Antioquian Beans Recipe - Traditional Colombian Dish with Kidney Beans and Bacon

Antioquian Beans

Antioquian Beans Recipe - Traditional Colombian Dish with Kidney Beans and Bacon
Region / culture: Colombia | Preparation time: overnight | Cooking time: 1.5 hour | Servings: 6


Antioquian Beans
Antioquian Beans

Antioquian Beans, also known as Frijoles Antioqueños, is a traditional Colombian dish that is hearty, flavorful, and deeply rooted in the culture of the Antioquia region. This dish combines the richness of kidney beans with the unique flavors of plantains, salt pork, and a blend of vegetables and spices, creating a comforting and satisfying meal that is enjoyed by families throughout Colombia and beyond. Whether you're looking to explore Colombian cuisine or simply searching for a delicious and nutritious meal, Antioquian Beans is a recipe that promises to deliver on all fronts.


The history of Antioquian Beans dates back to the colonial times in Colombia, specifically in the Antioquia region, where beans were a staple food for the indigenous people. The introduction of pork and plantains by the Spanish added new dimensions to the traditional bean dishes, leading to the creation of what is now known as Frijoles Antioqueños. Over the years, this dish has become a symbol of Antioquian culture, representing the fusion of indigenous and Spanish culinary traditions. It is a dish that is passed down from generation to generation, with each family adding their own touch to the recipe.


How to prepare

  1. Wash the beans and let them soak overnight.
  2. Put the beans and bacon or salt pork in a cooker with enough water to cover.
  3. Cook for approximately one hour.
  4. Add the plantains and continue cooking.
  5. Add the salt and mix thoroughly.
  6. Saute the tomatoes, onions, and garlic in the oil, then add them to the beans.
  7. Cook the beans for another half an hour.


  • 1. Vegetarian Version: Substitute the salt pork or bacon with smoked tofu or a vegetarian sausage to keep the smoky flavor without the meat.
  • 2. Spicy Version: Add a chopped chili pepper or a teaspoon of chili flakes to the sautéed vegetables for a spicy kick.
  • 3. Sweet Version: Increase the number of plantains or add a tablespoon of brown sugar for a sweeter taste.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

1. Soaking the beans overnight will significantly reduce the cooking time and make the beans more digestible.

2. Adding a teaspoon of baking soda to the soaking water can help soften the beans even further.

3. Cook the beans with the salt pork or bacon to infuse them with a rich, smoky flavor.

4. Sautéing the vegetables before adding them to the beans will enhance their flavors and add depth to the dish.

5. Be sure to add the plantains at the right time so they cook to the perfect tenderness without becoming mushy.

Serving Suggestions

Antioquian Beans can be served as a main dish, accompanied by white rice, avocado slices, and arepas for a traditional Colombian meal. It can also be enjoyed on its own or with a side of warm, crusty bread for dipping.

Cooking Techniques

The traditional method of cooking Antioquian Beans involves slow-cooking the beans until tender, which allows the flavors to meld beautifully. Using a pressure cooker can significantly reduce the cooking time while still achieving a delicious result.

Ingredient Substitutions

1. Kidney Beans: Can be substituted with pinto beans or black beans.

2. Salt Pork or Bacon: Can be replaced with chorizo, smoked sausage, or a vegetarian alternative.

3. Plantains: Green bananas or potatoes can be used as a substitute, although the flavor profile will change.

Make Ahead Tips

Antioquian Beans tastes even better the next day, as the flavors have more time to develop. You can prepare this dish in advance and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Simply reheat on the stove or in the microwave before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Serve Antioquian Beans in a colorful clay pot or a rustic serving bowl to highlight its traditional roots. Garnish with fresh cilantro or green onions for a pop of color and freshness.

Pairing Recommendations

A light, crisp beer or a fruity red wine pairs wonderfully with the rich flavors of Antioquian Beans. For a non-alcoholic option, a chilled glass of guava juice complements the dish beautifully.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply warm the beans over medium heat on the stove, adding a little water if necessary to prevent sticking. Microwave reheating is also an option, though stovetop reheating is recommended for the best texture.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A typical serving of Antioquian Beans contains approximately 350-400 calories, making it a hearty and filling option for a meal. The exact calorie count can vary depending on the specific ingredients and portion sizes used.


