Ranch style beans
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Texas original ranch-style beans are soft pinto beans slowly simmered in a thick chile sauce.

It’s great as a delicious side dish with Mexican or TexMex dishes, and it’s also fantastic as the main entrée!

Why Is This Recipe So Delicious?

Ranch style beans Easy
Food: Ranch style beans (Source: Taste of Home)
  • When I lived in Texas, this was one of my favorite cuisines! Ranch-style beans are a traditional Texas dish, and even though I’ve lived in Tennessee for a while, I still crave them. It’s that fantastic!
  • It’s a robust, chili-like recipe that’s perfect as a side dish for Mexican or TexMex dishes but filling enough to be a meal on its own! To soak up every last drop, serve on fresh-baked broccoli cornbread. It’s perfect for grilling season, but save it for the fall and winter when stews and chilis are in full swing.
  • The ideal blend of chile powder, oregano, cumin, and brown sugar season each bite. It’s savory and sweet, with just the proper balance of spice and sweetness.
  • If you store leftover ranch-style beans in an airtight container, they will last up to 5 days! That makes them an excellent choice for weekday lunches; simply prepare a large batch on the weekend and eat it all week!

Important Ingredients

Beans (pinto) – This low-cost protein and fiber source is incredibly beneficial! They’re high in antioxidants, which can help combat free radicals and inflammation while also lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Try our Instant Pot Pinto Beans (No Soak!) if you want to add more pinto beans to your diet.

Chipotle Chili Pepper Powder – Cayenne pepper can be used instead of or in addition to the chili pepper powder.

Tomato Paste — This thickens the combination of the ranch-style beans and adds a nice, slightly sweet tomato taste to the whole dish.

Can This Recipe Be Made in a Crock-Pot?

Yes! And it’s so simple!

Go straight to the slow cooker without soaking. Combine the pinto beans, beef broth, onion, garlic, tomato paste, brown sugar, cumin, oregano, and chili powder in a large mixing bowl.

Cook for 8-10 hours on low, or until the beans are soft and cooked through. If you need them sooner, you can cook them on high for 6 hours.

Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. For a thinner consistency, add water as needed.

Chef’s Advice

  • If you prefer a thicker sauce, simply leave the ranch-style beans to boil uncovered on the burner before serving. They’ll thicken as they cool as well.
  • Because the beans may swell during soaking, I recommend using a big basin with enough water to thoroughly cover the dried beans plus 2-3 inches. This keeps them submerged even as they grow.
  • Because salt can prevent the beans from softening, add it near the end for the best texture.
  • Top your ranch style beans with sliced jalapenos, cayenne pepper, or a dab of spicy sauce for extra heat.

Slow Cooked Beans

15-minute prep time
2 hours 15 minutes to cook
8-hour soak time
10 hours and 30 minutes in total

Texas original ranch style beans are soft pinto beans slowly simmered in a thick chile sauce. It’s great as a delicious side dish with Mexican or TexMex dishes, and it’s also fantastic as the main entrée!


  • 1 pound dried pinto beans rinsed
  • 6 cups beef broth or water
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 6-ounce can of tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle chili pepper powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • lots of freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 cup water divided, plus more as desired

Optional Garnishes

  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • chopped cilantro
  • chopped green onions
  • sliced jalapeños
  • sour cream


  • Bowl or pot for soaking
  • Large pot with lid
  • Large skillet
  • blender

Instructions For Slow Cooked Beans

Ranch style beans healthy
Food: Ranch style beans (Source: Taste of Home)
  1. There are two ways to soak beans. Option 1: Place dry beans in a large mixing dish. Add enough water to completely cover the beans. Allow beans to soak in room temperature water overnight (8-12 hours). Option 2: Pour dried beans into the pot. Add enough water to completely cover the beans. Bring the water to a boil, then cover and remove the saucepan from the heat. Soak the beans for 1 hour.
  2. Drain the beans once they’ve been soaked. Place the drained beans and beef stock in a large pot over high heat. Bring the liquid to a boil, then cover the saucepan. Reduce to low heat and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  3. 1 tablespoon neutral oil, heated in a large skillet over medium heat cook 5 minutes with diced onion in heated oil. Cook for a further minute after adding the garlic.
  4. Blend the onions and garlic that have been cooked. Combine tomato paste, brown sugar, cumin, oregano, and chili pepper powder in a mixing bowl. Blend until the mixture is completely smooth.
  5. Stir the tomato mixture into the beans. Cook for 1 hour, uncovered, or until the beans are cooked and the sauce has reduced. To thin the sauce to the appropriate consistency, add 12 cups of water at a time. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Fill serving bowls with bean mixture and garnish. Serve hot.


  • Remove the added sugar: Replace the brown sugar with Brown Swerve, and use a tomato paste with no added sweeteners.
  • Vegetarianize it: In place of beef broth, use veggie broth or water.
  • Make it vegan by using vegan brown sugar and replacing the beef stock with vegetable broth or water. Use a vegan cheese instead of the cheese garnish.

This recipe serves around 6 people. Your desired portion sizes will determine the number of servings.

The nutritional values provided are for one serving out of six, based on the components mentioned but excluding optional garnishes. The exact macros will vary depending on the brands and types of ingredients utilized.

Prepare the recipe as directed to get the weight of one serving. Weigh the final recipe, then divide the weight (excluding the weight of the container in which the food is stored) by 6. The weight of one serving will be the result.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 339kcal, Carbohydrates: 56g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 2303mg, Potassium: 1527mg, Fiber: 14g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 638IU, Vitamin C: 13mg, Calcium: 128mg, Iron: 6mg, Net Carbs: 42g