The Best Canned Refried Beans Hack.
Creating this recipe was somewhat accidental, but what a happy accident it turned out to be. I could eat these creamy refried black beans on their own, but I really love to make black bean avocado toast out of them! Or put them on beefy quesadillas, or this breakfast burrito with hashbrowns and cheesy eggs.
Creamy refried black beans are something I dream about constantly. We eat a ton of Tex-Mex food, so having this super easy recipe on hand is a lifesaver when we need a quick side dish for dinner.
How to Make Canned Refried Beans Better?
It’s easy, I promise. This canned refried bean recipe uses a few pantry staples to level up the flavor of these refried beans, and make them super creamy! Here is a list of ingredients that you’ll need to make your canned refried beans taste better:
- Unsalted Butter
- Finely chopped Onion (Yellow or White)
- Minced Garlic
- Cayenne (if you want some heat!)
- Sour Cream
- Hot Sauce
- Fresh Lime
- Chopped Chives or Green Onion (for garnish)
This is such a simple way to make canned refried beans even better. You can use refried black beans OR refried pinto beans.
Recipes using Canned Refried Beans:
Creamy refried black beans go with anything Tex Mex. Here’s some of my favorites:
- Breakfast burritos (the beans are mixed with cheesy eggs and crispy hashbrowns!)
- Chicken tostada stacks (this is a favorite quick & easy weeknight dinner!)
- Beefy quesadillas (another quick & easy dinner recipe!)
- Creamy Black Bean Avocado Toast (great for anytime of the day)
Here’s another thought : creamy refried black beans would also make an awesome base layer for the fiesta flatbread I made up one day! That was another happy accident – I definitely recommend checking it out if you haven’t done so already. It’s by far one of the most fun and colorful flatbreads I’ve ever made!
Quick and easy, this refried bean recipe is the perfect side dish for any weeknight dinner. Please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions, and I would love a rating / comment below if you love this recipe! You can also tag me on Instagram if you make these beans; I would love to see them!
Quick Rundown of this Canned Refried Beans Recipe:
Actual Prep / Cook Time: 15 minutes
Clean-up difficulty: 2
Overall difficulty to make: 2
Price range? This dish is under $3 for two people.
Tips for Making Canned Refried Beans Taste Better:
- Use bacon fat instead of unsalted butter if you have it! I may be weird, but I always keep a small mason jar of bacon fat in the freezer for twice baked potatoes, sautéed brussels sprouts, and other recipes that need a kick of salty, rich fat to cook in. These beans are AMAZING when I use bacon fat, but I write butter in the recipe because I don’t think many people just have bacon fat hanging out in their freezer. If you’re one of those people, definitely make that swap!
- Adjust spices to your liking. The recipe is pretty solid as is, but you are certainly welcome to add more cumin, more cayenne, or even a touch of Mexican oregano if you please!
- If you don’t have onion and garlic on hand, use the dried versions. For two cloves of garlic, use 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder. Substitute 1 teaspoon of onion powder for the chopped onion. Taste the beans after they are mixed in, and add up to another teaspoon of onion powder if desired.
- Swap Greek yogurt for sour cream for a lighter version. If you don’t like sour cream or you’re looking to make a slightly lighter version of this recipe, Greek yogurt will do the trick. It will still deliver a creamy texture and great flavor!
- Add more hot sauce if you like it spicy! Adjust the heat to your liking, and use your favorite brand of hot sauce! I love Cholula or Tapatio, but your favorite one is the way to go!
© Originally posted in 2015 | recipe updated in 2020 | photos updated in 2021.
Creamy Canned Refried Black Beans
- 1 T butter
- 2 small clove garlic minced
- 2/3 cup white onion finely chopped
- 1 can refried black beans 15.5 oz
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1/3 cup sour cream light works!
- 1 Tbps. cholula
- Melt butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat.
- Add onion, cook 3-4 minutes until tender. Add the garlic and cook another minute until tender and fragrant.
- Add beans, and mix thoroughly with the onion and garlic. Stir until smooth, then add the cayenne and cumin. Stir to mix.
- Stir in the sour cream and hot sauce (optional) until fully combined.
- Top with any combination of tomatoes, green onion, jalapeños, cheese, etc.
- Serve hot!
Use this as a layer inside of quesadillas, as a flatbread base, or as a side. It's very versatile.
I didn't find a need for salt and pepper, but always add some if you feel it needs it!