a smashed black bean recipe for canned black beans
Smashed black beans are an awesome side dish for Tex-Mex food. This particular recipe for smashed black beans packs a flavor punch, and also delivers on the heat. But it’s easy to adjust if you don’t want a lot of spiciness! Smashed beans have a consistency that is similar to refried beans, but without a ton of additives and fat. It’s basically refried beans from scratch, just a bit chunkier. 🙂
How do you make refried black beans from scratch?
Softening the black beans by simmering them in liquid, and then smashing them, creates a texture that is very similar to refried beans. Canned refried beans are usually heavy on the fat and sodium (although they are super delicious!), so this is a great substitute! This smashed black bean recipe is basically like refried beans from scratch, just a bit chunkier. By cooking the beans in water (along with a ton of flavor components), they soften enough to allow us to “smash” them. It’s not only easy to do, but it’s healthier than refried beans!
Are black beans good for you?
If you’re not following some diet fad that has convinced you otherwise, yes they are! Black beans are loaded with protein and fiber. They’re also gluten free and cholesterol free! For canned black beans, like in this recipe, be sure to drain the liquid from the can and thoroughly rinse the beans before cooking them. This rinses off the starches, which would alter the texture of the smashed beans. The liquids from the can are also packed with sodium, and we don’t need that.
What do you eat black beans with?
Oh, I have so many suggestions for you!
- Crunchy Chicken Tostada Stacks (use the beans for this recipe!)
- Chicken Fajita Quesadillas (eat the beans as a side, or spread them on the tortillas before layering the cheese and chicken!)
- Spicy Shrimp Tacos (definitely use beans as a side dish)
- Pork Carnitas Tacos (in the taco or on the side!)
- Slow Cooker Spicy Shredded Beef (layer some beans and this beef on nachos!)
So many options, seriously. The flavor in these beans makes it stand out from just standard refried beans. We start with onions and jalapenos, which are cooked in butter for ten minutes to soften and slightly brown them. Then we add garlic and spices to really amp up the flavor. Once the beans are softened and smashed, we stir in some hot sauce and sour cream to finish.
What spices go well with beans?
For these black beans, we use cumin, cayenne, oregano, and chili powder. You are more than welcome to omit the cayenne if you don’t want as much heat, though. The basis for most of my Tex-Mex recipes is cumin, oregano, and smoked paprika or chili powder.
I hope you get to make these soon, and I would love to see your recipe photos on Instagram or Pinterest! Be sure to tag me if you share your pictures – it seriously makes my day! And shoot me an email if you have any questions. 🙂
spicy smashed black beans
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup finely chopped white onion (or yellow onion)
- 1 tbsp. minced jalapenos (seeds removed for less heat)
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1/4 tsp. chili powder
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne (optional - leave out for less heat)
- 1/2 tsp. oregano
- 15.5 ounces canned black beans drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 2 tsp. hot sauce your favorite
- Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add onions, jalapenos, and a healthy pinch of salt. Stir to coat in butter, then cook for ten minutes.
- Stir in garlic and seasonings, and cook for three minutes.
- Stir in the drained/rinsed black beans and water, then cover the pot with a lid. Allow the beans to simmer for ten minutes, until softened.
- Uncover the pot, and turn the heat down to low. Once the beans are not actively bubbling, use a large spoon to stir the beans, and gently smash the beans against the side of the pot. Continue smashing until they form a creamy, thick texture.
- Stir in the sour cream and hot sauce. Carefully taste, and season with more salt if needed.
- Serve hot, and top with crumbled cotija cheese and cilantro, if desired!