Charro Beans Recipe: Master the Art of Mexican Cuisine!

Charro Beans
4.75 from 4 votes
Mouth Watering Charro Beans Recipe
Charro beans are a savory and hearty Mexican dish made with pinto beans cooked alongside bacon, onions, garlic, tomatoes, and chili peppers.

Hey there, food enthusiasts! It’s Austin here, your culinary companion from Beyond The Bayou Blog. I’ve got something delicious to share with you today: Charro Beans. Picture this—mouthwatering beans cooked with bacon, tomatoes, and spices, creating a flavor sensation that’ll have you hooked.

Charro Beans are like a warm hug in a bowl, bringing together simple ingredients for a dish that’s full of heart and flavor. It’s the kind of meal that brings back memories of family gatherings and good times with friends.

I’m all about celebrating the vibrant flavors of Tex-Mex cuisine with Frito Pie, Mexican Cornbread Muffins and this Charro Beans recipe is a real winner. It’s easy to whip up and bursting with that Southwestern charm we all love.

So, let’s get cooking! Trust me, once you try these homemade Charro Beans, you’ll be hooked. Let’s dive in and enjoy every tasty bite!

What Are Charro Beans?

Charro beans are a classic Mexican dish made with pinto beans, cooked alongside flavorful ingredients like bacon, onions, garlic, tomatoes, chili peppers, and spices. The name “charro” comes from the skilled Mexican horsemen known as “charros,” who often enjoyed this hearty meal during their travels. These beans are typically slow-cooked to allow the flavors to blend, resulting in a rich and savory dish that’s perfect as a side or as a main course served with rice and tortillas. Charro beans are beloved for their comforting and robust flavors, making them a cherished staple in Mexican culinary tradition.

Overview: How To Make Charro Beans?

To begin, assemble all your ingredients. You’ll need pinto beans, bacon, onions, garlic, tomatoes, chili peppers (such as jalapeños or serranos), and an assortment of spices like cumin, oregano, and chili powder.

Start by rinsing and soaking the pinto beans overnight or for several hours. This step helps soften the beans and reduces their cooking time.

Once soaked, drain and rinse the beans thoroughly before transferring them to a large pot or Dutch oven. Make sure there’s enough water to cover the beans completely.

Add the bacon to the pot and cook it until it becomes crispy and releases its flavorful fat, infusing the beans with a smoky essence.

Then, incorporate chopped onions, minced garlic, diced tomatoes, and sliced chili peppers into the pot. Sauté these ingredients until they become tender and aromatic.

Now, it’s time to season the beans. Add your preferred combination of spices, such as cumin, oregano, chili powder, salt, and pepper, adjusting the flavors according to your taste preferences.

Cover the pot and let the charro beans simmer over low heat for about 1-2 hours. Stir occasionally and add more water if necessary to maintain a desired consistency.

Once the beans are cooked to perfection and have absorbed all the delicious flavors, serve them piping hot as a delightful side dish or a hearty main course accompanied by rice, tortillas, and your favorite toppings like fresh cilantro, diced onions, and a squeeze of lime juice.

Indulge in the rich and comforting flavors of your homemade charro beans, and share the culinary joy with your loved ones!

Try More Such Recipes!

  1. Navy Beans
  2. Southern Red Beans And Rice
  3. New Orleans Style Chicken, Beans & Rice
Charro Beans

Mouth Watering Charro Beans Recipe

Charro beans are a savory and hearty Mexican dish made with pinto beans cooked alongside bacon, onions, garlic, tomatoes, and chili peppers.
4.75 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Calories: 30kcal
Author: Austin Carter
Servings: 2


  • 1 Large Pot or Dutch Oven This is used for cooking the beans and other ingredients over low heat for an extended period.
  • 1 Cutting Board and Knife For chopping onions, garlic, tomatoes, chili peppers, and any other vegetables or ingredients required.
  • 1 Colander To rinse and drain the beans after soaking them, if necessary.
  • 1 Measuring cups and spoons For accurately measuring out ingredients like beans, spices, and liquids.
  • 1 Wooden Spoon or Spatula Used for stirring and mixing the ingredients while they cook.
  • 1 Can Opener To open cans of tomatoes or beans if not using fresh or dried varieties.
  • 4 Serving Bowls For serving the finished charro beans.


