Family Recipe: Cuban Black Beans

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Black beans are a legume known for their dark pigment. Like peas, lentils, and peanuts they share a strong nutritional profile. Black beans have many health benefits including cancer preventative properties, supporting healthy digestion, improving heart health and blood sugar retention. Some key takeaways on the benefits of black beans include:

  • Strengthening healthy bones with nutrients including phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc.
  • Providing quercetin and saponins to aid in cardioprotection.
  • Acting as a filling high-fiber food to increase the feeling of “fullness” and satiety which helps reduce overeating.

Check out this family recipe from Dr. JoAnn Yanez!

Quick and Easy!

Undoubtedly, without question….the best I’ve ever had.  Not just saying that because it is a family recipe. Trust me – they’re delicious!!!

  1. Start with sofrito – 1 to 2-ish TBSP Olive oil (traditional recipes call for bacon or pork fat) finely dice and sauté 1 onion, 1 bell pepper, 3-4 cloves garlic and 1 small stalk celery (That’s mom’s secret. She’ll be mad I am writing it down!)
  2. Once the vegetables are soft, add in the spices to warm through.  1 tsp paprika, ¼ tsp black pepper, ¼ tsp cumin, a pinch of oregano, 1-2 TBSP dried parsley, a dash of celery salt. Salt to taste.
  3. Then add one can plain organic black beans (drained)
  4. Fill the can with organic chicken or veggie stock and swirl to find the little last bits of beans
  5. Add ¼ cup wine (mom always uses port).  Any robust red will do.
  6. Simmer on medium to low heat until desired consistency (about 20-25 min) stirring occasionally to avoid burning the bottom.
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Serving Ideas:

This is better the next day as well – the flavors meld into heavenly yumminess.  Can be served over rice or added to quesadillas, burritos, omelets or anything you would want beans in.  It can also be blended smooth in the food processor for a killer bean dip, served with tortilla chips or cut veggies of your choice.

*substitution – you can sub pigeon beans (gandules) for a Puerto Rican version or any bean of your liking. But, for Cubans, black beans are a staple.

JoAnn Yanez, ND, MPH, CAE

JoAnn Yanez and her mother.

JoAnn is the Executive Director of the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges and the chair of the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health (ACIH). She also serves on the Integrative Health Policy Consortium (IHPC) Education Committee. Weaving a passion for illness prevention into her professional life, Dr. Yanez’s career has spanned advocacy, academia, patient care, and public health.

About The Author(s)

INM's team is made up of naturopathic doctors and health journalists.

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