Simply Refried Beans: How to Make Refried Beans from Scratch

How to make refried beans from scratch - minnesotafromscratch

Around here we enjoy our fair share of quesadillas and nachos so it only makes sense to cook up a large batch of refried beans once in a while.  I love the flavor and versatility that making them from scratch offers.  It doesn’t take up a lot of time, but it does require you to be around the house for at least a couple of hours. A batch can be completed before noon if you get started right away in the morning.



  • 16 oz. Pinto Beans
  • 1 large onion (coarsely chopped)
  • 2-4 clove of garlic (minced)
  • 2 T. Olive Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Optional: 1-4 Jalapeno Peppers (diced)
Bean ready for a night in the fridge!

Beans ready for a night in the fridge!

Sort and rinse the beans, discarding weird ones and any rocks.  Soak beans overnight or for at least 6 hours.

Drain & rinse beans, then place in a large pot.  Fill the pot with water and bring to a boil.  Once boiling, cover and simmer until the beans start to soften, approximately 1 hour.  Check periodically adding water as needed.   Throw in the onion, garlic, oil and any peppers, then continue simmering until the beans become soft, approximately 30 minutes.


Ready to be cooked down.

Remove the lid and cook down until the beans are soft enough to mash with a potato masher.  Keep an eye on the pot, stirring every 5 minutes or so, continue to add in water as needed.

Soft enough to mash!

Soft enough to mash!

Mash to your desired consistency and enjoy!

Mash to desired consistency and enjoy!

Mash to desired consistency and enjoy!

The beans can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week and portions can be frozen and used later.  You can always add water when reheating if they get overcooked (not possible) or start to dry out.



7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Deb
    Aug 30, 2013 @ 08:13:07

    Looks delicious!


  2. Myrah Falco Duque
    Aug 30, 2013 @ 08:23:37

    I like that they can be stored!


  3. Megan Sutliff
    Aug 30, 2013 @ 08:58:45

    Yum! Looks easy and yummy!


  4. Antionette Blake
    Sep 12, 2013 @ 12:37:42

    oh looks delish – may have to try to make it this fall!


  5. Allison A
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 03:15:51

    I am making these today.


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