Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Save Money: Spicy Pinto Beans

I am always looking for ways to cut my grocery bill without buying unhealthy food for my family.  I make an effort to not buy processed foods as much as possible.  If I do, I own it.  If I want chips, I get them.  Overall, though, I want to make healthful choices and healthy does not always equal affordable.  I love trying new ways to make the same things.  Beans are cheap, however, I noticed the price going up even on dried, bagged beans.  I remember when they were under a dollar and now all varieties are over a dollar.  A 1 lb bag of dried beans is the equivalent to 5 cans....still a way more affordable option.  Beans are one of the most versatile foods out there.  There is so much flavor packed into these beans and you can make different meals with them.
Some of our favorite ways to eat these beans are with cornbread, make them into tostadas and burritos or as a side dish with grilled chicken and greens or corn on the cob.


  • 2 cups dry pinto beans
  • 1 ham hock or ham or bacon (optional)
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 2 each mini red, yellow and orange bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 whole jalapeno, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder  or creole seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoning salt (if using creole seasoning, omit salt)


  1. Rinse beans under cold water, sorting out any rocks.
  2. Place beans in a stock pot with the ham hock and cover with water by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot and simmer for 2 hours, checking occasionally to make sure the water level is fine. Add more water as needed.
  3. Then throw in diced shallot,  peppers, garlic and jalapeno. Cover and continue cooking for another hour, remembering to check the water level.
  4. Add salt, chili powder, seasoning salt and pepper, then cover and cook for another 30 minutes, or until beans are tender. 

Posted by on August 4 2011

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