6 Best Canned Refried Beans of 2021 Tested & Reviewed

Best Canned Refried Beans
Photo: Getty Images

With the best canned refried beans, you get a simple but healthy way to enhance various dishes. Also, these beans make a fantastic topping for pizzas and other dishes, and you will need them for various Mexican cuisines.

Better yet, canned refried beans make some amazing dips and some specific types are thick enough to make amazing bread spread. And to crown it all up, these canned beans have a long shelf life with some types staying fresh for over 5 years.

That said, like any other canned food, there are countless canned refried beans options out there that will differ in everything from the types of beans used and ingredients to the flavor and spiciness.

Here we help you pick the best tasting canned refried beans with reviews and a buying guide.

What To Check Before Buying Canned Refried Beans?

How to Buy the Best Canned Refried Beans
Photo: urbancowgirllife.com

As simple as canned refried beans might be, all are not the same, and so to make sure you choose the best ones, you need to consider the following factors.

1. Types of Canned Refried Beans

Canned fried beans will come in different types that will have different preparation styles. Hence, one of the first decisions you will need to make is to decide which type to buy from these different options.

Here are the 3 most common canned refried beans options.

– Heat & Serve

This is the most common type of canned refried beans, and perhaps what many people seem to prefer.

With these beans, preparation is straightforward as you will only need to heat them in a pan or microwave and serve them.

You will not need to add any water or other additional ingredients to these beans.

– Cook & Serve

The cook and serve types have to be cooked with water. Most of these beans have all the spices and flavors mixed in, and you will hence not need to add anything.

And while they require some cooking, it is usually fast and does not take any extra time when compared to the heat and serve.

– From Scratch

Many home cooks still prefer to have more control over things like the spiciness and salt in their beans.

If you fall into this category of canned refried beans lovers, you should go for the types that will require you to do everything from scratch.

These come as a can of pinto or black beans, and you have to cook and add all the flavors from scratch, which takes more time.

2. Ingredients

The exact ingredients in the canned refried beans matter a lot as it will determine both the taste and healthiness.

Hence, as you choose your beans, you need to carefully read the ingredients list. Doing this will allow you to make sure there is nothing in there that you might be allergic to.

Besides the pinto or black beans, other typical ingredients used in these canned beans include salt, lard, vinegar, oil, and different flavors and spices.

However, the actual ingredients and their proportions will vary from one brand to the other.

3. Size

The size or quantity of beans that you get in the can will also matter as it will determine whether you get enough beans, how many cans you have to buy, and hence how much you spend.

The good news is that most will come in a 16-ounce can, which for many home cooks is often enough for their typical meals. However, some like Amy’s 042272005895 will come in a 15.4-ounce can, which is still quite a good quantity.

When it comes to the size, it will mostly depend on just how many beans you use at a go as it is always advisable to use the entire can at a go.

4. Healthiness

Healthiness should be at the top of your mind when picking these beans.

And here the healthiest canned refried beans are those that will contain organic or all-natural ingredients like Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional Refried Beans.

Look for something that has all-natural ingredients or is clearly labeled to be completely organic as it will be healthier. Also, avoid things like lard if you do not want a higher level of cholesterol and fat.

Beans with lower sodium content will be healthier than they will provide relatively higher nutritional content.

5. Vegetarian or Not

If you are a vegetarian, you will need to make sure that the canned refried beans you buy are vegetarian.

The good news is that the vegetarian refried beans like Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional Refried Beans will always be clearly labeled as so on the can.

If the beans are not labeled as vegetarian or non-vegetarian, you will need to go through the ingredient carefully to determine whether they are vegetarian or not.

Those that contain lard and other similar ingredients are not vegetarian as this is an animal by-product.

6. Spiciness

The spiciness is also always a matter of personal preference as some people will prefer a spicier flavor, while others are more comfortable with something milder.

Mild beans tend to be better when you want to dress them up in different ways as they will not overwhelm other ingredients. Spicier ones, on the other hand, are perfect when you want them to be the dominant ingredient in your dishes.

The good news is that there are canned refried beans out there for everyone whether you like something hot or mild.

7. Variants

The beans variants or the specific kinds of beans used to make the canned refried beans is another element that will set them apart, and hence is also an important factor to consider.

Pinto beans are the most popular variant, and they go with tortillas, rice, and vegetables thanks to their creamy consistency.

Black beans, on the other hand, will make a flavorful addition to your tacos and burritos. Also, they will be perfect for homemade burgers.

And if you do not like black beans and pinto beans, you can get canned refried beans made with kidney beans, and this variant will be perfect for Mexican dishes.

