GF, Vegan & Raw/ RECIPES/ Sides

Crockpot Refried Beans Without The Refry

crockpot refried beans


I’ve been making this Crockpot Refried Beans recipe about once a week lately.  It is great to have on hand, a jar in the refrigerator and a few in the freezer.  My girls make themselves bean burritos as after school snacks with these beans.  I love having a quick wrap for lunch made with these beans, salsa, tomatoes, and lettuce.  They are great smeared on a tostada or to eat as a side to tacos with rice.  Also great for chip dipping.

They have so much more flavor than canned beans, and I feel great staying away from cans due to their BPA lining.  Another great thing about making these beans is that you can make them as chunky or as mashed as you like it.  I like a bit of texture in my burritos, but for nachos, I mash them and thin them out a bit more.


I put off making my own beans for a long time.  I kept reading how you have to sort them and soak them. It felt intimidating and like too much work.  Boy, was I wrong!  Sorting takes minutes, and with this Crockpot recipe, there is no soaking.


I measure out my beans (3 cups for this recipe) on my large cutting board.  I then quickly sort them, the pile in the front are sorted beans, the pile in the back has yet to be sorted.  This literally takes me maybe 2 minutes to sort 3 cups of beans.

reject beans

You are looking for shriveled beans, halved beans, or just plain ugly looking beans.  I also take the ones that look too small out.  Pictured above are my rejects.

washing beans

Put beans in a colander, and give them a quick rinse.

onion, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper

Dump them in the crockpot, along with 1 chopped onion, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper.  This recipe calls for a lot of salt, but it also makes a nice amount of beans. Use it, they need it.

refried beans

Set the crockpot to high and in 5 hours (can let them cook longer if needed) you have wonderful beans.  I love how these make the house smell.  We are eating less meat around here (next to none) and it has been great, but I have missed throwing something in the crockpot and having it make the house smell good.  Well, these beans solve that problem…they smell so good as they cook!  Yum!

Crockpot Refried Beans (without the Refry)
(from Real Mom Kitchen)

  • 3 cups of dry pinto beans (sorted and rinsed)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 9 cups of water
  • 3 1/2-4 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin


  • Put all the ingredients in a crockpot and cook on high for about 8 hours.
  • After they are done, drain all of the liquid out and SAVE THE LIQUID!!
  • Mash beans with a potato masher or whatever you mash with. Add liquid, a bit at a time, to desired consistency, but remember you want them a little runny because they thicken over time. (makes about 6 cups)
  • Note: I’ve read about people adding sliced jalapenos to this recipe, for a little kick.  These beans are full of flavor without it, but if you are a jalapeno fan.  Also, these freeze beautifully.

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    […] and salsa. Here I used it on taco’s in place of cheese.  I filled the tacos with my Crockpot Refried Beans Without The Refry.  I added corn to the beans, topped with the hummus/salsa dip, then topped that with Trader Joes […]

  • Anonymous
    August 30, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    This is a simple and delicious recipe I have done, twice and pressure canned the results….no more store bought beans EVER!!

  • Anonymous
    June 30, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    Since I found this recipe on pinterest, only a few months ago my family and I have devoured the entire crock of them each time! There are 6 of us, and they are the BEST, HEALTHIEST, and EASIEST “refried beans” ever!
    Thanks for sharing!

  • Anonymous
    April 17, 2013 at 6:02 am

    New to all this but can you use black beans in ace of pinto?

  • Krista
    March 24, 2013 at 1:58 am

    I just made a double batch of these in my crockpot last night. It worked great to start the timer last night at bed and then mash them and put them up in jars this morning. I bought a case of Walmart brand canning jars, pint sized. A double batch made 7.5 pints. I made them a little juicier this time around. The first time I made the recipe they really kind of dried out over time. But were still really tasty. I contemplated adding sriracha as I as mashing but decided to do that instead as we heat them for each meal.

    January 30, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    I cook mine in the crockpot as well, but I still soak them & don’t add seasonings of any type, I will for sure try some this time!

  • MaddyChristine Hope-Brokopp
    January 28, 2013 at 12:54 am

    I am from Holland and there we don’t use crockpots. When registering for our wedding gifts people were stunned I didn’t register for one. But I had no clue what to do with such a counter space filling ‘thing’. Especially since I don’t eat meat. This sure makes it more interesting.

  • Anonymous
    January 27, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    How long will they keep?? I’m going to try this!

  • Beth
    January 27, 2013 at 2:17 am

    Made these today and the whole family loved them. I left all the water in and mashed them lightly. Served over rice with lots of toppings. Yum! Thanks for sharing.

  • Bethany Nash
    January 26, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    I make some similar to these. I put a hot green chili in for kick… jalapenos taste like ass. (IMHO, lol)

  • Beads and Books (Tammi Mossman)
    January 25, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    Supposedly, soaking them overnight helps to cut down on gas issues, and adding the salt in the last hour of cooking makes the beans more tender. Can anyone confirm or deny these bits of info?

    I’m going to try your seasonings, sounds delicious.

  • Camille
    January 25, 2013 at 5:19 am

    Thank you! What do you freeze them in? How long are they good in the freezer? (Although burritos are pretty much my main food group, so I can’t imagine they’d be frozen long).

  • Kate@StillRoomToGrow
    January 25, 2013 at 3:28 am

    I make a recipe similar to this and serve them with homemade corn tortillas, it is amazing!

  • Anonymous
    January 25, 2013 at 2:16 am

    This is my go-to recipe also, however I do soak my beans overnight and add more cumin. The bad thing about cooking these in the crockpot is having to smell them and be hungry all day. 🙂

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