The effect of soaking in domestic processing, on the nutritive value of the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris, L.) cv IAC-Carioca, was studied. Five treatments were carried out with experimental diets, and offered to male, recently weaned Wistar rats. The protein sources were, respectively, control diet (casein) (CC), casein plus the soluble solids found in the soaking water (CSS), freeze dried bean cooked without soaking (BNS), freeze dried bean cooked with the non-absorbed soaking water (BSW), freeze dried bean cooked without the non-absorbed soaking water (BSNW). and an aproteic diet (AP) for corrective purposes. The anti-nutritional factors (phytates and tannins), were determined in the differently processed beans and in the soaking water. The following values for the reduction of phytates were obtained: BNS (20.9%), BSNW (60.8%) and BSW (53.0%), and the tannins were reduced by: BNS (86.6%), BSNW (88.7%) and BSW (89.0%). No significant differences were observed between the various treatments using the common bean as protein source, with respect to the net protein ratio (NPR). With respect to the digestibility corrected by non-protein diet, values varying between 94.1% and 94.6% for casein, and between 57.5% and 61.4% for the common bean, were observed, the treatment BNS being more digestible. It was concluded that soaking did not interfere with the NPR of the experimental diets containing the common bean as protein source, nor did it reduce the tannin content. However soaking was capable of reducing the phytate levels in the common bean. On the other hand, soaking was unable to increase the protein digestibility of the common bean, since the treatment BNS showed the highest value for digestibility.