Easy and creamy homemade refried beans that are flavorful and perfect as a side or in some of your favorite recipes like tostadas and burritos!
Whether it’s for 7 Layer Bean Dip or Mexican Pizza, or just as a side dish for any Mexican meal, these refried beans are so creamy and delicious, you’ll become a firm believer that they’re better than store bought!
Homemade is Better
Not only are these beans simple, but they taste so much better than the canned version. With butter, onion, salt, garlic, chili powder, cumin and garlic powder, they were so tasty and would be great as a side or in some of our favorite dishes like burritos and tostadas.
If you want a cheesy version, you can also add 1/2 cup to 1 cup of Mexican cheese. We like to garnish it with cotija cheese, but shredded cheese takes these already-delicious beans to a whole new level.
How to Make Refried Beans
Our favorite way to make these beans, is to do it on the stove top. They can be made other ways, but for the creamy consistency, we definitely still recommend using an immersion blender for at least half the beans. Here is how we make them:
Add butter to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and salt making sure to saute the onions until soft (about 3-4 minutes). Then, add the garlic and continue cooking for an additional minute.
From there, add chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, pinto beans, broth, and lime juice. Cook for 10 minutes.
Use a potato masher or an immersion blender to mash half of the beans (more if you prefer a creamy consistency). You may need to add a little chicken broth if the mixture becomes too thick. Continue to cook the beans for 5 more minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove from heat, garish with cilantro and cotija cheese, if desired.
If you want to try these in the SLOW COOKER, we recommend adding all the ingredients (but using onion powder instead of onions) to the crock pot and cooking on LOW for 2 hours. Then continue the recipe starting at STEP 3 and then placing them back in the slow cooker to warm up.
NOTE: We used butter in this recipe, but lard or oil work as well. Just sub the butter for the same amount of the other fat.
Uses + Tips
We love these homemade refried beans to use in other recipes, but I promise they’re great served as a side, for dipping warm flour tortillas in or even for tortilla chips.
Some recipes these beans would be great in, include:
They also make great additions to Mexican casseroles or with some of your favorite breakfast foods like eggs and breakfast tacos and burros.
To STORE, refrigerate in an air-tight container or bag for 3-4 days. If FREEZING, place in a freezer-safe bag once cooled for up to 2 months. To REHEAT, place in fridge overnight and reheat on the stove top. If beans are too dry, you can add a little milk, water, butter or olive oil to get them creamy again.
For more bean recipes, check out:
Refried Beans Recipe
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 yellow onion - finely diced
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- 3/4 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 4 cups pinto beans - cooked, fresh is best, but canned works too
- 1/4-1/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tbsp lime juice - fresh
- 1 tbsp fresh cilantro - chopped
- cotija cheese - for garnish, optional
- In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, add the butter. Once hot, add the onions and salt. Saute onions until soft, about 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and continue cooking for an additional minute.
- Add chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, beans, broth, and lime juice. Cook for 10 minutes.
- Use a potato masher or an immersion blender to mash half of the beans (more if you prefer a creamy consistency). You may need to add a splash of chicken broth if the mixture becomes too thick. Continue to cook the beans for 5 more minutes, stirring frequently.
- Remove from heat, garish with cilantro and cotija cheese, if desired.