Because the pinto beans in this chili are sprouted prior to cooking, they digest as vegetables. That’s a good thing for people who are watching their carbs. For more information on that, and to see other uses for sprouted beans, see 5 Yummy Ways to Use Sprouted Beans.
Rest assured, those who normally shun sprouts won’t know the difference. 😉 The beans become part of the soup when barely sprouted and they don’t taste any different.
With the exception of sprouting the beans for about three days prior to making the chili, you can use any favorite chili recipe. This is my general recipe for making sprouted bean chili. Adjust the seasonings however you’d like. This isn’t a spicy chili, so if you use my suggestions, you’ll end up with a mild chili that everyone will like.
Basic Sprouted Bean Chili
Sprout the beans
- 2 cups pinto beans dry
- pure water
Prepare the chili
- 1 onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic diced
- 1 pound grass-fed ground beef
- 1 can tomato paste
- 4 cups broth homemade or pure water + additional as desired for consistency
- 2 teaspoons sea salt use additional as needed to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper plus additional to taste
- 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons ground cumin or to taste
- 1 tablespoon paprika or to taste
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- garnishes such as; sour cream, diced onions, chopped cilantro, shredded cheese, etc.
Sprout the beans
Takes approximately one to three days.
Soak the dry pinto beans in water overnight, or for 8 to 12 hours.
A stainless steel pot with a lid makes a good sprouting container.
After 8 to 12 hours, use the lid to help drain the water without spilling the beans.
Leave the pot out at room temperature, with the lid partway off, so the beans have plenty of airflow while they begin sprouting.
Now for the next two to five days, rinse the beans well each morning and evening.
If the temperature is warm (higher than room temperature - 72 degrees), add a mid-day rinse, or additional rinses as necessary to keep beans fresh.
Watch for the beans to sprout.
When most of them have 1/8" to 1/4" sprouts, they're ready to become part of the chili.
If it has been awhile (like half a dasince the last rinse, give them a good final rinse and drain.
When the beans are sprouted and ready, prepare the chili.
Prepare the chili
Brown together in a medium or large stockpot over medium to medium-high heat: ground beef, onions, and garlic. I leave the meat somewhat chunky - this way everyone gets a few decadent-sized pieces in their bowl, rather than a million minuscule pieces. That's what we like.
Combine the tomato paste and stock (or watein a 4-cup measuring cup, and whisk until smooth.
Add to the meat mixture.
Add the beans and all spices.
Bring to a simmer, then turn down heat and let simmer for 20 to 30 minutes to cook the sprouted beans and develop flavor.
Serve with desired garnishes.
Other Chili Recipes!
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I like to can my pinto beans so I have a supply in my pantry. On busy days, I just grab a jar and dump it into the blender to make refried beans. Can sprouted beans be canned?
LeGay – That’s great that you do that! I would think sprouted beans can be canned – however, I’m not sure what the cooking time would be. These cook about 1/3 faster than soaked dry beans.
Thanks… you answered my question about taste! I’ve been looking into increasing sprouting even for our cooked items more lately. Any other benefits you’re aware of besides carbs?
Faith – if uncooked, you get the benefit of enzymes – that’s great to take a load off our bodies from having to produce digestive enzymes, freeing us up to make metabolic enzymes. I’m unsure how many of the increased vitamins last through the cooking; certainly the enzymes do not. So really, the greatest benefit is the easier digestion, which I think would translate for most people into less gas, too. 🙂 If there are other benefits, free free (anyone) to chime in…
I am going to try making this week so I soaked my beans 2 nights ago but didn’t forget to drain the water for approx. 14-15 hours after I’d started soaking them! I drained them and have left them in the strainer in a big pot with the lid over top (it isn’t sealed tight). I’ve been rinsing them but I’m worried that they are not going to turn out because I soaked them for so long. Do you think that matters? I’ve never sprouted beans before so I am not sure. They are super soft and they smell a little. Are they supposed to smell since they’ve been sitting out for awhile?
Renee – That is not too long to soak. They should be fine. They should smell earthy, maybe even a bit like dirt. If the smell is foul, then they did spoil. The lid shouldn’t be on all the way – perhaps they need more air. Give them some additional rinses, some more air, and smell them frequently. I hope they work for you! If they don’t, give it another try. Also, how old are the beans? Old beans may not sprout. Let me know what happens, please?
Thanks for the instructions for sprouting beans. It’s very helpful.
Just wondering if its ok to sprout the beans more then 3days?? I lost count of my days! I am sprouting kidney beans and I think Im going on 4 days. I was going to use them in chili tonight would they still work?
Cari — Yes, it is fine. As long as you like them, that’s the only rule. 🙂
I have this on my menu plan later this month-I think I will make a double batch so I have leftovers for those days when plans just don’t work out, and/or to have for lunches also. Thanks for more great stuff!
I know this is an old post. But I have made it with pinto beans and my son said it was good. I made this with black beans and he said it was crack. Apparently this is a compliment.