Restaurant-style black beans

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Restaurant-style black beans /

It was my birthday yesterday, which means today I’m taking it a bit gently. No sudden movements, no bright lights, etc. I’ll be back with the real celebration tomorrow! For now, an easy and ridiculously yummy Mexican recipe – restaurant-style black beans!

If you’ve been reading Amuse Your Bouche for a while, you’ll know about my love for black beans. I  can’t get enough of them – so much so that I even dedicated a whole post to them a while back (see: 60 vegetarian black bean recipes). I find some beans (think butter beans) a bit too big for my taste, with that strange squishy texture and thick, chewy skins – but not the black bean. Black beans are small and soft, and they have a gorgeous dark, rich flavour that works perfectly with a bit of spice. I’ll happily put them in just about anything, but for some reason I don’t usually serve them on their own.

So this time I decided to let my favourite bean be the star of the show. There’s a restaurant where I live that does the best black beans – slightly spicy, soft and creamy, and ridiculously moreish. I always get them on the side of a burrito, but since they’re full of protein, they make a great meal on their own too. I couldn’t resist giving them a go myself.

Restaurant-style black beans /

Turns out, they’re easy – which is good, because I rarely make things that aren’t. Cook some onions, garlic, a bit of chilli, add your black beans… voila. If you’re unsure what sort of chilli to go for, err on the side of caution – you can always add more, but you can’t take it away! I tend to use quite a mild red chilli, because I don’t like my food to be overwhelmingly hot. You can see the kind of chilli I used in the background of my Thai green curry spinach soup photos.

Make sure you serve these with a big dollop of sour cream to make them even creamier, and a good sprinkling of fresh coriander to really set them off. I served mine with some brown rice to round out the meal, but as I said, they make a good side dish too. Your choice!

Restaurant-style black beans /
Restaurant-style black beans
Recipe Type: Main meal
Author: Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
  • 1tbsp oil
  • 1/2 onion, halved then thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small red chilli, finely diced
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 x 400g tin black beans, drained but not rinsed (240g when drained)
  • 100ml vegetable stock
  • Black pepper
  • To serve: fresh coriander, sour cream
  1. Heat the oil in a pan, and add the onion, garlic and chilli. Cook for a few minutes over a medium-low heat, until soft and translucent. Add the spices and cook for one more minute, stirring regularly.
  2. Next, add the black beans and stock, and season with plenty of black pepper. Bring to a simmer, and cook for around 15 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes, until the mixture has reduced down to your desired consistency.
  3. Serve topped with some fresh coriander and a dollop of sour cream.
Restaurant-style black beans /

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  1. Wow!  By far the best black bean recipe ever!  My husband is vegetarian.  I am not.  I make this recipe weekly.  It’s fantastic with Mexican,  just potatoes or rice and salad.  My quick and easy go to recipe.  Great recipe!

  2. Made this last night and loved it! Even my husband who is a meat lover said that he didn’t miss the meat :-D which is a definite win in my book! So pleased I found your blog, can’t wait to make more of your homely, comforting meals!

  3. Family loved it…….. I know my son love it, he didn’t even say a word, he just shoveled it down! He gave me a big thumbs up! Thanks for sharing this great recipe.

  4. I made this for dinner to go with our tomatillo chicken rice bowls and they were amazing! This is the recipe I have been searching for. I used an Anaheim pepper from my garden instead of the red pepper to make it mild so my kids would eat it, but apparently my Anaheim pepper was really hot. Even my husband said how spicy they were. Next time I might have to leave the pepper out :( But I thought they were perfect!