Plain and Simple Pinto Beans

If you are looking for a recipe for a simple pot of pinto beans, this is it. All you need is beans, water, salt pork and a good Dutch oven!

  • 1 pound dried pinto beans
  • 7 cups water
  • 1/4 to 1/2 pound salt pork (as lean as you can find)
  • 3 large cloves garlic, crushed
  1. Wash and pick over beans. Make several cuts into the salt pork down to, but not through, the rind.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a heavy saucepan or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low simmer. Cook very slowly, covered. Stir beans up from the bottom occasionally, and add water if they start looking dry.
  3. Cook for at least 2 hours. When beans are soft (not mushy), but still hold their shape, they are done.
  4. Makes 6 servings.

Note: People in areas with hard water, like Austin or San Antonio, Texas can cook their beans till the cows come home, and the beans will still be tough or not thoroughly done. If you have that problem, add a scant 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to the cooking water, and you will have one less problem.

Prep time: 15 Min; Cooking time: 2 Hr; Ready in: 2 Hr 30 Min

Dutch oven or large pot

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