Frijoles De La Olla

Basic beans in a pot. A simple, delicious side dish and versatile Mexican staple. These beans can be mashed and refried, blended smooth for topping sopes, enfrijoladas, tostadas and Chicken Flautas. Add meat and a few other ingredients and you’ve got Frijoles Charros.


1 pound dry Pinto, Mayo Coba (Peruvian beans) or black beans


1/2 a medium yellow or white onion (I leave mine whole because I like to remove it when the beans are done but you can also chop it up before cooking and leave it in.)

2 whole garlic cloves, peeled

Salt to taste (about 2 teaspoons for me)

Optional: 1/4 cup Epazote leaves roughly chopped

  • Sort and rinse your beans and place them in a large bowl
  • Cover them with about an inch of water and leave them in a cool place or in the refrigerator to soak overnight
    Note: You CAN cook beans without soaking but cooking takes longer, there’s a chance of uneven cooking, mushy beans, and turning your bum into a WMD. Proceed with caution.
  • Drain and rinse the soaked beans and transfer them into a 4 quart or larger pot or dutch oven (you’ll need a lid. A plate will work in a pinch)
  • Cover the beans with an inch of water and add the onion, garlic and the optional epazote and bring everything to a boil over medium-high heat
  • Once the pot starts boiling, reduce the heat to low, and simmer with the lid on, but slightly ajar.
  • Start checking your beans after 1 hour. 2 hours if you’ve chosen not to soak. Bean cooking times can vary based on age and variety. Be patient and keep checking for tenderness.
  • Add water as needed to keep the beans submerged. When they’re *almost* done, sort of al dente, add the salt and continue cooking until they’re soft and creamy.

Slow Cooker Cheat Mode:

What better way to cook something low and slow (and free up some time) than a slow cooker? I can’t think of one.

Bonus: with a 6-8 hour cook time, they’ll come out tender whether you soak them or not.

  • Add your rinsed, soaked (optional) and drained beans to your 3 1/2 quart or larger slow cooker and cover them with 2 inches of water.
  • Add salt, garlic, onion and Epazote (optional)
  • Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours

Stir and Serve.


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