September 6, 2018

Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

These easy oil-free black beans are completely plant-based, gluten-free, quick to prepare, and, most importantly, delicious. Perfect for dinner tonight!

Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

Life is busy! But lack of time doesn't mean lack of yummy plant-based meals to devour (or lack of recipes to share with you!) It just means simple recipes that don't take too long.

Whether you're a busy student, a mom of young kids, a working professional, or just someone who wants to spend time NOT cooking, oil-free black beans are your new best friend.

This recipe saves time without compromising on flavor with two simple tricks:

  1. Canned Beans. You could definitely cook your own. The process involves a pre-soak and active cook time. If you have time, go for it! You'll reap the benefits of consuming less sodium :) But for those of us busy people (who isn't?!) canned beans are the way to go. Look for an organic, low-sodium, BPA-free can.
  2. Spices. Using spices to create flavors of fresh foods shortens prep-time immensely. If you don't already have a large spice collection, now's the time to invest! So. Much. FLAVOR.

Why I love these Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

  • Dietary needs — these beans are plant-based, gluten-free, dairy-free, oil-free, and sugar-free
  • Nutrient dense — beans are high in protein and fiber, two nutrients we all should be getting more of!
  • Literally so easy — all you're doing in this recipe is adding some extra flavor to a can of beans. It takes less than 10 minutes to make this dish and you probably have everything you need for the dish already in your kitchen

Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

Ingredient Notes & Substitutions

  • Canned Black Beans: if you have the time and want to cook dry beans, go for it! Otherwise, a can is perfect. Look for canned black beans without any added ingredients like sugar or salt
  • Red Onion: you can sub yellow or red. You can sub 2 tablespoons of onion powder if you don't have an onion on hand.
  • Spices: garlic powder, smoked paprika, cumin, chili powder, turmeric, salt & pepper. If you don't have one of these spices, you can omit it or sub something similar. For smoked paprika you could sub regular paprika. For chili powder you could sub cayenne.
  • Lime Juice: lime juice adds a kick of acid. You could sub lemon juice.
  • Cilantro: fresh or freeze dried cilantro gives the beans a little burst of green. If you don't have cilantro, omit it.

How to make Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

Step 1. If you have time, you can chop some onions. Give them a quick sauté in a non-stick pan. Add a tablespoon of veggie broth if they start to stick.

Step 2. Add a can of black beans to your non-stick. Make sure to include the liquid.

Step 3. While the beans are warming/softening, start adding your spices. If you didn't sauté onions and garlic, add onion powder and garlic powder.

Step 4. Then add paprika, cumin, red pepper flakes, turmeric, chili powder, salt, and pepper.

Step 5. Finally, for a bit of citrus flavor, add some lime juice. You can use fresh if you have time. I often use juice from a bottle because I have it on hand.

Step 6. Cook for several minutes, until the liquid from the can has thickened and the black beans are soft. The liquid may start to bubble -- this is normal.

Soon you'll have thick oil-free black beans to devour. Enjoy!

Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

Recipe Prayer

Bless us, Lord, in our busy lives. Watch over us in all the activities that fill our days. Keep us healthy with the foods that we eat and draw us back to you always. Amen.

Related Recipes

Looking for other plant-based dinner recipes? These are some of my favorites:

Tried this recipe?

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Easy Oil-Free Black Beans

These easy oil-free black beans are completely plant-based, gluten-free, quick to prepare, and, most importantly, delicious. Perfect for dinner tonight!















  • 1 can Black Beans
  • 1/2 Red Onion, chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste
  • Cilantro, to serve, optional


