Most beans take about two and half hours to cook in a jar, but if they are old they may take longer. Pour out the bean soak water, fill it with fresh and place the jars in the pot of cold water. In the canning pot pictured below there is room for seven jars. Because grains only take 40 to 50 minutes or less and beans take about 2 1/2 hours, we cook all the grains at one time and then cook all the beans at one time.
Cooking beans in quart jars makes sense when you realize that beans take about two an a half hours to fully cook even when you soak them first. Cooking beans in a jar you can cook many in the same pot at the same time. This time-saving, energy-saving process also reduces stress at dinner time and at the same time improves the quality of your meals. We call these whole foods Vegan Core Dishes.
We soak our whole foods overnight such as quinoa, pinto beans and brown rice in jars, then in that same jar we cook it. The soaking process actually causes the whole food to sprout inside. If you left it for several days you would see tails sprouting out of your food. That means your food is alive and packed with the highest nutritional value possible. Soaking overnight is enough to cause the seeds to transform from a dormant, rock hard pebble that is difficult for your body to digest, to a glorious sprouted vegetable overflowing with the life-giving source that every cell in your body craves.
When you start with one cup of uncooked whole grains or beans and soak them overnight they will swell to about double the size. Then they will continue to swell as they cook to finally be about three times the original size. In other words, one cup of beans will fill a quart jar. Grains swell more than beans. One cup of grains will swell more than beans to fill a quart jar and even push up taller than the rim of the jar! For this reason it makes sense to store large amounts of beans and grains in their smallest state rather than storing canned beans that have already swelled to three times their size. They take less space, cost less and are light weight to store. And forget about expiration dates. Whole foods remain dormant until you soak them. Until then they will remain perfect for years–maybe even decades.