Refried Kidney Beans

A simple Homemade Mexican Easy Refried Kidney Beans recipe. Made from scratch. Perfect for a Mexican Feast. 7 Simple Ingredients. 10 Minutes. Gluten-Free. Vegan. This easy refried beans recipe is sure to please!

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Ingredients to Make Easy Refried Kidney Beans:

  1. Red Kidney Beans (Cooked or Canned)
  2. Onion
  3. Minced Garlic
  4. A Handful Of Spices

How To Make Easy Refried Kidney Beans:

  1. Start by tossing all the ingredients into a small pan.
  2. Bring everything to a boil and let it simmer.
  3. Stir it every few minutes and smash the beans until it reaches your desired consistency. (We prefer chunkier refried beans.)
  4. Once it’s at your desired consistency, remove from heat, garnish with fresh cilantro and serve!

What Do You Serve With Refried Beans?

One of our favorite ways to enjoy these red refried beans, is the grate some cheddar cheese on top, microwave it until melted and then eat it as a dip with tortilla chips.

It’s a great side dish any Mexican meal!

  1. We like to spread it in a tortilla for a burrito,
  2. Scoop a dollop into a taco,
  3. A side dish to Mexican Chicken
What Are Refried Beans?

Refried Beans is a popular dish consisting of mashed beans. It is a staple in Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisines, but has some difference approaches when cooking the dish.
Although refried beans are sometimes referred to a “Mexican Beans”, it is a popular dish in various Latin American cultures.

Are refried red beans healthy?

Refried Beans are a good source of Protein and Dietary Fiber. They are low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. Red Kidney Refried Beans are also rich in Vitamin C, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese.
It contains about 217 calories per cup of refried beans. When eaten as part of a balanced diet, refried red beans can be a healthy addition to your meals!

Are Refried Beans Keto Friendly?

If you’re wondering whether you can have refried beans on the low-carb or keto diet, the answer is “no” in most cases.
Although beans are high in protein, fiber and other important nutrients – they have a very high carb count, making them unsuitable for low-carb and keto dieters in the majority of situations.

Can You Use Kidney Beans For Refried Beans?

Yes! In this recipe we use red kidney beans, because we absolutely love they flavor. They make a for great tasting refried beans.

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Easy Refried Kidney Beans

A simple and easy Homemade Mexican Refried Red Kidney Beans recipe. Made from scratch. Perfect for a Mexican Feast. 7 Simple Ingredients. 10 Minutes. Gluten-Free. Vegan.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Serving Size 4 servings


  • 1 Can Kidney Beans
  • ¼ Onion, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Minced
  • 2 teaspoons Chili Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Cumin
  • ½ teaspoon Pepper


  • Add the beans (including the liquid) from the can into a medium sauce pan, over a medium heat.
  • Add all the rest of the ingredients, and cook until heated through.
  • While it cooks, be sure to smash the beans until they reach your desired consistency.



  • Add vegetable stock if the refried beans get too thick.
  • If it’s too saucy, just keep simmering for a few minutes longer.
  • If you would like a very smooth final product – use an immersion blender.
  • Draining the beans: We always buy canned beans in brine. The ingredients are beans, water and salt. Check the label.

This recipe for Refried Kidney Beans was first published on August 1, 2018 and was updated on February 19, 2020 to include detailed step-by-step instructions and faqs.

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  1. 5 stars
    Super easy and very tasty. I like spicy food so I used some chili and some chipotle, but you can easily adjust the spice level and I suspect you could use pintos or other beans. The best part from my point of view is you can adjust how thick they are. I’m not crazy about the solid canned refried beans, but I don’t want soupy and I can make them to the consistency I prefer.

  2. I found this recipe when I was about to make some tostadas and realized I did not have any refried beans. I only had a can of whole kidney beans so quickly checked online to see if ok to refry kidney beans.

    For those who prefer less salt, always rinse your canned beans thoroughly to reduce sodium content and omit the salt or use less! Simple fix.

    I blended my beans with around 1/4 cup water. To the saucepan, I added some olive oil and fried the beans, adding some homemade salsa. At first the beans may look very runny. Continue cooking on low heat, stirring frequently, preferably with a rubber spatula. Before you know it, the beans will thicken up!

    P.S. In Mexican cooking, refried beans are just that…refried. I did not notice any oil or fats added in this recipe. So, maybe these should’ve been titled “Mock Refried Beans”? ; )

  3. On a limited salt diet. Drained 3/4 liquid from the low salt kidney beans, lightly mashed them, added 1/2 cup salsa , 1/4 onion minced, 2 cloves grated garlic. Heated for 10min.

  4. 4 stars
    Great recipe — bit too much salt. Next time I’ll wait until the end and salt to taste. Thanks for the starter, though!

  5. 5 stars
    I loved this…. I made some beans by soaking, cooking, then freezing them in. Can sized portions. So I used those and with water but I also mixed a little of Sabor medium salsa in while it cooked and omitted the cumin because I’m not a fan! It is seriously so awesome…it has ruined me for all other refried beans!
    I topped it with a little cheddar and hot sauce!

  6. Loved the recipe! Wish I had looked at your notes section sooner. I added salt when the can already had salt added. Otherwise, fantastic recipe. I can’t wait to try it with other bean types!

  7. Fantastic recipe! I see that you have taken note about the saltiness – 1 tsp was definirely too much. Still, I’ll make it again and less salty!

  8. 5 stars
    This was Delicious. Our beans had too many preservatives in the liquid for me to want to cook with it, so I used your tip to add veggie broth. We also omitted the salt since our beans were quite salty to start. We made simple bean and cheese burritos. Will definitely do this recipe again.

  9. 5 stars
    Make these all the time 3 cans at a time. Living in Uganda I had to make my own chili powder. I also dice a fresh jalapeño per can & brown onion, garlic & jalapeño. Then before I add beans I use a T of apple cider vinegar per can & 1 to grow on, & all dry seasonings, stir well & cook about 2 min then add beans. Thank you so! Yummy🥰

  10. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious. Very simple and very tasty. It is salty but refried beans generally are so no complaints there.

  11. We’re changing this recipe to “salt to taste” since it’s impossible to know the salt content of all different brands of beans.

  12. 5 stars
    Delicious recipe!! I started by browning some shallots and garlic then adding the kidney beans/ seasoning and stirring continuously for about 10 mins, lightly mashed it and it came out amazing! Super tasty, would highly recommend in some pulled pork burritos like I had!!

  13. Cannot tell you how delicious this recipe was! We cannot get pinto beans here, dry or canned, and honestly, it never occurred to me that maybe kidney beans might make a nice substitute. So after years of living without refried beans, I thought I would try it and found your recipe. It was such a hit that I am going to make big batches, portion and freeze them so that we can always have them on hand. Although, this was so fast and easy that it isn’t really necessary, we just have a lifestyle where grabbing a bean quesadilla or burrito for lunch has been a missed option. Yum!

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