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How to Make Refried Beans? 11 Easy Important Steps

Are you drawn to new foods like me? Do you want to try something new? So I would try making refried beans at home. I don’t know if you have ever heard of this dish before. But last week, while out in Mexico, I learned about this amazingly tasty dish.

What can I say about the food, I still can’t forget its wonderful melty taste, and the best thing is that it is very healthy.

So while searching for how to make refried beans at home, I found a wonderful recipe. It is very easy to make. And that recipe I will share that recipe with you. So that you too can make this recipe very easily. So let’s see today’s topic making refried beans.

how to make refried beans
by ChrisBoswell/Unlimphotos

1. What are Refried Beans?

Refried beans are a Mexican dish made with pinto beans or any other beans. The refried beans dish is different from its name. Also, ‘refritos‘ means ‘fried’, but the food is not ‘fried’; it is slightly fried and mashed.

This dish is very popular as a main course in Mexico. Also popular in Latin America. It’s known as ‘frijoles rewrites in Spanish; this dish translates to ‘well-fried beans‘ in English.

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by Anna Tarazevich/pexels

The word ‘ree’ in English means fried, so the name of this dish may confuse you as many people think of it as a dish where the beans are fried again, which is the opposite.

There are different cuisines of refried beans recipe. Everyone has small variations according to their own taste.

But there is only one main ingredient in this recipe, which is mainly made with kidney beans, pinto beans, or even black beans or canned beans. The taste may vary depending on the type of beans.

This Refried Beans recipe does not require refried beans. They are first cooked and then mashed. So, in a word, it is a healthy food.

2. Who Invented Refried Beans?

Before I examine how refried beans are cooked, let me tell you about their history. This famous dish originated in northern Mexico about 100 years ago.

Although the name of the first person to cook this iconic dish is unknown, Gustavo Arellano’s book “Taco USA” mentions that refried beans were introduced commercially in America the Mountain Pass Canning Company founded the refried beans in 1930 in New Mexico.

3. Materials Used for Homemade Refried Beans Recipe

Here are the ingredients-

  1. olive oil, vegetable oil, or bacon fat.
  2. Finely chopped onion (about ½ small onion).
  3. Sea ​​salt.
  4. Garlic cloves.
  5. Chilli powder.
  6. Cumin.
  7. 2 canned pinto beans, rinsed and drained, or 3 cups cooked pinto beans.
  8. ½ cup of water.
  9. Chopped fresh coriander leaves.

4. How to Make Refried Beans- The 11 Easy Steps

 Step 1.

First, take ½ cup of kidney beans. Then wash the beans several times with clean water. Now soak the beans in water for 8 to 9 hours in a bowl. The day before you want to make refried beans, you can soak them overnight.

Use whatever beans you like. I use kidney beans, but you can also substitute pinto beans, and black beans, for kidney beans if you like.

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Step 2.

Drain the water after soaking for 8 to 9 hours. Now wash the kidney beans very well with clean water. Cook the beans in a normal or 2-liter stovetop pressure cooker. Now, add enough water to boil and add ¼ teaspoon of salt.

If you want to cook beans in an Instant Pot, add the soaked beans to a 6-quart saucepan with 2 cups of fresh water.

Step 3.

Turn on the gas oven and cook the pot with the beans for 15 to 18 minutes. Remember to keep the heat to medium heat. For the pressure cooker, cook on a high flame for 20 minutes.

If your question is how to make refried beans? Then definitely choose fresh beans for it. Because fresh beans cook faster than old beans. So, keep this in mind when cooking refried beans.

If you want to cook in a pressure cooker, seal its lid well and also seal the valve.

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by HomeMaker/pixabay

Step 4.

After 18-20 minutes of cooking, open the pot and check if the beans are cooked well.

How do you know when the beans are fully cooked? Beans are cooked when they mash easily when pressed. Then drain all the water from the beans and keep aside in a separate bowl.

But fry the garlic until the raw smell goes away. A few seconds will be enough for it; no need to brown it too much.

Step 5.

Now add ⅓ cup of finely chopped onion to the fried garlic. You can use 1 medium-sized onion if you want. But be very careful, and the flame should be medium to low.

Then mix well and fry the onion, stirring frequently and very carefully. Fry until the onion becomes soft. When the onions become soft, add the pre-boiled kidney beans into it.

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by zkruger/Unlimphotos

Step 6.

Now add enough water. ½ to ⅔ cup of water is sufficient. But you add as your need. You also can add vegetable stock to enhance the flavor of homemade refried beans. Then add salt to taste and cook. Now keep the flame over medium-low heat and boil the kidney bean mixture.

Step 7.

If the mixture boils well, mash the beans with a vegetable masher. An electric blender can be used for this. You can even turn off the oven and blend the beans with a mixer once they have cooled slightly.

Make sure the mixture is smooth. But many people prefer some chunkiness in the beans. So you may not mash all the beans. But in my opinion, mashing well as this is the step that gives the refried beans recipe its creamy texture.

Step 8.

After mashing well, add spices like ¼ tsp black pepper powder, ¼ tsp dry oregano, ½ to 1 tsp red chilli powder (or cayenne pepper), and 1 tsp cumin powder to the mixture in the frying pan. You can add more or less of each spice and herb as per your taste.

Add chili powder or cayenne pepper depending on your desired spiciness in your homemade refried beans.

