Quick & Easy Homemade Refried Beans in Under 10 Minutes


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Did you know you can make a delicious plate of refried beans from scratch in just 10 minutes? That’s right – forget the canned stuff and whip up your own homemade refried beans that are healthy and packed with flavor in record time!

homemade refried beans

Homemade Refried Beans in Under 10 Minutes

Making your own homemade refried beans is a great choice for healthy eating and they’re very economical too! If you’re trying to keep a low grocery budget, this recipe will help!

By using simple and affordable ingredients, such as dried beans, water, and seasonings, you can create a delicious and healthy side dish that is packed with protein and fiber. Making homemade refried beans without lard also allows you to avoid unnecessary additives, preservatives, or excess salt often found in canned beans, which can be harmful to your health.

Plus, if you make a large batch, you can freeze or store the leftovers for future use, which can help you save money and reduce food waste. So, whether you’re looking to eat healthier or save money, making your own homemade refried beans is a win-win!

The best part? Healthy, homemade refried beans can be ready to enjoy in no time! Whether you’re looking for a quick side dish or a tasty addition to your tacos, this recipe is sure to impress. So let’s get cooking!

Yes, really! It is possible to make homemade refried beans in under 10 minutes, from start to finish. The secret ingredient: BEAN FLOUR or BEAN FLAKES.

How to Make Bean Flour

I grind my own bean flour in a grain mill. My grain mill is one of my most prized kitchen possessions. I have used both the Nutrimill Grain Mill and the WhisperMill. While I love them both I finally decided that the Nutrimill is my winner. You can read why in my Grain Mill Showdown post.

Why else do I love my grain mill? Because my grain mill makes fresh, homemade flour super quickly. It grinds wheat, kamut, spelt, rice, AND beans! Grinding wheat berries is more economical than buying the flour {and grinding my own nets me super fresh, nutrient-dense food}.

To make bean flour, grind dry beans on a coarse setting. That’s all you have to do! 1/2 cup of beans yields about 3/4 cup bean flour.

What if You Don’t have a Grain Mill?

If you don’t have a grain mill, don’t despair. You can buy many different types of bean flour or bean flakes that also make delicious refried beans from scratch. But it is cheaper, in the long run, to invest in your own grain mill if you’re serious about alternative flours.

What are Bean Flakes?

Bean flakes are dehydrated and ground beans that have been processed into a flaky or powdery form. They are typically made from a variety of beans such as black beans, pinto beans, or navy beans.

Bean flakes are popular in vegan and vegetarian recipes as they are a good source of protein and fiber. They can be used in a variety of dishes such as soups, stews, chili, and even as a meat substitute in burgers and meatloaf.

Bean flakes are great to keep in your pantry because they have a long shelf life and can be easily rehydrated by adding water or broth.

bags of dried beans

Where to find Bean Flour or Bean Flakes

Organic Pinto Bean Flakes from Vitacost

Organic Black Bean Flakes from Vitacost

What are Refried Beans?

Refried beans, or frijoles refritos, are a popular Mexican and Tex-Mex dish made from cooked and mashed beans, typically pinto beans. Refried beans have a long history as a staple food in Mexico where they’ve been used for many centuries.

Contrary to their name, refried beans are not actually fried twice. Instead, they’re cooked once and then mashed and cooked again with additional ingredients such as lard, onion, garlic, and spices.

The result is a creamy and flavorful dish that is often used as a filling for burritos, tacos, and other Mexican dishes, or served as a side dish. It’s easy to make refried beans from scratch using dried beans or using canned beans for a quicker preparation.

Our recipe is different because we don’t use lard or oil, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t taste good!

What is the benefit of making refried beans without lard ?

Many people traditionally used lard in refried bean recipes to give the beans a rich and creamy texture. But lard is high in saturated fat and a lot of people avoid it. It can increase the risk of heart disease and other health problems plus, it’s not vegan or vegetarian friendly.

Using alternative ingredients such as vegetable broth, chicken broth, or olive oil can provide a similar texture and flavor without the added saturated fat. And, it makes this a good dish for vegetarians, vegans, or other people who prefer to avoid animal products.

Why else do we like this homemade refried beans recipe?

