Easy 1-Pot Black Beans from Scratch

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Big serving bowl filled with perfectly tender homemade black beans

If you can cover beans with water and turn your stove burner on, you can make these black beans. From scratch! I believe in us. Let’s do it!

Wood platter displaying dry beans, onion, garlic, vegetable broth, adobo chiles, and kombu

For some of you, making beans from scratch may seem like old hat. But for those of us less experienced (hand raised) in the art of buying bulk beans to cook yourself, this recipe is good news.

After a little trial and error, research, and testing, we came to realize that if you want black beans that are flavorful, perfectly tender, and not mushy, they actually turn out tastier, less mushy, and deeper in color when you skip soaking before cooking. This is wonderful because it not only saves time, but there’s also virtually no prep time and the beans are ready in less than 2 hours!

That’s right! This recipe is super easy, requiring just 6 ingredients and 1 pot to make.

A large pot filled with ingredients for making Easy 1-Pot Black Beans

How to Cook Black Beans

Because the beans aren’t soaked beforehand, it’s a good idea to add a strip of kombu (seaweed) to make the beans easier to digest. And for flavor, add a halved onion and some garlic. Another way to infuse more flavor is to add some vegetable broth to the pot. We prefer a ratio of 3:1 water to vegetable broth.

Next, cook your beans until tender. Then remove the onion and kombu and simmer for another 10-15 minutes to evaporate some of the extra moisture. This is also an excellent time to add your salt and other seasonings. For a smoky, spicy note, we added cumin powder and two chipotles in adobo sauce.

Stirring a large pot of tender, flavorful homemade black beans created using our Easy 1-Pot Black Beans recipe

We hope you all LOVE these black beans! They’re:

Easy to make
Flavorful
Perfectly tender
NOT mushy
Versatile
Healthy
& Super delicious

These beans are so delicious on their own, but they would also work well with things like burrito bowls, tacos, nachos, veggie burgers and more!

More Homemade Bean Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Grabbing a spoonful of homemade black beans that are perfectly tender and flavorful

Easy 1-Pot Black Beans

Flavorful, easy-to-make 6-ingredient black beans cooked in 1 pot and that don’t require soaking! A foolproof way to cook black beans from scratch. Perfect for tacos, nachos, enchiladas, taco salads, and more!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Using a spoon to pick up a serving of homemade black beans made from scratch
4.63 from 35 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings 10 (1/2-cup servings)
Course Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 5-7 Days

Ingredients

BEANS

  • 1 pound dry black beans* (rinsed and sorted // for soaking, see notes)
  • 3/4 cup white or yellow onion (gently peeled, not chopped)
  • 5 cloves garlic (smashed and peeled // but not diced)
  • 1 strip kombu* (seaweed to improve digestibility)
  • Water
  • Vegetable broth*
  • Sea salt + black pepper to taste

ADD INS (optional)

  • 1 tsp ground cumin (for smokiness)
  • 1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (for heat)

Instructions

  • Add beans, onion, garlic, and kombu to a pot and cover with 3 inches water/vegetable broth. We went with a ratio of about 2/3 water and 1/3 vegetable broth for a little flavor.
  • Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Then reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered for 1 hour – 1 hour 45 minutes or until the beans are tender. If during that time the beans are no longer covered in enough liquid to cook, add more water or vegetable broth to just cover.
  • Once tender, remove the onion and kombu and scoop out any excess liquid that’s making the beans soupy (some liquid is good, just scoop out any excess sitting at the top).
  • Season beans to taste at this time. We added salt, cumin powder, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Then increase heat to medium/medium-high (the beans should be bubbling) and cook – stirring occasionally (uncovered) – for 10-15 more minutes. The liquid should evaporate a bit more.
  • Your beans are now ready to enjoy! These make a delicious addition to burrito bowls, burritos, tacos, nachos, taco salads, veggie burgers, and more. You could also add them to chili!
  • Store beans well covered in the refrigerator up to 5-7 days. Will keep in the freezer for 1 month (oftentimes longer).

Video

Notes

*1 pound dried beans typically equals 2 cups dried or 4-5 cups cooked beans.
*We didn’t find soaking necessary for texture and flavor. But if you’d like to soak the beans for improved digestibility, soak overnight in cool water, or for 6 hours. Then drain and proceed with recipe as instructed.
*Don’t worry – you can’t taste the kombu in the beans. It’s just there to help improve digestibility.
*As the recipe is written, we used a ratio of 2/3 water + 1/3 vegetable broth.
*Method adopted from the talented folks at Serious Eats.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with DIY vegetable broth, 1/4 tsp each sea salt and black pepper, and without optional add-ins.

