slow cooker refried beans

Homemade Refried Beans in the Crock Pot

  • Author: Amy Palanjian
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 7-8 hours on LOW
  • Total Time: 7 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 10-12 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American


This recipe makes enough for 2-3 meals depending on the size and appetites of your family. See below for storage information!


  • 1 pound dry pinto beans
  • 4 garlic cloves and/or 1 onion, peeled and halved
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder


  1. Add all of the ingredients to the crock pot.
  2. Add 8 cups water, cover, and cook on LOW for 7-8 hours. The beans should be very soft.
  3. Drain most of the water, reserving about a cup.
  4. Use a potato masher to mash the beans until they’re mostly smooth. Add in a little water if needed for the desired consistency. Season to taste with salt.
  5. Serve warm with tortillas, or rice, with assorted taco toppings.


Store, once cooled, in airtight containers in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for 3-6 months.

The key to adding flavor when making refried beans in the crock pot is to season the water. I’ve done this with just garlic, and just onion, and also both and I like them all.

You will need to taste them before you serve them to adjust the salt level. If they taste a little bland, add a smidge more salt and/or cumin and that should take care of it.

As far as the texture goes, you can mash them chunkier or smooth. If you want them really smooth, you can even put them into a food processor!

I like to reserve some of the cooking water to add back in at the end during the mashing to make sure that they are as thin or thick as we like For tacos, I like them to be thicker so they stay put in the tortilla. For a refried bean tip or to go with rice, you can add back a little more water to make them a little thinner in consistency.

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