Traditional Refried Beans Recipe

Homemade Refried Pinto Beans with Chips and Lime | Brent Hofacker

Enjoy the heartwarming goodness of homemade refried beans with this simple and delicious recipe. Perfect as a side dish or a filling for burritos and tacos!

Traditional Refried Beans Recipe


  • 2 cups of dried pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons lard or vegetable oil
  • Optional: 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin


  1. Soak the Beans: In a large bowl, cover the pinto beans with water and soak overnight, or at least 8 hours. Drain and rinse the beans afterward.
  2. Cook the Beans: In a large pot, add the soaked beans, chopped onion, minced garlic, and 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer covered for about 2 hours, or until the beans are very soft.
  3. Mash the Beans: Drain the beans, reserving some of the cooking liquid. Using a potato masher or a fork, mash the beans in the pot until they reach your desired consistency. Add some of the reserved cooking liquid if the mash is too dry.
  4. Fry the Beans: In a large skillet, heat the lard or oil over medium heat. Add the mashed beans and cook, stirring often, until the beans are a pasty consistency and slightly crispy on the bottom, about 10 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and cumin (if using).
  5. Serve Warm: Serve your refried beans warm as a side dish or use them as a base for other recipes.


  • For a vegetarian version, use vegetable oil instead of lard.
  • Customize your refried beans by adding toppings like cheese, salsa, or sliced jalapenos.
  • Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for longer storage.

This straightforward recipe guarantees you a delicious batch of refried beans that are perfect for any occasion. Enjoy!