Black Beans from the Pot

Black Beans from the Pot

Frijoles de Olla
5 cups, plus cooking liquid
Pati Jinich
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: black beans, cilantro, epazote, onion, pati's mexican table
Author:Pati Jinich
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Black Beans from the Pot recipe from Pati's Mexican Table Season 4, Episode 1 “Good Morning, Mexico!”


  • 1 pound dried black beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 white onion
  • A few sprigs of cilantro or epazote, optional
  • kosher or coarse sea salt, to taste

To Prepare

  • Place the beans in a big heavy pot and cover with enough water to cover the beans by at least 3-inches, about 12 cups of water. Incorporate the onion and bring to a rolling boil. You may also add cilantro or epazote. Let the beans simmer over medium heat, partially covered, for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until the beans are soft and then add the salt. Don’t add the salt in the beginning, or it will toughen the beans.
  • Let them continue simmering for another couple minutes, or until the beans are so soft, they come apart if you hold one between your fingers, and the broth has thickened to a soupy consistency. If the beans are not yet soft and the broth is drying out, add more hot water. Remove the cooked onion and herbs with a slotted spoon before serving.

45 comments on “Black Beans from the Pot

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. I truly appreciate you sharing your recipes! I am no cook but following your recipes I am getting better and teaching my daughter

  2. Dear Pati,
    I’ve been watching your show for several years and finally got the courage to try a recipe. This is the first time I’ve cooked black beans and they came out perfectly! We had them with a slow roasted pork belly and garnished it with avocado. It was delicious. Thank you for sharing your recipes and your love of food and culture!

    1. If you can’t find it at your regular market, you can usually find it at your local Latin/International market, Deloris. If you can’t find it, you can skip it or use cilantro.

  3. Pati,es usted una exlente chef,,yo siempre le digo a miss Amigas y gente que mevpregunta de resetas de comida Mexicana ybmi respuesta es si ustedes no han visto el programs de Pati Jinich,see an perdidobde comer una comida autentica Mexicana,much as gracias porvdeoeitar nuestro paladar con Susana exelentes platillos,quisiera poder encontrar el platillos del pollo que usted isovcon Los Chile’s secosvque Los llerve yvdespues prepara la salsa ybse cocinena en el horno ojaka sepdevquevreseta hablo.cinceramenre Sarita

  4. I watched this episode and see that a clay pot was used, are there any benefits to cooking in clay pots, and it is placed right on the fire? The clay pots have interested me since seeing them used in Cancun, my local Mexican market have them and I been thinking about giving it a try. I also like the aesthetics and nostalgia of them.

  5. Pati – I finally found some dried epazote at the Mexican food store in our town so for dinner tonight, I’m making your black beans, Rodrigo style sea bass, arroz verde, and a green salad with mango/habanero/avacado dressing. For a condiment to the fish and rice, I’m going to serve Julio’s salsa recipe (tomatoes, tomatillos, mixed dried chilis, etc.) from your second cookbook which I made yesterday. YUM!!!

    Question: Can I use Julio’s salsa as a marinade for fish or meat? Maybe by adding lime and orange juice to it? Or would it be best to use it as a condiment? I love the rich flavor.

    1. Hm. I have not used his salsa as a marinade. But… there is no reason why it couldn’t work… if you do, let me know how it turned out!!

  6. My wife left me and my son to fend for ourselves so I have to be like Mr Mom (the movie). Your recipes have helped me to prepare Mexican food like his mom makes it. Thank you and God bless you.
    By the way, you have a beautiful family.

    1. Hi Mary! Thank you. I have found that it is better to salt them once they soften and that they soften more if I salt near the end…. but of course we should all do what we find best in our own kitchens. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

      1. I’m inclined to follow your directions Pati. First of all, you have cooked many more beans than I have. Secondly, I’ve read many recipes that say to salt toward the end. Thank you for sharing all of your wonderful recipes. Thank you for helping us gringos to cook wonderful Mexican dishes.

  7. Dear PattiI would like to cook a nice,tasty Valentine’s dinner for my boyfriend, Reinaldo I was thinking some shrimp and steak what do recommend and for desert which flan do you recommend? He doesn’t know so he’s a big eater I need your help with a shrimp recipe that would go well with pasta I’m big on pasta please help me plan something nice. Thank you soon much.

    1. I used to, but not anymore. I realized there were not clear benefits except for the beans taking a bit less in cooking time…

  8. I want to make some beans but I do not have black beans, only pintos. Will the recipe work using beans besides black? I love your book!

  9. I just got and used epazote today to cook beans, I love the flavor the it gives the beans, what else can I use it for? I noticed someone asked about using dried, I could do that.

      1. Hola, Pati. I am going to try epazote leaves in my pot of black beans this week, but I am a little reluctant because of descriptions of its “stinky sweat” flavor/aroma description I’ve read online. Should I use just a small amount, then, to start? Would you ever make black beans without it? I am not a fan of cilantro, even, except on authentic tacos with diced onion, etc., so I’m not sure how to go. Thanks!

  10. Patti, thank you so much for sharing your passion with us! I love your show and am very excited to attempt to make one of your meals! Yay thank you again! You are awesome

    1. Marylin, Pati here! Thank you so much for watching the show. I can say that my boys love my cooking… most of the time, not always>>>