  1. Sauté the onion a small non-stick pan, using vegetable broth if the onion starts to stick.
  2. Empty a can of black beans (and the liquid) into the non-stick. Add the spices and lime juice. Cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, or until the bean liquid has thickened. Season with salt & pper to taste. Garnish with cilantro. Serve and enjoy!
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April 28, 2022
Jean Mastin
Elizabeth: Thank you so much for making my meal times wonderful again. I am 86 yrs plus, and was finding eating dull and dreary. Now it is " scrum delicious time to eat". . Blessings de Jean
Hi Jean - Thanks so much for your kind words. I'm so glad you are enjoying my recipes. Please let me know if you ever have recipe requests or if there's anything else I can do to keep your meals delicious!
April 9, 2022
Can you leave nutritional info for your recipes? Serving size/calories would be so helpful! Trying mushroom lentil stew tonight! and looking forward to crispy chickpea stuffed sweet potatoes very soon. Thanks for creating healthy, attractive recipes!
Hi Katie - so excited to hear that you are trying some of my recipes! I'd love to hear how they go. I haven't posted nutritional information for my recipes because I know it can be difficult for some people with disordered eating to see nutrition facts. I've gotten a lot of requests to add them recently, so I'm working on a solution that can provide information for those who want it but not be triggering for others. In the meantime, if you're curious about the nutrient info about a particular recipe, I recommend using Cronometer. It's a website/app to track and understand nutrient info and I think it does a great job of emphasizing all the nutrients (not just macros). I hope this helps! Please let me know if I can help in any other way.
April 9, 2022
U mentioned date sugar on this recipe but it’s not in the instructions. I know u add it but just in case u wanna add to instructions. Love ur recipes! Thank u. I’m thinking of going to vegan a little nervous tho lol
Hi Vickey - thanks so much for catching that! I am updating the post now. So happy to hear you enjoy my recipes. And exciting that you are thinking about going vegan!! If there's anything that I can do to help, please let me know.
March 28, 2022
Sr Maureen Egan
I'd love to try this soup. What are the nutritional values, like how much fat does it contain, carbs, etc.
Hi Sr Maureen - I usually don't post macronutrient information because I know each person has their own goals and I don't want to encourage or discourage anyone's specific goals. But I often use Cronometer as a tool to understand the nutritional profile of my recipes. I plugged the ingredient information for this recipe into Cronometer and got the following nutrient information per serving: 521 calories, 44g fat, 23g carbs, 16g protein. I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions and if you try the recipe!
March 26, 2022
Margareta Ahle
This curry is absolutely delicious.
Thank you so much! It's one of my favorites :)
March 23, 2022
Martha maloney
Thank you I have been doing the fruit and oatmeal, etc for years and I love it. I will try the pears. I refrigerate my left over oatmeal and with a touch of milk or fruit juice liquid it’s fine the next day. Just a warning about tofu; it interferes with some medicines especially Thyroid medicine. Thank you for the short prayers, there are lovely.
Hi Martha - thank you so much for your kind words. I'm glad you like the prayers! As someone who doesn't take any medications I have no issues with eating tofu and encouraging others to eat it too (it's a great source of protein!). That said, you should always consult with your doctor about possible interactions with medications. I have plenty of recipes without tofu, so hopefully you can find things that work for you!
March 3, 2022
Susan Cunningham
I made this for Ash Wednesday and it was delicious. It was also simple and not much work time once the mushrooms and onions were cut.
Hi Susan - I'm so glad you liked it!
March 1, 2022
When you say shape into a rectangular loaf, what dimensions? 1/2 thick by 8 inches long or?
My loaf was about 7" long and 4" wide with about 1" of height. Then I sliced it 1/2" thick along the long end to get 12ish biscotti. I will clarify this in the post! Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any other questions.
January 16, 2022
Tracy Henry
Made this tonight. Absolutely delicious Elizabeth. You got this one just right!
Oh yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it :)
January 16, 2022
L Collins
Hi Could you please confirm two things:1. The amount of salt. Seems like too much. 2. The directions say there is lemon juice in the dressing but it’s not listed under ingredients. ThanksL.
Hi there! Confirming that the two teaspoons of salt in the dressing is correct. I didn't salt the cauliflower when roasting it or the salad after it was done, so this amount of salt was perfect. If you're concerned about it you can decrease the amount of salt in the dressing and then add more at the end if you need it. As for the lemon juice, SO sorry about that! It was a typo in my directions and I've removed it now. Hope this helps :)
December 20, 2021
This looks lovely! Do you have a recipe for the red pepper hummus also? Thank you!
Hi Martha! I don't have a recipe for red pepper hummus on my site. I suggest taking a traditional hummus recipe and blending in roasted red pepper.
November 22, 2021
Amanda J Lehmann
I tried these and they were delicious! A bit dense but flavorful and the "buckeye" blend of peanut and chocolate was on point! Recommend!
Yay! I'm so glad you liked them! -- Elizabeth
December 6, 2021
Hi, these look amazing. I was wondering, could I used powdered peanut butter in place of creamy for the recipe? thanks
Hi Grace! There is already some powdered peanut butter in this recipe, so adding more might make the texture more gluey. Also, the real peanut butter adds some fat, which helps create flavor. That said, if you want to use powdered peanut butter, I would suggest mixing it with a high-fat liquid like coconut cream and then measuring out 2/3 cup. Hope this helps! Let me know how it goes :) -- Elizabeth
November 15, 2021
You mention using vegetable broth in your introduction but it isn’t included in the recipe
Hi Becky - thanks for pointing this out. I have removed mention of vegetable broth from this post. You do not need any vegetable broth. The mushrooms will release natural liquid which will prevent any sticking. -- Elizabeth
September 23, 2021
Tracy Henry
Hi Elizabeth, LOVE you recipes. Please keep them coming. :)I was wondering, can you share what is the vegan chocolate bar you used in this recipe?
August 28, 2021
Henry (Hank) Mader
thank you for the oil free recipe. I'm getting introduced to wild Bolete mushrooms here in Colorado, and everyone sautes Bolete's in butter or olive oil. I'm on a veggie, oil free regimen for heart health reasons. and your recipe suggestion may fill the bill. I can't wait to give it a try.
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This is so fun! Loving your creamy photography :)
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This looks incredible! So yummy and pretty photography