Cooking dried garbanzo beans -- while it may take some time -- is a great way to save money on your grocery bill. All it takes is a little pre-planning and an hour at home while the beans gently simmer on the stove. Use the garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, in vegetarian recipes like falafel, hummus or bean curries.
Measure the amount of beans to cook. Garbanzo beans will roughly double in size after cooking, so if you need 4 cups of beans, measure 2 cups of dried beans to prepare.
Place dry beans in a bowl large enough to allow for the beans to expand. Fill the bowl with water to at least 3 inches above the beans. Place in the refrigerator and let soak several hours or overnight.
Drain beans in a colander. Place beans in a large stockpot and cover with fresh water to at least 3 inches above beans.
Bring beans to a boil on the stove, then turn down heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until beans are thoroughly cooked but not mushy, which should be about one hour. Drain and enjoy as you would canned beans.
You may add seasonings -- like salt, pepper and a bay leaf -- to the cooking water if desired.
This method can apply to other types of dried beans, such as kidney and black beans.