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Need ideas on how to use up leftover refried beans? We’ve got you covered. From tacos and tortas to crunchwrap supremes, Mexican pizza, enchiladas and more, save this post and you'll always have many ideas to choose from to use up refried beans.

Collage of recipes using up refried beans.

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One of my favorite ways to save money on food is to reduce food waste. Feeding America states, “In the United States, people waste 92 billion pounds of food annually, equal to 145 billion meals. [We] throw away over $473 billion worth of food annually. Shockingly, [we] waste 38% of all the food in America.”

That's a LOT of wasted food and money!

My favorite way to minimize food waste is to meal plan carefully (learn exactly How to Meal Plan to Save Money) and incorporate at least one leftovers night into my weekly meal plan.

Every Thursday, I clean out the fridge, gather up all the leftovers, and put together an easy meal using leftovers. Think of it like your own personal, fun episode of Food Network's Chopped 😉

This simple habit has prevented food from getting pushed to the back of the fridge and has saved my family tons of money!

How to Use Leftover Refried Beans

So if you've cleaned out the fridge and found a Tupperware of leftover refried beans or refried black beans, you're in luck! I've rounded up 25 budget-friendly ways to use up those beans so you won't waste any food or money.

Now as you may know, an overwhelming majority of the recipes I share here are vegetarian and/or plant-based. This is because eating a plant-based diet is proven to be significantly cheaper than eating meat.

Some of the recipe ideas in this collection are made with ground beef. If you want to make the recipes with a cheaper swap, simply add additional refried beans, cooked lentils, or swap in my Homemade Vegan Ground Beef or Vegan Tempeh Walnut Taco Meat.

You can also make the vegetarian recipes 100% plant-based with these popular swaps:

Now without further ado, here are my favorite recipes to use up leftover refried beans!

Sandwich on roll and cutting board.

1

Easy Vegan Tortas (Mexican Sandwich)

These Vegan Tortas are filled with juicy Vegan Carne Asada, Refried Black Beans, Cilantro Lime Sauce, and tons of fresh veggies. It's the ultimate leftovers recipe and is one of my favorite recipes of all time.
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2

Bean and Cheese Burritos

Classic bean and cheese burritos filled with flavorful and creamy refried beans, diced onions, and two types of shredded melty cheese!
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Credit: isabeleats.com

3

Bean And Cheese Tamales

Bean and cheese tamales made with red masa, filled with refried beans and cheese, then steamed to tender perfection and served drizzled with your favorite salsa. These tamales are made with humble ingredients but are bursting with royal flavors!
Get The Recipe
Credit: mexicanmademeatless.com

4

Easy Bean Dip Recipe

Easy Bean Dip is a delicious party dip loaded with refried beans, cream cheese, shredded cheddar, and heaps of taco inspired seasoning!
Get The Recipe
Credit: spendwithpennies.com

5

Taco Pizza

Taco Pizza is a delicious Tex-Mex twist on the usual pizza night! Crust is topped with refried beans, salsa, ground beef, and cheese.
Get The Recipe
Credit: isabeleats.com
Crispy bean tacos on a serving plate garnished with freshly chopped cilantro.

6

Crispy Refried Bean Tacos Recipe

Switch things up on Taco Tuesday with these Crispy Refried Bean Tacos! Creamy refried beans and cheese folded in a buttery flour tortilla, then pan-fried until ultra crispy. It's the perfect weeknight meal when you're short on time and fresh ingredients.
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7

Vegan Huevos Rancheros with Tofu Scramble

Vegan huevos rancheros are bursting with flavor and make a fantastic vegan brunch. They're loaded with vegan cheese, tofu scramble, refried beans, and the best rancheros sauce you've ever had.
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Credit: sweetsimplevegan.com

8

The Best Vegan Nachos

Wow the crowd (or your fam or yourself) with the best vegan nachos… ready in just 25 minutes! These awesome vegan nachos are loaded with refried beans, vegan queso, vegan taco meat, guacamole, and all your favorite toppings.
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Credit: rainbowplantlife.com

9

Crispy Cauliflower Rice Tacos

Lighter and loaded with healthy goodies, these crispy cauliflower rice tacos are a great choice for Taco Tuesday! These awesome vegan tacos are loaded with chipotle walnut taco meat, refried beans, crispy shells, and vegan ranch sauce.
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Credit: thissavoryvegan.com

10

Potato and Bean Quesadillas

You only need 5 ingredients to make these tasty potato and bean quesadillas. Picky eaters and those who cook for picky eaters will love this easy and delicious recipe.
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Credit: sweetsimplevegan.com

11

Mexican pizza

This recipe is a homemade twist on the classic Taco Bell menu item. Swap the traditional pizza crust for tortillas and the pizza sauce for refried beans and enjoy the flavors of Mexican pizza!
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Credit: dinnersdishesanddesserts.com
Mexican twice baked potato loaded with cheese, sour cream, pico de gallo, cilantro, and lime.

