Pinto or Cowgirl Beans

Rate this recipe

Preparation info

  • Yield:

    6 to 8

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Craig Claiborne's Southern Cooking

Craig Claiborne's Southern Cooking

By Craig Claiborne

Published 1987

  • About


  • cups pinto beans (about ½ pound)
  • cups water, approximately
  • Salt to taste, if desired
  • ¾ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon safflower, corn, or peanut oil
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped seeded fresh jalapeño peppers
  • ¾ cup finely diced tomatoes
  • 6 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander


  • Pick over the beans and wash them well. Put them in a kettle and add the water. Bring to the boil, partly covered, and let simmer 1 hour.
  • Add salt and half the onion. Continue cooking, uncovered, about 30 minutes longer.
  • Heat the oil in a small skillet and add the remaining onion and the jalapeño peppers. Cook briefly until the onion is wilted. Add the tomatoes and coriander and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes.
  • Scoop out 1 cup beans, plus a little of their liquid, and place them in the container of a food processor or electric blender. Blend until as fine as possible. Return this to the beans.
  • Add the tomato mixture to the beans and continue to simmer, about 5 minutes.