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Test Kitchen Approved

Charro Beans

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Recipe By Wanda Benge, Savory Spice—Austin, TX customer


6 to 8 servings

Recipe By Wanda Benge, Savory Spice—Austin, TX customer

Note from the recipe author: "This is an old family recipe from Mexico that my niece-in-law shared with us."

Serving Suggestions

Great as a side to any Southwestern meal. Try with eggs, tortillas and avocado for breakfast or brunch.

Recipe Notes

Savory’s Test Kitchen adapted the author's original submitted recipe a bit to show how it works with several of our spices and Southwestern style chile spice blends or chili powders.


1 lb. dried pinto beans

1/2 lb. center cut bacon, diced

1 medium onion, diced

1 small green bell pepper, diced

1 large ripe red tomato, chopped

1 fresh jalapeño, diced

1 Tbsp. seasoning of choice:

1 (12 oz.) bottle amber beer (optional)

1 bunch fresh cilantro, roughly chopped

Savory Spice ingredients in this recipe

  • Minced Garlic

    Garlic, native to Central Asia, quickly spread to the Mediterranean and now is cultivated and widely used all around the world. As it’s one of the ...

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  • Chilean Merquen Seasoning

    Merquen (Merkén) spice mix was created by the indigenous people of the Mapuche Tribe. Now their flavorful creation is sought after around the globe...

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  • El Diente Southwestern Seasoning

    El Diente is a moderately hot blend that packs more flavor than heat. This is a versatile blend you can use anywhere you would use a Cajun rub. Try...

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  • Medium Chili Powder

    This widely used Medium Chili Powder seasoning is salt-free, garlicky, and earthy. It's perfect for cooking up a pot of comforting chili. Also grea...

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  • Ground Cumin Seeds (Organically Sourced)

    Cumin, also known as Comino, is native to the Nile valley in Egypt. It is now cultivated in other hot regions of India, the Mediterranean, and Nort...

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  • Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning

    It may seem simple, but this salt & pepper blend is one of our customers' all-time favorites. It's a super convenient way to add the perfect ba...

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Rinse and pick over pinto beans. Cover with water by at least 2 inches and soak overnight. In a Dutch oven or large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat until soft and fat renders. Add onions and peppers and cook until onions are soft, stirring occasionally, about 5 min. Add garlic and cook 2 more min. Drain and rinse beans and add to pot. Stir in tomatoes, jalapeños and chile spice blend of choice. Add beer (if using) plus enough water to cover all ingredients. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook until beans are tender, about 2 hours. Add salt & pepper to taste. Stir in cilantro just before serving.