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Ultimate Slow Cooker Guide to Beans

Slow Cooker Pinto Beans

These pinto beans couldn't be easier to make in a slow cooker. Any that you don't use within a few days can be stored in a container or resealable bag and kept in the freezer. To turn whole pintos into a healthy version of refried beans, saute a little onion and garlic in olive oil until tender, add the beans and some of the cooking liquid, and cook for a few minutes. Then, mash with a fork or puree in a blender.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Prep Time 1 minute
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 1 minute
Servings 6 cups (12 1/2 cup servings)
Calories 122 kcal
Author Katie Morford


  • 1 pound dried pinto beans (2 1/2 cups), rinsed, picked over for tiny stones
  • 7 1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Put the beans, water, crushed red pepper, salt, and black pepper into the slow cooker and stir. Cover and cook on low until the beans are tender but not falling apart (7 to 9 hours). The time will vary depending on the size and age of the beans. Once cooked, turn off the slow cooker. If you leave the beans in the slow cooker for a while, they will continue to absorb the liquid as they cool, making them more tender and creamy.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from The Mexican Slow Cooker by Deborah Schneider