Not-Too-Spicy Black Beans

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“Hi my name is Anne-Marie and I’m a jaraholic. It’s been one day since I salvaged a jar from the recycling bins.” (Some empty jars ready to pack.)

I am in the throes of moving.

Packing ALL of your cookbooks, several pots and pans and even some of your food really forces you to get resourceful in the kitchen. I feel like I’m camping indoors, except I don’t have to look out for bears when I use the bathroom in the middle of the night, just a cat I might trip over, sending me to an early death.

When I had that what-on-earth-will-we-eat-for-dinner moment Tuesday morning, I remembered that I hadn’t packed the black beans or rice and that I had fresh jalapeños (I have fermented also, for when jalapeños are out of season). Time for beans and rice. I needed cilantro, so on my bike ride home from work, I grabbed some at the store.

ingredients spicy black beans

Improvisations for this post

Olive oil. I like to cook the onions in lard but I cooked this for a vegetarian, so I opted for olive oil. Also, I haven’t rendered lard lately, and so have none…

Onions. Ordinarily, I would use a white or yellow onion for this but I only had shallots, which Anthony Bourdain says separates the chefs from the cooks, so maybe this is a good thing.

Citrus. I would prefer lime juice in this rather than lemon, but I grow lemons and so lemon it is.

Quick soak. Because I am obsessed with my pressure cooker, I hadn’t packed it. I didn’t think to soak the beans the night before though, so I did a quick soak in the afternoon. I brought the black beans to a boil, turned the heat off and let them sit covered for a couple of hours. I then drained them, added more water and cooked them to perfection in my pressure cooker in a mere four minutes! Here’s a post on cooking beans in a pressure cooker. If you haven’t tried using a pressure cooker, I highly recommend it. It will change your life.

Not-Too-Spicy Black Beans


  • 1 1/2 cups dry black beans
  • 2 tablespoons fat
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 jalapeños or to taste, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • Juice of 2 limes or to taste


1. Cook dry beans and reserve the liquid.

2. Saute the onion, garlic and jalapeños in oil until tender, about 5 minutes.

3. Add beans with some of their liquid and simmer until most of the liquid has cooked off (about 30 minutes).

4. Add salt and lime.

5. Serve with rice and garnish with cilantro and sour cream or yogurt, if desired.

spicy black beans

5 Replies to “Not-Too-Spicy Black Beans”

  1. First of all, I love this recipe. It’s pretty similar to the way we make it in Brazil. It’s our staple and a great source of protein too. Secondly, I’m a jaraholic too. Just moved recently because my partner and I will be travelling and I had to give away all my beloved jars…I still managed to save half of it at least 🙂
    Doing my best to reduce the waste in my house and I can’t wait to have a kitchen as waste-free as yours.
    Thanks for the inspiration!

    Larissa x

    1. Hi Larissa. Oooh, that’s great to know. I am doing something right then 🙂 I’m glad you were able to keep at least half of your jars. Thanks for reading my post, good luck in your waste-reducing pursuits and happy travels. ~ Anne Marie

  2. Looks delicious! Love black beans in all its varied forms.

    1. Thank you 🙂 I love them too. They are delicious, filling and inexpensive.

  3. Thank you for this quick bean dish❤️ I desperately need a new pressure cooker any suggestions🙏🏻
    Good luck with your move🦋

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