HomeRecipesMain DishRefried Beans 2.0

Refried Beans 2.0

Refried’s Rebooted was our go-to family bean recipe for close to a decade. Because we’ve been reducing our meat consumption, I’ve been working on more an explicitly veggie version.

The biggest difference is you’ll need to hit the kitchen before you plan to make these, because you’ll need a bit of 2 different No Nightshade Kitchen staples: Beetuto and Nightshire Sauce Sauce.

While I’ve laid out specific vegetables, you can of course mix this up with pretty much any kind of vegetable you care to try, be it a leftover, frozen, or fresh from your victory garden.


  • 2 cups of dried pinto, maya coban, or black beans (that’s 3 to 4 twelve ounce cans)
  • olive oil for sauté
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 carrots, chopped (between 1 and 2 cups)
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 heaping tablespoon kalonji seeds
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon table pepper
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup beetuto
  • 1 tablespoon Nightshire Sauce


1Cook the beans until soft. While some people enjoy having a pot of beans cooking on the stove for several hours, that’s not me. I also don’t like canned beans if I can avoid them. If you have and like to use an Instapot, wonderful, but I prefer my old-fashioned pressure cooker. To maximize the efficiency I try to soak the beans overnight beforehand, then replace the water and cook until soft. Different pressure cookers, different beans, different hardness of water—all of this will affect how long it takes your beans cook. You’ll have to figure this out for your own situation. Here are a couple of resources if you’re really new to this.

2Put a large, heavy skillet or Dutch oven on medium heat. Add the oil, and sauté the kalonji seed for a few minutes. While they will sometimes pop, they aren’t as lively as mustard seeds, so if you’re used to judging heat by that metric be careful not to burn them or get the oil too hot.

3Add the onions and garlic and sauté until soft, usually 5 to 7 minutes. A touch of caramelization here is good. Add the carrots and continue cooking until they begin to soften. (Sometimes carrots cook slowly; if it seems like the mixture is a little too dry to cook effectively, a splash of the reserved bean water can hurry things up.)

4Add the spices. Add the frozen corn and whatever greens you’re using, along with the Beetuto. Again, depending on the moisture level a splash of the reserved bean water can assist.

5Once the mixture is well mixed and the greens cooked, add the beans and the Nightshire Sauce, mixing thoroughly. If you like things salty now is the time to adjust. Since there may be salt in your beans and your Beetuto, and there is lots of salt the Nightshire Sauce, you want to make sure those ingredients are integrated before adding additional salt.
6Bring to a simmer and adjust water, adding the reserve as needed. You’ll need enough to finish the cooking without the beans sticking, but not so much that they are too liquid.


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