Homestead Refried Beans (Plus, Canning Tips!)

A spoonful of refried beans in front of a copper pot
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No journey toward self-sufficiency is complete without cooking and canning refried beans!

Dried beans are inexpensive, shelf-stable, nutritious and complete meal on their own! They just take a little preparation, but it’s totally worth the effort.

Many people experience GI upset when they consume modern-day beans. Why? Because no one takes the time to soak beans overnight like grandma did anymore.

Soaking beans overnight will result in a dish that will be much easier for you to digest! That’s because soaking reduces the beans’ oligosaccharide and lectin content while increasing enzymatic activity (Lucius, 2020).

In this recipe, I’ll share how to properly soak beans and make the BEST refried beans you’ll ever have. As a bonus, I’ll also give you instructions on canning refried beans so you can enjoy a tasty treat at any time without the prep work!

What You’ll Need

Ingredients for Making the Refried Beans

  • 1 lb dried pinto beans
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 4 strips of bacon (from organic, pasture-raised pigs)
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tsp italian seasoning blend
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups beef stock (from organic, grass-fed cows)
  • ½ cup cup salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (from organic, grass-fed cows)

Supplies for Canning Refried Beans

  • 4 Pint Canning Jars (I like wide-mouth)
  • 4 sets of Canning Lids and Seals
  • Pressure Canner with Canning Rack
  • Canning Funnel
  • Tongs

How to Make Homestead Refried Beans

  1. Rinse beans and pick out any sticks or stones
  2. Cover beans with water and add 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (this improves their digestibility!). Let soak 8-12 hours overnight. A glass bowl full of soaking pinto beans
  3. After 8-12 hours, drain and rinse beans well. Set aside.
  4. Cook bacon in a cast-iron skillet until crisp. Remove bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel or tea cloth. Once cooled, chop bacon and set aside.4 strips of bacon in a a cast iron pan
  5. Transfer bacon grease to a large pot and heat over medium. Add onions and cook until golden (~5 minutes).
  6. Add the garlic and spices. Cook for 1 more minute.Copper pot with onions and spices simmering
  7. Throw the soaked and rinsed beans into the pot along with 2 cups of beef stock.
  8. Add enough water to cover the beans by 1-2”  (~2 cups of water is ideal for the pot I use).Copper pot filled with beans to be cooked
  9. Cover and let simmer for 1.5-2 hours until the beans are soft, checking the water level occasionally. If you are planning to can them, you can get away with undercooking the beans a bit since they will continue to soften while pressure canning.
  10. Mash the beans up slightly with a potato masher, add the chopped bacon and stir in ½ cup of salsa.A copper pot full of homemade refried beans
  11. Top with cheddar cheese and enjoy!

Canning Homestead Refried Beans

  1. Let’s pick up from step 10! (Don’t add cheese just yet).
  2. If your refried beans ended up a little thick, add some extra water so that the heat penetrates during pressure canning, but not too much so that the beans are watery.
  3. Fill your clean pint jars with your delicious homestead refried beans leaving 1 ½” headspace.
  4. Process at 10 lbs of pressure for 75 min (pint jars) (Washington Post) – Adjust pressure for altitude.
  5. Store in a dark, cool place for up to 1 year.
  6. When you want to enjoy some homestead refried beans, simply reheat and top with shredded cheddar cheese. Yum!

4 pint canning jars filled with canned refried beans

Yes, when canning refried beans they absolutely need to be pressure canned. They are low acid food, so please do not attempt water bath canning with this recipe!

Please note: This is not an officially tested recipe so use at your own risk. However, I have done my own research, and feel confident in using it! 

Is this your first time pressure canning? If so, definitely check out The Prairie Homestead’s How to Use a Pressure Canner series. This is the same guide that I used when I was first starting out with pressure canning!

Variations

Prefer black beans?

No problem! They require the same soaking and cooking times as pinto beans.

Want a bigger kick?

Add chopped poblanos and/or jalapenos while cooking the onion and garlic. Yum!

Don’t want to add salsa?

Totally fine! In fact, my recipe is the only one that I know of that adds this. I learned the salsa trick from my mom and I think it adds a nice balance of flavor and acidity.

FAQ

Can you double this recipe?

