Habichuelas (stewed beans)

Another staple in PR cooking. Now, there are a million of variations of habichuelas out there. This is how I make mine. I remember living in Macomb, Illinois and shared some food with some grad assistants and they were surprised that we actually stew our beans. I was shocked because this was the only way I knew how to make beans.

I remember thinking, “who in their right mind would eat beans straight from the can?!” Apparently people do that. I don’t. 🙂 But, like I tell students. You do you boo.

Here’s how I make some beans. I always make more so that I can make arroz Mamposteao’ which you can see that recipe here.

How to make habichuelas:


  • 1 tablespoon (cube) of sofrito
  • 1 15 oz can of red beans (honestly you can use whichever, I mostly use dark kidney beans or pinto beans)
  • Water (use the can for the measurement)
  • 1 huge squirt of tomato paste (optional) it adds more depth of flavor if you do
  • 4 ounces of tomato sauce (I use diced tomatoes and then blend them in my food processor)
  • 1 -2 tablespoons of minced garlic
  • 1 packet of sazon packet (I bought mine from Amazon or my family sends some to me)
  • Adobo seasoning (to taste)
  • Black pepper (or white pepper if you don’t want to see it) to taste
  • You can add some pumpkins slices, cubed ham, potatoes, carrots, etc.


  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add the sofrito cube, add garlic (let it mingle for 1 minute) add the sazon packet (my mom doesn’t do this, but not sorry mom) I like to have the ingredients bloom and awaken. After around 30 seconds, add whatever veggies potatoes, carrots, cubed ham) you want to use. Add the beans, water, adobo seasoning, tomato sauce.

If you’re using pumpkin, add them after all of the other ingredients are in.

  • Stew for 15-20 minutes (if you’re using potatoes, cook until potatoes are cooked through). Add pepper to taste.

Serve this over white rice (I make mine now in the rice cooker, if I know its a busy day) or any of the yellow rice that I have shared here like my Arroz con Maíz or my Lazy arroz amarillo.

As a protein side you can serve it with my chicharrones de pollo, pan fried chicken, sazon style chicken, or my garlic-pepper Iowa chops!

If you like recipes like this, click that Follow button. To get email updates, subscribe to the blog! You can also follow on Facebook with the page “Boricua in the Midwest” and follow my Instagram @lokoxmusica where you can get a snapshot of my life filled with music & food!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: