Christina’s Refried Beans {A Great Mexican Side Dish

Christina’s Refried Beans {A Great Mexican Side Dish

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!I got this recipe for refried beans from Christina, a friend I used to work with when I lived in Virginia Beach.

I guess everybody has a job in their past they hated. I am no different. I once had a job that started out great, but turned sour. Although I was treated ok for most of my time there, it ended up being one of the worst jobs I ever had.

I had to force myself to go to work every day. I hated my job so much that I actually pulled up in the parking lot, looked at the door in the rear view mirror, and I could not bear the thought of going through the door. I decided I was not going to work that day. I put my Jeep in reverse, backed out of the parking lot and went back home. I called in sick on my way there. No one ever saw me and it didn’t really matter if they had.

No, I didn’t like that job, but some good came out of working there. I made many friends that I still keep in touch with today. One of those friends was Christina, a military wife from California.

I always enjoyed my conversations with Christina and I learned a lot from her. It is because of her that I now know how beneficial Zinc vitamin supplements are when I think I am getting a cold.

Chris was sweet, but she didn’t put up with bullshit. One day, someone pushed the wrong buttons and she quit and walked out! As much as I hated that place, I didn’t have the balls to do what she did. I always admired her for that. She ended up going to work for the same company David worked for at the time. The company was also one of our printing competitors.

Through the powers of Facebook, Christina and I have managed to keep up with each other. From time to time we chat about life’s challenges, The Young & The Restless (don’t judge), and one of our favorite subjects food!

Her ex-mother-in-law was a Mexican lady, so when I decided I wanted to try my hand at refried beans, I went to her to see if she had a recipe to share. Of course, she did! 

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly with garlic, onion, and bacon, then finished with butter, milk, and cheese. 

Here’s how you make them:

Christina's Frijoles | These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly with garlic, onion, and bacon, then finished with butter, milk and cheese. | TheMountainKitchen.com

The day before: rinse and pick through the dried beans to remove any shriveled, broken, discolored or blemished beans, loose skins and other debris.
Place the beans in a large bowl; add water to the beans until the water is covering by 2 to 3 inches over the beans. Soak overnight.

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!

Rinse the soaked beans and then pour them into the crockpot.

Peel and quarter onion the onion; add it to the beans in the crock pot; cover with water covering by about ½-inch over beans. 

Christina's Frijoles | These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly with garlic, onion, and bacon, then finished with butter, milk and cheese. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Leave the bacon whole, but cut the strips in half; place it on top (It will break up during cooking).

Add the onion and garlic powder.

Christina's Frijoles | These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly with garlic, onion, and bacon, then finished with butter, milk and cheese. | TheMountainKitchen.com

Place the lid on and cook on low 9 to 10 hours or 7 to 8 hours on high. Christina recommended that you give the beans a good stir every hour or so to help the bacon and onion break down.

After they have finished cooking, taste. Add salt and additional onion or garlic powder if needed; season to taste. Remove about half of the beans with a slotted spoon into a bowl; set aside. With a potato masher, mash the remaining beans right in the pot until preferred consistency.

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!

When the beans are mashed, add the whole beans back in; stir to incorporate.

Add butter, stir until melted. Add the evaporated milk and stir in cheese until well combined.

Allow the beans to cook on low for another 15 minutes, then they are ready to eat! Or, if you have a warm setting, switch to that and let ’em sit until you are ready.

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!

Note: These beans freeze extremely well in a freezer bag.


A huge thank you to Christina for sharing this refried beans recipe with me and giving me permission to share them with you. You’re gonna love them, so get them soaking and have that crock pot handy, the Superbowl is on Sunday!

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!
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Christina's Refried Beans

These traditional refried beans are even better than restaurant style beans. They are creamy, smoky and seasoned perfectly. A great Mexican side dish!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Crock-pot, Mexican
Keyword crock-pot, Refried Beans, slow cooker
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 340kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 pound dried pinto beans
  • 1 onion large, white or sweet
  • ½ pound bacon
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 cups extra-sharp cheddar shredded
  • 4 ounces evaporated milk
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • sea salt to taste

Instructions

  • Rinse and pick through the dried beans to remove any shriveled, broken, discolored or blemished beans, loose skins and other debris. Place the beans in a large bowl; add water to the beans until the water is covering by 2 to 3 inches over the beans. Soak overnight.
  • Rinse the soaked beans and then pour them into the crock-pot; cover with water covering by about ½-inch over beans. Peel and quarter onion the onion; add it to the beans in the crock-pot. Leave the bacon whole, but cut the strips in half; place it on top (It will break up during cooking). Add the onion and garlic powder. Place the lid on and cook on low 9 to 10 hours or 7 to 8 hours on high. Christina recommended that you give the beans a good stir every hour or so to help the bacon and onion break down.
  • After they have finished cooking, taste. Add salt and additional onion or garlic powder if needed; season to taste.
  • Remove about half of the beans with a slotted spoon into a bowl; set aside. With a potato masher, mash the remaining beans right in the pot until preferred consistency. When the beans are mashed, add the whole beans back in; stir to incorporate.
  • Add butter, stir until melted. Add the evaporated milk and cheese; crockpot until combined.
  • Allow to cook on low for another 15 minutes, then they are ready to eat! Or, if you have a warm setting, switch to that and let 'em sit until you are ready.

Notes

These beans freeze extremely well in a freezer bag.
Recipe adapted from my sweet friend Christina

Nutrition

Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 45mg | Sodium: 258mg | Potassium: 638mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 335IU | Vitamin C: 3.4mg | Calcium: 210mg | Iron: 2.2mg
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The Mountain Kitchen

Hi, my name is Debbie, Author and Photographer at The Mountain Kitchen, a blog that shares delicious homemade recipes using clean food ingredients, and stories about mountain life.
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