Dominican Beans Recipe (Habichuelas Guisadas)

Habichuelas Guisadas Recipe (Stewed Red Beans): part of La Bandera Dominicana (dominican traditional lunch), it lies between stew and sauce for rice.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Dominican, Latino
Keyword dominican black beans, puerto rican, red beans, stewed beans
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 396kcal
Author Clara Gonzalez


  • 2 cups of dry pinto, cranberry, or red kidney beans
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp dry oregano
  • 1 bell pepper , chopped
  • 1 small red onion cut into four quarters
  • 2 cloves of garlic , crushed
  • 1 cup of diced auyama (West Indies pumpkin)
  • 1 cup of tomato sauce
  • Leaves from a celery stalk , chopped (optional)
  • 4 sprigs of thyme or 1 tsp of dry thyme (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon of salt (or more, to taste)


If you are using dry beans

  • Soak the beans overnight.
  • Remove the beans from the soaking water and boil in fresh water until they are very soft (may take up to an hour, or about 20 minutes in a pressure cooker.

How to make habichuelas guisadas

  • Separate the beans from the boiling water. Set both aside.
  • In a pot heat the oil over medium heat. Add oregano, bell pepper, onion, garlic, auyama, tomato sauce, celery, thyme and cilantro. Cook and stir for half a minute. Add the beans and simmer for two minutes.
  • Pour in 4 cups of the water in which the beans boiled (complete with fresh water if necessary). Once it reaches a rolling boil, lightly mashed the beans with a potato masher to break them out of the skin and making creamier habichuelas. Cook until it reaches a creamy consistency.
  • Remove the chunks of onion, as well as any stray twigs or large bits of herbs if you used fresh herbs. Season with salt to taste.
  • Serve with the other components of La Bandera Dominicana.



My mom only used ajíes gustosos (a non-spicy version of Scotch bonnet peppers), and some homes use cubanelle peppers. The first are harder to find nowadays, and I don't like the taste of cubanelle in my habichuelas. Each Dominican home cook will have their own preference.
Most homes do not add auyama to their beans. I cannot think of not adding them to mine. My mom would disapprove.
The final color of your beans will depend on the type you use. The darker ones are red kidney beans, the ones that look less intense are either pinto, or cranberry beans.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 396kcal | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 1064mg | Potassium: 1794mg | Fiber: 17g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 4915IU | Vitamin C: 58.2mg | Calcium: 152mg | Iron: 6.1mg