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How to Make Refried Beans

How to Make Authentic Refried Beans

Authentic Refried Beans - My grandma's recipe!
Prep Time 1 hr 5 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time 3 hrs 35 mins
Course Beans
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 12


  • 3 pounds dried pinto beans
  • water
  • 3-5 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 -1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup Monterey jack cheese
  • Water


  • Pick beans over, removing dark beans, broken beans, dirt clumps and rocks.
  • Quick soak beans. Put sorted beans in a large pot, cover with at least two inches water.
  • Bring water to a boil, cover bean pot.
  • Boil beans three minutes or so.
  • Remove pot from heat, let sit covered about an hour.
  • After an hour drain beans.
  • Fill bean pot up with water. I used a 10-quart pot filled 3/4th of the way with water.
  • Cover bean pot with lid and cook for about two hours on medium, stirring occasionally, and more often towards the end of the cooking time.
  • Season beans for salt.
  • Finish cooking beans and make sure the beans taste perfect for salt.
  • I typically add 3-4 teaspoons of salt.
  • In a cast iron skillet "cook" the vegetable oil. Cook so that you can smell the oil getting hot.
  • Remove oil from heat and let it cool down.
  • Add beans to the cooled down skillet with "cooked oil". Be sure to add some bean juice too. You need more bean juice than you think because the beans will thicken up.
  • Cook beans over medium, stirring often until the bean juice get really creamy.
  • Smash about half the beans with the back of a spatula.
  • Fold in Monterey jack cheese, and stir cheese in as it melts.