Black Beans Slow Cooker

Who is excited to celebrate Cinco de Mayo?  I know I am!  One of my all time favorite meals is Cuban Bistec de Pollo (grilled chicken) with black beans, white rice and fried sweet plantains from either Don Ramon or Havana in West Palm Beach, Florida.  Honestly, I could skip the chicken and just get the beans, rice and plantains.  I have been know to order just the sides, and no chicken, on many occasion!  I wanted to recreate the flavors at home and this Winter I got out my slow cooker to test different recipes.  After a few tries, I found the right recipe and today I am going to cook up a batch of black beans for our Cinco de Mayo dinner . Salud and Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

Black Beans Slow Cooker
Black Beans Slow Cooker
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  • 1 bag Goya black beans
  • 1 piece smoked ham hock
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 onion – whole and skin removed
  • 1 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 4 Cups of water – more for soaking beans overnight
  • 2 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 4 oz Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Minced garlic
  • 2 tsp minced onion
  1. Rinse beans, discarding any broken beans and soak overnight in a bowl of water.  Make sure the water covers the beans by about 2 inches.  The beans will soak up the water.  Do not be surprised if the beans turn a dark purple after soaking.  This is normal.  
  2. Drain the water from the beans and place in slow cooker with on whole onion, 3 garlic cloves, ham hock, olive oil and bay leaves.  Cover with 4 cups of water.  Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours
  3. Remove ham hock, onion, bay leaves and garlic from slow cooker.
  4. Heat Olive oil in skillet with tomato sauce, sugar, salt and minced garlic until boils.  Pour into slow cooker with beans.  Mix to combine.  I like the to cook the beans for at least another hour or two so that the flavors of the seasons blend into the beans.  
  5. Serve with rice
Cooks Note: The ingredients that you combine to the beans for flavor can be altered to your taste. Like many recipes this part is fun to experiment with.  You can include a jalapeno, chopped cilantro or maybe chili powder depending on the heat and spices you like.
Black Beans Slow Cooker
Photographs by Ridgely

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