Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Is Canning Your Own Beans Cheaper? HECK YES

Today I mowed the entire lawn bright & early before it got too hot.  The 'entire' lawn includes both sides of our long gravel driveway, around the apple trees, the small front yard, and the large back yard.  It takes about 2 hours to do it all (not counting the time it takes to stagger back into the house, flop on the couch with a glass of water and recover enough to do anything else).

Then my mother-in-law brought over a squirrel for me to process.  Meanwhile I went through the lengthy process it takes to can dried black beans.  Bring huge pot of beans to a boil, let soak for an hour.  Bring back up to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes.  Prepare jars, boil water to cover the beans, etc.  

I ended up canning 17 pints of black beans.  Amazingly we burn through them pretty quickly since we put them on nachos, in soups, in cold bean salads, etc.  Whew!

So now I'm ready to kick back on the couch with a cold glass of whiskey and relax.  Ahhh...

But FIRST!  Let's figure out if canning your own black beans is cheaper then buying them in the store.

Store Bought Black Beans:
Can of black beans = approximately 99¢
Organic black beans = approximately $1.99

Homemade Organic Black Beans:
Jars = free from family / neighbors
Lids = $1.69 per pack of 12 (14¢ per lid)
4.41 lbs of organic black beans = $7.89
TOTAL = $10.27 / 17 cans, or 60¢ per can

So I now have organic black beans at a FRACTION of the cost they would be from the store.  WHOO HOO!  I don't know about you, but that feels like a total win to me.  :-)

Now for that drink...


  1. If you want to do a really nutso calculation, you should figure out what your time is worth, and factor that in to how long it took you to can the beans.

    Though, given you live out in the boonies, you actually probably do end up saving given the time it takes to get to a grocery store and back, plus the gas burned, plus the pollution from running a car.

  2. I'll just add that making dried beans into canned beans is way less time-intensive than trying to soak and cook beans every time you want to eat them. So...yay!