How *Not* to Cook Beans

This is not a post about a good way to cook beans. Do not cook your beans the way I did yesterday or you might be scrambling around at dinner time trying to find something else for your family to eat!

Doesn't look like a yummy dinner to me!

Doesn’t look like a yummy dinner to me!


  • 2 c. dried pinto beans, soaked overnight
  • 1/4 tsp each of garlic salt, cumin and onion powder
  • 1 c. diced tomatoes (canned or fresh)
  • 8 hot dogs, chopped


Put everything in your smallest slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours. You should have a lovely, inexpensive, thick soup full of tasty beans and hot dogs. Perfect for a chilly winter day…if everything worked like it was supposed to!

Instead, the beans took forever to cook, probably because my littlest slow cooker doesn’t get as hot as my other slow cookers. So, when dinner time rolled around, the beans had been cooking since 7:30 a.m. and were still crunchy! In addition, the hot dogs gave up their flavor about halfway through the cooking time and became dark, rubbery sponges. Mmm…crunchy beans and chewy, flavorless chunks of hot dogs. How unappetizing for a family dinner!

I’m sharing this because I think it’s important to laugh at my mistakes. And because I think we women get too caught up in believing that every other wife/mother is perfect. When we compare ourselves to the perfection we imagine exists in someone else, we’re destined to feel bad about ourselves. So, the next time you think you’re the only one whose recipes fail, I hope you remember this post!

(By the way, if you fish out the hot dogs, feed them to the dog and finish cooking the beans, this does actually make a tasty dinner…a few hours after it was supposed to be ready.)



5 thoughts on “How *Not* to Cook Beans

  1. Becca February 23, 2013 at 3:36 pm Reply

    I cook pinto beans in the crock pot all the time but had the same thing happen to me once because I added tomatoes. Read somewhere that the tomatoes keep the beans from cooking and have to be added after the beans are already done. Sounds like a great meal idea you have. And you are so right about us women getting caught up in trying to the perfect wife/mother. These unplanned things happen to us all from time to time.

    • heatheralwin February 23, 2013 at 4:07 pm Reply

      Very interesting…I’ll have to try it again without the tomatoes. I think my little crock pot doesn’t quite get hot enough either. They did eventually cook, and we ate them with our red beans and rice at lunch (without the nasty hot dogs!).

  2. Rebecca Chavez February 23, 2013 at 10:42 pm Reply

    I’ve always added all my spices & tomatoes too at the beginning, but only had problems when I didn’t add enough water…I guess it happens to the best of us…Thanks for posting it helps to hear seasoned cooks sometimes run into the same dilemas we do…If men only realized how much effort & planning it takes to properly feed our families 😉

  3. […] crock pot ham and pintos, […]

  4. Laurie V. February 22, 2015 at 5:35 pm Reply

    I didn’t know about the hotdogs, learn something new everyday. I’m sure your crockpot is fine …… because I noticed you added garlic “salt”… Never add salt or salt products when cooking beans from fresh. Only after the beans are fully cooked.
    As I’m sure you guessed by now…. I learned that the hard way lol
    BTW: I LOVE your recipe and will be making it soon for hubby and I.

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