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Are Refried Beans Vegans? 1 Awesome Recipe

Are refried beans vegan? Refried beans, as per the traditional Mexican recipe, are vegan. But, some versions may include non-vegan ingredients such as lard fat (pork) or bacon bits. It is important to check the ingredients or consult the restaurant to ensure that the refried beans are suitable for a plant-based diet.

Refried beans are a popular Mexican dish made from mashed pinto beans, spices, and herbs. The name “refried” comes from the Spanish word “frijoles refritos,” which translates to “well-fried beans.” This dish is believed to have originated in Mexico during the 16th century and has since become a staple in many Latin American countries.

Related: Is Coffee Vegan?

Key Ingredients

The critical ingredients for making refried beans include dried pinto beans, onion, garlic, olive oil, or lard, spices such as cumin and chili powder, and herbs like oregano and cilantro. Depending on the recipe, additional ingredients such as jalapenos or tomatoes can also be added for extra flavor.

History of Refried Beans

Refried beans have been around for centuries and were initially made with lard. This traditional preparation method was used to preserve the beans for extended periods and give them more flavor. Over time, this dish has evolved into different variations depending on the region it is being prepared. In some countries, it is served with rice, while in others, it is served as a side dish or even as a dip with tortilla chips.

Are Refried Beans Vegan?

vegan refried beans

Vegan Refried Beans: View on Amazon

Yes, the traditional Mexican recipe of refried beans is vegan. However, some recipes are made with lard fat (pork) or bacon bits, which would not make them suitable for a plant-based diet. Always check the ingredients or confirm with the restaurant preparing the refried beans.

How to Make Vegan Refried Beans at Home

vegan refried beans recipe

Making refried beans at home is easy and only requires a few simple steps:

  1. Rinse and soak the dry pinto beans overnight or for at least 8 hours before cooking them. This helps soften them up so they will mash easier later on.
  2. Drain the soaked beans, then add them to a pot with enough water to cover them by an inch or two. Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until tender (about 45 minutes). Drain any excess liquid before mashing the cooked beans with a potato masher or fork until desired consistency is reached (you can also use an electric mixer if you prefer).
  3. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, then add chopped onion and garlic cloves until softened (about 5 minutes). Add mashed beans and your favorite spices such as cumin, chili powder, oregano, salt, pepper, etc., stirring occasionally until heated through (about 10 minutes). Serve warm with your favorite toppings such as vegan cheese, vegan sour cream, etc., or use as a dip with tortilla chips!

Benefits of Eating Pinto Refried Beans for Vegans

Pinto beans are a nutritional powerhouse packed with protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They are a great source of plant-based protein and provide essential nutrients for optimal health.

Regarding macronutrients, pinto beans contain carbohydrates, protein, and fat. Carbohydrates make up the majority of the bean’s composition at about 60%, followed by protein at 22% and fat at 11%. Pinto beans have 21 grams of protein per 100-gram serving. That’s just a few grams less than steak.

Pinto beans are also rich in folate, magnesium, potassium, and iron for vitamins and minerals.

There are many reasons why people should include pinto beans in their regular diet. They are an excellent source of plant-based protein, making them an ideal choice for vegetarians or vegans looking to get enough protein in their diet.

Additionally, they are high in fiber, which helps promote satiety and can help regulate blood sugar levels.

Their high magnesium and potassium content also helps prevent high blood pressure, while their antioxidants can reduce cell damage caused by free radicals.

When it comes to preparation and use in recipes, pinto beans can be used in various dishes such as soups, salads, or even as a side dish.

They can also be mashed to create refried beans or blended into dips like hummus.

The recommended serving size is 1/2 cup cooked daily for optimal health benefits.

It is essential to remember that consuming too many pinto beans may cause digestive issues due to their high fiber content, so it is best to increase your intake gradually if you need to get used to eating them regularly.

Overall, pinto beans are an excellent nutrition source that offers numerous health benefits when consumed regularly as part of a balanced diet. They provide essential nutrients such as protein, fiber, and vitamins while helping regulate blood sugar levels and reduce cell damage caused by free radicals.


Refried beans are a great vegan option for those looking to add more plant-based foods to their diets. They’re high in protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals, making them an excellent source of nutrition.

However, it is essential to check the ingredients before purchasing refried beans as some brands may contain animal products such as lard or chicken stock which would make them non-vegan friendly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are refried beans vegetarian?

Refried beans are not always vegetarian, as they may contain lard, an animal-based product. However, it is possible to make vegetarian refried beans using vegetable or plant-based oils. Various recipes are available for making vegetarian refried beans, such as using pinto beans, onion, garlic, and spices.

Are Taco Bell refried beans vegan?

The answer is yes! Both the canned varieties and the refried beans sold at Taco Bell restaurants are certified vegan. They contain pinto beans, soybean oil, and a few other ingredients.

Are Old El Paso refried beans vegan?

The Original Old El Paso refried beans are not vegan because they contain lard, an animal byproduct. However, they have a vegetarian flavor which is also vegan.

Vegan Multi Vitamins at FutureKind.com
Vegan Multi Vitamins at FutureKind.com