Black Beans in Slow Cooker


  • 1 lb black beans, wash and remove broken or wrinkled beans and/or small stones
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 onion, halved or diced
  • 2-3 whole garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon salt-added at end (seems like a lot, you can use less if so desired)


  • Wash beans and remove any dirt, drain in a colander and rinse again
  • Place beans, onion, garlic cloves and bay leaf in slow cooker. Add water.
  • Cook on high 3-4 hours, testing after 3 hours. To test doneness, spoon out a few beans and blow on them. If the skin peels back, they are ready. Taste to make sure. If all of the water has been absorbed, add more. Beans must be completely covered to prevent burning. If cooking on low for 6-8 hours, test the beans past the 6 hours point.
  • Add SALT and let cook, or sit with heat off for another 20-30 minutes to absorb the salt.
  • Remove the bay leaf, garlic cloves and onion before using, if desired.
  • Use immediately, or allow to cool off before transferring beans and some of the cooking liquid to zipper-lock freezer bags or an airtight container. Refrigerate up to one week or freeze up to 3 months.
  • If freezing, flatten bag in freezer, making it easier to defrost.
  • Defrost in warm water.