Vegan Slow Cooker Pintos

My favorite pinto beans are the ones made by my good friend, Melissa. She’s Colombian, and man oh man does that Mamacita know how to make some beans.

When I lived in Florida, I saw Melissa weekly. She always made me beans, tostones, mangoes, espresso, and all the yummy Hispanic treats and that you just don’t get at your grandma’s house. And she made them vegan for me, probably against her will. I carefully watched her in the kitchen. No matter how hard I tried, I could never make her food like she made her food.

Beans sounds simple, right? It’s taken months for me to perfect this recipe. And while it will never be the same as Melissa’s, it’s as close as I’m going to get until I see her again 😉

This recipe works best for pinto beans, but also works for kidney beans, Roma beans, etc. Melissa doesn’t soak her beans, but I’ve found it works better for me if I soak my beans overnight, rinse them, and pick through them to get any rocks or duds out.

I also buy my beans in bulk because it’s cheaper and available to me.

Soak beans overnight. Rinse and pick out any rocks and loose particles.

Peel and chop your carrot and plantain. If you can’t find a plantain, 1/2 of a russet potato will work. This helps to give the pintos their creamy texture.

Measure the spices and loosen the sofrito cubes. If you don’t have homemade sofrito cubes, I don’t recommend buying jarred sofrito, as it’s not as tasty and usually very high in sodium.

Use the following blend instead of the spice mixture listed in the recipe:

• 3 cloves of garlic

• 2 tsp onion powder

• 2 tsp cumin

• 1 tbsp paprika

• 2 bay leaves

• 2 tbsp tomato paste

• 1/2 bunch of cilantro

• salt and pepper to taste (add this AFTER their finished cooking)

Add all ingredients to your slow cooker. Give them a quick stir.

Cook them on low for 5 hours, checking the water level every hour or so. Add or remove water if needed, as every slow cooker is different. 4 cups of water for 2 cups of beans works perfectly for me.

You can serve them with your favorite toppings or sides. Don’t forget the salt and pepper!

Some nights I prefer them with short grain brown rice, avocado, Kitehill’s Greek-style yogurt, and Cholula Girl hot sauce.

Other nights I want them with fluffy vegan cornbread and sauteed kale.

Baby likes hers with whole carrots and plantains and avocado. Remember not to add salt to baby’s food if under 1 year old, and season lightly until 2.

vegan slow cooker pintos

Vegan Slow Cooker Pintos

Prep Time 12 hrs
Cook Time 5 hrs
Servings 6

Equipment

  • slow cooker

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups dry pinto beans
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 sofrito cubes see notes for spice blend if you don't have sofrito cubes
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 green plantain, peeled and chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Soak pinto beans over night. Drain, rinse, and remove loose particles.
  • Peel and chop whole carrot and half of a plantain.
  • Measure dry spices and loosen sofrito cubes from freezer (or use spice blend listed in the notes below).
  • Add all ingredients to your slow cooker. Stir and cook on low for 5 hours. Check water level occasionally. Add or remove water as needed.
  • Serve with your favorite toppings and sides. Don't forget to add salt and pepper after the beans finish cooking.

Notes

If you don’t have sofrito cubes, use the spice blend below instead of the spices listed in the recipe:
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 bunch of cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste (add this AFTER their finished cooking)
 

How do you like your pinto beans? Tell me in the comments below.

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