Pinto Beans with Chilies

Pinto beans cooked with dried chilies have a deep, rich southwestern flavor. This pinto bean recipe uses ancho and pasilla chilies to create a healthy and delicious dish.

One great thing about pinto beans is their versatility; this recipe works as a side dish for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. We also love to serve them with good BBQ, grilled chicken, and all sorts of other things.

During testing, we found that cooking the pinto beans over low heat for a long time helped keep them tender and that adding a little salt at the end brought the flavors together. A tip when working with dried chilies, if you don’t want too much heat, but want to keep the chilies’ complex flavors, cut them open, wash out the seeds, and remove the pith.

You can get dried Ancho chilies from Umami’s market.  Try serving these beans with Ancho Chili Rubbed Chicken or some Spit Roasted Pork Carnitas.

Pinto Beans With Dried Chilies Recipe

Pinto Beans with Chilies

5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 50 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours
Servings: 8 servings


  • 1 lb dried pinto beans
  • 2 ancho chilies
  • 1 pasilla chile
  • 4 oz can roasted green chilies
  • 1 cup red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp hot sauce, optional
  • 3 1/2 tsp salt, divided


  • Prep the beans by washing them and pulling out any that look off. Place the beans in a large pot, filled with 48 ounces of water, bring the water to a boil for a couple of minutes, remove from the heat, cover, and let the beans soak for an hour or two.
  • While the beans are resting, soak the dried ancho and pasilla chilies in hot water for 30 minutes. When the peppers have finished soaking, mince them and set them aside.
  • When the beans have finished soaking, remove them from the pot and discard the water. In the pot, you're going to cook the beans in, sauté the red onion, garlic, and green chilies for a couple of minutes, add in the minced chilies and cook for another couple of minutes before adding the beans and the water. 
  • Add in 2 tsp of salt, stir, and cover.
  • Cook the beans on a low simmer until they are nice and tender. This usually takes around 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Add in the rest of the salt and hot sauce.
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Southwestern


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