4 min read

Can Dogs Eat Beans?


By Alex Olsson

Published: 05/10/2024, edited: 05/11/2024

Reviewed by a licensed veterinary professional: Dr. Linda Simon, MVB MRCVS

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Black beans, baked beans, classic green beans — they’re a well-loved staple in diets all over the world, and they come in many different forms. This fresh legume offers protein, fiber, and essential nutrients, making them a versatile and nutritious option for humans. But can our canine companions enjoy this delicious, nutritious food? 

Let's explore whether dogs can eat beans, which types are safe, and how to serve them to your furry friend.

Can dogs have beans?

Yes, generally! Dogs can indeed eat most kinds of beans, but as with many human foods, there's a caveat. The type of bean and how it’s prepared are important factors to consider before sharing them with your pup. Many beans, when plain and cooked, can offer nutritional benefits, but some types and preparations can be harmful.

How should I feed beans to my dog?

Be sure to cook the beans thoroughly; for your dog to safely eat beans, they need to be plain and cooked well. Raw beans, as well as beans cooked with excessive seasonings, oils, or fats, can sometimes lead to digestive problems for dogs. To avoid tummy aches, skip the extra flavor and stick to the basics. 

What kinds of beans can dogs eat?

With so many different types of beans, there’s no one-size-fits-all way to go about feeding this food to your pup. So what types of beans can dogs eat, and how should they be prepared to keep your dog healthy? 

Green beans

Can dogs eat green beans? Yes, they’re a safe option for dogs when either cooked plainly or served raw. They’re low in calories and packed with vitamins A, C, and K, as well as fiber and folic acid. Green beans can be a healthy, crunchy snack for dogs and can even be used as training treats

Keep in mind, though, that some dogs may find raw green beans difficult to digest. If your dog shows any signs of digestive trouble, consider cooking them lightly before offering them again.

Black beans

Black beans are another viable option for dogs, as long as they’re cooked without seasoning. Black beans are rich in protein and fiber, and they offer essential nutrients like iron, magnesium, and potassium. One tip: avoid any canned black beans that contain added salt or preservatives, since these can be harmful to your dog.

Lima beans

When cooked plainly, lima beans can be a healthy and delicious addition to your dog's diet! Like most other types of beans, they contain fiber, protein, and lots of different vitamins and minerals. 

Pinto beans

What about pinto beans? Can dogs eat those? Yes, these are safe for dogs, too! They’re a good source of protein, fiber, and nutrients like folate and iron. 

Garbanzo beans

Garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, can be safely eaten by your dog if cooked plainly. These beans offer the same benefits as most other beans do: protein, fiber, and various vitamins and minerals. As usual, stay away from the canned version of these beans, as the added sodium and preservatives can be harmful for your dog. 

Kidney beans

Can dogs eat kidney beans? Well, cooked kidney beans, yes! They can be a healthy treat for dogs, but never give them to your dog when they’re raw. Raw kidney beans, on the other hand, contain a toxin called phytohemagglutinin, which can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and other health issues. Stay away from these when meal prepping for your pup.

Refried beans

No! Refried beans are not recommended for dogs. They tend to contain high amounts of salt, fat, and spices, which can lead to digestive issues and other health troubles for dogs. It's best to avoid giving your dog refried beans entirely — even though they might want to sneak a taste.

Baked beans

If you’re wondering ‘can dogs eat baked beans?’, this would be another ‘no’. Baked beans aren’t typically recommended for dogs to eat since they’re typically cooked with sugar, molasses, or other sweeteners — these can contribute to obesity and dental problems. Baked beans also often contain added salt and seasonings that can be harmful to your dog's digestive system, as well as toxins such as garlic or onion powder.

String beans

String beans, like green beans, are safe for dogs to eat either raw or cooked plainly. They offer those same vitamins and fibers, making them a healthy, low-calorie snack for dogs.

Are beans good for dogs?

Beans are definitely good for dogs, when prepared correctly. They offer loads of health benefits for your furry friend, when served in moderation of course! They provide protein, fiber, and essential nutrients, contributing to a balanced diet. But remember — your dog's primary source of nutrition should come from their regular dog food, which is formulated to meet their specific dietary needs.

Need help deciding what food to choose for your pup? Either check out our article for tips on picking the right dog food, or head over to our partners at Dog Food Advisor for advice on the best types of food for your dog. 

Remember, beans should be given as an occasional treat or supplement to your dog's diet — not as a replacement for their regular meals.

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© 2024 Wag Labs, Inc. All rights reserved.