Alternative:Refried Beans

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cooked beans and ham bone

Oddly enough, refried beans (frijoles refritos) are only fried once. The prefix "re" is a Spanish prefix meaning "very" or "well", inappropriately tacked onto a non-Spanish word.



  1. If using dried beans, wash them and examine them for any rocks, or small dirt clods, then cover with water in a medium pot and simmer until they are very soft. You'll need to cook the beans a long time on very low heat. You may add salt to the water. You may add onion halves or a ham bone, which you can remove at the end. You may wish to soak the beans overnight in the refrigerator before cooking them. Expect the cooking to take at least 3 hours, if not 6 or more.

Pinto beans soaked overnight take about 1.5 hours to cook when cooked at a slow, roiling boil. Cook pinto beans with a lid on the pot. Be certain to pour the soak water off and add fresh water for cooking. The soak water contains most of the ingredients that can cause flatulence. A faster alternative to soaking overnight is to bring a pot of pinto beans to a boil then take them off the fire and let them soak for about an hour, until the outer skin is wrinkled. Pour off this soak water to help with the flatulence issue, add fresh water and cook with slow roiling boil for about 1-1.5 hours. Of course, cooking pinto beans in a pressure cooker takes even less time. Finally, you can cook your soaked pinto beans slowly in a crock pot.

  1. If using canned beans, rinse them. Try to make sure they are not slimy or too salty.
  2. Get a large wide pot or tall-sided frying pan.
  3. Smash the beans, perhaps with a potato masher.
  4. Add home-rendered lard or butter, totaling up to 20% of the total. (25% of the amount prior to adding)
  5. Fry the beans, stirring and turning them until they thicken as desired.

Recipes using refried beans include