Refried Beans (Frijoles Refritos)

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1 1⁄2 hours 8 Servings Print RecipeEmail Recipe


1poundpink or red beans, typically dried pinto beans
1 1⁄2quartwater
1⁄2cuplard or bacon fat, or more
  salt to taste


Soak beans overnight for faster cooking. Add more water to cover and salt and cook slowly until very tender. Mash with potato masher, added very hot lard or bacon drippings (drippings improve the flavor) and continue cooking until all the fat is absorbed by the beans. Be sure to stir often to prevent sticking!

In a frying pan, heat additional fat such as lard, bacon fat or vegetable oil. Add mashed in frying beans, and cook, stirring until beans are completely dry. The more fat, the better, most people think.

For Refried Beans with Cheese (Frijoles Refritos Con Queso), add cubes of Monterey Jack cheese. Let cheese melt, then serve dish quickly.

For Crisp Mexican Refried Beans (Frijoles Chinitos), re-fry fried beans until crisp.


If you live where pink beans are not available or do not wish to cook the beans, you may use the canned kidney beans in the following manner: heat 4 tablespoons of fat in frying pan, mashed 1 can of drained kidney beans, add the liquid gradually and cook until all fat has been absorbed.

Preparation time does not include soaking time.

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