Mexican Refried Beans

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Mexican Refried Beans

Cooking time:

  • 20 minutes in total
  • 10 minutes cooking
  • 10 minutes preparation

Serves: 2


  • 150 g dried or canned beans (see author notes)
  • 1 dried pasilla mixe chili

  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin
  • 1/4 tsp Paprika
  • Splash of white wine vinegar
  • Juice of half a lime (can be adjusted to taste)


Empty the cupboard – refried beans edition! There are numerous opinions regarding how you should properly make “frijoles refritos”, but don’t let that stop you from making an easy yet tasty version. We normally add a paste made from dried chiles, but you can substitute with whichever hot sauce, chili paste or salsa macha you have in your kitchen. In this recipe we used black beans, but you could substitute with kidney beans or similar.

Refried beans is a nutritious and protein-rich side dish to any meal or inside a delicious taco. If you feel like snacking, get a bag of tortilla chips and use it as a bean dip. Be sure to make a big batch because you’re going to be craving this for days!


  1. Start the preparation a day in advance if using dried beans: Soak the dried beans in cold water overnight. Rinse the beans in water and boil for 30-60 minutes with bay leaves, salt and black pepper. 
  2. While the beans are boiling, remove the stems and seeds from the pasilla mixe chili and fry on a hot pan for 1 minute on each side until it’s slightly charred, but not burnt.
  3. Bring 5 dl water to a boil, turn off the stove and let the chilies soak in the hot water until they’re nice and plumb.
  4. Add the rehydrated chilies to a blender with some of the boiling water (save the rest of the chili water for later) and blend to a paste. Set aside in the blender.
  5. Once the beans are slightly overcooked and mushy, remove from the stove and discard the water (see author notes).
  6. Roast some finely diced onions and garlic on a very hot pan in plenty of olive oil with cumin, ground coriander, paprika, salt and pepper. Add beans and roast for five minutes followed by a splash of white wine vinegar.
  7. Add the bean mixture to the chili paste in the blender and add more chili water until you can blend it all together in a paste (see author notes).
  8. Put the paste back in the pan and let it roast for 10 minutes. Keep adding chili water until you have the desired consistency
  9. Squeeze in some lime juice and taste for seasoning – add a couple of drops of Vera Mexicana Fiery Sauce if you want it spicier. Buen Provecho!

Author notes

The boiling water from the beans is not toxic as beans have been soaked in cold water overnight but using it may cause a stomachache which is why we discard it. We like a bit of texture in our refried beans, so we pulse the blender to chop it chop. However, you could also blend it into a smooth paste.