Refried Beans

Frijoles Refritos

Making homemade refried beans is easier than you might think and they are far superior in flavor and texture to canned refried beans.

You might be surprised to know that they are not overloaded with lard. We prepare the recipe with 2 tbsp. of cooking oil. The more traditional preparation method calls for lard but this recipe substitutes cooking oil which is the way many people prepare beans today.

Refried beans are the perfect side dish for any Mexican meal.

Homemade Refried Beans

Healthier than You Think

Normally, we don’t talk too much about calories and fats in our recipes but in this case, we think it is worth mentioning nutrition.

Many people are reluctant to make refried beans because they believe that the fat content is excessive and that they are really unhealthy. There are only 8 grams of fat per 1/2 cup serving. We think they are a healthy option.

How to Make

You will need cooked whole beans to prepare. We recommend that you cook your own beans using our frijoles de la olla recipe. Although, our method of preparation works equally well with your home-cooked beans or canned beans.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked beans pinto, black, bayo (Different varieties of beans give a different flavor. Experiment to find your favorite.)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 finely chopped garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • A pinch of black pepper
  • Salt 1/2 tsp. + to taste
Frijoles de la Olla to Make Refried Beans

Preparation

Chop the onion. Finely chop the garlic.

Chopped Onion and Garlic on Wooden Cutting Board

In a medium-sized pan, heat the oil to medium and add the chopped onion. Cook until the onion is just becoming transparent.

Frying Chopped Onion in Pan

Add the chopped garlic.

Chopped Onion and Garlic in Frying Pan

Cook for 1 or 2 minutes until the onion is just starting to brown.

Cooked Onions in Frying Pan

Add the cooked beans with a little bit of the cooking water plus the salt and pepper to the pan. Cook for 2 minutes before mashing.

Beans Cooking in Pan

Mash the beans to the constituency you prefer.

Mashing Refried Beans
Mashing Refried Beans in Pan

Once they are mashed to your preferred consistency, cook for 5 minutes stirring continually. Turn off the heat and allow the beans to rest for 3 minutes before serving.

Refried Beans in Pan

Dishes Served with Refried Beans

To get you started here are some of our favorite dishes served with refried beans.

Enjoy! 

Easy Homemade Refried Beans
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3.74 from 19 votes

Homemade Refried Beans Recipe

Flavorful homemade refried beans are easy to make in 15 minutes. Start with your favorite bean variety, pinto, black, or bayo.
Course Side
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword beans, black beans, frijoles, pinto beans
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 cups
Calories 182kcal
Author Andrés Carnalla

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked beans pinto black, bayo with a little cooking liquid (We recommend that you cook your own beans using our recipe for frijoles de la olla. But no need to worry, canned beans work perfectly well.
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 finely chopped garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • a pinch of black pepper
  • salt 1/2 tsp. + to taste

Instructions

  • Chop the onion. Finely chop the garlic.
  • In a medium-sized pan, heat the oil to medium and add the chopped onion. Cook until the onion becomes transparent.
  • Add the chopped garlic and cook for 1 minute. Do not allow the garlic to brown which will give it a bitter taste.
  • Add the cooked beans with a little bit of the cooking water plus the salt and pepper.
  • Cook for 2 minutes before mashing.
  • Mash the beans to the consistency you prefer.
  • Cook for 5 minutes stirring continually.
  • Turn off the heat and allow the beans to rest for 3 minutes before serving.

Notes

Substitutions
  • You can reduce the cooking oil by 1 tbsp. to reduce the fat.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/2 cup | Calories: 182kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 8g | Sodium: 207mg

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18 comments… add one
  • Dean Fanson

    Just made these awesome first time. I added a pinch of Cumin.
    I’ll try again and add chili powder.

  • Pete Medrano

    I am still looking for a recipe that refries the beans. This recipe only fries them once. Am I missing something?

    • Ernie

      The name “refried” is a misnomer, Pete. The most common spanish name for the dish is (as stated) Frijoles Refritos. They are beans that have already been cooked (boiled to soften) that are then mashed and fried. think of a different translation for “refritos”–reheated or recooked by frying.

  • Stephen

    Toast separately, cumin and. Coriander seeds, black peppercorns, rosemary, thyme. Put in a coffee grinder with ome paprika, turmeric, cinnamon, shredded nutmeg, allspice and kosher salt. Grind to a fine powder. Add to beans while frying, 1/2 teaspoon at a time. Be sure to use fresh spices. Adjust these spices to suit your own palate but for goodness sake, do something beyond what this recipe calls for. I reconstitute several kinds of dried Mexican chillies and use some of the pot liquor while finishing the beans. Bon appetit!

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