Bean-smothered tortillas: Enfrijoladas

articles Food & Cuisine Recipes

Karen Hursh Graber

Enfrijoladas, which can be made with any kind of bean on hand, are eaten all over Mexico. They are the classic, inexpensive meal prepared with nothing more than cooked beans, tortillas, and whatever tortilla filling is handy. They vary from household to household and from meal to meal, depending upon what is available. They are the perfect answer for what to do with leftover beans. As simple as they are, enfrijoladas are delicious, and my family seems to like them just as well as more complex, sophisticated dishes. This recipe gives the basic ingredients; quantities, as well as proportions, will vary according to what is on hand.


  • any kind of cooked beans, with their liquid
  • fresh corn tortillas
  • shredded cheese, leftover chopped, ground or shredded meat or cooked chicken
  • oil for soft-frying
  • salsa (a chipotle salsa is especially good with enfrijoladas)
  • Mexican crema or sour cream

In a large pot, mash the cooked beans, with their liquid, until they are crushed but not pureed; they should be soupy but still have some texture to them, with the consistency of a very thick gravy.

Heat the beans and keep them simmering while the tortillas are being filled.

Soft-fry the tortillas in a small amount of vegetable oil, top with cheese, meat or chicken (you can be creative here; I once used leftover sauteed mushrooms) and fold over as for quesadillas.

Dip the quesadillas in the simmering beans, one at a time, and ladle them on to plates with plenty of bean “gravy.” Top with salsa and crema and serve immediately.

Link to Source Articles
Fabulous frijoles: Mexico’s versatile legumes
The whole enchilada: Thrifty variations on a Mexican classic
Kids in the kitchen: Mexican cooking for children


Published or Updated on: October 1, 1999 by Karen Hursh Graber © 1999
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