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How to Cook Canned Pinto Beans

If an expert comes across this headline, they will laugh their heart out at what it insinuates. And they won’t be wrong, as the statement is almost contradictory. But if you wait for a minute, you’d see why it isn’t. And the answer is as simple as the question may seem ridiculous.

How to Cook Canned Pinto Beans

Normally, canned pinto beans come precooked, explaining why those familiar with it would find the statement laudable. The canned beans are made such that you can open them and eat them right away. And while this factor spells convenience for some, others who prefer more flexibility in their foods may want another way out.

Pinto Beans Nutrition Facts

How to Cook Canned Pinto Beans

Why Consider Cooking Canned Pinto Beans?

You may have thought about it and wondered if this feat isn’t a complete waste of time. But you won’t always have time to prefer dried pinto beans, even if you prefer that. So, knowing how to tweak (yes, that’s what we’re doing), a can of pinto beans may be your next best help. And the reasons are numerous, with some of the most common below;

It May Have Excess Sodium- As with every other canned product out there, you may want to take a step back when considering sodium content.

The Flavor Needs Help- You don’t live on gourmet dishes every day, only to settle for the mediocre taste of a typical can of pinto beans. And while some consider the sauce good enough, we’re just not having it.

The Texture Could Do Better- The average texture of canned pinto beans might not be what you want in a specific recipe. And this factor comes into play, especially when you need pinto beans in a recipe but can’t afford to cook from scratch.

You Want Something Different– You may also be one of those who don’t have an issue with canned food. But the urge to experiment with flavors is strong, and you feel you can do more with a can of pinto beans.

Cooking Tips for Canned Pinto Beans

Whatever your reasons for modifying the canned pinto beans, you still need help and suggestions. Of course, many may have ideas about what they wish to do, but we learn every day so that you can add this to your book. As such, follow these suggestions next time you plan to adjust the flavor profile of your canned pinto beans.


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Drain the Beans

You can open the can with a manual or electric can opener, and if you don’t have one, you’d have to get it. The reason is attempting to open a can with anything but is risky and can lead to injuries. Once the can has been properly opened, the first step is to drain the liquid in it.

Most times, the liquid that comes with canned beans tends to be high in sodium. So, if you’re on a healthy diet, this is the first thing you eliminate. Once the fluid has been drained, turn the contents of the can into a colander. Then, rinse the pinto beans under running water until all residue and goo have been completely washed off.

Seasoning Ideas

Removing the liquid isn’t the only reason people re-cook canned pinto beans. The chances of influencing the flavor are limitless so that you can explore that too. For example, you could add your favorite seasonings to the beans as they cook or mix them with a rich blend of pepper and salt. Or you can push the flavor up a notch with freshly chopped herbs, aromatics, and vegetables.

Other options for flavoring canned pinto beans include hot sauce, sugar, butter, broth, oil, bacon grease, and bacon strips. And if you’re making more than a can, double the amount of ingredients you plan to use.

Cooking the Beans

Well, you’re not ‘cooking’ the pinto beans per se. Canned pinto beans have been precooked, so you’re only reheating it to the preferred texture. After combining the beans with your selected ingredients, note that it’ll take around 10 to 15 minutes to reheat over a medium stove. Nut note that you need to stir the beans every four minutes, so the cooking is even.

Another handy way to reheat canned pinto beans is in the microwave. First, combine the rinsed beans with your preferred seasoning in an oven-safe container. Then, seal the top with plastic wrap, poke a few holes in it, and heat the mixture for six to eight minutes in the microwave.

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How to Cook Canned Pinto Beans

Re-cooked Canned Pinto Beans (2 Servings)

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  • One can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • Half cup water or broth
  • One garlic clove, minced
  • One bacon slice, cut into pieces
  • Half-inch slice yellow onion, chopped
  • One tablespoon unsalted butter
  • One tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon hot sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • Salt


  1. Medium-heat, the cooking oil, add the onion and garlic, saute for about two minutes, add the bacon, and cook until soft.
  2. Add the rinsed pinto beans and keep cooking over medium heat. Then, add half a cup of liquid with the butter, hot sauce, sugar, and pepper. Stir and let it grow bubbly, then taste and adjust as needed with salt.

When ready, serve as desired. Also, check here for more ideas.

  • Author: Bobby