Pintos & Gravy

Refried beans has always been my favorite side dish for fajitas or tacos, but I’ve only recently begun to experiment with other ways of preparing this inexpensive protein source. I love cumin with pintos, but not everyone is as fond of it as I, so using less (or none) may be in order if you’re not a fan. I’m sure this dish would also work well in a Crockpot.

These pinto beans are great on their own, but I like them best served over rice or mashed potatoes.

Prep: overnight soak for beans
Cook: 2 hours


1 lb. pinto beans (soaked overnight)
2 slices nitrate-free bacon
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 a sweet onion, finely chopped
1 small or 1/2 large green bell pepper, finely chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2-1 tsp. ground cumin, or to taste
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4-1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken stock
6-7 cups water

  1. Soak pinto beans in 6-8 cups water overnight. Drain and rinse beans.
  2. Chop bacon and cook with about 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium-high heat in a large pot/Dutch oven, 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add chopped onion and bell pepper to bacon. Cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add minced garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Reduce heat to medium and add drained beans, water, chicken stock, bay leaf and cumin.
  6. Cook 2 hours or until beans are tender, stirring often, adding more water if necessary. (If you have too much water, simply let the beans cook longer and thicken.
  7. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

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