A serving of Antioquian Beans is rich in carbohydrates, primarily from the kidney beans and plantains. Kidney beans are an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which provide a steady source of energy. Plantains, on the other hand, add a slightly sweet flavor and are also a good source of carbohydrates. Together, they make this dish a great option for fueling your body throughout the day.


The fat content in Antioquian Beans comes mainly from the salt pork or bacon used in the recipe. While this adds a rich flavor to the dish, it's important to consume in moderation due to the saturated fats present. Using lean cuts or substituting with a healthier fat source can be a good way to reduce the overall fat content without compromising on taste.


Kidney beans are an excellent source of plant-based protein, making Antioquian Beans a fantastic option for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. The addition of salt pork or bacon also contributes to the protein content, although it's the beans that are the star protein source in this dish.

Vitamins and minerals

This dish is packed with vitamins and minerals, thanks to the variety of ingredients used. Kidney beans are rich in iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc, while plantains provide a good dose of vitamins A, C, and B6. The tomatoes and onions add to the vitamin C content, making Antioquian Beans not only delicious but also nutritious.


This recipe is naturally free from most common allergens, including gluten, nuts, and dairy. However, those with sensitivities to legumes should exercise caution due to the kidney beans. Always check the labels of processed ingredients like salt pork or bacon for potential allergens.


Antioquian Beans is a well-rounded dish that offers a good balance of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, along with a variety of vitamins and minerals. It's a hearty, nutritious meal that can be enjoyed by the whole family.


Antioquian Beans is a traditional Colombian dish that offers a delicious blend of flavors and nutrients. With its rich history and versatility, it's a recipe that can be adapted to suit various dietary needs and preferences. Whether you're looking to explore Colombian cuisine or simply want a hearty and nutritious meal, Antioquian Beans is sure to satisfy.

How did I get this recipe?

I remember the joy I felt when I first discovered this recipe for Antioquian Beans. It was many years ago, during a visit to my dear friend Maria in the beautiful region of Antioquia, Colombia.

Maria was an excellent cook and she had invited me to spend a few days with her in her quaint little home nestled in the lush green mountains. As soon as I arrived, I was greeted with the most delicious aroma coming from her kitchen.

Curious and excited to see what she was cooking, I made my way to the kitchen to find Maria busy at work, stirring a large pot filled with beans, tomatoes, onions, and a variety of herbs and spices. The mixture simmered slowly on the stove, filling the room with a tantalizing scent that made my mouth water.

Maria noticed my interest and smiled, beckoning me to come closer. She explained that she was making Antioquian Beans, a traditional dish from the region that was not only delicious but also packed with nutrients and flavor. She told me that the recipe had been passed down through generations in her family and that she was more than happy to share it with me.

Eager to learn, I watched as Maria expertly prepared the dish, adding ingredients with precision and care. She explained the importance of using fresh, high-quality ingredients and taking the time to allow the flavors to meld together. As the beans cooked, she told me stories of her childhood and the memories she associated with this dish.

After hours of simmering, the beans were finally ready. Maria served me a steaming bowl of Antioquian Beans, topped with a dollop of creamy avocado and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro. I took my first bite and was immediately transported to a world of rich, savory flavors that danced on my taste buds.

I knew then and there that I had to learn how to make this dish for myself. Maria graciously shared her recipe with me, detailing each step and ingredient with care. She taught me the importance of patience and attention to detail when cooking, reminding me that the best dishes are made with love and dedication.

I returned home with a heart full of gratitude and a belly full of delicious Antioquian Beans. Over the years, I have made this dish countless times, each time recalling the memories of my time with Maria in Antioquia.

I have shared the recipe with friends and family, passing on the tradition of Antioquian Beans to future generations. The dish has become a staple in my kitchen, a reminder of the rich culture and flavors of Colombia that I hold dear to my heart.

As I sit here now, stirring a pot of beans on my stove, I am filled with gratitude for the friendships and experiences that have brought me to this moment. The aroma of simmering beans fills my home, evoking memories of Maria and our time spent together in Antioquia.

I am grateful for the joy that cooking has brought me and the connections it has allowed me to make with others. And most of all, I am grateful for the recipe for Antioquian Beans, a dish that has brought me closer to the flavors and traditions of a place that will always hold a special piece of my heart.


| Bacon Recipes | Colombian Meat Dishes | Colombian Recipes | Kidney Bean Recipes | Onion Recipes | Plantain Recipes | Salt Pork Recipes | Tomato Recipes |

Recipes with the same ingredients