These are the best refried beans because they are faster and easier to make, healthier, and have more flavor than the traditional version. Traditional refried beans are not actually fried and then refried as the name implies. They are cooked, mashed and then fried, usually in lard. This recipe is not refried or even fried, and there is no lard.
EASIEST REFRIED BEANS RECIPE
This recipe is easy because the beans are cooked in an Instant Pot. They are first soaked overnight or brined. Then they are cooked and mashed. They are mashed with an immersion blender right in the bowl they will be served in, along with the salt, hot sauce, and garlic olive oil and garlic confit. There is no frying at all, just blend and serve. They can also be made ahead of time and refrigerated in a heat proof dish and then reheated, blended, and served all in the same dish.
HEALTHIER REFRIED BEANS RECIPE
This recipe is healthier because homemade garlic olive oil and garlic confit are added instead of frying the beans in lard, so the oil is much more heart healthy. Since it is garlic olive oil, it is much more flavorful than olive oil, and it has a flavor that is much more appropriate for Mexican food. We make the garlic olive oil and garlic confit and always have it on hand. And besides being healthier, this is also a sustainable recipe, so eating this way is helping to save the planet.
We vary this recipe with different beans and with different sauces and spices. Chipotle sauce or smoked salt, like smoke salt crystal flakes from Falksalt add a smoky flavor which works well in refried beans.
For certain products, the choice of brand will make a big difference in the outcome of the recipe and in your carbon footprint. So, for those products, we have listed the brand. We are not paid to mention a brand and have no affiliates.
Check the beans for debris by pouring them onto a white plate.
Always Soak the beans for at least 5 hours, though overnight is better. 1 cup of beans to 4 cups of filtered water and 2 teaspoons of salt. (Filtered water is used because minerals in the water might keep the beans from cooking evenly. The salt is added to season and to brine the beans so they hold their shape.). The next day, Drain and rinse well, throwing away the water. (Soaking and rinsing is done to remove natural toxins found in beans. This also removes some of the gas causing quality of beans.)
Put the beans in the Instant Pot and add 4 cups filtered water and 2 teaspoons of salt. Use the Instant Pot default setting for beans which will pressure cooking on high for 20 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 20 minutes before opening.
Put the beans into the serving dish.
Add garlic olive oil and garlic confit, siracha or other spices and use the immersion blender to blend it. Add water if needed. Salt to taste and serve.
Check out the chart on the blog post to see how food choices affect climate change. This recipe uses responsible brands and items that are lower on the chart and the production creates less greenhouse gas.