How to make black beans from scratch

Black beans are an amazing addition to any latin recipe, and are one of my favorite vegan/vegetarian protein sources. Cooking a homemade version makes you appreciate how much time goes into this staple food in latin cuisine. Plus, it’s healthier when it is made it home because your black beans will have less sodium and preservatives! Fun fact, I’ve read online that black beans don’t require soaking like other dry beans, so I skipped this step.

The following are modifications I made to the original recipe from the Spruce Eats. With all of these revisions, I still enjoyed how the black beans tasted.

  • I didn’t have green bell peppers, bay leaf, or white wine, so I did not include these original ingredients.
  • Used white wine vinegar instead of red wine vinegar because this is what I could find at home.
  • Added a sprinkle of chili powder for extra spice
  • Took out the original suggestion of 1 tablespoon of sugar because I didn’t want my black beans to be sweet.

This is the recipe from the Spruce Eats (adjusted based on my modifications).


  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 medium onion (quartered)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (optional)


  1. Bring the beans and water to a boil, then immediately turn the heat to a simmer and cook, covered for 1 1/2 hours, or until the beans are almost tender.

  2. Prepare a sauce, called sofrito, by combining onion, garlic, oregano, cumin, chili powder and a little of the cooking water in a blender. Blend on low until the mixture is smooth.


  3. Add the sofrito to the beans. Bring to a boil again, then immediately reduce the heat to a simmer.

  4. Add salt and vinegar. Continue to simmer, uncovered, until the bean mixture becomes thick, about 2 more hours.

  5. Add olive oil (optional) immediately before serving.



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