Go Back
Healthy Tasty NOT Refried Beans
Print Recipe Pin Recipe Save this Recipe

Please leave a rating!

No ratings yet

Marta's Healthy Tasty NOT Refried Beans

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins
Soaking Time8 hrs
Total Time9 hrs 25 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: beans, dried beans, pinto beans, Refried Beans
Servings: 10 ½ cup servings
Calories: 171kcal
Author: Anna


  • 1 pound dried beans, about 2 cups, Pinto or Canary beans, See Gr8 Notes
  • 2 quarters of a large brown onion, peeled
  • 3 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 1 stem epazote, See Gr8 Notes
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 whole serrano chiles, feel free to use more if desired. You can also use jalapeños, they may impart more heat.



  • Put beans into a 3 ½ to 4 quart pan and cover with water by 2 inches. Soak these overnight. In the morning, drain and rinse the beans in a colander.


  • Put the beans in a saucepan and add 6 to 8 cups of hot water. Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes, then simmer for one hour. Drain and rinse the beans in a colander.


  • Fill the same saucepan ⅔ with water and bring to a boil over high heat.
  • When the water is boiling carefully add the drained beans. The water should be two-inches over the beans. If there is too much, use a heat proof liquid measuring cup to remove the excess.
  • Add one quarter of the onion, the garlic, the epazote, and the salt. Do not stir.
  • Partially cover the pan and bring back to a simmer. Once the mixture is simmering adjust the heat so it doesn't boil over.
  • After about 15 minutes skim any foam that has collected on top of the broth.
  • Simmer for a total of 30 to 45 minutes, until the beans are tender and creamy. Do not stir.
  • Carefully remove the onion, garlic, and epazote.
  • At this point, you can cool the beans and freeze (see Gr8 Do Ahead Notes). Or let them cool and continue with the next part when ready to serve. If you have extra water, do not drain. You will use this in the next part of the recipe.


  • Slice the remaining quarter onion into thin strips, about ¼" wide.
  • Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large frying pan. (I like to use my 12" cast iron pan.)
  • To the hot oil, add the sliced onion and the whole serrano chiles.
  • Cook the onion and chile until the onion is nicely browned and the chiles are charred.
  • Remove the chile and onion from the pan and set aside. Add about a third of the beans to the pan.
  • Using a potato masher (or the back of a wooden spoon) mash the beans and cook. Add a little of the bean water to keep this mash moist. You should have a nice mixture of mashed beans and whole or partially whole beans.
  • Continue adding the beans and the juice and mashing until all the beans are combined and mashed. You may not need to use all of the bean broth. If you do need more broth than you have, just use a little water.
  • Slice the charred serrano chile and serve the chile and the onion with the beans, if desired.


Gr8 Notes:
Marta uses Goya Canary Beans, available at Latin supermarkets or on Amazon. These beans turn out creamy and delicious with this recipe.Healthy Tasty NOT Refried Beans
Epazote is an herb native to southern Mexico, Central America, and South America. It has many amazing benefits, with the main one being that it is supposed to reduce the bloating and flatulence that often accompany eating beans! I have found this herb at our Smart & Final grocery store.
Gr8 Do Ahead Tips:
Prepare the beans up through Step 8.
To Make Later in the Day: Let cool. Then continue later in the day when ready.
To Freeze: Cool and freeze in freezer safe plastic bags. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight and continue with the "Finish the Beans" section. The beans can be frozen for up to 6 months.
This nutritional information is only an estimate. We do not guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 171kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 180mg | Potassium: 637mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @Great8Friends or tag #gr8food!