Beans and Lentils/ Gluten Free/ Mexican and Latin Recipes

Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans

Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans – All the flavor of slow cooked black beans with white onions and epazote but made quicker by using canned black beans.

Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans ~ The Complete Savorist

Black beans are not something I enjoyed much of growing up.  Not because they weren’t around or served, I just didn’t like them. In fact, I didn’t fall in love with black beans until college when my dear friend Erik and I went out to lunch and I decided to follow his example and give them another try.  I was at least 7 or 8 years old when I last tried them, so no time like the then-present to give them a shot again. I am so glad I did.

Since that lunch many years ago in Provo with Erik, I have been in love black beans.  They are my go-to bean. I have them both dried and canned. I love the flavor that comes from slow cooking beans with herbs, spices, and onions. But I don’t always have the time and, quite frankly, the inclination to want to soak my beans overnight, and then boil them for hours on my stove top.

Now if you look at the recipe, you might notice an ingredient called epazote. If you know what it is, skip this next section, but for those of you wondering WTF it is, well keep reading.

Hispanic aisle ~ The Complete Savorist

Epazote is native to Mexico-I can’t find two websites to agree on where in Mexico. It is similar in its pungency to anise, fennel, and tarragon, but stronger. Black beans is the main way it is used, but can be found in other dishes like tamales, mole, rice, quesadillas, among others. The good news, for centuries it’s been used in teas to alleviate stomach discomfort. So this magical fruit becomes less magical when epazote is used. You can find it in a dried form on the Hispanic aisle of your local market.

Getting Started ~ The Complete Savorist

Simmering Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans ~ The Complete SavoristQuicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans ~ The Complete Savorist

Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans

Author: Michelle


  • 5-15 oz cans black beans (drain, but do not rinse 2 cans, 3 undrained/unrinsed)
  • 1 cup white onion; finely diced/minced
  • 2 cloves garlic; minced/grated
  • 2 tbsp bacon renderings (lard or olive oil)
  • 1 tsp dried epazote
  • 1/2 tsp salt +/- to taste
  • 2 tbsp crumbled bacon
  • Queso fresco , optional.


  1. Cook bacon, reserve 2 tbsp of the rendered fat.
  2. While cooking, open all 5 cans of black beans, only drain two of the cans but DO NOT RINSE; set aside
  3. Reserve 2-3 slices of cooked bacon and crumble.
  4. In a large pot, heat the bacon renderings on medium high, add the onion and garlic; cook for about 3 minutes or until the onions and garlic soften.
  5. Add the epazote, stir well and allow to bloom or become slightly fragrant.
  6. Gently stir in the cans of black beans, one at a time starting with the three undrained cans.
  7. Toss in the bacon, stir gently and bring to a high simmer.
  8. Once simmering, cautiously taste test and begin to add salt to taste, a bit at a time. The salt will intensify as it simmers.
  9. Reduce heat to low, cover and allow to cook for 30 minutes, stirring twice and taste for salt. Add more if needed, a bit at a time.
  10. Garnish with queso fresco, if desired, and serve using a slotted spoon.

This recipe have all the flavor you have come to love and expect in your local favorite Mexican restaurant-style black beans. But they are quicker and rather easy to make, saving you from slaving over a hot stove all day long. Traditionally, lard is used, I opted for the much healthier bacon fat (are you laughing, I surely am.) However, if you want to make them vegetarian, use olive oil and also omit the queso fresco if you’re aiming for vegan.

When you’re adding the epazote, you’ll notice it is very coarse and dry, but unlike rosemary, it will soften as it cooks and not stab the roof of your mouth…or shouldn’t anyway.

Quicker Authentic Black Beans ~ The Complete Savorist


Quicker Authentic Mexican Black Beans ~ The Complete Savorist

Thank you for sharing!

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  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 2:57 am

    Looks nutritious and super delicious. It’s such a coincidence because I will be preparing some black beans for today’s lunch. Thanks for the recipe.

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 11:53 am

      They make a great lunch.

  • Reply
    Arman @ thebigmansworld
    June 1, 2015 at 5:33 am

    I had no idea you used bacon as part of this- I could so use some right now!

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 11:49 am

      Lard is uber traditional, bacon still gives you the authentic taste.

  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 6:23 am

    Yummmm, love, love, love black beans! Canned beans really are easy and tasty, pinning this recipe to try later!

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 11:49 am

      Thanks Judy, hope you enjoy it.

  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 9:14 am

    Whenever we have taco night we have a side of beans with it. I have to try yours–they look great!

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 11:50 am

      And they are quick, but this does serve a full family.

  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 9:48 am

    I’m also a big fan of black beans. Will definitely try this without the bacon!

  • Reply
    Sheryl @Lady Behind the Curtain
    June 1, 2015 at 10:05 am

    I love this recipe! Can’t wait to try it out. Sounds so good!

  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 10:25 am

    I’ve got epazote in my pantry! I first learned of it when a farm share offered fresh epazote leaves as part of the weekly box, and since then I’ve picked up the habit of having some on hand when cooking beans.
    Great idea to make a Mexican side!

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 11:51 am

      Black beans aren’t truly Mexican style without the epazote.

  • Reply
    Carla (@charliesue)
    June 1, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    YUM, this bean dish looks delicious! I love using cotija cheese on my black beans too.

    • Reply
      June 2, 2015 at 12:00 am

      Thank you Carla, hope you enjoy them.

  • Reply
    June 1, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    You had me at beans, and queso and fiber and queso. These look fantastic. Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      June 2, 2015 at 12:01 am

      Thank you for stopping by.

  • Reply
    Dan from Platterr Talk
    June 3, 2015 at 9:06 pm

    5 stars
    Major lover of black beans here! Thanks for the fantastic post!

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