Homemade Slow Cooker Refried Beans is an easy side dish. So much tastier and so inexpensive compared to the store-bought beans. Made from scratch!
Refried Beans is a great side dish that often gets overlooked. Don't let this happen to you because you deserve to have some extra choices in your meal planning.
I feel very fortunate to have grown up in the southwest where Mexican style food was in our family's meal planning regimen.
It never occurred to me that everyone was not eating enchiladas and tortillas.
The move to a small town in Georgia introduced me to a shocking realization. There wasn't a tortilla insight or even a can of refried beans.
Granted, this was many years ago but I still had to have Mexican food!
Salsa I could manage but tortillas and refried beans? Luckily, I had Diana Kennedy's first cookbook, The Cuisines of Mexico.
So, I rolled up my sleeves and got to cooking. The recipes were so darn good and I was off and running.
Now I have made and created many Mexican style recipes and there are probably eight that are variations on beans.
Just last week we had another southwest side dish called Mexican Cauliflower. It was great served right alongside our homemade refried beans.
What Goes Great with Refried Beans?
- Where shall I start?
- Fajitas and here are some Vegan Fajitas aka Meatless Chicken Fajitas.
- Enchiladas for sure. This enchilada sauce is made in the slow cooker and then you get the recipe for Vegetable Enchiladas as a bonus.
- Taquitos are stuffed fried tortilla rolls that are just so good.
- Rice and Meatless Beef Burritos don’t have any beans in them and they would be perfect alongside slow cooker refried beans.
Let me show you a picture of one of these recipes just to tempt you. Let's see ... Here ya go!
Don't you agree? Refried beans on the side!
I would be being selfish if I didn’t tell you that there is also a recipe for Instant Pot Refried Beans on this blog. And it's from scratch too!
This crockpot recipe should be in everyone’s arsenal. Flavorful and easy and you'll be spooning up creamy refried beans in no time.
Do You Have to Soak the Pinto Beans Before Cooking?
- Well, sort of, yes.
- You don't have to for delicious beans but ...
- You should to help with, ah hem, intestinal gas.
- It's the right thing to do.
- Some beans are kinder than others but it's still a good thing to do.
Can You Freeze Refried Beans?
Use a freezer container and freeze up to 3 months.
TO PREPARE AFTER FREEZING:
Remove from the freezer and put in the refrigerator overnight because it is a pretty solid mass and will take longer to defrost. Heat, covered, in a microwave or in a saucepan. Add a little more liquid if it seems to dry.
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Slow Cooker Refried Beans
- 1 pound dried pinto beans
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic finely diced
- 1 onion small, finely diced
- 1 chile pepper
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Rinse and drain the beans.
- Put the pinto beans in a large pot with water to cover, about 6 cups of water.
- Let the pot set all day or overnight and the beans will plump up.
- Drain water from the beans and put the beans into a slow cooker.
- Cover with fresh water just to cover or up to about an inch.
- Turn on high for 3 hours.
- While the beans are cooking prepare the vegetables.
- In a large skillet add olive oil and onion. Sauté onion until translucent.
- Add garlic and chili pepper. Cook 2 more minutes.
- Add all the spices to the pan. Cook another minute stirring occasionally. Set aside.
- When the beans are done, mash in the crockpot with a potato masher.
- Add the onion mixture and mix well.
- If it is too dry you can add some more water.
- Turn the slow cooker back on to the low setting. Cook 1 hour.
- That's it! The best refried beans and so much healthier than the canned beans.
- If you need to add more liquid at the last hour of the final cooking process you can add some tomato juice or diced tomatoes. Even a little salsa can be added if your family likes the extra spices.