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Leena Spices



Black Beans – The Famous Turtle Beans

Black beans are small, shiny, and nutrient-rich beans (also called black turtle beans because of their rugged shell-like appearance). These are edible legumes, popular ingredients in South American and Caribbean Cuisines. Other varieties of black beans are Domino, Black Magic, Raven, and Condor.

Scientific Properties 

Common Name: Turtle Beans, Caviar Criollo And Frijoles Negros

Botanical Name: Phaseolus vulgaris

Kingdom: Plantae

Family: Legume

Origin: America

Specie: Wild Bean

Background and Cultivation

America is the native country to black beans. They are a staple part of the diets of Central and South Americans. Hot weather is the first requirement for their cultivation. Therefore, these are cultivated vastly in Mexico, China, India, and Brazil. Black beans are used in the national cuisine of Brazil, Feijoada.

Black beans are grown during the last days of the spring season. During that time temperature of the soil began to rise and reach 70 degrees Fahrenheit. These will germinate in almost 14 days and be ready in 100 days. Brazil is the top producer and consumer of black beans.

Taste and Texture

Black beans are mild and have a slightly sweet taste. These beans also pick the flavors of other ingredients they are cooked with.

They look like an oblong pea with almost half an inch in size. These are hard and shiny in their uncooked form. After cooked, their texture will be soft, meaty, and creamy.

Culinary Uses

Black beans are a popular ingredient of many Indian, Caribbean, and American cuisines. From soup to rice, various cuisines contain black beans as essential ingredients. Here are the most common culinary uses of black beans.

Black beans maintain their shape during every cooking process. Therefore, these are the best ones to use as a side dish. Roasted black beans with some seasoning are the perfect side dish for any dining table.

Black beans soup is a particular type of soup enjoyed as a traditional dish in Cuba. The beans are boiled, and then olive oil, seasonings, and other soup ingredients are added. It goes well with white rice.

Due to their meaty texture and mild flavors, these beans are vastly used by vegetarians to replace taco meat. From pizza to the burger, these can be consumed instead of meat.

They are also used in some desserts due to their slightly sweet taste. Brownies and smoothies are typical desserts that can use black beans.

They also go well in salads to add some fibers.

Nutritional Facts

Black beans are a rich source of a variety of nutrients. They are low in fat and include minerals such as calcium, zinc, phosphorus and iron. Each 100-gram serving of black beans contains the following value of nutrients.

Energy: 552Kcal

Fat: 0.54 g

Carbohydrates: 23.71 g

Sugars: 0.32 g

Dietary Fibers: 8.7 g

Proteins: 8.86 g

Calcium: 27 mg

Phosphorus: 140 mg

Potassium: 355 mg

Magnesium: 70 mg

Benefits of Eating Black Beans

These lower blood pressure as they contain other nutrients in more amounts than sodium. Moreover, sodium content is reduced during soaking and rinsing. Low sugar levels and high dietary fiber portions of beans help maintain diabetes.

Selenium is also present in black beans and activates liver enzymes. It prevents from cancer by detoxifying several carcinogenic materials.

Due to fiber content, black beans are easily digestible and ease the constipation conditions.


They can survive 2-3 years at room temperature. It is best to store in an airtight container to keep the moisture away. However, don’t mix the old beans with and new ones as old beans takes longer to cook.

Cooked black beans can also be stored in a refrigerator for a day or two.

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