Vegan Refritos (Refried Beans)

This recipe calls for the traditional pinto bean, but you could easily swap in black beans or whatever dried beans you have on-hand


  • 2 cups pinto beans, soaked overnight (per package instructions)
  • 1-3 teaspoons chili powder (depending on how spicy you prefer)
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped medium
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • 3-4 tbsp sunflower (or other vegetable) oil


  1. Drain and rinse the pinto beans. In a stock pot add all of the ingredients, except the spices and oil, add triple the water, as the beans will soak up a lot of water as they cook. Add water if needed as you cook. You want enough liquid afterward to add to the beans at a later step.
  2. When the beans are tender and cooked through, remove from the heat. Drain and reserve the bean liquid.
  3. In a saute pan over medium heat, add the sunflower oil. When the oil shimmers, add the beans. Gradually add reserved liquid as you mash the beans into a paste. Depending on how you like them, continue adding enough liquid so the beans are similar in texture to mashed potatoes. If you have a stick blender, you can use it to get a silky texture with no lumps.
  4. Salt, pepper, and hot sauce may be used to adjust the flavor to your liking. Serve hot, garnished with pico de gallo, or topped with cheese.

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