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Homemade Slow Cooker Refried Beans

Refried Beans in the Slow CookerLet me start with a bit of a disclaimer. This is not a traditional refried beans recipe. It is a recipe that I created to be a healthy replacement for a Mexican side dish I love so it is not fried once, much less twice. The flavor is so similar though, that you won’t know the difference.

I cannot adequately explain how much I love using the slow cooker. It is the ultimate small kitchen appliance that is as easy to use as it is versatile. My slow cooker is used about once a week for everything from pizza sauce to Thai peanut chicken, helping me make flavorful meals with just a few minutes of prep time. At the end of a long workday, it is too easy to stop by the drive-thru window for dinner, so why not toss a few ingredients in the slow cooker while you’re waiting for your coffee to brew and come home to dinner perfection?

Homemade Slow Cooker Refried Beans
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
  • 8 oz. dried pintos (about 2 cups)
  • 6-8 cups water
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon homemade taco seasoning mix
  • ½ jalapeno, coarsely chopped (or a few jarred slices)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  1. The night before, rinse and sort dried beans and add to crock pot. Cover with 6 cups of water and allow to soak until morning.
  2. Drain soak water and add 6-8 cups of water to the crock pot along with beans and remaining ingredients.
  3. Cover and set your slow cooker on low heat. Cook for 5-7 hours on low, or until beans are fork tender.
  4. Drain beans over a large bowl or pot to keep the cooking liquid.
  5. Using a wooden spoon or potato masher, mash the beans until they are the desired consistency. For me that means a coarse mash that’s about 50/50 creamy and chunky. Add reserve liquid as needed and freeze the remaining liquid for adding to soups or stews later.


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