What’s for Dinner: Crock-Pot Beans, Revised - SLO Classical Academy
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Welcome to Down Home, San Luis Obispo Classical Academy’s blog! We are a classical school offering several options to make our education work for families with infants through high schoolers. Our signature hybrid program, which is part-time classroom and part-time home instruction, provides an engaging education for preschool through middle school (with full time options available). We also have a university model high school. This blog is meant to support and encourage on the home front because, in so many ways, the heart of what happens at SLO Classical Academy happens down home.

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What’s for Dinner: Crock-Pot Beans, Revised

{photo by Jenny Bischoff}

Crock-Pot Beans

A few years ago I submitted this recipe to Down Home as my top go-to meal for cheap and easy dinners. I still make this at least twice a month and my family still loves it, so I felt they were worthy of re-posting. We use these beans for burritos, tacos, nachos, bowls, and salads. In the last year I’ve revised my original method just slightly – I used to chop the onion and mince the garlic, and that is still a lovely way to prepare these, but this way makes it even easier and faster to prep in the morning, and still delivers the same flavor. Hey, beans may not be all that glamorous, but if you’re looking for a quick and easy crock-pot meal, this one is a reliable winner!


3 cups dried pinto or black beans

1 onion, skin removed and cut in half

6-8 garlic cloves, smashed and skins removed

1 tsp. cumin

8-10 cups water (enough to cover thoroughly)



Rinse beans and place in crock pot. Add the onion, garlic, cumin, and water. Cook on low all day. When the beans are tender and done, add salt to taste. Remove the large chunks of onion and garlic if desired, and serve.

These are great in burritos just as they are, or mash them up for more of a refried bean feel. Combine with chicken or beef if desired, or use alone for a satisfying vegetarian dinner. All the usual toppings go great with these: shredded cheese, lettuce, sour cream, guacamole, salsa, olives, sautéed onions, peppers or other veggies, rice, chips… whatever you like! Or serve with cornbread. These beans are super versatile!

Click here for a printable PDF of this recipe.

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