I teach you how to make these tasty Cuban-style black beans. Creamy and flavorful, they are easy to make on the stove or in the instant pot.
Soft, creamy black beans, just like the beans at your favorite restaurant, are easy to make with a few ingredients you probably have around the kitchen.
Flavorful black beans are perfect simply served over white rice with a squeeze of lime. They are also a great side dish for any Mexican meal. I serve them with tacos, in burritos, and over my nachos for a crowd.
They're saucy with a hint of heat from the jalapeño, and super flavorful. The seasonings make these authentic black beans extra special. Read below to see how to save a step and make them with canned beans.
How long does it take to cook black beans?
Instant Pot Cooking dried beans in an Instant pot saves about an hour to an hour and a half on cook time, plus no stirring required! Throw in the dry beans, add water and the flavorings, and your beans will be ready in 25 minutes.
Stovetop: While a more intensive process, cooking beans on the stove is just as effective. It's important to keep watching the temperature of the beans.
Shortcut using canned beans
Even though dried beans are a cinch to make in the instant pot, you may want to make these with canned black beans in a rush. You skip the soaking step and are that much closer to enjoying your creamy black beans!
- Canned beans can be very high in sodium. You'll want to cut down on the salt called for in the recipe and adjust the seasoning to taste at the end. You can also purchase canned beans with a lower sodium content.
- Canned bean liquid is just fine to eat! Most recipes call for draining and rinsing canned beans. For this recipe you can drain the beans, but save 1/2 cup of the can liquid to add to the recipe with the broth. This thick, flavorful liquid helps make the final dish creamy and tasty.
- Canned beans are cooked just perfectly. And for these authentic, creamy black beans, you'll want your beans just a bit softer. This simply means that the simmering time is crucial. Softening the beans just right helps this dish taste great whether you're taking a shortcut or not.
Make black beans mild or spicy:
Jalapeño peppers are a very popular pepper, and notorious for adding that extra Mexican zing to dishes. They are hot, but fairly moderate in relation to other peppers. This makes them perfect for adding spice and a little heat to contrast with the creamy black beans.
Did you know jalapeños are used for chipotle seasonings and are the main ingredient in sriracha hot sauce?
Authentic black beans are delicious in tacos or served on the side. Try one of my favorite taco recipes.
Authentic Creamy Black Beans
Cook the black beans
- 1 lb dry black beans picked and rinsed
- 1 small jalapeño (optional) quartered and seeded
- 1 small yellow onion peeled and quartered
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 bay leaf
- 7 cups water
Assemble Authentic Black Beans
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small jalapeño finely diced
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 cup low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
For the black beans
- Pick through dry beans for any pebbles and rinse beans. Place in an instant pot. For spicier black beans add the jalapeño, for less spicy leave it out. Add the onion, garlic, bay leaf and water.
- Seal and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes. Let the instant pot do a natural release. Drain beans and remove any jalapeño pieces you see. Use or keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
Assemble Authentic Black Beans
- In a pot or high-sided skillet heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add onion, garlic, and jalapeño and reduce heat to medium. Saute until onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the salt, oregano, chili powder, cumin and coriander and cook 30 seconds. Add drained cooked beans and broth. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
- Serve beans immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
To cook on the stove:Pick through dry beans for pebbles and rinse. Soak overnight, drain and rinse. In a large pot cover beans with 2 inches of water. Add the onion, jalapeño if desired, garlic and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until very tender, 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours. Drain, remove jalapeño pieces and use as desired.
Shortcut with canned beans:Drain 3 cans of black beans, reserving 1/2 cup canned bean water. When ready to add beans to the cooked onion mixture, add the beans and bean water with the broth. Reduce the salt to 1 teaspoon, then taste and add more salt as desired. Let simmer for about 5 minutes to soften before serving.
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Recipe by Tara Teaspoon
I’ve been in the food publishing business for over 20 years, creating recipes and food styling for magazines, books, television and advertising. Find out more about me!