Cooking Mung Beans 101 – How to Cook Mung Beans

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how to cook mung beans

Welcome to Cooking Mung Beans 101. Mung beans are a delicious and nutritious way to add protein, phosphorus, and calcium to many sweet and savory dishes. If you have wanted to try mung beans but shied away because you weren’t sure how to cook them, rest easy. Class is about to begin.

In this article, we will talk about:

  • Cooking mung beans in rice cookers, instant pots, and pressure cookers.
  • The ins and outs of soaking mung beans.
  • How to tell when your mung beans are cooked perfectly.

Let’s get started.

How to Cook Mung Beans in Rice Cooker 

A rice cooker is one of the handiest kitchen gadgets around. Despite the name, it has many uses, including making it simple to cook perfect mung beans.

What you’ll need

  1. Dried mung beans
  2. Water
  3. Rice cooker
  4. Large spoon
  5. Pinch of salt (optional)

1. Soak Mung Beans (Optional)

soak mung beans

Soaking mung beans before cooking is not a necessity, but it does slightly shorten the cooking time and yield better results. An overnight soak is best, but as little as 4 hours will help. 

2. Rinse Your Beans

Before cooking, you should rinse your beans with cold water. Rinsing removes any loose material and starch that might have come free during the soaking process, or present in unsoaked beans.

3. Place Mung Beans In The Cooker

mung beans amount

All rice cookers are different, but as a rule of thumb, you should limit the amount of beans you plan to cook to 1/3  the cooker’s capacity. As an example, in a 6 cup rice cooker, limit yourself to 2 cups of beans.

4. Add Water and Salt

If you rehydrated your beans, then a ratio of 1.5 cups of water to 1 cup of beans is about right. If beans are unsoaked, then 3 to 1 is needed. Add salt if desired. Use a large spoon to smooth the beans into an even layer.

5. Cook your Mung Beans

mung beans in rice cooker

You can now turn on your rice cooker and allow it to run a normal cycle. Keep an eye on the water level in the pot. Some models cook at higher temperatures, and you may need to add a little additional water.

In most rice cookers, beans that have been soaked will need 1.5 cycles to cook. Unsoaked beans may require two or more. 

It is best to experiment with small batches till you learn how your particular rice cooker performs.

How to Cook Mung Beans in a Pressure Cooker

A pressure cooker offers one of the quickest and simplest ways to prepare mung beans. There is no reason to pre-soak your beans as they will cook so quickly the added time is negligible. 

What You’ll Need

  • Pressure cooker
  • Dried mung beans 
  • Water
  • Strainer
  • Salt (optional)

Rinse Your Beans

Pour your dried mung beans into a strainer and rinse with cold water.

Add Ingredients To The Pressure Cooker

Add beans, water, and salt to the pressure cooker at a ratio of 4 parts water to 1 part beans.


mung beans pressure cooker

  • Seal the pressure cooker and place it over a medium flame. 
  • When steam begins to escape from the stem, place the pressure regulator on top and reduce heat.
  • Allow to cook for 9 to 12 minutes at high pressure. Time depends on the desired consistency.
  • Remove from heat and allow pressure to drop naturally.


Once the pressure cooker has cooled sufficiently for the pressure to drop, you can remove the lid and serve your freshly cooked mung beans. 


How to Cook Mung Beans in the Instant Pot

Instant pots have become popular for some excellent reasons. They are immensely versatile and offer a stovetop pressure cooker’s speed and cooking convenience without the associated risks. To cook mung beans in an instant pot is a straightforward process.

What You Will Need

  • Instant Pot
  • Dried mung beans
  • Water
  • Strainer

Rinse Your Beans 

rinse mung beans

Pour dried mung beans into a strainer and rinse with cold water to remove any debris and loose material.

Load Your Instant Pot

Place the desired amount of beans and water into your instant pot. 4 parts water to 1 part beans by volume should be about right. 

Set Instant Pot Controls

There are many models of Instant Pots available, and each is slightly different. The cooking method that you want to achieve is to cook your mung beans for 9-12 minutes under the highest pressure your Instant Pot has. Set your controls appropriately. 

Cook Your Mung Beans 

All that is left to do is seal your Instant Pot lid and hit start. The appliance should take care of the rest.


After your Instant pot has run its cycle and the pressure has dropped, you can remove the cover and serve your mung beans. 


