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5 from 3 votes

Homemade Chili Beans

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Vegan
Servings: 8
Calories: 215kcal
Author: Susan Voisin


  • 1 pound dried pinto beans rinsed, picked over, and soaked
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 whole dried red chilies optional
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste see tip below
  • 2-3 teaspoons chili powder may use all or part chipotle chili powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 green bell pepper minced


  • Cover the beans with water and presoak them overnight; or do a quick-soak by bringing them to a boil for one minute, removing them from the heat, and allowing them to stand, covered, for one hour.
  • Drain the soaking liquid from the beans. Place them in the pressure cooker with the water, onion, garlic, oregano, cumin, and chilies. Close the pressure cooker and bring it to high pressure; cook for 5 minutes at high pressure. Remove from heat and allow the pressure to come down naturally.
  • (If you’re cooking them in a regular pot or crockpot, cook until the beans are just soft enough to eat. The time will vary depending on your beans and method of cooking, but on the stove, allow at least an hour of cooking; in the slow cooker, count on at least 3 hours on high or 6 on low. Then proceed with the rest of the recipe.)
  • Open the cooker and remove the dried chilies, if you used them (squeeze them gently to get out all the flavor, but don’t add the seeds to the beans if you don’t want them to be spicy). Add the remaining ingredients and cook, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes. Adjust seasonings to your own taste. Serve hot with fresh salsa.


Basic Salsa:

When I make salsa, I never measure ingredients, so this is just a list of what I usually add:
diced tomatoes
chopped green pepper
chopped red onion
minced garlic
minced jalapeño pepper
lime juice
black pepper
I mix it up and let the flavors mingle for about 15 minutes before using.
Tip: After you open a can of tomato paste and use what you need, freeze the rest in a freezer bag for a later use. Flatten the bag so that it’s easy to break off a chunk of tomato paste whenever you need it.
This makes about 8 servings of beans. Try it as a filling for burritos, or mash it and “fry” it in a non-stick skillet for refried beans.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 215kcal | Carbohydrates: 39.5g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 0.5g | Sodium: 50mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 3g