Cuban Black Beans Recipe

If you're looking for a great side to add to a Mexican or Cuban-themed evening, these beans should be right up your alley. This tasty bean recipe includes a ton of black beans, onion, green peppers, and several spices that blow regular beans out of the water. These are a must-try and will add a great addition to any meal! 

Recipe developer Miriam Hahn came up with this wonderful Cuban black bean dish that doesn't skimp on flavor. "​​My favorite thing about this recipe is how the blend of spices adds such flavor to simple black beans," Hahn says. "This is the great base for a weeknight can have these made ahead of time and add cooked rice and a green salad, and you have a really delicious, hearty meal!" Hahn adds. "Also great to serve for entertaining as a side dish if you want something with a little flair at a barbeque or Cuban theme night." Keep reading to find out how to make this delicious side dish.

Gather the ingredients to make Cuban black beans

You can begin this recipe by making a grocery list and heading to the store. Be sure to grab some avocado oil and an onion. You will also need to pick up a green pepper and some garlic cloves. While you're in the produce section, get a jalapeño. 

Next, take a walk down the spice aisle and load up on cumin, coriander, oregano, salt, smoked paprika, and pepper. The recipe also calls for water, but you should have some at home already. You'll also need a few cans of black beans, fresh cilantro, juice from a lime, and some scallions.

The health benefits of black beans

When it comes to health benefits, black beans have a lot. And who better to tell us about them than Hahn herself? "Beans are so good for you for many reasons. They are high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals and super low in calories, making them very nutrient-dense," she shares. "They are also high in resistant starch, which means they are extremely good for your gut health, for leveling out blood sugar, helping with digestion, and acting as an appetite suppressant. In the areas where there are the highest number of people living over 100 (the blue zones), beans are a common ingredient." As if all of these reasons weren't enough to enjoy black beans, they're also tasty and versatile!

Sauté the veggies

Now that you have all of your ingredients in front of you, it's time to start sauteing the veggies. Grab a large pot and place it on your stove. Add the olive oil and turn the heat to high. Then, toss in the onion, green pepper, garlic, and jalapeño. As a reminder, you should have chopped and diced these veggies ahead of time, making this step a lot quicker and more efficient. 

Continue to sauté everything together for about five minutes, until the onions turn translucent. This is a good indicator that the veggies are where they need to be to move to the next step. 

Add the spices

This next step is where all of the wonderful flavors come into play. Toss in the cumin, coriander, oregano, salt, and smoked paprika. Next, add in the pepper. Stir everything well to coat the vegetables with spices.

"This dish has a smoky, savory flavor with a kick of heat. You can dial that up or down based on how spicy you like it," Hahn says of the flavor. "Instead of fresh jalapeño, sometimes I will use pickled jalapeños. You can also add in a poblano pepper if you want another flavor that is on the mild side."

Add water and beans

The last things you will need to add to the pot are the water and the black beans. Go ahead and dump them in and stir. The great part about this dish is that you don't need to drain and rinse the beans.

Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 10 minutes. Leave the pot uncovered and continue to stir the beans on occasion. As the bean mixture cooks, it will thicken. If you want the beans even thicker, cook for an additional 10 minutes. Then, add the cilantro and lime juice and stir. 

Serve and enjoy

Take the black beans off of the heat and serve on a plate or in a bowl of your choice, optionally topped off with chopped scallions. Hahn provides a few great serving suggestions. "This is good alone with toppings like onion, cilantro, avocado, or even pickled onions," she shares. "You can serve it over rice, quinoa, farro, or freekeh. It goes well in a tortilla, taco shell or tostada shell. Very versatile! They can be made ahead and store well for up to a week." We hope you love this recipe, which is great for your next Cuban or Mexican-themed night!

Cuban Black Beans Recipe
5 from 195 ratings
If you're looking for a great side to add to a Mexican or Cuban-themed evening, these beans should be right up your alley
Prep Time
Cook Time
black beans in bowls
Total time: 25 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 small green pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ jalapeño, diced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon coriander
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 cans black beans, undrained
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
Optional Ingredients
  • 3 scallions as garnish
  1. Add the oil to a large pot and turn the heat on high. Add the onion, green pepper, garlic, and jalapeño. Sauté for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent.
  2. Add the cumin, coriander, oregano, salt, smoked paprika, and pepper. Stir to coat the vegetables.
  3. Add the water and black beans. Stir and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally. The bean mixture will thicken. If you want them thicker, cook for 10 minutes longer.
  4. Stir the lime juice and cilantro into the beans.
  5. Serve topped with chopped scallions.
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