Edible Parts of Bean Plants

Asked September 16, 2020, 11:37 PM EDT

I just read an article about getting your greens from unusual places and it mentioned edible bean leaves. This, like other articles I’ve read over the years, uses somewhat non-specific language like “common beans” or, makes a general statement and then begins talking about one particular variety, like fava beans, or just starts talking about Asian cuisine. I have never been able to find firm, expert statements that “all” are edible or even, hardly, that a specific variety is okay to consume. I feel I’m walking through the dark, here. Can you direct me to a rule-in/rule-out list resource of the typical dry bean varieties we eat, here in the US, where the top leaves are consumable? Think the “15-bean soup varieties,” cheap staples on the shelf everywhere, locally. Pinto, black, black-eyed peas, navy, butter/fava, kidney, etc. I specifically would like to make pestos, to freeze fresh, or I want to cook up a pot southern collard-greens style. Cooking up a bean soup and throwing in chopped leaves, too, ...sounds...nutritious and delicious. Growing and harvesting young plants throughout the winter, using lights, sounds fun. My concerns are whether there are any toxins that require boiling and draining, etc. because, just as I find the vague pro statements, I also find vague “mildly toxic” statements. Thank you.

Mercer County Pennsylvania

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