Simple Slow Cooker Refried Beans [Vegan/Gluten Free]

I kind of have a love-hate relationship with cooking things in the crockpot.  The love is that I can come home or wake up to a meal made.  The hate?  As much as I’m a planner in all aspects of my life, I’m not always the best planner when it comes to meals.  Need a meal out of the crockpot?  That’s not something you can throw together for 1 hour from now.  And, I’m also the one who has to count out the time that the crockpot will be done.  “Sure, I’ll set it at 10pm and let it cook for 5 hours”.  Wait.  Who’s getting up at 3am to turn it off?  And I most frequently shy away from the crockpot because sometimes I think of a meal, and I want it right then.  And I can’t have it right then.

With all of that said, when the stars align and I am able to come home (or wake up) to a warm, perfectly cooked meal, I love it.  Hm.  Perhaps I should do it more.

Today I’m bringing you a crockpot recipe for refried beans.  And I know you can go to the store and buy a can of them, and heat them up, and have dinner in an instant.  But, have you read the label on those before?  And…these taste so much better.

But some days, I will just buy the can.  I’m a sucker for instant gratification.

Also.  I have no clue how to make refried beans look ‘pretty’.  I tried.  Below is the end result.

Simple Slow Cooker Refried Beans [Vegan/Gluten Free]

Simple Slow Cooker Refried Beans [Vegan/Gluten Free]

Adapted from a recipe from 100 Days of Real Food

Click Here for a Printable Version

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of dried pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut into fourths
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (or pepper of choice)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, each chopped in half
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup salsa (optional)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water (or omit vegetable broth and use 6 cups water)

Let’s Make It:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in the slow cooker.  Stir well.
  2. Let cook for about 8 hours on high
  3. Remove from slow cooker, using a stick blender or a regular blender, blend all ingredients until smooth.  Use caution if still hot.  **Note – if you want your beans to be very thick, you will need to drain the liquid first.  I didn’t.  They turned out excellent, but they’re not the ‘typical thick canned refried beans’ consistency.
  4. Serve warm with toppings such as: diced tomatoes, guacamole or avocado, tofutti non dairy sour cream, salsa, cilantro, or add to tortilla shells, or use as a taco filling or chip dip
  5. Once cooled, Store leftovers in a covered container in the fridge for up to 4 days.  These freeze great – just freeze in portion sized containers!

I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!

-Chelsea

I included this recipe in a recipe roundup.

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