The best part about this homemade bean recipe is that it is made from really simple ingredients. It’s low in fat because it doesn’t use lard or oil, and it’s tasty because of the addition of simple spices.

You can make a big batch of refried beans and freeze the leftovers for quick and healthy freezer meals to eat another time. And the recipe is so versatile! You can use any type of bean you want, including black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, etc.

The one complaint I have heard about this recipe is that the beans can be on the runny side. You can thicken them up by using homemade broth, simmering a few minutes longer, or if you’d like, adding in a cup of cooked beans.

tostadas with homemade refried beans

What’s the best way to eat homemade refried beans?

Refried beans is a versatile staple that can be used in many different ways. They are often served as a side dish or used as a filling for Tex-Mex cuisine like burritos, tacos, tostadas, and enchiladas. They can also be used as a dip for tortilla chips or vegetables, or as a base for a layered dip. Some people even spread them on toast for a healthy and filling breakfast option.

We think these refried beans make a great side dish for other recipes we have on the blog:

Salmon Street Tacos with Jalapeno Lime Crema

Baked Taco Empanadas

Our Favorite Taco Meat – large batch recipe perfect for the freezer

How can I adjust the recipe to make spicy refried beans?

This recipe is pretty mild, so you may want to add a few things to make it spicier. Adding spice to your refried beans is a great way to add some flavor and kick to your dish! To make spicy refried beans, you can add some diced jalapenos, chili powder, or red pepper flakes to the recipe.

Start with a small amount and taste as you go, adjusting the amount of spice to your liking. You can also use a can of diced green chilies to add a mild kick of flavor.

You. can also add in some of our homemade taco seasoning. It’s a large-batch spice mix recipe and it has a kick!

How long will homemade refried beans keep in the fridge?

Homemade refried beans will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days if stored properly in an airtight container. It’s important to make sure that the leftover refried beans have cooled completely before storing them in the fridge to prevent the growth of bacteria.

If you don’t plan on eating the beans within 5 days, you can freeze them for up to 3 months.

Can you freeze refried beans?

Yes, you can freeze refried beans. In fact, it’s a great way to store leftovers so make a large batch of refried beans to freeze for later. To freeze refried beans and prevent freezer burn, let them cool to room temperature and transfer them to an airtight container, ziplock freezer bag, or Souper Cubes Freezer Trays.

Be sure to leave some room for expansion, as the beans will expand when frozen. Label the container with the date and freeze for up to 3 months.

When you’re ready to eat, thaw frozen refried beans overnight in the refrigerator. Or, use the defrost setting on your microwave. Reheat the beans in a saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently, until heated through.

Pro Tip: Souper Cubes freezer-safe containers are my favorite way to freeze foods, from eggs, to leftover cooked dried beans, to homemade stock.

Yield: 4 servings

Homemade Refried Beans from Scratch

homemade refried beans

If you're looking for a quick, easy and healthy recipe for homemade refried beans, this is for you!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 3/4 cup bean flour or bean flakes {I used pinto beans, but black beans would also be great!}
  • 2 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder


    Put bean flour and water in a medium-sized saucepan and cook over medium heat. Stir constantly while the beans start to thicken {1-3 minutes}. After they’ve started thickening, add spices, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 5 minutes. 

    Viola!! Homemade Refried Beans in under 10 minutes.


If you want to grind your own bean flour, 1/2 cup dried beans yields about  3/4 cup bean flour. Grind more if you want to have bean flour on hand to make lunchtime even quicker next time!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 243Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 318mgCarbohydrates: 42gFiber: 12gSugar: 2gProtein: 15g

Nutritional Information is not always correct.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram tagging @simplifylivelove! I love to see your photos!

About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long-time green-living enthusiast, and rural Iowa mom of four. She empowers families to grow and eat seasonal, local foods; to reduce their ecological footprint; and to come together through impactful travel.

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    1. I like them both. They both have pluses and minues. The cost is about the same. The Nutrimill has a larger capacity, but the machine is also bigger and takes up more room. The Wondermill can’t grind as much at one time, is smaller, but maybe just a tad quieter. If you want a larger volume, go with the Nutrimill. If you want a smaller machine, go with the Wondermill. 🙂 Helpful at all?

      1. Yes – my counter top is getting full. I like the thought of the smaller machine that can still get the job done! Thank you!