The convenience of canned refried beans is hard to deny. The only problem of course is that they don’t always taste the best.
Sometimes you might think that they’re a bit off, and the beans will often be way too thick.
Having refried beans turn out too thick makes it tough to enjoy them, and you’d likely rather have them be a bit thin and incredibly creamy.
Is there anything that you can do to try to turn things around? Can you make canned refried beans thinner?
Read on to learn about your best options.
You Must Add Liquid to the Beans
You must add liquid to the refried beans if you want to make them thinner. It’s important to approach this the right way or you could make the beans runny.
Runny refried beans could wind up being just as unsatisfying as beans that are way too thick. Luckily, it’s easy to get things right when you know how much liquid you’re supposed to add.
For every thirty ounces of refried beans, you’re going to need to add one cup of liquid. Sticking to this ratio will allow you to thin things out in a very natural way.
You shouldn’t have things turn out way too thin so long as you’re keeping an eye on how much liquid you’re adding. If you were to go overboard with adding liquid, there’s a good chance that things wouldn’t turn out so great.
Luckily, this is going to be a pretty easy process. You just need to choose which type of liquid you want to add to the beans.
1 – Using Water
Using water is sort of the default or standard way to thin out refried beans. This is a safe route to take because it’ll ensure that you won’t add extra flavors to the mix.
If you don’t wish to alter the taste of the refried beans in any way, adding water will be a great idea. Stick to the ratio mentioned above and you will get good results.
Using water will pretty much be the easiest way to get the job done. You should always have access to running water, and this means that you don’t need to run out to buy some type of special ingredient.
It’ll be easy to get the beans to turn out just as thin as you need them to be. The water won’t throw off the taste of the beans, but it will alter the consistency.
Just be careful not to use too much. You don’t want the beans to be overly runny or you might not be pleased with how things turn out.
2 – Use Buttermilk
Buttermilk will be a good choice when you’re trying to thin out refried beans. You can thin them using buttermilk by using the same ratio that was mentioned earlier.
Simply add one cup of buttermilk for every thirty ounces of refried beans. Once you’ve finished, the beans will be substantially thinner.
You will also have altered the taste of the beans a great deal. Some people feel that using buttermilk to thin out the beans will make them taste better, but it’ll come down to personal preference.
3 – Try Using Heavy Cream
If you want your refried beans to be thinner, you’ll be able to use pretty much any liquid that makes sense to get the job done. Most people wind up using water or some type of milk.
Those are fine options, but you might want to try using heavy cream. Heavy cream will help you to make the refried beans tastier than ever without making things too sour.
Buttermilk is the most common type of milk used to thin out refried beans. Using it is fine, but it can alter the taste of the beans a lot.
Using heavy cream will be a lot different. You’ll get incredibly creamy, satisfying beans that won’t have the subtle sourness of the buttermilk.
4 – Sour Cream Can Work
Sour cream can work as well when you’re looking to thin out the refried beans. This is something that you very well might be adding to the beans later anyway, depending on what you’re using them for.
This isn’t a liquid and is instead considered to be a semi-liquid. It can still work to thin out the beans until they have the right consistency.
Just keep adding a little bit of sour cream at a time while stirring the beans. Test the consistency and then stop once you’re satisfied with how things have turned out.
The downside to this idea is that using sour cream can make the beans turn out a lot different than normal. Basically, your refried beans will have a strong sour cream taste if you wind up using too much.
Even using a little will alter the taste of the beans. If you’re worried about throwing the taste off, sticking to using water will be a better course of action.
5 – Use Broth
Using broth will probably be a good way to thin out the beans that most people will like. This will have an impact on the taste of the beans, but it’ll likely be a positive impact as far as most people are concerned.
You can use pretty much any type of broth that you want. Some people use beef broth while others will use chicken broth.
It’ll give the beans a bit of a meaty flavor. That can wind up going well with certain dishes, and it might make sense depending on what you’re using the refried beans for.
Simply stir the broth into the refried beans just as you would if you were thinning things out with water. You’ll be able to easily get them to turn out thinner.
Taste the beans to see if you’re satisfied with the taste. If all goes well, broth might become your go-to option for thinning out the refried beans.
Learning what you need to do to make refried beans thinner will help you out. You don’t need to put up with them being far too thick when you have the tools to alter the consistency.
The only thing that you really need to worry about is what type of liquid or semi-liquid you’re going to use. Some might want to just use water, but others will prefer using something such as broth, heavy cream, sour cream, or buttermilk.
There are pros and cons of using each different type of liquid or semi-liquid. Some options will alter the taste of the beans quite a bit while others will be neutral.
Examine the different options that you have available to you and then decide what you want to do. So long as you stick to the right ratio, it’ll be easy to get the beans to turn out just right.
The next time you make refried beans, it’s going to be much easier to get the consistency in the right range. Your next dinner party is sure to be a huge hit.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.