Try this hearty Mexican staple with homemade tacos or burritos. It’s healthy and protein-rich that you can even top it on some classic Tex-Mex dishes. Once you have a go at our refried beans recipe, you might have it more frequently than expected.

Homemade Refried Beans Recipe

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Preparation: 10 mins
Cooking: 1 hr15 mins
Total: 1 hr25 mins
Serves: 6 people


  • 15.5 ounces pinto beans or 1 can, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tbsp. bacon fat or vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup onions finely chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves finely chopped
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • ½ cup water
  • salt
  • pepper to taste


  1. Heat the bacon fat or oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onions and sauté until softened and lightly browned.
  3. Add the garlic, cumin and chili powder and cook 1-2 more minutes.
  4. Add drained beans and the water.
  5. Cover and reduce heat to medium.
  6. Simmer until beans are very tender and thickened, about 5 minutes.
  7. If they become too thick or dry, add more water.
  8. Mash the beans with a fork, wooden spoon or a potato masher, until they are mashed but still chunky.
  9. You can vary this by adding cayenne pepper, fresh hot minced peppers, cheese or salsa.
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