6 Best Canned Refried Beans Reviewed




Taco Bell 4704

1. Taco Bell 4704 (Best Overall)

  • All-natural flavor
  • Less salt and oil
  • Zero fat and cholesterol
  • Good value per ounce
Amy’s 042272005895

2. Amy’s 042272005895 (Best Traditional-Style)

  • Delicious traditional-style beans
  • 50% less sodium
  • USDA-certified to be organic
  • Gluten and trans-fat-free
Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional Refried Beans

3. Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional (Best Vegan-friendly)

  • Completely vegan-friendly
  • 100% organic and traditional-style refried beans
  • Non-GMO and with zero hydrogenated oils
  • Low-fat content
Old El Paso 046000843315

4. Old El Paso 046000843315 (Best Spicy Taste)

  • Nice, spicy taste
  • Fast heating in microwave/stove
  • Zero fat content
  • Natural flavors
Rosarita Organic Refried Beans

5. Rosarita Organic Refried Beans (Fiber-Rich)

  • 6-gram fiber content
  • 100% organic ingredients
  • Can be heated on stove and microwave
  • Authentic flavor
Ortega 3900001095

6. Ortega 3900001095 (Simple & Delicious Ingredients)

  • Delicious ingredients including lard
  • Perfect for Mexican dishes
  • Zero trans and saturated fats
  • Contains sodium, calcium and other healthy minerals

1. Taco Bell 4704 – Best Overall

Taco Bell 4704

Photo: Taco Bell

  • Type: Heat & serve    
  • Main Ingredients: Pinto beans, water, pink beans, salt, soybean oil, soy lecithin, and natural flavor           
  • Size: 16 oz.

The all-natural flavor used on the Taco Bell 4704 beans gives them a highly pleasant flavor that will go well with different foods and makes them nice to eat on their own. This nice flavor and the fact that these beans will give you a good value per ounce are what make them out the best overall choice.

Also, these are healthier canned refried beans that will not contain any saturated or Trans fats. Better yet, there is less than 1 gram of sugar on these beans, and they will contain less than 2% salt and soybean oil.

With 5-gram of dietary fiber, 9 grams of protein and 21 grams of carbohydrates, these beans will provide a more balanced diet with all the important dietary components.

While there might not be a pop-top tab on these cans, opening them is still quite easy with a can opener or even a knife. And given the value and quality of beans, this is hardly a significant issue.


  • Pleasant natural flavor
  • Healthier with no fats
  • Relatively more affordable per ounce
  • Contains little salt and oil
  • Rich in fiber and proteins


  • No pop-top tab

2. Amy’s 042272005895 ​– Best Traditional-Style

Amy’s 042272005895

Photo: Amy’s

  • Type: Heat & serve                
  • Main Ingredients: Organic pinto beans, filtered water onions, sunflower oil, garlic, sea salt, and other spices
  • Size: 15.4 oz.

For those that prefer a more traditional take of the canned refried beans, Amy’s 042272005895 is perfect. Besides being made the traditional way, these refried beans have a delightfully delicious taste and will be the perfect toppings for a wide variety of dishes.

With up to 50% less sodium when compared to other canned refried beans, these are also a healthier option. And to give you some assurance they are healthy, they will come with a USDA organic certification.

These gluten-free canned refried beans are an excellent source of both protein and fiber, and they do not contain any trans fats, which makes them a good pick for almost anyone. And to crown everything up, the can will not contain any BPA lining, which makes them both safe and healthy.

Occasionally, some cans will arrive dented, but this is not a unique problem for this product because many canned foods face the same issue, and it should hence not be a deal-breaker.


  • Rich and delicious traditional-style beans
  • Contains less sodium
  • Certified to be 100% organic
  • Non-BPA can lining
  • Does not have any trans fats or gluten


  • Some cans come dented

3. Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional – Best Vegetarian

Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional Refried Beans

Photo: Bearitos

  • Type: Heat & serve    
  • Main Ingredients: Organic pinto beans, water, canola oil, and sea salt         
  • Size: 16 oz.

Anyone looking for the best vegan canned refried beans will not need to look past these from Bearitos. Besides being completely vegetarian, these are also delicious beans that are prepared in the traditional style for more authentic flavor.

These beans will contain relatively less total fat when compared to others out there, and they will not have any saturated or trans fat, which makes them healthier.

Also, these are 100% organic refried beans with all-natural ingredients with zero GMO and hydrogenated oils. And you can be sure that the can will not be the source of any unhealthy components as it has no BPA lining.

Pop tops make cans easier to open, and this is why they are nowadays almost standard for all cans. But, lack of pop tops will not make these refried beans can any hard to open, and should hence not be a significant drawback.


