooker's ability :)
End result? - Beans were not even near tender, even after 10 hours of cooking on high. Actually, what I forgot is that even might Pressure Cooker needs overnight soaked beans or you will waste a lot of time, opening cooker, adding more water and then cooking again and again!!
Any how, after 11 hours of cooking, I had to finally shift my batch of par-cooked beans from slow cooker to pressure cooker to make'em fully cooked. Frankly, I was SO disappointed at me :(
Second Attempt: Overnight Soaked Beans
But I did not give up! I still wanted to cook fresh kidney beans curry, from scratch, in slow cooker.
This attempt, I soaked beans overnight with 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Salt helps tenderize the skin and helps get creamier texture of beans. In morning, rinsed beans, added to pot with other ingredients and in 6 hours, slow cooker cooked creamiest beans ever!
And my kitchen!!!
It smelled like an Indian Kitchen! lol!
Well, at it's core, it is an Indian Kitchen ;) So....
But, you get the idea, right? haha
PS: Other than soaking overnight, I changed nothing!
You know, why I test such recipes? I think, If I will ever work again, I would like to come back home, from work, and welcomed by houseful fragrance of fresh cooked curry of any kind!! Beans, lentils, lamb, chicken...... I want to have tested recipes, for everything, in my recipe wallet!
And what is the BEST part?! It is, if I will.... so will you :) How good does that sound?
Isn't it awesome?
Come home from work and a top-class Indian Restaurant food is waiting for you!
And above all, it has no preservatives, no high-sodium... etc!
Not just Beans Curry, you can really cook beans with any flavoring using this easy approach!
Now, Confession Time! I have always cooked red kidney beans along with overnight soaking liquid. Never discarded it. I USED TO think, that soaking liquid had lot of color of beans which make beans curry red in color. Looks very tempting and well prepared! I was SO SO wrong!!
I learned that soaking of beans release some water soluble chemicals from beans into soaking liquid, which are harmful for our body. So, we should always discard the soaking liquid, rinse beans, and then cook with fresh water. Also, never eat under cooked beans!!
Food is such a vast topic! Every day, I learn something new! And, I'm happy, at-least, I'm able to correct the things for health of my family and also share with you all good friends!
I'm sure if you start eating fresh home cooked beans, you will find they taste far better than canned versions! And lastly, don't you think, canned beans are rather expensive for everyday use? I mean, raw beans are much cheaper and you can cook just as much you like!! No half-open cans in refrigerator no-more!
Now, I'm famished! Time to grab some lunch :)
Enjoy my friends and have a great weekend - Savita x
Serve with rice or make Indian Breads, like these, at home:
Creamy Slow Cooker Beans Curryreview) (1
1. In food processor, add onion, ginger, and garlic. Process to make coarse paste.2. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a saute pan. Add onion-garlic mixture and saute on medium heat for 4-5 minutes until onions are soft and start to brown at edges. Add pureed tomatoes and tomato paste with curry powder, cumin powder, and half of salt and cook for 5 minutes or until oil separates. Additional Notes: Stir a few times to avoid burning garlic.
3. Transfer soaked beans (soaking liquid discarded), tomatoes onion-garlic mixture, lemon juice, and half of chopped cilantro to a slow cooker pot. Add remaining of salt (add less if using stock), 1/4 tsp black pepper with 5 cups of stock or water. Stir to combine. Set slow cooker to cook, on high, for 6-8 hrs or until beans are tender per your liking. Additional Notes: Critical Important - Always soak fresh beans overnight ( 8 hours minimum) or beans will not get tender in slow cooker and will end up dry or burnt.4. Once cooked, take 1 cup of the cooked beans, pulse in food processor and transfer back to slow cooker to make curry more creamy. Stir in remaining chopped cilantro. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Serve with steamed rice on side. Additional Notes: For more creamy texture, mix in 1/2 cup of yogurt/heavy cream/coconut cream. This makes beans thicker and taste even creamier!
Important, please read:
1. Please soak beans overnight for at-least 8 hours or boil them in salted water for 15 minutes before adding to slow cooker. Discard soaking liquid in both cases.
2. Use only ripe juicy roma tomatoes or if can't find then for best results use canned peeled tomatoes.
3. Cooked beans have tendency to absorb water. If you thinking to keep slow cooker on for longer than 8 hours, please add 1/4 water for every extra two hours or beans might dry out or burn.
Picture with all ingredients in crock pot shows un-soaked beans, just boiled for 5 minutes. That picture was my first attempt at cooking un-soaked beans in slow cooker and it took me 10+ hours on high to make'em tender (even though I did boiled beans for 5 minutes before using). Lesson Learned? ALWAYS soak fresh beans overnight (minimum 8 hours) for slow cooker or even pressure cooker cooking. Also, make sure to discard the soaking liquid.