Absolutely and please do! I’ve found that once I’m already making a mess and have the pressure canner out, it’s well worth the effort to double or even triple what I’m making. There’s nothing better than having a bunch of canned homestead refried beans ready to go!

How long does it last?

  • 3-4 days in the fridge
  • 6-12 months once pressure-canned and properly stored

How many pint size canning jars does this recipe fill?

For me, this recipe fills 4 pint size canning jars, plus a little extra for a tasty snack!

Are homemade refried beans better than canned ones?

Heck yes! I didn’t think that I was a big refried beans fan until I had made my own from scratch. Now I’m completely addicted!

What is your favorite pressure canner?

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Homestead Refried Beans Recipe Card

A spoonful of refried beans in front of a copper pot

Homestead Refried Beans (Plus, Canning Tips!)

In this recipe, I’ll share how to properly soak beans and make the BEST refried beans you’ll ever have. As a bonus, I’ll also give you instructions on canning refried beans so you can enjoy a tasty treat at any time without the prep work!
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 8 hrs
Cook Time 2 hrs 15 mins
Total Time 10 hrs 15 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people
Calories 139 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Bowl for soaking beans
  • 1 Strainer for straining the soaked beans
  • 1 Large Pot for cooking the homestead refried beans
  • 4 Pint Canning Jars OPTIONAL - if canning
  • 4 Sets of Canning Lids/Rings OPTIONAL - if canning
  • 1 Pressure Canner with Rack OPTIONAL - if canning
  • 1 Canning Funnel OPTIONAL - if canning
  • 1 Tongs OPTIONAL - if canning

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb dried pinto beans organic
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar for soaking
  • 4 strips bacon organic, pasture-raised
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp italian seasoning blend
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 2 cups beef stock organic, grass-fed
  • ½ cup salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (for topping) from organic, grass-fed cows

Instructions
 

Pre-Soaking Dried Beans

  • Rinse beans and pick out any sticks or stones
  • Soak beans overnight with a splash of apple cider vinegar (8-12 hours)
  • Drain and rinse beans well. Set aside.

Cooking Homestead Refried Beans

  • Cook bacon in a cast-iron skillet until crisp. Remove bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel or tea cloth. Once cooled, chop bacon and set aside.
  • Transfer bacon grease to a large pot and heat over medium. Add onions and cook until golden (~5 minutes).
  • Add the garlic and spices. Cook for 1 more minute.
  • Throw the soaked and rinsed beans into the pot along with 2 cups of beef stock 
  • Add enough water to cover the beans by 1-2”  (~2 cups of water is ideal for the pot I use)
  • Cover and let simmer for 1.5-2 hours until the beans are soft, checking the water level occasionally. If you are planning to can them, you can get away with undercooking the beans a bit since they will continue to soften while pressure canning.
  • Mash the beans up slightly with a potato masher, add the chopped bacon and stir in ½ cup of salsa.
  • Top with cheddar cheese and enjoy!

Canning Homestead Refried Beans

  • Let’s pick up from step 7! (Don’t add cheese just yet)
  • If your refried beans ended up a little thick, add some extra water so that the heat penetrates during, but too much so that the beans are watery.
  • Fill your clean pint jars with your delicious homestead refried beans leaving 1 ½” headspace
  • Process at 10 lbs of pressure for 75 min (pint jars) (Washington Post) - Adjust pressure for altitude
  • Store in a dark, cool place for up to 1 year
  • When you want to enjoy some homestead refried beans, simply reheat and top with shredded cheddar cheese. Yum!

Notes

Yes, when canning refried beans they absolutely need to be pressure canned. They are low acid food, so please please please do not attempt water bath canning with this recipe!
Please note, this is not an officially tested recipe so use at your own risk. However, I have done my own research and feel confident in using it! 
Is this your first time pressure canning? Definitely check out The Prairie Homestead’s How to Use a Pressure Canner series. It’s the same one that I used when I was first starting out with pressure canning!

Nutrition

Calories: 139kcal
Keyword bacon, beans, canning, homestead, lard, soaking
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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16 thoughts on “Homestead Refried Beans (Plus, Canning Tips!)”

  1. My hubby and I are empty nesters so I would like to can half pints. Do they still process at 10 lbs of pressure for 75 minutes?

  2. This looks amazing. We are always buying canned refried beans and I never thought of making my own. I will be now! Thank you for this recipe.

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