Today, I'm experimenting with this recipe that I came across online: coleensrecipesblogspot.com/2010/02/crock-pot-refried-beans-for-crowd.html It had good reviews. I always make my beans on the stovetop.
The recipe calls for using DRY pinto beans, along with spices, bacon, etc., and you cook it for 8 hrs. on high. It included dumping everything in the crockpot at once, including the salt. That made me nervous since I've always heard that you shouldn't put salt in your beans until the last hour of cooking because it interferes with the cooking process. I couldn't bring myself to put in the salt, so I'll do that around 5:30 pm tonight.
I thought this method might be a convenient alternative for those times when I don't the time to be a slave to the stove, or have forgotten to soak the beans overnight, or don't care to do the "quick-cook" method for the beans. I'll let you know if they turn out.
I always add salt to my pintos at the beginning. I might have to add more that evening...
But I soak my beans overnight, then rinse and put in slow cooker. Give a good stir when I get home from work. My biggest problem is now that husband is retired and home all day, he stirs during the day. I don't wanted broken up or refried beans...I'm want beans! Besides, every time the lid is taken off, it takes a while to get back to temperature - he does it regardless of what's in the pot. I may have to get a slow cooker with a locking lid and take the key with me. LOL
The beans turned out great! I will definitely use that process in the future. The recipe called for 1 1/2 lbs. pintos and 9 c water. Too much liquid, I think I could easily cut back the water to 7 1/2 or 7 cups. When I do them on the stovetop, I make a lb of pintos and use 6 c of water.
I always put an oven mitt on the top of my slowcooker. That reminds DH that it's "hands off." Works for me!