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Did you try the recipe? Do you have feedback or a question? Leave a message below.
Ivy nSounds like a great recipe, trying to be more vegetarian. What do u suggest what to serve with as a balanced meal.
SavitaI recommend side of boiled/steamed rice or quinoa, a fresh salad, or lite salted plain non-fat yogurt. This is how we eat it often. I hope you enjoy!
MikeyNutritional facts of meal?
Gemma.email@example.comMine was extremely bitter. Followed recipe carefully but didnt taste as great as I hoped! Any ideas?
SavitaI’m not sure what you saying. I never found beans tasting bitter? Did you pre-soak beans overnight? Also need to discard the soaking liquid. These are only things I can think of.
Gemma.firstname.lastname@example.orgCan you just use canned beans and wash them? Then no need to soak overnight?
SavitaHi, you can use canned beans but that wilm be completely different recipe. Proportions of ingredients here are more suitable for dry pre-soaked beans.
Ren HuntIts in the cooker now! Smells great can’t wait. Only suggestion is to add the 5 cups of H2O or stock to ingredients list. Had to read it 6 times before I was sure I could add the water. Thanks for this very excited.
SavitaHi Ren, I will make the suggested correction. Thanks for pointing out. I hope you enjoy the curry.
HeidiHi Savits, I am going to try this dish tomorrow as I don't have the soaked beans today. But I was wondering if there was a specific ratio I needed between water and beans for soaking overnight with the salt? This dish looked super tasty, can't wait to try it.
SavitaHi Heidi, there s no specific ratio but I always make sure to rinse beans throughly. then, soak in wide bowl with plenty of water (and salt) that is above beans by at least 2-3 inches. Beans will soak water and will need room to adjust in bowl overnight. If water is less, beans will not get fully hydrated. I hope it helps. Enjoy!
Laura LeonHi! This looks delicious! It is next on my list to try. One question though, at what point do I add the cumin powder? Is it at the same time as the curry powder? Sorry if I missed it in the instructions. Thank you!
SavitaHi Laura, thanks! You are correct, cumin powder is added with curry powder. I missed it in directions. I have updated it now. thanks for brining to my notice.
HelenaThanks for the great recipe and directions. Mine are in the crock pot now!
CharmaineI'd love to try this, is there anything I can sub the tomato paste and can of tomatoes with? I'm sort of sensitive to tomatoes :/
SavitaCharmaine, thanks! Honestly, I always add tomatoes in this curry. However, making it without is very easy. I would add good splash of lemon/lime juice (adjust per taste) and 1/2 cup puree of cooked beans into the curry to give it some depth of flavor. I hope it helps.
EmilieThis recipe looks fabulous I can't wait to try it. Can I use canned beans instead? And if so, should I still leave it for 8 hours ?
SavitaEmilie, thanks! You can sure use same recipe for canned beans. I would change a few things though, 1) as you asked, it won't need 8 hours, 3-4 should b sufficient. 2) It will need less water, about 1 cup. Rest should work as is. I hope it helps and you get chance to try it soon.
JenniferI made this curry yesterday for my inlaws, came out very good. Every one enjoyed the taste. good tips on soaking and pureeing the beans. I also added some cream after cooking. thanks for the recipe though. I will be making it again.
Savitathanks, Jennifer! I'm glad your family enjoyed the curry.
DaveThe curry did have a good taste, but next time I will probably make a few changes to better suit my taste. I will soak the beans for 12 hours, and add about 1-1/2 cups of more liquid. Using the slow cooker is an excellent idea though, and I will definitely try until i get it just the way I like it.
SavitaDave, that sounds awesome! If use medium size beans and specified amount of water with overnight soaking, it should work. Happy cooking! Also, thanks for taking time to reply.
DaveThe curry came out way too dry. Not enough Liquid.
SavitaDave, the amount of liquid in slow cooker can vary based on various factors: 1) If you use larger beans, those will soak more liquid. 2) If you cooked on low, it will need more liquid than cooking on high. 1/4 to 1/2 cup more. You can make this adjustment next-time you make these beans. I hope curried beans turned out tender and tasted good?
GauriYes, Its best to cook the dish in a liquid in which we boil/pressure cook the ingredient than soaking water, isn't it? And yes, slow cooking is the way to Indian cooking... whether it's overnight soaking or frying the paste or making a dish on low flame... that's where we actually get the taste :)
SavitaYes, Gauri, soaking liquid should not be used for cooking. We should always cook food in fresh water or in stocks for flavor.
annie@ciaochowbambinaMy daughter absolutely loves Indian food and I would love to surprise her with this! Thank you for sharing!
SavitaAnnie, I hope your daughter will like it when you try! Have a great day, my friend!