No-fail refried beans

Refried beans recipe by Primary Beans


Once you’ve made a pot of beans using our guide, you’ve allllmost made refried beans. All you need is a little more fat to fry everything up. If you can find quality, pasture-raised lard, use it for the best flavor. Then, the magic comes during the mashing process, performed right in the skillet, adding just enough bean broth so that the consistency is velvety. We LOVE refried beans and all that they offer. Smear them, slather them, use them as stuffing, or devour them by the forkful.  

Featured bean: Bayo

Other beans to try: MayocobaOjo de Cabra, Flor de Junio, Flor de Mayo

Take 'em from dried to cooked with our guide

Print recipe here

What you’ll need

  • A batch of beans in their broth
  • Some lard or neutral oil, or a combination   
  • Coarse salt
  • ½ white or yellow onion, diced
  • A fresh or dried chile (optional)


Strain beans, reserving the broth. Heat lard and/or oil in a large cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet until very hot, you’ll want about ¼ cup fat for every 4 cups of beans. If using lard, it will start to turn golden (which is good!). Add onions until they begin to brown around the edges. Then, add the beans and some of their broth, about 1 cup for every 4 cups of beans. Simmer for a few minutes and start mashing with a wire masher until the beans are velvety. Continue mashing until very smooth. Cook the beans for longer to thicken, or add more broth to thin.


We imagine this with…

Crispy corn tortillas (bean tostadas!). A warm, high-quality flour tortilla (bean burritos!). Scrambled eggs, hot sauce, avocado, and warm corn tortillas (breakfast tacos!). The options are endless.

Turkish bean salad (piyaz) recipe with Primary Beans Cannellini beans

Turkish bean salad (piyaz)

Feast for the Future brothy beans

Feast for the Future brothy beans

Enfrijoladas recipe by Primary Beans

Sofia and Francisco's enfrijoladas