How to cook black beans


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Here’s the recipe!

Makes approximately two cups/serves four


  • 500g of dried black beans
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1⁄2 of a large white onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp dried epazote or 4 tbsp fresh chopped epazote
  • Dried chipotle chiles*
  • Salt to taste

*These are optional, depending on how spicy you want your beans. We added two to infuse a rich, smoky flavour into the beans. The chiles will break down during the cooking process.


  • ­Rinse beans well under cold running water
  • Soak overnight or for at least 6 hours
  • Rinse beans again and place in a large saucepan with enough water to cover them by about 2” ­
  • Bring to the boil and add all remaining ingredients EXCEPT the salt**
  • Reduce the beans to a medium heat and boil for approximately 1.5 hours. Try a couple of beans at this point to see if they are sufficiently cooked. They should be soft right through
  • When beans are cooked, add approximately 1 tablespoon of salt

**Do not add salt until the end of the cooking process otherwise it will prevent the beans from absorbing enough water to cook properly.

Black beans are ubiquitous in Mexican cuisine. Served either on their own, with rice, refried, inside tacos, as a garnish on tacos etc, they can be used in an infinite number of dishes.

Recipe and photo remain property of Sean O’Callaghan and Julio Alcantara and may not be reproduced without permission. © 2016

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Written by fatgayvegan

  1. Made this today and it was so tasty! Used chipotle and smoked paprika paste from tesco, and omitted the epazote because I didn’t have any. I served it with some nooch and vegan bacon bits stirred in, soooo good! Thanks

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