Colombian Frijoles or Red Beans

Kolumbianische rote Bohnen

Today you will get Colombian red beans or frijoles, yay! I really enjoy eating these and the recipe below was invented by my husband who tweaked the family recipe to his liking. Red beans are served all throughout Latin America. My friends are often surprised when they realize that Colombian red beans are mild in flavor as many immediately think of spicy red beans from Mexico or Brazil. However, rest assured, these beans are not spicy as they are flavored with cilantro and other equally mild herbs.

Kolumbianische rote BohnenAnother feature of Colombian cuisine is the so-called “guso”, which is a mix of tomatoes, spring onions, and garlic. Minced meat is usually marinated overnight with this sauce and, you probably have guessed it, are also cooked with the red beans to give them their distinct flavor.

Kolumbianische rote BohnenIn addition to cilantro and the “guiso” my husband likes to serve this recipe with pork belly. So this is NOT a vegetarian dish. The pork belly gives the beans some creamier texture and extra flavor. I have tried without and have to say that it definitely takes away, so I can only recommend to sticking to the recipe.

Colombian Frijoles or Red Beans

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Serves: 6-7 persons
Prep Time: About 10 hrs Cooking Time: 2hr 10min

Colombian frijoles or red beans are a creamy stew made with red beans and a few vegetables. Perfect on the side of rice.


  • 500 grams of dry red beans

  • Vegetable Broth
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 onions
  • 1 stalk celery
  • One bunch parsley
  • One bunch cilantro
  • 2 bay leaves

  • 200 grams of fresh pork belly
  • 5-6 spring onions
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 4 tomatos
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste



Soak the red beans in plenty of water overnight. You need to cover them with at least two to three centimeters of water as they will soak up everything overnight. If needed, add further water the next morning. Drain when ready and set aside.


Prepare the vegetable broth by roughly cutting the carrots, slicing the onion in half and cutting parsley and cilantro. Fry the carrot and onion for a few minutes on the bottom of your pot to bring out the flavor a bit more. Add two liters of water and the herbs and bring everything to a boil. Simmer for about 45 minutes. Discard vegetables and keep the vegetable broth. Cook the beans with the prepared vegetable broth in the pressure cooker for about 45min according to instructions.


Cut the pork belly in large rectangles, cut the spring onions and dice the garlic. Grate tomoatoes as you would grate cheese and chop up cilantro. Add all these ingredients and the cumin to your beans. Cook everything combined for about 40min, add further water if necessary. The beans should be soft and the stew reach a bit creamier consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve with additional fresh cilantro and with some rice. The beans will taste even better the following day. When reheating, add a bit of water first.

Kolumbianische rote Bohnen

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