Mexican Tomala Beans

Prep Time
Cook Time
1d 3h
Ready In

Recipe: #37163

June 28, 2021

"From 1930s cookbook Bayo beans central Mexican pinto like bean or Spanish red beans"

Original is 6 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (403.1 g)
  • Calories 251
  • Total Fat - 16.8 g
  • Saturated Fat - 7.3 g
  • Cholesterol - 69.4 mg
  • Sodium - 241.7 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 8 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 2.8 g
  • Sugars - 4.1 g
  • Protein - 17.6 g
  • Calcium - 51.2 mg
  • Iron - 2.2 mg
  • Vitamin C - 14.7 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.1 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

Soak beans overnight

Step 2


Step 3

In stockpot

Step 4

Cook beans in water with salt pork

Step 5

Cook 2 hours adding water as needed

Step 6

In last hour of cooking add chili powder to water let soak 1/2 hour

Step 7

In saute pan melt butter

Step 8

Add onions

Step 9

And steak brown add tomatoes

Step 10

Pour into beans

Step 11

Add water if needed . must be Juicy

Step 12

Right before serving add chili mixture

Step 13

Cook long enough to heat


No special items needed.

Editorial Notes

The ingredient tips, suggestions, variations, facts, questions and answers below are not edits to the original author's recipe. They are not meant to imply any change would improve the recipe. They're offered for convenience, alternative ideas, and points of interest. If you have any comments about them, please post in the Help & Ideas forum.

  • Be sure to buy the freshest ingredients available for the best flavor.
  • Be sure to read the labels when purchasing canned goods to make sure they are gluten-free, if needed.

  • Substitution 1: Replace the salt pork with a vegetarian alternative such as tempeh bacon for a vegetarian-friendly dish. Benefit: This substitution allows for the dish to be enjoyed by vegetarians and vegans. Thinking Behind: By substituting the salt pork with a vegetarian alternative, the dish can be enjoyed by a larger audience.
  • Substitution 2: Replace the round steak with ground beef for a more cost-effective option. Benefit: This substitution allows for the dish to be made at a lower cost. Thinking Behind: By substituting the round steak with ground beef, the dish can be made at a lower cost while still maintaining the same flavor.

Vegetarian Version Substitute vegetable broth for the water and salt pork, and use 2 tablespoons of olive oil instead of butter. Omit the steak and use 1 can (15 ounces) of black beans instead. Add 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika to the chili mixture.

Mexican Rice: A flavorful side dish of Mexican rice cooked with garlic, onion and cilantro. This is a great accompaniment to the Mexican Tomala Beans as it adds a delicious contrast to the savory and spicy flavors of the beans.

Grilled Corn with Lime Butter: A delicious and simple side dish that pairs perfectly with Mexican Rice. The sweetness of the corn is balanced out by the zesty lime butter, making it a great contrast to the savory and spicy flavors of the Mexican Tomala Beans. This is a great addition to any Mexican-inspired meal.


Q: How long do I need to soak the beans?

A: You need to soak the beans for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Q: What type of beans should I use?

A: Any type of dried beans can be used for soaking, such as pinto, black, kidney, navy, or cannellini beans.

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Fun facts:

The Mexican Tomala Beans recipe is believed to have been created in the 1930s, during a period of great economic change in Mexico. It was a time when many people had to make do with what little they had, and this recipe was a great example of how to make a delicious meal with simple ingredients.

The recipe has been popularized by celebrity chef Rick Bayless, who has made it one of his signature dishes. He believes that the recipe is a great example of how Mexican food can be both delicious and nutritious, and has helped to introduce it to a wider audience.