Should Mung Beans Be Soft When Cooked?

softer mung beans

Yes, mung beans should be soft when cooked. How soft they will get depends on many factors. 

Mung beans can be purchased:

  • Whole (Green).
  • Split with skins on.
  • Hulled and split (Yellow).

Removing the husk results in a softer, creamier bean, as does splitting.

Cooking methods will also affect the texture of cooked mung beans. Beans cooked under pressure and at higher temperatures will be softer than those simply boiled.  Additionally, the longer mung beans are cooked, the softer they will become. 

Can Mung Beans Be Cooked Without Soaking?

mung beans soaked overnight

Yes, you can cook mung beans without soaking. Soaking, especially whole green mung beans, does yield softer beans in less cooking time. 

The cooking time for unsoaked beans will be approximately double that of soaked beans.  

As an example; 

Unsoaked mung beans cooked on a stovetop will require 20 to 30 minutes of hard boiling to be soft enough to add to most soups or salads. Beans soaked overnight will be just as soft after only 10 to 15 minutes. 

How to Cook Mung Beans Without Soaking

dry mung beans

Soaking mung beans does not affect cooking methods. You can prepare unsoaked mung beans in any manner that you would use for beans that have been rehydrated. 

The only difference will be that dry beans will require approximately twice as long to cook and, depending on cooking methods, may require slightly more water. 

You can use mung beans in many different ways, and the desired texture has more effect on cooking method and time than soaking or not.  

Is It Better to Soak Mung Beans?

Whether it is better to soak mung beans depends on how you intend to use them and the texture you want. If you’re going to use them as a cream filling for a dessert or base for cake icing but want their total nutritional value, then soaking is advisable. It will result in a smoother consistency.

If you are cooking mung beans to add a little crunch and protein to a salad, it is best not to soak them. 

How to Cook Mung Beans for Soup

Mung beans are an easy way to make delicious healthy soups even more nutritious and flavorful. Here is how easy mung beans are to prepare for soups (stovetop method). 

You’ll Need

  • A colander 
  • Dry green mung beans
  • Water or broth
  • A large saucepan

Step 1 Rinse Your Beans

Place the desired amount of dry mung beans in your colander and rinse with cold water. 

Step 2 Cook Your Beans

  • Transfer beans to a large saucepan, and add your water or broth. Since this is going to be soup, don’t be stingy.  
  • Cook on high heat until the beans reach a boil and then simmer on a low fire for 30-40 minutes.
  • When beans begin to soften and split their skins, they are done. 

Step 3 Make Soup 

mung beans soup

You can continue to build your desired soup in the pot with your beans or allow the beans to cool and add them to the soup just before serving. The latter leaves the beans firmer and chewier.  


How Long Does it Take to Cook Mung Beans?

Mung beans are one of the quickest cooking dry beans available. They are relatively thin-skinned and small. How long it takes to cook them depends on the cooking method and desired consistency. 

 The list below shows average cooking times that should give you soft but firm beans with the most popular cooking methods. 

  • Instant Pot – 9 to 12 min.
  • Pressure cooker – 9 to 12 min.
  • Rice cooker – 30 to 40 min.
  • Stovetop – 30 to 40 min.

How Long Do You Have to Soak Mung Beans?

how long do you soak mung beans

You don’t have to soak mung beans. They can be cooked without soaking without any ill effect. However, for creating dishes with the creamiest texture, it is advisable to soak mung beans for a minimum of 4 hours. The best practice is to allow them to rehydrate in cool water overnight. 

How to Quick Soak Mung Beans?

It is best to soak mung beans overnight, but if you want beans in a hurry, they can be quickly rehydrated in an hour or less.  You can also use this method for other types of dry beans.

Step 1 

Just as you would before cooking, place your beans in a colander or sieve and rinse with cold water.

Step 2

Place rinsed mung beans in a large saucepan. Add cool water till beans are submerged by approximately 3 inches.

Step 3 

Place your pot over medium heat and almost bring to a boil. Don’t let it boil. Just heat till the first bubbles appear around the edges.

Step 4

Place the lid on the pan and remove it from heat. Allow beans to cool for 1 hour.

Step 5

Drain beans and use as you would ones that had soaked overnight.

Can You Over Soak Mung Beans?

oversoak mung beans

You can over soak mung beans. If left in water over 12 hours, they will absorb too much moisture and begin to lose their flavor. Oversoaking can also affect mung bean’s texture and, in extreme cases, diminish their nutritional value.