Be careful with spices and other herbs as required.

Step 9.

Mix the spices well with the mixture. On low to medium-low heat, cook beans for 5 to 6 minutes. Now keep stirring until it thicks. When the mixture gets thick, you will know that your refried beans are almost ready.

You can keep the mixture thick or slightly liquid and runny. You can keep it according to your own choice. If you don’t like the beans too thick, you can add more water to adjust the consistency.

Step 10.

Turn off the heat when the refried beans finally thicken to the desired consistency. But before that, check the taste last and add salt, red chili powder, black pepper, and oregano if needed.

Step 11

 After checking everything, pour into a bowl and serve the refried beans. Congratulations, you can make your homemade refried beans.

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by Anna Tarazevich/pexels

5. How to Serve the Refried Beans Recipe?

Many people are confused about how to serve beans, as well as how to make refried beans. But today, I will give you some refried bean serving ideas that will make your homemade refried beans just like the restaurant.

You can serve your refried beans with some coriander leaves or parsley leaves. If you don’t like it too plain, you can also sprinkle some grated cheddar cheese over the beans. You can also serve guacamole, tomato salsa, and sour cream.

5.1 How to Serve it?

You’re best served with your homemade refried bean tacos. This famous Mexican dish makes a great filling with chimichangas or burritos. It can also be eaten as a dip with nachos.

5.2. Health benefits of Refried Beans:

Refried beans have health benefits as well as taste. It has protein and calcium properties, which help in the bone-strengthening process.

The onions and tomatoes used in this recipe add to the flavor and provide freshness and a handful of antioxidants.

If someone is health conscious, he can take this food according to my advice. But in that case, you can reduce the amount of oil and butter and avoid sugar completely.

7. What Types of Beans Are Best for Refried Beans?

If you want to make this popular dish Mexican style, pinto beans are your best choice for this recipe. But you can use black beans or canned beans. Also, cranberry beans are very nicely prepared in this method.

I’ve tried using white navy beans to make refried beans for tostadas a few times. I just added some chipotle powder to them for spice, which was delicious. But pinto beans or black beans bring the most magical taste.

7.1 Things about Canned Beans:

I know in our crazy busy lives, we don’t have time to cook. So many people cannot cook refried beans. I assure you that you can now prepare this tasty dish at home in just a few minutes. Are you wondering how to make refried beans?

The answer is very simple, using canned beans. Add 3 to 3.5 cups of these cooked, canned beans to the pressure cooker and cook. But before that, first, remove the water from the can and rinse the well with clean water. These steps will help you with how to make refried beans.

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by duplass/unlimphotos

7.2 Things about Pinto Beans:

If you want to know how to make refried beans with pinto beans. Always choose fresh beans for this; never choose old or aged ones.

Because fresh beans will cook faster in a pressure cooker, and old beans will take you longer to cook. So, please choose beans carefully; it will help you make the recipe for refried beans.

8. How Long Can You Store Refried Beans?

If you really want to know how to make refried beans, so this guide will help you learn about freezing refried beans. Many times we sell refried beans made for home or a party, and you can safely keep them in the freezer for several days. Just follow a few steps.

Use an airtight container to keep it in the freezer. This allows you to store cooked beans for up to 5 days. Never refrigerate refried beans until completely cooled. You can keep it in the freezer in a safe container for up to 3 months.

Thaw refrigerated beans before using them again. A few things to note: If after defrosting, you find the consistency is a bit watery, just add a little oil and stir them well in the pan.

Make sure you label the storage container with the date before putting it in the fridge so that you can track the time. The good news for you is that you cook refried beans at home will last about three to six months if you deep freeze them.

9. Some Tips for Making Refried Beans:

If the beans become too thick while cooking the refried beans, you can thin the consistency a bit. For that add water or liquid from the can and boil well and dilute.

If your beans become too watery while cooking, boil them for a few more minutes to thicken a bit. However, you can keep the consistency liquid if you like your beans runny.

Sometimes the beans can get too thick when we cook them. So then you let it stand in a slightly liquid state. Because it will thicken once removed from the heat.

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by ChrisBoswell/unlimphotos

10. Why Do Restaurant-Refried Beans Taste so Good?

Many times when eating refried beans at a restaurant, you may have noticed that restaurant beans taste a little different than homemade beans.

Did you know you can bring bean flavor at home? And how is that possible? It’s very easy to do; just add one thing.

Most restaurants add extra fat, such as bacon fat, bacon grease, lard, butter, or other types of fat, for that delicious flavor.

Add any of these to your cooking and watch the magic happen. No one will be able to guess whether it is a restaurant or a home. Although if you want how to make refried beans cheater-style at home, you don’t need to add extra fat!

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by bernjuer/unlimphotos

11. How Long do Refried Beans Last in a Can?

You open the canned beans and decide to keep them? What should you do? It will keep well in the refrigerator for about 3-4 days.

11.1 How Do You Warm it?

  • Dissolve the butter in a frying pan.
  • Add onions and saute until they are translucent. Add the garlic and cook on low heat until it starts to fragrant.
  • Add refried beans, broken up, and incorporate into butter, onion, and garlic.
  • Add some half and half, and stew.
  • Add some sour cream
  • Season with salt, pepper, and cumin to taste (I used 1 teaspoon of each).
  • Add some cheese.


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