Nutrition (1 of 10 servings)

Serving: 1 half-cup servings Calories: 176 Carbohydrates: 31.8 g Protein: 11 g Fat: 1 g Saturated Fat: 0.1 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.07 g Monounsaturated Fat: 0.3 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 216 mg Potassium: 770 mg Fiber: 8.2 g Sugar: 2.1 g Vitamin A: 706 IU Vitamin C: 2.98 mg Calcium: 72.44 mg Iron: 2.98 mg

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    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Bayla, it depends on the type of seaweed. We prefer kombu in this recipe because it has a more mild flavor.

  1. Jana says

    Holy moly, these are the best beans I have ever tasted. I had a huge assist from Rancho Gordo’s amazing dried beans, of course. I didn’t have an onion so I just skipped it, and I added a little bonus kombu (all of which seems to have dissolved during cooking – no sign of it!). I used homemade chicken broth (obviously I am not a vegetarian). I can’t believe I’ve ever eaten canned black beans, those days are officially over.

  2. Rose says

    I had a bag of dried black beans I had soaked overnight, rinsed and forgotten about in the fridge for a few days, so I was looking for something to do with them prior to freezing (I’m new to the whole dried beans/soaking thing). This was really good. Since I had already soaked mine overnight I threw them in with a carton of chicken broth, chipotle chili powder, cumin powder, salt, paprika and the five crushed garlic cloves, brought to a boil and simmered for an hour.

    It was easy peasy and had a good amount of flavour even when drained and rinsed. Four stars simply because I had pre-soaked them and so didn’t follow the complete recipe.

    They also freeze well- when I need some I just pour some from the ziplock into the pan or whatever I’m using.

    Looking forward to trying them with the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.

  3. Sophia says

    Just made these and my Mexican family was very impressed! Read some of the other comments; I didn’t have a problem getting them tender at all after an hour of cooking. My mother said that one of the secrets is to not add salt until after they begin to soften-can cause them to stay hard! Just a thought.

    I would love a refríes beans recipe if you’re ever up for it! Absolutely love every recipe I’ve tried from you- your spice combinations are absolutely fantastic!!! Thanks for all of your hard work xx

  4. Pj says

    Nice recipe. I rate this 4.7 out of 5, being from a Guatemalan family, I was impressed how good this recipe was very close to how my moms beans would taste. I think the broth made them even more rich! Kudos!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Enough to cover with 3 inches water/vegetable broth. We went with a ratio of about 2/3 water and 1/3 vegetable broth for a little flavor.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      There shouldn’t be much liquid remaining. But yes, they would probably be best frozen with some liquid for reheating purposes.

  5. regina says

    The best beans are simmered with your preferred herbs and spices. I like to saute onions and garlic until brown and add them in the last 30 minutes of cooking. I sometimes will cook the onions and garlic in bacon drippings or add a few ham hocks in it.

  6. Denise says

    Another delicious and fail proof recipe. It came together so easily and has a rich, smokey flavor. Love it!

  7. Laura Babnik says

    Hi. before I make this, I wonder if anyone can clarify if the black beans are soy beans or turtle beans, please? maybe they take different times to cook…thx

  8. Jade says

    This recipe made very yummy beans! I soaked mine overnight and the beans cooked in under an hour–probably 45 mins. Very tender and flavourful!

  9. Michael Firchow says

    You may want to correct your post. Cumin does not add smokiness. Chipotles add the smokiness being that they are smoked jalapenos in Adobo sauce. Cumin is a common Mexican spice found in everything from taco seasoning to guacamole.
    I would also have to agree that the cook time should be extended, or simply soak the beans. I am in MX and there is no way that I will find Kombu here.
    Gracias!

  10. Jenny says

    Bought dried beans today for this recipe and, even after about 4 hours of cooking uncovered, they’re still not tender. Seems as though they should’ve been soaked after all. The flavor is already great though.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jenny, sometimes if the beans have been sitting on the shelf too long, they have trouble softening. Better luck next time!

      • Aleisha says

        I have a new packet of black beans and they’re not very tender after two hours of cooking. I’ll be soaking them next time!

    • Antoinette Blunt says

      Using dry beans without soaking. You may want to boil the water in th pot first. Then shut off boiling water and add the dry beans. Let them sit for at least an hour. Then pour out the water and refill with clean liquids and then follow recipe. If you don’t soak dry beans overnight. Boil pot of water, shut off, drain water, refill and start recipe for tender beans.

