Black Bean Dip

Homemade Black Bean Dip is the best appetizer. This easy black bean recipe calls for dried beans, and it can be made in the Instant Pot or on the stovetop. Pair this dip recipe with fajitas, guacamole and other TexMex dishes for any occasion. Makes 12 servings.

Black bean dip, garnished with sour cream and jalapeno slices, is shown in a bowl, surrounded by chips

Are you a tailgater?

Do you enjoy watching sports, in general?

Or do you simply enjoy entertaining (and don’t really care about the whole sport thing?)

Well, whichever category you fall into, I’ve got a recipe for you!

Why I love this recipe:

This Black Bean Dip can be made on the stovetop or in the Instant Pot.

It’s also perfect party appetizer because it can be made in advance, and it’s super tasty, too!

You can also serve it as a side or top your fajitas, quesadillas or tacos with it.

As an added bonus, you can bring this goodness with you and heat it up on a grill… or you can serve it cold, too.

The only key to this recipe is cooking the beans long enough for them to become soft and for the flavors to meld. Crunchy beans in this dip are not wanted.

More easy appetizers: Heirloom Tomato BruschettaCaprese SkewersGrilled Steak Flatbread PizzaCaramelized Onion GuacamoleTuna Pesto Crostini / Garlic Herb Cream Cheese Dip

Looking for an entertaining dish? Head on over to my Entertaining Recipe Index for ideas.

All the ingredients for Black Bean Dip are laid out on a marble surface in bowls before cooking

What you’ll need to make this recipe:

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In addition to these tools, you’re going to need ingredients to make this black bean appetizer recipe, too:

  • Extra virgin olive oil—or another neutral-tasting oil
  • Veggies—we’re using a combination of yellow onion, green bell pepper and jalapeño pepper as the base for this recipe. You could also use white onion or red onion in place of the yellow onion.
  • Dried black beans—these are the piece de resistance of this recipe. I have instructions for how to make this recipe with canned black beans below if you don’t want to mess with dried black beans, but I think they are worth the effort
  • Liquids—we’re using a combination of water (to soak the beans overnight if you’re cooking on the stovetop AS WELL AS to cook the beans in), orange juice, rice wine vinegar and freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Herbs and seasonings—we’re going to use a combination of these to pack flavor into our bean dip recipe. They include chili powder, cumin, kosher salt, fresh oregano, fresh sage and bay leaves.
  • Garnishes—these can include sour cream, jalapeño, cilantro (or parsley) and more.
  • Dippers—I’m partial to classic tortilla chips, but you can also use vegetables to dip into this, if so desired. I have it on good authority that carrot sticks are excellent with the beans.
A woman lifts a tortilla covered in dip out of the bowl

How to make Black Bean Dip

This recipe can be made two different ways. I’ll be honest: I’m partial to the Instant Pot version because it doesn’t take planning ahead.

That said, you can make it on the stovetop if that’s your preferred method, and it totally works that way, too.

For both dishes, you’ll need to do the following before you begin to cook:

  • Sort the beans. This means going through the beans and removing any that are broken, as well as any that look wonky or any small rocks from the packaging. (Don’t know how to do this? My friend Aline talks about in length in her post about how to cook dry beans.)
  • Measure out the beans and the liquids that you’ll need.
  • Chop the veggies.
  • Measure out the spices and other ingredients so that the cooking process can be as quick as possible.

Now let’s get into the nitty gritty of each type of cooking…

How to make Instant Pot Black Bean Dip

Saute the veggies in the Instant Pot. Heat up the oil first. When the sensor reads ‘HOT,’ add the onion, bell pepper and jalapeño pepper.

Stir constantly as they cook, and turn off the Instant Pot when the veggies are soft.

Cook the bean dip under high pressure.

  • Add the sorted black beans, water, orange juice, rice wine vinegar and lime juice to the Instant Pot on top of the softened veggies.
  • Measure in the chili powder, cumin and salt, and stir until everything is incorporated.
  • Add the oregano sprigs, bay leaves and sage leaves, too.

Secure the lid on the Instant Pot and seal the valve for high pressure cooking. Set to manual high pressure for 2 hours.

Finish the bean dip and serve. Once the beans have cooked, let the pressure naturally release for a few minutes before doing the quick release until all the pressure is gone.

Remove the bay leaves, sage leaves and oregano sticks.

Stir the beans together, smashing with a fork to reach your desired consistency.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, additional jalapeños and a garnish of cilantro or parsley. Serve with your favorite dippers.

The black bean dip is shown in a large serving bowl after cooking, without garnishes

How to make Stovetop Black Bean Dip

Soak the beans overnight. Sort and measure into a large bowl. Cover with water so that the beans can soak it up.

Drain the beans. Save the extra liquid because you’ll add this to the dip later.

Cook on the stovetop. Transfer the beans and add water into a Dutch oven. Add the oregano, bay leaves and sage. Bring to a boil, then cover.

Let the ingredients boil for an hour, or until the liquid has completely absorbed into the beans.

Cook the veggies in a skillet. While the beans cook, heat the oil in a nonstick skillet. Saute the onion, bell pepper and jalapeño, and cook until soft. Season with salt, chili powder and cumin once soft.

Put the dip together. When the beans have soaked in all the initial cooking liquid, add the vegetables to the pot. Pour in the reserved liquid from the beans’ overnight soak. Simmer.

Add the orange juice, lime juice and rice wine vinegar, stirring until combined.

Smash some of the beans, making the dip your desired consistency.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream and jalapeño rounds. Garnish with parsley or cilantro. Enjoy with chips.

