The pods of edamame beans are too fibrous to be edible according to the National Soybean Research Laboratory. Also referred to as a vegetable soybean, edamame can be eaten raw or boiled or steamed for 4 to 5 minutes and then cooled under tap water. The soybeans may be difficult to remove from the shells if not steamed.
Cooked edamame can be stored in the freezer. It can be served hot or cold and is often used in salads, soups and a variety of other dishes.
Edamame is high in nutritional benefits and easy to grow. Home growers should stagger planting to ensure a continuous harvest, as the plants have a limited window for optimal harvesting.