  • Tasty vegan refried beans
  • Contains little fat
  • Zero hydrogenated oils and GMO ingredients
  • Completely organic with all-natural ingredients
  • Safe can with no BPA lining


  • No pop tops

4. Old El Paso 046000843315 – Best Spicy

Old El Paso 046000843315

Photo: Old El Paso

  • Type: Heat & serve                
  • Main Ingredients: Cooked beans, jalapeno peppers, and water        
  • Size: 16 oz.

Being one of the spiciest options on our canned refried beans review, the Old El Paso 046000843315 is a perfect choice if you prefer to have an extra kick on your refried beans. Also, the extra spiciness will help give your foods a nice overall flavor.

These beans are a great choice for anyone watching their weight or on a diet as it will contain zero fat and just one gram of sugar. There are only a total of 90 calories per 16-ounce can, and hence making this a spicy and healthy refried beans option.

Also, these beans seem to heat up well and fast both in the microwave and in the stove. Many beans lovers will love that they only use natural flavors and are low in other ingredients like salt. And they seem to go well with a wide variety of dishes.

Although these canned refried beans might not have the same pleasant mouthfeel as what you get from those with lard, as an ingredient they are still fantastic. Also, denting of the cans is a small issue and typical of most of these canned beans that you should not stress over.


  • Spicy and great tasting
  • Contains no fats
  • Does not have any artificial flavors
  • Heats fast and easily
  • Combines well with various dishes


  • Not the best mouthfeel
  • Dented cans

5. Rosarita Organic Refried Beans – Fiber-Rich Refried Beans

Rosarita Organic Refried Beans

Photo: Rosarita

  • Type: Heat & serve    
  • Main Ingredients: Cooked organic pinto beans, water and under 2% of other things like coconut oil, salt, garlic powder, and chili pepper                      
  • Size: 16 oz.

One of the main things that make canned refried beans popular is that they contain various healthy components. But, the Rosarita Organic Refried Beans seem to pay a little more attention to the fiber because the 6 grams of fiber they provide is more than what most others out there will have.

Also, these beans will contain all-natural and organic ingredients, and they have a USDA certification to give you some assurance that this is not just a marketing gimmick, and they are as healthy as the manufacturer claims.

There is less salt on these refined beans, and the spices and other ingredients like oil are moderately used to ensure you can easily dress them up and pair them with other foods. Also, the moderate use of seasoning and spices and the all-natural ingredients, gives these beans a delicious and more authentic flavor.

The only notable complaint with these beans does not have to do with their quality, but rather, the packaging as some come dented and beat up. But, you can easily get replacements for any damaged cans, and hence should not be a deal-breaker.


  • High fiber content
  • Contains all-natural and organic ingredients
  • Easy to heat on stove or microwave
  • Less salt and other spices
  • Delicious and more authentic flavor


  • Wanting packaging

6. Ortega 3900001095 – Simple and Delicious

Ortega 3900001095

Photo: Ortega

  • Type: Heat & serve                
  • Main Ingredients: Cooked pinto beans, water, salt, lard, distilled vinegar, garlic powder, onion powder, and spices
  • Size: 16 oz.

The simple but highly delicious ingredients are what make the Ortega 3900001095 such a special canned refried beans choice. Also, these fantastic flavors make it perfect for pairing with Mexican-style cuisines.

While the total fat content in a 16-ounce can of beans is around 3%, there is nothing to worry about as it still contains zero trans and saturated fats, which are the unhealthy types responsible for a wide variety of health issues.

Better yet, these beans will not only supply the body with a nice dose of fiber and protein, but also contains various healthy minerals such as potassium, calcium, and iron, which the body needs.

If you read between the lines on the ingredients list, it is easy to tell that these beans are not completely organic, but unless you are looking for 100% organic beans, this should not be an issue. Also, they contain a little more salt than others on our canned refined beans review, but overall, their salt content is still within the acceptable parameters.


  • Highly delicious ingredients
  • Works great with Mexican-style dishes
  • Completely trans and saturated fats-free
  • Rich in a variety of healthy minerals


  • Not completely organic
  • Contains a little more salt


Whether you want to make Mexican cuisines or want a nice topping for your pizzas or even something to give your dips a nice kick, canned refried beans will be perfect.

Now finding the best canned refried beans is all about picking what suits your tastes from the reviewed products above as they are amazing.

And to help you narrow down your choices further, the all-natural Taco Bell 4704 is our best overall because, besides the fantastic flavor, these beans are also healthier and offer good value per ounce.

But, if you are vegan, the Bearitos Organic Low Fat Traditional Refried Beans will be a good product to buy. They are not only completely vegetarian-friendly but also have an amazing flavor.