Gluten Free Mexican Food and Abby’s Refried Beans

21 Oct

My wife Abby is from America, where Mexican food is as common as the good old chippy in England.  So since we met 10 years ago Mexican food has been a regular feature in the Gollop household.  Fortunately Mexican food is easy to make gluten free, thanks largely to Discovery Foods great range of products – many of which are labelled gluten free.  We frequently use the taco trays to make quick and easy tacos.  Stir fry some onion and peppers with some mince or chicken with one of the spice mixes, serve with some grated cheese and salsa and you have a tasty meal in minutes.

Slightly trickier to find are gluten free tortilla wraps.  There are solutions though.  My first taste of gluten free tortilla wraps was the Lovemore version from Asda.  Quite possibly the worst gluten free product I have tried, like eating old leather boots and not something I would recommend!  Hope was restored though when we successfully tried this recipe from The Gluten Free Student Cookbook.  One of the most popular GF wraps amongst the gluten free community are the corn wraps from Mexgrcoer, and these are really nice (though only 6 inch diameter).  I’ve also had success with the Cool Chile Co wraps that are available in Whole Foods.  Another option is the easy mix available from the Foodamentalists, which is also available at Plymouth Greengrocer for Plymouth based readers.

Whether it be tacos, fajitas or quesadillas, no gluten free Mexican meal in our household is complete without Abby’s Mexican bean recipe.  These can also be re-heated in a microwave and can be perfect for parties to dip your tortilla chips in.  Based on classic Mexican refried beans, this recipe has evolved over time to use black beans instead of pinto beans.  They are much more readily available in tinned form, which makes this a simple recipe.  We have tried in the past with dried black and pinto beans and have never really had much success.  The caramelised red onion, garlic, white wine vinegar and lime juice infuse to give these beans an extraordinary flavour.  We usually serve as a side dish, but a friend we passed the recipe onto made them and just served with rice and really enjoyed it.

Abby’s Mexican Refried Beans

1 red onion. chopped

4 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 tbsp white wine vinegar

2 tbsp soft brown sugar

2 tins of black beans, drained

250 ml (ish) passata

Lime juice of one lime (we use bottled lime juice)

Fry the red onion and garlic in a pan with a tiny bit of olive oil.  Next add the vinegar and brown sugar and cook until the onions are caramelised.

Stir in the black beans, passata, lime juice and add some salt and pepper to season. Simmer for 20 minutes until thickened, or longer depending how mushy you like your beans.

Hope you enjoy and we’d love to hear from you if you try these.

Edit: For this of you asking where to buy soaked black beans, these are the ones we use which are from Sainsbury’s:


9 Responses to “Gluten Free Mexican Food and Abby’s Refried Beans”

  1. Tracy dixon October 21, 2012 at 7:15 pm #

    Some great tips for Mexican food lovers like me! I spent two years living in America and developed a love for Mexican, especially as we had an amazing mexican restaurant in The town where i lived. I’m definitely going to try and get hold of those tortilla wraps!

    • Kevin Gollop October 21, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

      Thanks Tracy, I share your love of Mexican food! Hope your enjoy the tortillas 🙂

  2. Vicky September 2, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

    Wow kevin! These look lovely – refried beans are awesome!


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