12

Mexican Twice Baked Potatoes

Warm baked potatoes meets tacos in this Mexican twice baked potatoes recipe that is the perfect twist on a Taco Tuesday! A new way to serve potatoes.
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Credit: tastesoflizzyt.com

13

Easy Vegetarian Bean Enchiladas

The filling for these cheesy vegetarian enchiladas combines refried beans, blackbeans with my homemade red enchilada sauce. Ready within 40 minutes!
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Credit: forkinthekitchen.com

14

25-Minute Vegetarian Skillet Fajitas

Weeknight dinners have never been easier than with stovetop skillet fajitas! Saucy, tender fajita veggies paired with refried beans for a satisfying meatless meal!
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Credit: forkinthekitchen.com

15

Air Fryer Vegan Rolled Tacos

These Air Fryer Vegan Rolled Tacos are filled with beans and avocado before being layered with all of your favorite taco toppings. Simple and quick!
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Credit: thissavoryvegan.com

16

Vegan Taco Casserole

This quick and easy Vegan Taco Casserole is packed with protein and delicious Tex-Mex flavors! Serve it as a fun party dip with tortilla chips or over fluffy rice for a hearty dinner.
Get The Recipe
Credit: frommybowl.com

17

Authentic Mexican Molletes

Mexico’s twist on bruschetta! This Mexican Molletes recipe uses seasoned refried beans and two cheeses on toasted bread with pico de gallo on top.
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Credit: keviniscooking.com

18

7-Layer Dip Recipe

7 Layer Dip has seven distinct layers, each offering a delicious blend of Mexican-inspired flavors and textures. No cooking required—just layer and enjoy!
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Credit: natashaskitchen.com

19

Breakfast Tacos

Quick and easy breakfast tacos with eggs, refried black beans and cheese. Add your favorite toppings for a satisfying breakfast or fast dinner!
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Credit: wellplated.com

20

Carne Asada Fries

Carne Asada Fries are a San Diego staple and a fun way to serve grilled carne asada. Crispy fries loaded with meat, cheese, refried beans, and guac! I would make these with my cheaper, vegan carne asada!
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Credit: somuchfoodblog.com

21

Street Corn Tacos

These street corn tacos are made with fresh sweet corn cooked a creamy chili lime sauce and stuffed into warm tortillas with refried beans.
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Credit: connoisseurusveg.com

22

Vegan Quesadillas (Sheet Pan Recipe)

I don’t think you’re ready for this incredible vegan quesadillas recipe that can be made in a single sheet pan!
Get The Recipe
Credit: plantyou.com
Tamale pie.

23

Vegan Tamale Pie Recipe

Slow cooker vegan tamale pie is a comforting and flavorful dish that turns the traditional Mexican tamale into a convenient, delicious slow cooker meal It's packed with tender vegetables, vegan beef, and spices, and a soft and fluffy masa topping.
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24

Totchos (Tater Tot Nachos!)

Impress everyone with this totchos recipe! Tater tot nachos are endless fun, crispy and loaded with all the best toppings, including refried beans!
Get The Recipe
Credit: acouplecooks.com

25

Black Bean Tostadas with Avocado Salsa

These Black Bean Tostadas with Avocado Salsa are layered with refried beans, seasoned black beans and chunky avocado corn salsa.
Get The Recipe
Credit: thissavoryvegan.com

How to Freeze Leftover Refried Beans

No time to cook one of these delicious recipes? No problem. Transfer the leftover refried beans to silicone Souper Cubes and freeze for up to 3 months.

I like to freeze my beans using their 2-Cup Souper Cubes. If you'd like to buy your own freezer cubes, use my code HOMECOOKEDROOTS10 for 10% off!

When ready to eat, reheat directly from frozen in the microwave for 7-8 minutes. Enjoy!

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