Easy creamy coconut black beans made completely from scratch. See how to make the creamiest black beans ready for any meal. You only need one pot! Jump to the Coconut Black Beans Recipe or read on to see our tips for making it.
We are so excited to share these with you. The method for these beans was inspired by Serious Eat’s no-soak method for black beans. The coconut milk addition was inspired by the Saint and the Sinner (a restaurant in our hometown of Walla Walla). It was there that we first tasted coconut black beans. The moment we did, we knew we wanted to share our own version with you.
How to Make the Creamiest Black Beans from Scratch
When we first made these, we were amazed at just how easy they are. Unlike many bean recipes, you don’t need to soak the black beans before cooking.
To make them, throw everything into a pot then cook at a very low simmer until the beans are creamy and tender. In the photo below, you can see that we add dried black beans, spices, garlic, half an onion, coconut milk and water to the pot.
It’s important to use unsweetened coconut milk. We first tried coconut water, but that has sugar. It made the beans taste sweet with a strong coconut flavor. The unsweetened coconut milk adds creaminess to the beans and gives them a delicate coconut flavor. The spices add backbone and the onion and garlic act as aromatics, helping the beans smell and taste incredible.
After 1 1/2 to 2 hours of cook time, the beans are tender. To finish, we increase the heat a little and simmer the liquid down until it’s thick and sticks to the beans. These are so creamy and are excellent with a variety of dishes. I basically eat them out of the pot with a spoon, but they are fantastic served over rice, in tortillas, with eggs and just about anything else you can think of.
Serve these coconut black beans with our Crave-Worthy Ground Pork Tacos, our Creamy Avocado Lime Sweet Potato Noodles, these Healthy Baked Sweet Potatoes with Tomato Avocado Salsa or our Easy, Garlic Citrus Marinated Chicken Fajitas.
More Easy Bean Recipes
- Homemade Refried Beans — How to make delicious homemade refried beans using dried pinto or black beans as well as how to make refried beans from canned beans.
- Easy Chickpea Salad — With lemon, fresh dill, crisp cucumber and tomatoes that’s quick to make and you can make it in advance.
- Lemony White Bean Salad — This Mediterranean inspired bean salad has creamy white beans, salty prosciutto, parmesan cheese, peppery arugula, and a punchy lemon dressing.
- The Best Veggie Burgers — These veggie burgers are packed with black beans and vegetables! See how to make homemade veggie burgers that are hearty, flavorful and full of vegetables.
- Utterly Delicious Chipotle Bean Chili — Make this easy and delicious vegetarian bean chili with dried beans or canned. You can make it in the slow cooker or on the stove.
Easy Creamy Coconut Black Beans
This no-soak black beans recipe cannot really get much easier. Throw everything into a large pot and simmer until the beans are tender. Using coconut milk for the liquid makes the beans extra creamy. They have a delicate coconut flavor, which is absolutely delicious when you squeeze a little fresh lime on top before serving. When choosing the coconut milk, make sure it is unsweetened. For the creamiest beans, use full fat canned coconut milk. Reduced fat canned or the refrigerated coconut milk often found near dairy milk does work, the beans will just be slightly less creamy and rich.
**Not currently tested with canned black beans. We are working on a method and will share as soon as we can**
You Will Need
2 cups dried black beans, picked through, rinsed (about 1 pound), *not currently tested with canned beans
3 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1/2 medium onion, peeled, left unchopped
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 3/4 cups can unsweetened coconut milk, see notes
Salt and ground black pepper
Handful fresh cilantro
Optional toppings: Tomatoes, avocado and cheese
1Add black beans, garlic, onion, bay leaf, cumin, cinnamon and the coconut milk to a large pot. Cover the beans with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, stir then reduce the heat to a low simmer. Cook uncovered, until the beans are tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. As they cook, stir the beans every once and a while and add extra water if they look dry.
2When the beans are tender, remove the onion, garlic and bay leaf. Taste and season with salt and pepper (start with 1/4 teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon salt). Increase the heat to medium and bring to a rapid simmer. Simmer the beans, stirring often, until the liquid thickens, 5 to 10 minutes. Serve with fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime. Chopped tomatoes and avocado are also excellent added to the top of the beans.
Adam and Joanne's Tips
- Coconut milk: One 14-ounce can of coconut milk should be close to 1 3/4 cups. If you are slightly under, simply add additional water to make up the missing liquid.
- Store cooked black beans covered in the refrigerator up to 5 days and in the freezer up to one month.
- The no-soak method for cooking black beans was adapted and inspired by “The Lazy Cook’s Black Beans” from Serious Eats.
- Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values.
If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste
Hey there! Made these beans not long ago to the letter, only difference is that I soaked our beans overnight as our tummies can’t handle un-soaked ones. They were absolutely delicious; the toddler loved them and husband (who usually rolls his eyes at vegetarian meals) went back for seconds. We had them with some quinoa and a citrus/cilantro dressing and it was a shockingly filling meal. Added this one to my recipe card box!
My family and I enjoyed these beans very much. They came out creamy as described and love what the coconut milk does to these. I did however increase the cumin a bit, and didn’t bother removing the garlic or the onion (cut the onion in half) because it kind-of disintegrated. We enjoyed these very much along with Chile Rellenos. Thanks so much for sharing. Made for Best of 2020 as recommended by Nancy.
I am a dried bean newbie. Would soaking overnight alter the recipe?
Soaking the beans would likely make your beans take a little less time to cook.
What great flavor — love the creamy texture and flavor of the coconut milk. This went well with our grilled skewers and cilantro lime rice. : )
What a great recipe. The coconut milk adds such a nice flavor and creamy texture to the beans. I did have to cook them a little longer though. Made these beans to go with some cilantro lime rice. : )
My wife HATES beans… Hate isn’t a strong enough word. After 18 years with her, I have never seen her eat them and she goes out of her way to avoid them. I cooked these per the recipe and asked her to try just one bean. She said, Not bad! Blend them into a dip and I’ll eat them on chips! Her response amazed me. Personally, I thought they were fantastic and I will be making them again.
LOVE my beans (and coconut milk) and all your recipes I have tried, so will try SOOOON Thanks you two!
Hi, there’s canned coconut milk and there’s also the refrigerated coconut milk that you find in the dairy aisle. Which one did you mean?
Hi Chris, we have used both. Full fat canned coconut milk makes the creamiest beans, but unsweetened refrigerated coconut milk will work.
Thank you Joanne! I will have to try the canned coconut milk at some point as that does sound decadent… but today, I will use the coconut milk I have in my fridge. Thanks again.
looking forward to cooking this. tried serious eats version twice, got nowhere. hope springs eternal.
How do I convert this to an IP recipe?
Hi Edith, We have not tried this recipe in our Instant Pot yet, but I would expect them to take 20 to 25 minutes on high pressure with a natural release.