  • 1 Can Pinto Beans but dried beans often require soaking before cooking.
  • 1 Pack Bacon
  • 2 Onion
  • 1 Garlic
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 2 Chili Peppers
  • 6 tbsp Spices oregano, chili powder, salt, and pepper, though exact spice blends may vary based on personal preference and regional variations.
  • 3 Cups Broth or Water or water if preferred.
  • Optional Ingredients: Some recipes may include additional ingredients such as cilantro bay leaves, or even beer for added complexity of flavor.


  • Preparation: Rinse dried pinto beans thoroughly and soak them overnight in water to soften. Drain and rinse the soaked beans before cooking. If using canned beans, drain and rinse them.
  • Cook Bacon: In a large pot or Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until it becomes crispy and releases its fat.
  • Add Aromatics: Add chopped onions and minced garlic to the pot with the bacon. Cook until the onions are translucent and the garlic is fragrant.
  • Incorporate Tomatoes and Peppers: Stir in diced tomatoes and sliced chili peppers. Cook for a few minutes until the tomatoes start to break down.
  • Add Spices: Sprinkle in your desired spices, such as cumin, oregano, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Adjust the seasoning according to your taste preference.
  • Add Beans and Liquid: Add the soaked or canned beans to the pot, along with enough broth or water to cover the beans by about an inch.
  • Simmer: Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let the beans simmer uncovered for about 1 to 2 hours, or until the beans are tender and the flavors have melded together. Stir occasionally and add more liquid if needed to prevent the beans from drying out.
  • Adjust Seasoning: Taste the beans and adjust the seasoning if necessary. You can add more salt, pepper, or spices to suit your taste.
  • Serve: Once the beans are cooked to your liking, remove the pot from the heat and let it cool slightly before serving. Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.


  1. Soaking Beans: If using dried beans, soaking them overnight or for several hours helps to reduce cooking time and improve their texture. However, if you’re short on time, you can use the quick soak method by boiling the beans for a few minutes, then letting them soak for an hour off the heat.
  2. Bacon Substitutes: While bacon adds delicious flavor to charro beans, you can also use other ingredients like ham, chorizo, or smoked sausage as substitutes.
  3. Adjusting Spice Level: The level of spiciness in charro beans can be adjusted based on personal preference. Add more or fewer chili peppers, or remove the seeds for less heat.
  4. Vegetarian/Vegan Options: To make vegetarian or vegan charro beans, omit the bacon and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. You can also add extra vegetables like bell peppers or corn for added flavor and texture.
  5. Thickening: If you prefer thicker beans, you can mash some of them against the side of the pot or use a stick blender to blend a portion of the beans before serving.
  6. Storage and Reheating: Charro beans can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. They also freeze well for longer storage. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave, adding a little water or broth if needed to prevent them from drying out.
  7. Garnishes: Serve charro beans with garnishes such as chopped cilantro, diced onions, sliced jalapeños, sour cream, or shredded cheese for added flavor and freshness.
  8. Meal Ideas: Charro beans are versatile and can be served as a side dish alongside grilled meats, tacos, or enchiladas. They can also be enjoyed as a main course with rice and tortillas for a complete meal.


Serving: 240g | Calories: 30kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 500mg | Potassium: 500mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 500IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 4mg
Keyword Charro Beans, Easy Charro Bean Recipe, Simple & Flavorful Charron Bean, The Best Charro Beans

What To Love About This Recipe?

  1. Flavorful Ingredients: Charro beans are packed with flavorful ingredients like bacon, onions, garlic, tomatoes, and chili peppers, which combine to create a rich and savory dish.
  2. Versatility: Charro beans can be enjoyed in various ways—as a side dish, a main course, or even as a topping for tacos or nachos. They’re incredibly versatile and can be customized to suit different tastes and preferences.
  3. Comforting and Satisfying: There’s something inherently comforting about a bowl of charro beans. Whether enjoyed on a chilly day or as part of a festive meal, they provide warmth and satisfaction with every spoonful.
  4. Easy to Make: Despite their complex flavors, charro beans are relatively easy to make. With just a few simple steps, you can whip up a batch of delicious beans to enjoy with family and friends.
  5. Nutritious: Charro beans are a good source of protein, fiber, and essential nutrients. They’re also naturally low in fat and can be made even healthier by using leaner cuts of meat or incorporating more vegetables.
  6. Homemade Goodness: Making charro beans from scratch allows you to control the ingredients and tailor the recipe to your liking. Plus, there’s something special about enjoying a homemade dish made with love and care.

Possible Variations With The Recipe!

