Seeds and beans are often thought of interchangeably based on their matching appearance (other than certain prominent exceptions).
For beginners in the cooking industry as well as food enthusiasts, it is equally important to gain a deeper understanding of how these two eatables are different, irrespective of their similar looks.
- Seeds are embryonic plants enclosed in a protective outer covering, capable of developing into a new plant.
- Beans are seeds of legume plants used as food sources for humans and animals.
- Beans are a subset of seeds, providing various nutrients and health benefits.
Seeds vs Beans
The difference between Seeds and Beans is that the former may or may not be edible while the latter is always edible. These two categories are inclusive of each other. If understood by a Venn diagram, the seed section will include the bean section inside itself but not vice versa. In other words, all beans are seeds, whereas, all seeds are not beans.
Seeds are the end products of fertilization in plants. These further aid in the formation of more plants and are mainly used in the kitchen as condiments.
A seed is the beginning stage of bud formation because the seed bursts after some time to give rise to a new sapling.
Beans are types of seeds, mostly in the shape of human kidneys, that are edible.
They do not have a husk in most cases and several savory dishes can be made using them. Beans grow on leguminous plants only and are highly proteinaceous due to their composition.
|Parameters of Comparison||Seeds||Beans|
|Definition||Seeds are the developed version of plants’ ovules that are formed as a result of fertilization.||Beans are edible seeds that grow inside pods of the Fabaceae family.|
|Parent Category||They come under the category of reproductive products of plants.||They come under the category of legumes.|
|Further Classifications||Seeds are of two types – breeder seeds and foundation seeds.||Beans are further classified into adzuki and blackeyes.|
|Method of Consumption||They can be consumed directly in raw form, after removing the outer covering. Some seeds need to be roasted and ground before consumption.||They need to be cooked before consumption. In most cases, beans are consumed in the same manner as lentils.|
|Inherent Nutritional Values||Seeds are rich in vitamins and minerals.||Beans are rich in roughage and protein.|
What is Seed?
Seeds constitute the part removed while consuming a fruit. A plant begins from seed and ends at a seed only. These are pollinated by various means like air, water, humans, animals to give rise to new plants.
This way, the seeds play a crucial role in the propagation of the variety and help in sustaining the plant cycle.
Seeds are of various types – foundation seeds are those that fall naturally once the fruit is decomposed and then begin growing into a new plant at the foot of the old one.
Breeder seeds are cultured in laboratories for better produce. These are also put to commercial use during distribution to farmers. The higher the quality of the seed, the higher will be the price and the produce from the resultant plant.
Seeds are of different sizes – pomegranate seeds are so minute that they can be consumed easily. On the other hand, mango seeds are big enough to be discarded.
The uses of seeds are numerous. They can be used to season food items and salads. To increase the intake, certain seeds like sunflower seeds and flax seeds are produced in powdered form. Oils can also be extracted from seeds.
What is Bean?
Beans are highly nutritious edible seeds that grow without a fruit covering. They hang from the plant itself and are then extracted for further use.
Some of the most popular beans include coffee beans and kidney beans (also referred to as “rajma” in several Asian households).
Though beans are also capable of reproducing plants in the future, the majority of beans are packed and sent out for consumption.
Beans are taken in to form of appetizing dishes. They also form part of diets prescribed to people who have just recovered from an infection.
On regular consumption of beans, cholesterol levels can easily be controlled. Since these are fibrous food items, issues like constipation can also be kept at bay by eating beans in adequate amounts.
The appearance of beans is taken as the sole criteria for categorizing them into different heads like blackeye and adzuki.
Beans that are hard need a lot of processing before consumption and thus are priced at the higher end. Prominent examples include cocoa beans and coffee beans. Soft beans are scarcely found.
The best way to consume the normal edible beans is to boil them after soaking them overnight. By doing so, the nutritional component is enriched sans bound and the toxicity is reduced considerably.
Main Differences Between Seeds And Beans
- Seeds are the plant-producing particles transferred withing the fruit. On the other hand, beans are podded seeds that grow independently and have varied purposes. .
- The categorization of seeds is done under reproductive products of plants (after both sexual and asexual reproduction) while beans are categorized under legumes.
- Seeds can be broadly classified into breeder seeds and foundation seeds. Contrarily, beans have been identified as blackeye and adzuki resepctively.
- The husk needs to be removed before consuming uncooked seeds while beans cannot be consumed raw, owing to their leguminous nature.
- Seeds furnish optimum amounts of vitamins and minerals. On the other hand, beans provide the body with necessary protein and roughage (to facilitate easy movement of food across the ailimentary canal).
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Piyush Yadav has spent the past 25 years working as a physicist in the local community. He is a physicist passionate about making science more accessible to our readers. He holds a BSc in Natural Sciences and Post Graduate Diploma in Environmental Science. You can read more about him on his bio page.