  11. TRISH the fiddler says

    After a decade of cooking with dried beans I thought I was fairly expert…. but this recipe knocks it out of the park. Great texture and tenderness, and a rally lovely roundness to the flavour. This fall we had a HUGE harvest of habanero peppers so I used half of a pepper, no seeds or membrane, instead of the chipotle. It was just the right heat. One question: does this recipe double or triple well?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Trish, thanks so much for the lovely review! Depending on the size of the pan, it should double or triple well! Let us know if you give it a try!

  12. Caitlin Rader says

    Hello Dana! Love your recipes <3
    I would like to make this for a party; if I'd like to triple/quadruple the recipe, would you suggest I get two deep stockpots in order to make two double batches in each? I am wanting to ensure that the beans are cooked thoroughly/evenly and wasn't sure if this would work I could just do it in one giant stockpot or not.

    Thanks for your help!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I think that would be a good idea. Overcrowding the pan could mean longer cook times and unevenly cooked beans!

  13. Luke says

    Damn. I always soak my beans but followed your advice that these beans don’t need soaking. Been cooking them for 5 hours now, still crunchy ?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Luke, is it possible that your beans aren’t fresh? Sometimes if they are old they do not soften properly.

  14. Connie Carroll says

    I a man a bit confused about the liquid to add in this recipe? I added 2/3 cups of water and 1/3 cup of water and that did not cover the beans at all, so I added more water just to cover the beans. How far should the liquid be over the beans? Thank you!

  15. Natalie Bench says

    I loved this recipe!!! Didn’t know cooking black beans was so easy. I will be making this again and soon!!!

  16. Traycee Klein says

    I followed the recipe ingredients exactly and these came out very good. The only adjustment that I had to do was related to timing, which I believe has to do with the age of the dried beans. I had to cook mine for around 3 hours and kept adding water each time I tasted for desired consistency to make sure they did not dry out. Thank you. I love your recipes.

  17. Rita B says

    Hi from Montana,

    I love black beans, including soups. wraps and bowls.
    For those who have experienced beans that were tough and seemed to be uncooked, consider your elevation.
    I could easily make a pot of beans without soaking when in lived at sea level on the Washington coast.
    I’m now living in the Rockies and need pre-soak any beans.

    Hope this helps!

  18. Kathy Saunders says

    Hi Dana,

    Love your recipes! Mine turned out slightly pasty — like they were on their way to being refried bean texture. However, when I was at the stage to remove some water, there wasn’t much on top to remove, but just enough to increase the temp for that final cooking. I made sure I topped up the water when it simmered down. Do you think this was a lack of water problem? They are still good — just some are a bit pasty and not intact as beans.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Kathy, it sounds like they may have cooked too long and/or had too much water. Maybe play around with that for next time! Hope it helps!

  19. Sam says

    Hi! I don’t have dried beans or a way to get them at the moment, so I only have canned… how long do you think I should cook these for then? Maybe 30-40 min.? I want them to be fairly whole at the end, so not mush. Thank you!

  20. Bobby says

    Epazote is what my papa uses for the stomach. Also adds a distinct Mexican flavor.. maybe you would wanna try this out someday.. it an aquired taste but once u you to love it there really is nothing else quite like it.

  21. Sophie says

    Made these last night. Delicious. Soaked them over night and cooked them for quite a long time to get the right texture. Cooking time really comes down to the age of the beans. I added a couple of tsp cumin, Smokey paprika and Sumac when I was browning the onions and added salt, stock cube and a tbs brown sugar at the end to round out the flavour.

  22. Alana says

    I made this exactly as it was written and it was amazing- super easy, perfect texture, and they tasted just like black beans you get at a restaurant

  23. lola says

    I love love love black beans, and tried this recipe when unexpected dinner guests appeared. Sad to say I am not a fan. Despite cooking 3x as long as the recipe calls for, the beans were weirdly rubbery/chewy. I am fine with mushy or firm beans, but this recipe yielded a texture that was not edible. I might try again with a short soak. :(

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Lola, we’re not sure what would cause that other than maybe if your water supply has hard water? Sorry to hear that happened!

  24. Jess says

    My go to recipe for cooking any beans. I use my pressure cooker instead though and cook the beans for 40mins. Delicious.

  25. Jackie says

    Much easier than I anticipated (only took me an average of an hour both times I’ve made this so far) and such a fuller consistency/flavor than canned beans. Made them for my boyfriend & he said they tasted like they came from a restaurant! Definitely in my regular rotation for meal prep now.

  26. ann torledsky says

    I made these once before and am making them again! Delicious!! I did not have the seaweed and ate them without distress! Just love this recipe. Thank you!

  27. Valerie says

    These black beans are amazing! So simple to make, but the flavor is awesome! I will be making my own black beans from now on. I used these in the Mexican Quinoa Salad Cups and they were delicious. Thank you for the great recipes Dana!

  28. Marlee E. says

    Just made this! I didn’t have kombu on hand, but I did use three bay leaves instead to aid digestion. Also added in smoked paprika, a dash of coriander and vegan Worcestershire for some more flavor. It tastes great.

    BTW, y’all’s chipotle romesco sauce goes super well on top of this if you eat it with rice.

    Mods on mods on mods! :~)

  29. rain says

    Hi! Suggestions if I want to make a smaller quantity? My big hesitation with making dry beans is I end up with way too much! Can I just cut everything in half?

  30. Alison says

    These beans are delicious! I just turned the leftovers into refried beans- I sautéed onion, garlic tomato and some adobo sauce (from canned chipotles) in a little oil and then added beans that I’d processed in the food processor til they were smooth-ish. Cooked everything together for a few minutes. So good!

  31. Elisa Morua says

    Hi I am from Costa Rica and been following your blog for about a year now.
    In CR we make beans a lot :)

    One thing that helps the beans be tender for the cooking is leaving them in water the night before cooking them, it’s important to discard this water.

    We also drink “black bean soup” when the beans are just made.
    It’s eaten with rice, egg, coriander, raw onion and tomatoes.

    I also want to add that every single one of your recipes that I’ve tried are wonderful.

    Thanks!

  32. Erica says

    I am not new to beans but i usually use canned. I have been trying to use dried since there cheaper and it is a good way to avoid BPA. I have tried several different ways to cook dried beans. The package directions and slow cooker but have not been impressed with either way but this way is indeed perfect. I was skeptical when you said not to soak the beans but it came out perfect. Thank you so much for the recipe!

  33. Cassie Thuvan Tran says

    Wow, I love using black beans for everything–salads, stir-fries, taco filling, Buddha bowls, and more! I want to try making a dessert with them soon. Can’t wait for that! If I try this recipe, I’ll be using curry powder, mushroom powder, garlic, turmeric, pepper, cinnamon, and paprika!

  34. WorldWalker says

    Would it be worth it to make this in a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot? Or would it make them too mushy? I just got one as a gift and want to experiment with it.

  35. Cristina says

    These are delicious, thank you for the recipe! I added some extra adobo sauce in with the chipotles and it really made these pop. I’ve been having these over rice with veggies & avocado for a yummy vegan lunch… been trying to decrease my dairy intake a bit and the avocado really scratched that itch for some yummy fats.

    I also never realized how dark black beans are when made from scratch. So velvety black versus the canned ones!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Britta! We haven’t tried and can’t say for sure, but if you give it a try, report back!

    • lulu says

      You must definitely can! I discovered this trick a while ago and now I have perfect black beans cooked in under 30 minutes without having to soak them. It depends on what you are wanting to use them for, if they should be firmer I cook ours for about 20 minutes and if they should be mushy than more like 30 minutes. I would check your pressure cooker guide, times can vary. I add the spices directly in the pot with the beans and vegetable stock.

  36. Amy Estes says

    I have been wanting to try and make my own beans from scratch. This is great! ?. Definitely going to try this??.

  37. Pam says

    Thank you so much for this delicious recipe. My beans were cooked in about 1 hour and 45 minutes. My piece of dashi kombu did fall apart, so i had trouble removing it. Maybe it added to the great flavour? I just had a bowl of these after they’d been in the fridge for a couple of days. I put them on top of some microwaved sweet potato, then topped that with feta cheese, fresh cilantro and avocado. Yum!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Lovely! Yes, the kombu can split apart and that’s common. Just takes a little extra digging to remove. Glad you enjoyed!

  38. Kylie Tucker says

    Holy Moly these are the best black beans I’ve ever had! I have been craving them all day and just had to make these immediately (It’s 12:30 AM here in North Carolina) I have enjoyed a huge bowl and now I can drift happily off into dream land, totally satisfied. Great recipe!

  39. Ingrid says

    I’ve been looking for a simple and straightforward way to cook my beans since I buy them dry. I’ve seen a bunch of different ways to do it and for some reason it never comes out right. Thank you!

  40. Vanessa says

    Did you have to “clean” the beans before putting them in the pot? Like pick out little rocks/stones? I find this step so tedious.