  1. Vegetarian Option: Skip the bacon and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth to make vegetarian charro beans. You can also add extra vegetables like bell peppers, corn, or diced carrots for added flavor and texture.
  2. Spice Level: Adjust the spice level to suit your taste preferences by adding more or fewer chili peppers. You can also experiment with different types of chili peppers for varying levels of heat.
  3. Protein Variations: While bacon is a traditional addition to charro beans, you can also use other types of meat such as ham, chorizo, or smoked sausage. You can even try adding cooked shredded chicken or beef for a different twist.
  4. Bean Variety: While pinto beans are commonly used in charro beans, you can also try using other types of beans such as black beans, kidney beans, or navy beans for a unique flavor and texture.
  5. Add-In Ingredients: Get creative with additional ingredients to customize your charro beans. Consider adding diced potatoes, chopped cilantro, diced green chilies, or a splash of beer or tequila for added depth of flavor.
  6. Toppings and Garnishes: Serve your charro beans with a variety of toppings and garnishes to enhance the flavor and presentation. Some popular options include shredded cheese, sour cream, diced onions, sliced jalapeños, chopped avocado, and fresh lime wedges.
  7. Smoked Flavor: For a smoky twist, you can use smoked paprika or chipotle peppers in adobo sauce to add a rich, smoky flavor to your charro beans.
  8. Creamy Variation: If you prefer a creamier texture, you can add a dollop of cream cheese, sour cream, or heavy cream to the beans towards the end of the cooking process.

What to Serve with Charro Beans?

Tips & Tricks!

  1. Soaking Beans: For dried beans, soak them overnight or use the quick soak method to reduce cooking time and improve texture.
  2. Layer Flavors: Sauté onions, garlic, and bacon first to build depth of flavor before adding other ingredients.
  3. Control Spice Level: Adjust the amount of chili peppers to your taste. Removing seeds can reduce heat while retaining flavor.
  4. Use Quality Ingredients: Choose high-quality bacon and fresh vegetables for the best taste. Consider organic or locally sourced options.
  5. Experiment with Beans: Try different bean varieties like black beans or kidney beans for unique flavors and textures.
  6. Add Acid: A splash of lime juice or vinegar at the end can brighten flavors and balance richness.
  7. Thicken as Desired: Mash some beans or blend a portion for a thicker, creamier consistency if preferred.
  8. Garnish Creatively: Elevate your dish with garnishes like cilantro, onions, jalapeños, or sour cream for freshness and visual appeal.
  9. Make Ahead: Charro beans often taste better the next day as flavors meld. Consider making them in advance for convenience.

Storing The Charro Beans!

  1. Cool Completely: Allow the charro beans to cool to room temperature before storing to prevent condensation and bacterial growth.
  2. Transfer to Airtight Container: Place the cooled charro beans in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag. Make sure the container is tightly sealed to prevent moisture and air from entering.
  3. Refrigerate Promptly: Place the sealed container of charro beans in the refrigerator as soon as possible after cooking. Store them on the top shelf or in the middle of the refrigerator where temperatures are the most consistent.
  4. Label and Date: It’s helpful to label the container with the date of preparation to keep track of freshness. Charro beans can typically be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  5. Freezing (Optional): If you don’t plan to consume the charro beans within a few days, consider freezing them for longer-term storage. Transfer the cooled beans to a freezer-safe container, leaving some space for expansion, and seal tightly. Frozen charro beans can maintain their quality for up to 3-6 months.
  6. Thawing and Reheating: To use frozen charro beans, thaw them overnight in the refrigerator or thaw them quickly in the microwave. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave, adding a splash of water or broth if needed to prevent them from drying out.
  7. Inspect Before Consuming: Before serving leftover charro beans, inspect them for any signs of spoilage such as off odors, mold growth, or unusual appearance. If in doubt, it’s best to discard them to avoid foodborne illness.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Can I use canned beans instead of dried beans?

A: Yes, you can use canned beans instead of dried beans to make charro beans. Simply drain and rinse the canned beans before adding them to the recipe. Keep in mind that canned beans may have a softer texture than dried beans.

Q: How do I make charro beans less spicy?

A: To make charro beans less spicy, you can reduce the amount of chili peppers or remove the seeds and membranes, which contain most of the heat. You can also use mild chili peppers like poblano peppers instead of hotter varieties like jalapeños or serranos.

Q: Are charro beans gluten-free?

A: Yes, charro beans are naturally gluten-free as long as gluten-containing ingredients are not added. Be sure to check ingredient labels on spices and other packaged ingredients to ensure they are gluten-free if you have a gluten sensitivity or allergy.

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