Nutritional Values for Dried Beans Vs. Canned Beans

Beans provide a number of health benefits, including potentially lowering your heart disease and cancer risk and making it easier to maintain a healthy weight, according to the North Dakota State University Extension. Although dried beans need to be soaked before cooking and take longer to cook, they're often more nutritious than canned beans. They also have a better texture because the higher water content of canned beans can make them a bit mushy.

A mixture of dried beans in a bowl and on a table. Credit: fpwing/iStock/Getty Images

Macronutrient Content

The macronutrient content of cooked beans that were dried is similar to that of canned beans. For example, a cup of boiled kidney beans has 225 calories, 0.9 gram of fat, 15.3 grams of protein and 40.4 grams of carbohydrates, including 11.4 grams of fiber, or 45 percent of the daily value. Canned kidney beans have 210 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 13.4 grams of protein and 37.1 grams of carbohydrates, including 13.6 grams of fiber.

Vitamin Content

The main difference in vitamin content between boiled dried kidney beans and canned kidney beans is the higher folate content of the dried beans, which have 58 percent of the DV compared to just 23 percent in the canned beans. Kidney beans cooked from dried have 19 percent of the DV for vitamin K and thiamine and 11 percent of the DV for vitamin B-6 per cup. Canned kidney beans have 13 percent of the DV for vitamin K, 20 percent of the DV for thiamine and 9 percent of the DV for vitamin B-6 in each cup. Folate, thiamine and vitamin B-6 help you turn the foods you eat into energy, and vitamin K is essential for blood clotting.

Mineral Content

Canned beans are also lower in minerals than boiled dried beans. Canned kidney beans have 17 percent of the DV for iron, magnesium, potassium and copper; 23 percent of the DV for phosphorus; 8 percent of the DV for zinc and 22 percent of the DV for manganese in each cup. A 1-cup serving of boiled kidney beans has 22 percent of the DV for iron, 19 percent of the DV for magnesium, 20 percent of the DV for potassium, 19 percent of the DV for copper, 24 percent of the DV for phosphorus, 12 percent of the DV for zinc and 38 percent of the DV for manganese. You need iron and copper for forming red blood cells, and magnesium and potassium are essential for nerve and muscle function. Phosphorus and zinc help form DNA, and manganese helps with blood clotting.

Sodium Considerations

Most Americans consume way more than the recommended amount of sodium, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Processed foods, such as canned beans, are one of the major sources of this mineral, which can increase your risk for high cholesterol and heart disease. Beans boiled from dried contain almost no sodium unless you add salt, while canned beans are high in sodium. A 1-cup serving of canned beans has 758 milligrams of sodium, or 32 percent of the DV.

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