  41. Danna says

    Hi Dana. I made these yesterday and while they were definitely delicious, I found the cook time to be vastly different than your recipe. I think I did something wrong. My beans had to cook for nearly 7 hours to get to the soft texture I was looking for. I started by boiling and then simmered (on low) for the recommended hour and 45 minutes and they were still rock hard. Should I have been boiling them the entire time rather than turning to low? Thank you and great recipe – they were totally delicious!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      So strange. Perhaps your beans were not fresh? There is no way they should have taken 7 hours. Or, do you just prefer them very soft?

  42. Patti @ Patty Cake's Pantry says

    I’m so thankful to have found this recipe. I read years ago about adding kombu to beans, but didn’t remember where. My husband kept telling my I was confused. I’m so glad I have something in writing to prove I was right.

  43. Cassia says

    It looks delicious as all your recipes! I also want to say that is so weird for me (I’m from Brazil) that you think it’s too much work to cook beans from scratch because that’s the only way we make it here hahaha. And it’s so worthy and it has so much flavor when you do that.

  44. Sara says

    Scratching my head as to why this recipe isn’t working out for me. I’ve been cooking the beans for over 3 hours and they’re still not tender. They’re firm, al dente at best. I just re-read the recipe and have done everything as written. Is this happening to anyone else? I’m in Texas so altitude isn’t a factor.

    Thank you for any insight/suggestions! I love minimalist baker and this hiccup won’t dissuade me from trying future recipes :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ah, thanks Sara! Did you get them to a good boil before simmering? And also, are they covered with liquid completely? These two factors are very important. Also, make sure your beans are fresh. If stale, they’ll have a hard time cooking.

  45. Katherine says

    This is nearly identical to a recipe that I use to make black beans! I put all of the ingredients (minus the seaweed . . . that’s a novel idea!) in a slow cooker and let them cook for at least 5 hours on low. They turn out great every time and make the house smell like heaven! I love the addition of the adobo peppers—don’t skip this step! It adds a lot of flavor but not heat. I usually use 1 T of cumin and 2 tsp sea salt.

    Sometimes as a variation I’ll add a can of drained diced tomatoes or will mix 1/2 black beans and 1/2 pinto beans. Also good with 1 T of chili powder. The basic recipe makes it easy to experiment!

  46. Ganesh says

    Just remember, if your digestive system is weak or on the sensitive side, to presoak the beans and pour away the soaking water before cooking! The use of kombu is not always enough!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks Andree! I definitely get the soaking thing, which is why I tried it first. And you certainly still can soak. But for taste, texture, and ease, this recipe as written does the trick. Hope you enjoy them!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I’d assume these would cook the same as any other bean in a slow cooker. You could probably find the instructions in your slow cooker manual? We don’t own one so sorry I can’t make recommendations.

  47. Marjorie Simmerlinh says

    This is very much the same thing as my recipe for black beans and rice. I make Cuban Congri with the same ingredients. Wonderful recipe and high in nutrition.

  48. Joanah says

    Just made this with red kidney beans ? only skipped chipotle peppers in sauce as I couldn’t find them at the grocery store! They turned out perfectly ???

    Had them with your delicious breakfast potatoes!

    I love you. I love your recipes. Thank you!

  49. Cynthia Allen says

    In Tampa Florida…my parents in the late 40…rented to folks who were part of a family that open the Colombia restaurant and the recipe for black beans was shared with my mother….at the end of cooking the beans… a big spoon of vinegar was added in…cooking and boiling for 5 minutes more….nothing over powering but enough to have folks saying that is so different then how I have had them before…good flavor…!!!!

  50. Kathy Mader says

    I have to say, this is fabulous news. I’ve always wanted to make tasty-from-scratch-beans but hesitated because my beans always turned out tough (“tough beans” anyone?, No?, I didn’t think so). Not soaking? Who says the wheel can’t be reinvented? Thank you!

  51. Kathy says

    Do the chipotle peppers disintegrate while cooking, or do you have to smash them up to incorporate them into the beans?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      They kind of do, but of course mash them for a more infused texture. You can also finely chop it before adding if you prefer.

  52. Jennifer says

    Thank you !!! I love all of your recipes. On the Kombu , is there a difference between regular and dashi kombu? I cannot seem to find an answer. Also the large ad that pops up at the end of the recipe (normally knorr) blocks the instructions to the actual recipe and you have to continuously refresh to get it to go away. It happens often and on most of the recipes.

    • sean says

      No difference, Jennifer. In fact, dashi is just the stock that is produced with heating kombu up with water and also sometimes dehydrated mushrooms. There are other styles of dashi as well. But to answer your question, any and all kombu would work for this.

  53. bhairavi janssens says

    Hi
    can i use these beans to make the black bean burger please? and if you could tell me how much
    thank you so much!!
    Bhairavi