Can you steam broad beans?

In this short article, we will answer the question, “Can you steam broad beans?”, along with other information such as ways to cook broad beans and the health benefits of eating them. 

Can you steam broad beans?

Yes, you can steam broad beans in a few simple steps. Remove the pods from the broad beans or peel the skins. Place them on a steamer,  and sprinkle with thyme, butter, or any other topping. 

Steam until they are tender, and this should take around 15 minutes, depending on their size. Once done, top with salt and pepper, and serve warm. 

How long do you steam broad beans?

The time taken to cook broad beans depends on their size. Usually, broad beans take around 5-10 minutes to cook if you are steaming them. Older beans, however, take longer to cook, around 15 minutes or so.

Always make sure to avoid overcooking the beans, as they will get hard and unappetizing. You can use a fork to test if the beans are cooked thoroughly before eating. 

Are raw broad beans poisonous when steamed?

No, raw broad beans are not poisonous when steamed, although they do cause several unpleasant conditions such as gastroenteritis. 

The broad beans contain a toxin called Phytohaemagglutinin, which is a natural toxin found in most types of beans. This can lead to some stomach discomfort in some people. 

Do I need to soak broad beans before steaming them?

Yes, you need to soak the broad beans before steaming them. This hydrates them and ensures that they cook faster and more evenly. Soak the beans overnight in 10 cups of water after washing them to remove any dirt or debris. They should be nice and easy to cook the next morning after soaking.

What are the health benefits of eating steamed broad beans?

There are many health benefits of eating steamed broad beans, and more information on this can be found here

Loaded with nutrients

Broad beans are packed full of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals important for health and well-being. Eating a bowl of broad beans can dramatically improve ailments such as indigestion, constipation, or vitamin deficiencies. 170 grams of broad beans typically contain:

  • Calories: 187 calories
  • Carbs: 33 grams
  • Fat: Less than 1 gram
  • Protein: 13 grams
  • Fiber: 9 grams
  • Folate: 40% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Manganese: 36% of the DV
  • Copper: 22% of the DV
  • Phosphorous: 21% of the DV
  • Magnesium: 18% of the DV
  • Iron: 14% of the DV
  • Potassium: 13% of the DV
  • Thiamine (vitamin B1) and Zinc: 11% of the DV

May improve anemia symptoms

People suffering from anemia could benefit from eating broad beans, as it increases the levels of iron in the blood. Iron is required to form hemoglobin, responsible for carrying oxygen to cells in the body. Iron deficiencies lead to symptoms such as fatigue, dizziness, and shortness of breath.

Why do you discard bean-soaking water?

Bean-soaking water is discarded as it cannot be used for anything else. Since the water contains dirt and debris from the beans, such as pesticides and other plant matter, it is not reusable for anything. You can use the water to water other plants in your garden or discard it down the sink. 

Can I microwave steamed broad beans?

Yes, you can microwave steamed broad beans. Place the broad beans in a microwave-safe dish after washing them, and add some garlic, salt, and oil. 

Cover the dish and cook on high for a few minutes, till the beans are tender. Poke the beans with a fork and check for doneness before removing them from the microwave.

How do you soften broad beans?

You can soften broad beans by boiling them. Add them to a large pot with some water and salt. Let the water boil and cook the beans for about two minutes. 

Immediately after, blanch them by soaking them in ice-cold water, to stop any reactions from taking place. This makes the beans very tender for any dish. 

What to put in steamed beans to prevent gas?

You can add baking soda to steamed beans to prevent gas. Baking soda will help break down the gas-making sugars in the beans, reducing the chances of bloating and gas that happens after eating them.  However, if you experience a lot of discomfort after eating beans, avoid eating them in excess. 

How do you know if steamed broad beans are bad?

You can tell if the steamed broad beans are bad, by checking for their color, odor, and texture. Spoiled beans contain a foul odor, and their skin will have brown spots due to the growth of bacteria or mold. 

They will also feel soft and mushy to the touch. Discard the beans immediately to avoid any food-borne infections if you see these signs. 

Can you freeze steamed broad beans without blanching them?

Yes, you can freeze steamed broad beans without blanching them. However, blanching them makes them last longer in the freezer without spoilage. 

Moreover, blanched broad beans will also be soft and crunchy when cooked, and also have a more vibrant color as compared to normal frozen ones. 

Other FAQs about Beans that you may be interested in.

Can you cook beans without soaking them?

Can you cook beans in a rice cooker?

Can you eat yellow beans with brown spots?


In this short article, we have answered the question, “Can you steam broad beans?”, along with other information such as ways to cook broad beans and the health benefits of eating them. 


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