Beans have long been dietary staples. Most kitchens have a can or two of beans tucked away in a cupboard. Shelf-stable and ready-to-eat, canned beans are a convenient way to add protein and fiber to a meal. However, purchasing beans from our bulk department reduces both the cost and recycling associated with canned beans. The same holds true for buying staple grains, such as rice, oats, or quinoa. You can buy a little to try, or stock up on your favorites.
Having a selection of bulk beans and grains at the ready also leads to more versatility in the kitchen. With a little practice, you can cook the perfect amount—whether you’re making a single batch of chickpea hummus or a big pot of lentil chili. Leftover cooked beans and grains are great to have on-hand! Consider them the DIY equivalent of canned beans or instant rice in your pantry. They will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, or up to 3 months in the freezer. Frozen beans can be added straight to soups, stews, and casseroles. Thaw frozen beans to puree them into spreads and sauces. Leftover grains can be tossed into salads, stir-fried with vegetables, added to soups, reheated with herbs and eggs, folded into the batters of baked goods, or transformed into a savory and decadent gratin. Given the possibilities you’ll want to bulk up!
Feeling intimidated by bulk shopping? Don’t be! We provide paper and plastic bags, or you can bring your own container to reduce waste. Make sure to have a cashier weigh your container before you fill it. Then write the bulk ID number on a twist tie or piece of tape.
To store bulk foods at home, select clean, dry containers with air-tight lids. You can purchase food storage containers like mason jars, or reuse your glass jars. Check out our Bulk Beans and Grains Guide for cooking information!