Mexican Black Beans (Frijoles Negros) are delicious and super easy to make! Made with simple pantry ingredients and packed full of fiber and nutrients, enjoy these restaurant-style black beans with all your favorite Mexican dishes including tacos, burritos, and enchiladas. Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.
What are Frijoles Negros?
Frijoles Negros (meaning “black beans” in Spanish) is a well-known Latin American dish made with black beans. It is especially popular in Guatemala, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and Venezuela (where it is called caraotas negras).
There are many different ways of preparing frijoles negros. Some recipes are seasoned with ham, while others may be kept vegetarian. Some versions may be blended and soup-like, while others may be left thicker, with the beans still intact.
Today we’re making a Mexican-style black bean recipe. I am not claiming authenticity with this recipe as there are too many versions of “black beans” out there.
These yummy restaurant-style black beans, however, are a perfect side dish for any Mexican, Latin American, Caribbean, or Tex-Mex meal.
How to Make Mexican Black Beans Recipe (Frijoles Negros)
- Cook the onion and bell pepper until softened. Add the garlic, salt, and ground cumin. Mix well.
- Add the beans. Include the liquid if you’re adding canned beans, or, if using your own pre-cooked black beans, add approximately 1/2 – 1 cup of water.
- Bring to a gentle simmer. Stir often to prevent the beans from burning.
- Stir in the cilantro and red wine vinegar.
- Garnish with crumbled cotija cheese, fresh limes, or diced onion, if desired.
Enjoy your frijoles negros with the following recipes,
Easy Vegetarian Enchilada Recipe
20-Minute Ground Beef Tacos Recipe
Mexican Mole Sauce Recipe (Chicken Mole)
The Best Guacamole Recipe
Classic Margarita Recipe (How to Make a Margarita)
Mexican Birria Recipe (How to Make Birria)
15 Minute Sheet Pan Shrimp Fajitas
Can the Beans Be Smashed Like Refried Beans?
Yes. Use a potato masher to mash up the entire batch of black beans directly in the pan, or mash only part of the black beans. If your beans become too thick, add a little water or chicken stock, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency is reached.
Can I Make This Recipe Using Pinto Beans?
Absolutely. In fact, you’ll often find pinto beans served alongside your favorite Mexican food at your local Mexican restaurant. Simply swap the black beans for pinto beans and you’re good to go.
More black bean recipes to try,
Have you tried making these Mexican Black Beans (Frijoles Negros)?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts.
Mexican Black Bean Recipe (Frijoles Negros)
- 1 tbsp oil (olive oil, canola oil, avocado oil, etc.)
- 1 medium onion (diced)
- 1 green bell pepper (diced )
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 tsp salt (plus more to taste)
- ¼ tsp ground cumin (plus more to taste)
- 2 (15.5-ounce) cans black beans ((approx. 3-4 cups cooked beans))
- water or chicken broth (if needed)
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro (chopped)
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- Cotija cheese (crumbled, for serving)
- Add the oil to a medium-sized saucepan set over medium heat. Add the diced onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened - approximately 5-8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and saute for 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Season with salt and cumin.
- Add the black beans. If you're using canned beans, add the beans with their liquid. If you're using your own cooked beans, add a little water (approximately 1/2-1 cup) so that there is enough water/liquid to prevent them from burning. Bring to a simmer, reduce to low heat, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.
- Stir in the chopped cilantro and red wine vinegar.
- Garnish with crumbled cotija cheese and fresh lime juice, if desired. Enjoy!
- 1/2 pound dried beans = about 1 cup dried beans = approximately 3 cups cooked
- 1 15.5-ounce can black beans (with liquid) = 2 cups
- 1 15.5-ounce can black beans (drained) = 1-1/2 cups
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)