Close up of Black Bean Dip, garnished and ready for dipping

Erin’s Easy Entertaining Tips

If you have an Instant Pot, now is the time to put it to use! Set these and forget ‘em as they cook on the counter while you make the rest of your meal.

Make this dip 1-2 days early and reheat it, either in the Instant Pot, stovetop or microwave. Thin the dip out with a little extra orange juice or water if it’s too thick.

This is my secret to any gathering: finding dishes to make in advance that require very little hand holding the day-of!

A woman dips a tortilla into Black Bean Dip, close up

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use canned black beans in this dip?

You can certainly use canned black beans in this dip, but if you do, I suggest making it on the stovetop.

Simple drain the beans in a colander, and rinse them thoroughly before adding to your Dutch oven.
Cook for 15-30 minutes, or until super soft with the liquid, and follow the rest of the instructions for finishing and serving the dip.

What is black bean dip made of?

This dip recipe involves dried black beans with green bell pepper, onion, herbs and spices and a little extra.

What is good to eat with black beans?

In my opinion, black beans are good with most anything! This dip pairs well with fajitas, tacos and most other TexMex dishes.

The cooked Black Bean Dip, shown with other ingredients and garnishes, before serving

Quick tips for making easy this Black Bean Dip recipe:

  • This dip is gluten free and vegan, so long as you don’t serve it with sour cream.
  • Make it in advance, and store in a food storage container in the refrigerator until it’s time to serve it.
  • To reheat this dip, place it in a microwave-safe bowl and warm in 30-second bursts. You might need a little water or orange juice to thin it out to your preferred consistency. Use your judgment, but don’t water it down too much!
Pinterest image, including text and a close up of the dip, garnished and with chips

What can I serve alongside this dip recipe?

Here’s how you can make this recipe for black bean dip…

Close up of Black Bean Dip, garnished and ready for dipping
Yield: 12 servings

Black Bean Dip

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Overnight Soak Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 14 hours 15 minutes

Start any party off on the right foot with this delightful vegan Black Bean Dip. Perfectly spicy and seasoned to impress, this dip goes wonderfully with fajitas, guacamole and various other TexMex dishes. The black beans are cooked down with onions, a green bell pepper, a jalapeño, oregano, bay leaves, sage, chili powder, cumin, orange juice, lime juice, rice wine vinegar and salt until they fall apart. Serve with tortilla chips to create the perfect vegan gameday appetizer.

Ingredients

Dip

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • ½ green bell pepper, diced (about ½ cup)
  • ½ jalapeño pepper, diced
  • 1 lb. dried black beans (2 cups)
  • 4 cups water
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 sprigs fresh oregano
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 6 fresh sage leaves

Garnishes

  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, sliced into rounds
  • Cilantro or parsley, for garnish

Instructions

To make the dip in the Instant Pot

  1. Measure out all your ingredients and chop all the veggies. This is an important step because things move fast as you’re cooking, and you don’t want to burn something or not have it done in time!
  2. Set the Instant Pot to the Saute setting for 15 minutes.
  3. Add the oil, and let heat.
  4. Add the onion, bell pepper and jalapeño pepper, stirring constantly until they have softened.
  5. When the Saute cycle has ended, add the dried beans, water, orange juice, rice wine vinegar and lime juice. Measure in the chili powder, cumin and salt. Stir until combined.
  6. Add the oregano sprigs, bay leaves and sage leaves.
  7. Secure the lid on the Instant Pot, sealing the valve for high pressure cooking.
  8. Manually set to high pressure for 2 hours.
  9. Once the beans have cooked, let the pressure naturally release for 5-10 minutes, then quick release it until all the pressure is gone.
  10. Remove the bay leaves, whole sage leaves and oregano sticks. Stir the beans together. (You can also smash some of the beans using a fork to make them a little smoother for dipping.)
  11. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, and enjoy with chips or another dipper of your choosing!

To make the dip on the stovetop

  1. Soak the black beans overnight in water. Make sure the water is well over the black beans, as they will soak up some of the liquid.
  2. Drain black beans and save the extra liquid to add in to the dip later.
  3. Place beans and water (from the recipe, not the reserved liquid from above) into a large pot over medium heat. Throw in oregano, the bay leaves and the sage leaves and bring to a boil.
  4. Cover and let boil for almost an hour, or until the liquid has been completely soaked into the beans.
  5. While the beans, water and herbs are coming to a boil, sauté the olive oil, onions, bell pepper, and jalapeño together.
  6. When the vegetables are soft, season them with the salt, chili powder and cumin.
  7. When the beans have soaked in all the initial liquid, toss in the vegetables and also pour in the liquid the beans soaked in overnight.
  8. Simmer for another half hour.
  9. Pour in orange juice, lime juice and the rice wine vinegar.
  10. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, and enjoy!

Notes

Please note that if you make this dip in the Instant Pot, you will not have to soak the beans overnight.

If you want to use canned beans, do the following: Rinse the beans and drain in a colander. Cook on the stovetop over high heat for 15-30 minutes, or until super soft with the liquid, and follow the rest of the instructions for finishing and serving the dip.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 162Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 223mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 7gSugar: 2gProtein: 9g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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This Black Bean Dip was originally published on September 15, 2011. The photographs, text and recipe card were republished in August 2019.

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One Comment

  1. I make a similar kind of meal with red kidney beans…it’s kind of like a chilli con carne without the carne. You can have it with rice and a bit of sour cream or cheese on top. It’s yummy. A simple and quick meal to make but I do cheat a bit..the beans come out of a can !

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