Friday, August 19, 2011

How To: Homemade Refried Beans

Homemade Refried Beans

We love beans.  We eat a lot of them because they're yummy, healthy, and CHEAP! 

We especially eat a lot of Refried Beans.  We make a 2 lb. bag of Pintos every two weeks. 

Did you know that 1 cup of Refried Beans is low in Saturated Fat, and very low in Cholesterol? It is also a good source of Protein (13g), Vitamin C, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese, and an excellent source of Fiber (12g...that's 49% of your Daily Value).

So what do we do with all those beans?  We make Quesadillas, Bean and Cheese Burritos, Bean Dip, Tostadas, and Touch Down Taco Dip.  We also use them as a side to enchiladas and tacos.  The kids even like to eat them in a small dish with cheese on top.  Having them on hand makes for SUPER EASY "go to" lunches and dinners. 

Let's get cookin'.

Here's what you'll need:

1 lb bag Pinto beans
1 stick butter (or any other fat such as bacon fat or lard...but everything is betta with butta!)
Salt, Pepper, and Garlic powder to taste

First, sort your beans.  Place a small pile on the counter at a time and pick out any dirt clots, rocks, or anything else that doesn't resemble a Pinto bean.

See that big, ugly clump of dirt?  Now aren't you glad you sorted first?

Here are the gems I found in my last bag.  El Grosso!

 As you're sorting your piles, throw the beans in a medium to large pot.

Now, give the beans a quick rinse....pour out water, and then refill pot to about an inch or two above the beans.

First stage done.  Go relax and let those babies soak all night.  (Quick soak method below)

When you're ready to begin cooking the beans, pour out the soaking water and refill with fresh water, again, 2-3 inches above beans.  I usually use hot water just to give the heating up process a jump start. 

Bring beans to a boil.  Be careful not to let those beans boil over while you’re not looking…the mess is a doozy!  But I wouldn't know about that.

Let boil for a couple of minutes and then reduce heat to low.  Simmer for 2 to 3 hours.  Stir occasionally and add water if necessary.  If you let all the water evaporate, your beans will burn, your pot will be lots of fun to clean, and your house will not smell very pleasant.  But I wouldn't know about that either!

When your beans are done, they will look plump and feel soft.  Drain some of the water.  Not all of it, though...about like this. 

Now pour the beans in a food processor.  If you do not have one, or you just don't feel like luggin' the huge thing out, use a masher.  Add butter, about 2 teaspoons of salt, a little pepper, and a little garlic powder.  If you're using a masher, be sure and stir the beans, 'cause those mashed beans stick to the bottom.

Process away!  Once you’ve reached your desired consistency, it’s time to taste.  Does it need more salt?  Probably so.  Maybe a little more pepper and garlic?  I don’t know…they're your beans.  Taste them!

Each time you need to add more seasoning, pulse or stir to blend.

Once you’ve got them all nice and seasoned, pour them into a container to cool.  Once cool, seal tightly.  Will store in the fridge for two weeks. 

So, you see, they’re not actually REfried, but that's okay...they still taste amazing!  But if you want to "re"fry them, have at it.

Here's the printable version:

Homemade Refried Beans

1 lb Pinto beans
1 stick butter
Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder to taste

Sort beans and place in medium to large pot.  Rinse with cool water and drain.  Refill to about 1-2 inches above beans.  Let soak all night.  If you don't want to wait until the next day, use the quick soak method.

*Quick soak method:  After rinsing beans, refill with hot water, and bring to a boil.  Boil a few minutes and then turn off the stove.  Let sit an hour...resume at this step below.

Drain soaking water and refill to about 1 inch above pot.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 hours.  If you're not sure when they're done, taste a bean to make sure it's very soft.

Drain some of the water, but not all of it.  Pour beans into food processor and add butter, about 2 teaspoons of salt, some pepper, and a little garlic powder.   Pulse (or stir if using a masher) to incorporate seasoning and butter.  Pulse until you get the desired consistency.  Taste often to check for seasoning.  Trust your know what taste good to you!

Pour beans into air tight container.  Allow to cool and store up to two weeks.  These freeze well too.   Enjoy!

Photo Credit (top)


  1. Anonymous12:46 PM

    So excited to have this recipe! Now, you need to share the touchdown dip. I love the new blog...makes me feel a bit closer to you and your family!
    Love ya,
    Katie V.

  2. Needed some help to feed my 4 homeschooled children, healthy meals, and I got oh so much more. What a sweet family you are.

  3. We were just talking about refried beans last night at TX blog chat, and I thankfully I stumbled upon your recipe while browsing your site. I am going to pin it. Can't wait to try it out. It looks pretty easy!

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