Beans: Pinto Beans


Beans: Pinto Beans

My personal favorite bean, they are lighter in color, creamier in texture and softer than black beans.  In Northern states, the pinto is the most popular bean.

In Sinaloa they cook them with onion, garlic, tomato and the serrano chile, those four ingredients that are the basis for many Mexican dishes. There is also a twist on Sinaloa beans called frijoles puercos or piggy style beans which is rather heavy, and served with bacon, chorizo, and cheese.  It is delicious!

Known for its mottled skin, it is also the most common bean in the US.


15 comments on “Beans: Pinto Beans

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  1. Hola Pati, we love your show and love your food even more ! I have a question that pertains to your” pinto beans” recipe? I have always pre- soaked My beans and added a 1/4 t. baking soda in cold H20. for 6-8 hours before draining, then rinsing and then adding fresh H2o and all other ingredients. Is this the correct method of prep for pinto beans? Also while I am preparing to cook my beans, I add a small to medium size chunk of pork. Have you ever done this?

  2. Hi Pati love your show you are an amazing cook!
    wanted your advice on the Sinaloa style pinto beans, when should the garlic be added and should it be whole like the onion or diced? also what kind of tomatoes do you use and are they diced or whole?, and can I substitute serrano chile with a jalapeno? Thank you for taking the time to help. God bless you.

  3. I would love to know how to make Peruvian beans if you have any recipes for that could you please send to me thank you so much

  4. Yes, it worked! After reading your suggestions regarding no salt and just to keep cooking and adding water, I decided to go back to the basics. Inspired by your show Saturday, I boiled some pinto beans with just the water. They were still crunchy after several hours and I needed to get up early Sunday so I put them in the fridge overnight. Yesterday they finished cooking in less than an hour and were very tender and tasty. I added my favorite seasonings and my husband really enjoyed his dinner, bean and cheese burritos with diced onion. Yum! Thanks again!

  5. Dear Pati,
    My husband and I both enjoy your wonderful cooking show. Thanks for sharing your recipes so freely and with such a positive flair.
    I grew up in Michigan, then spent time in El Paso, where I made pinto beans without any effort. Since I moved to the Denver area which is a much higher altitude, I am having trouble with my beans being crunchy. I’ve tried soaking them overnight, not adding salt until the last minute, using a blender to mash in place of my potato masher, to little success. Also, the flavor seems off. I’ve tried using diffrent stocks, including tomatoes, yet, my beans just don’t taste as good or have the creamy texture.
    If you have any suggestions, I’d really appreciate it.
    We hope you keep doing your show!
    Mary Jo

    1. Hi Mary Jo, It seems that dried beans take longer to rehydrate and cook at high altitudes. I’d try cooking a little longer — taste as you cook, and keep cooking until they have the soft texture you remember. I hope this will help you! Thank you so much for watching the show!!

    2. Pressure cooking seems to help speed up the process after soaking. For flavourings, I recommend hot pepper powders like Cumin and Cayenne (just a little of each), or Chili powder if you prefer less hot spices. I have lived at altitude in the past where my stepmother would boil then refry the beans until they were softened, she used a lot of oil during the refry process though. On the coast I find the dried beans still need a lot of work to re-hydrate and I almost never get all the way there, so I don’t think altitude is affecting this. If you can afford them, canned beans are always soft.

  6. Pati,
    I am having trouble in finding your recipe for refried beans using pinto beans.
    What am I doing that is making it difficult to find. My pinto beans have soaked overnight and ready to cook.
    PLEASE HELP!!!!!!