Oil Free Refried Beans recipe by Hello Nutritarian | Vegan Refried Beans Dr Fuhrman Eat to Live 6 Week Diet Plan Dr Greger How Not to Diet Dr McDougal Starch Solution Chef AJGet ready to fiesta because these Oil-Free Refried Beans have all the flavor of your favorite store-bought brand but without the oil and tons of added salt!

Let’s face it, nutritarians are bean people.

And we should be because they are hands down the most nutrient-dense form of carbohydrate.

Beans are packed with insoluble fiber (which means not all their carbohydrates even get absorbed) and they stabilize your blood sugar (even during the 2 or 3 meals after you enjoy a meal containing beans).  Yup, beans are magic like that.

And I’m so excited to be sharing a new way to love on beans with you!  Let’s do this…

Oil Free Refried Beans recipe by Hello Nutritarian | Ingredients Vegan refried pinto beans no oilFresh Flavor

In an ideal world I would always pre-soak fresh pinto beans and cook them at home myself.

If you’ve ever done this (and I have when I’m feeling extra) you’ll know they taste absolutely amazing home cooked like that!

But our world is far from ideal.  Hectic schedules = sometimes packaged beans happen. Okay, okay it’s most of the time.

Well, what I really love about this recipe is that you can infuse some fresh produce to the mix and it really perks up those packaged beans into something special!

Oil Free Refried Beans recipe By Hello Nutritarian | Dr Fuhrman 6 Week Eat to Live Diet plan review Dr Greger How Not to Diet Starch Solution What the Health WFPBUn-Fried Refried Beans

If your scratching your head right about now wondering how in the world we’re going to get that “traditional refried beans” consistency without, you know, frying–I gotcha…

Nutritarian 101 for cooking without oil is to sauté your veggies in low-sodium veggie broth instead.  You can do this with all the things, even Un-Fried Rice!

The other secret to getting rich savory flavor sans the oil is to blend up some of the beans with fresh garlic and spices and then cook them up with those sautéed veggies.

How to Love on These Refried Beans

Oil Free Refried Beans recipe by Hello Nutritarian | Vegan Refried Beans Dr Fuhrman Eat to Live 6 Week Diet Plan Dr Greger How Not to Diet Dr McDougal Starch Solution Chef AJ
5 from 1 vote

Oil-Free Refried Beans

Get ready to clean up this traditional Mexican classic!  These Oil-Free Refried Beans have no added salt but are high on fresh flavor! 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 1/2 cup servings
Author Kristen Hong


  • 1/2 cup low-sodium veggie broth
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup diced tomato
  • 2 tbsp. diced jalapeno pepper
  • 2 13.4 oz packages pinto beans
  • 1/2 cup aquafaba (reserved from the packages of beans)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice


Sauté the veggies:

  1. Add the veggie broth to a medium-sized sauce pan over medium-high heat.  One the broth starts to bubble and steam add the diced onion, tomato and jalapeno peppers.

  2. Sauté and mix the veggies well for 2 minutes, then reduce heat to medium low.

Blend the beans:

  1. Drain the packages of pinto beans over a bowl to reserve the aquafaba (bean juice), you'll need 1/2 aquafaba cup for this recipe.  Also, reserve 1/2 cup of the pinto beans and set aside (these will be left whole). 

  2. Combine the rest of the drained pinto beans, the 1/2 cup aquafaba, the 2 garlic cloves, cumin, onion powder and lime juice to your blender bowl. 

  3. Blend on high for about 20 seconds or until just starting to smooth (you want to keep a bit of texture to the mixture). 

Finishing up:

  1. By now the sautéed veggies will be softened and done cooking.  Add the blended bean mixture and combine well.  Reduce to low heat and cook for another 5 to 7 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes.

  2. Finally, add the reserved whole pinto beans and stir to combine.  Remove beans from heat. 

Recipe Notes

Makes 2 1/4 cups.

Stores for up to 10 days in the fridge in a glass food container. 

I can’t wait to hear what you think of this Oil-Free Refried Beans recipe!  Please leave a rating and comment below!


Let’s live better together!
xo, Kristen
Kristen Hong of Hello Nutritarian

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  • Kim says:

    Wondering what I can use to replace aquafaba…until I make another batch I have some frozen.

    • Kristen Hong says:

      Hi Kim!

      I think you could replace it with 1/4 cup veggie broth or stock and the texture would be okay. Of course you can add more if you need to, but that would be my best guess!

      Let me know if you try it out that way!

      xo, Kristen

  • Dea Greenhalgh says:

    Brilliant! I should’ve doubled the recipe. Personal preference for next time, I would add the garlic to the veggies for the last couple of minutes, but that’s maybe just for this household!
    I also cooked my own pinto beans in a pressure cooker so added the extra 1/4 cup of veggie broth as you suggested. Texture & flavours are excellent. I stumbled upon this recipe & will now have to check out the rest of your site & all that you offer. Great job on the refried beans!