≡ Menu

Easy Vegetarian Refried Beans

refried beans

Is everyone looking forward to Memorial Day weekend?  It seems like all the schools around here are out and the kids are jumping for joy.  This is kind of weird to me.  Back when I was growing up Memorial Day didn’t mean all that much in terms of summer.  We had to go right back to school the following week.  I remember one year where we didn’t get out until June 6th.  And the summer still felt pretty long to me…in a good way, of course.  I was all about running barefoot, playing Donkey Kong Country, and reading Jane Eyre.  Yep, I was a weird kid.  Am I the only one whose school let out so late?  Tell me it wasn’t only me!

On to the joys of food.  Who is a refried bean lover like me?  I’ve known a lot of people who don’t really like them at all.  I think it’s a texture thing.  But I don’t mind.  More for me!  😎

I’ve made a lot of refried beans over the years, but I think this recipe is probably my favorite.  First of all, it’s incredibly easy.  It takes about twenty minutes to put together.  And then there’s the fact that it’s vegetarian.  Woohoo.  The original recipe called for bacon fat, but I used es olive oil instead.  I still eat a little meat every once in a while, but I’m seriously straining to think when the last time I had bacon was.  (And the Internet suddenly did a collective shudder at that comment). 😉

I also really like these beans because of that hint of spice from the jalapeño.  I do not abide bland beans.  Just like I don’t like bland salsa.  Around here everyone loves their store-bought “mild” salsa.  Not me, I’m a rebel.  A rebel who watched Gilmore Girls.  Yep.  I’m pretty hard core, huh?

Anyway, this is made with canned pinto beans just to keep things easy.  Generally I like to use dried beans, but sometimes you just want some instant gratification, you know?

refried beans

So what do I do with these refried beans?  Well, given that Memorial Day is just around the corner, these beans would be fantastic in a seven layer salad.  Or how about alongside the grilled food with some guacamole, salsa, and chips for dunking?  Seriously, just give me that.  I can make a meal out of it.

But my favorite way to have these refried beans is on a homemade taco pizza.  Just slather it on that crust and I’m a happy camper.  I seriously love taco pizza. 😍

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  Make sure to eat some s’mores or at least toast a marshmallow.  I’m pretty sure it’s the law. 😉

refried beans

(Adapted from a refried beans recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook, 2001-2016).

Easy Vegetarian Refried Beans
  • 2 (15 oz) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • ¾ cup low-sodium vegetable broth or water
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¾ cup minced onion
  • 1 large jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves
  • 2 tsp fresh lime juice
  1. Measure out 1 cup of pinto beans and set aside.
  2. Place remaining beans, broth or water, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until smooth.
  3. Add in reserved pinto beans and pulse just slightly, until chunky.
  4. Place olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add in onion, jalapeno, and cumin. Cook until softened and just beginning to brown, about 3-5 minutes. Add in the garlic and stir for 30 seconds.
  5. Reduce the heat to medium and add in bean mixture. Cook until thick and creamy, 4-6 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat, add in cilantro and lime, and serve.


{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Kathy @ Beyond the Chicken Coop May 28, 2016, 7:39 am

    We still have two weeks left of school. I love these fast and easy beans. They look so full of flavor and much creamier than the cans of refried beans!

    • Amanda May 29, 2016, 8:33 am

      Studying when it’s beautiful out: I feel for those kids. 😀

  • Eva @ Eva Bakes May 30, 2016, 5:22 am

    June 6 seems so early! Our schools don’t get out for another 3 weeks! Growing up, we didn’t get out until mid-June either. Your vegetarian retried beans look lovely. Happy Memorial Day!

    • Amanda June 2, 2016, 2:02 pm

      I’m glad I’m not the only one who went to school in June! Hope your Memorial Day was good!

  • Manali@CookWithManali May 30, 2016, 9:39 pm

    nothing like homemade, looks great!

Leave a Comment

Rate this recipe:  

Next post:

Previous post: