See how you can transform these black soy beans into the perfect low carb and keto friendly Cuban style black beans side dish!
I lived in Miami for three years and fell in love with Cuban food. Mojo Chicken, delicious pulled pork, fried plantains, and of course black beans are just some of my favorites. Beans however are not typically a part of a lower carb or ketogenic diet (learn more about the Keto Diet with my Keto FAQ).
Luckily for me (and you), black soybeans are a higher fiber, lower carb bean option. For this recipe, I used the Eden Organic Black Soybeans (this is not sponsored). I purchased mine at my local grocery store chain, but I do believe you can find them at Whole Foods and you can also buy them in bulk on Amazon.
Get all the cooking tips, techniques and more about this recipe below!
- Medium Sized Saucepan
- Can Opener
- Knife & Cutting Board
- Spatula / Wooden Spoon
This lower carb black bean side dish is super simple and you can easily throw it together on a weeknight. The biggest factor to making these taste as incredible as possible however, is time. The longer they cook, the more the flavors develop (kind of like how my low carb beef chili always tastes better the next day).
I prefer to serve my beans with Mojo chicken or pork. My suggestion is to get these beans going (in 10 minutes or less) and then cook/prep your other food so they have plenty of hands-off time to develop a stronger flavor profile.
What is sofrito? How is it used in Cuban black beans?
The major flavor agent in this Cuban black bean dish is called sofrito (so-free-toe). Sofrito is essentially a “Cuban mirepoix” (classically this is a mixture of carrots, celery, and onion that provide many dishes and sauces with flavor). Instead of the classic style mirepoix, you use peppers, onions, and garlic.
I used a little bit of green pepper (adds a hint of natural sweetness) and some jalapenos (for spice), a small amount of red onion, and thinly sliced pieces of garlic (the more the merrier in my world). Get the sofrito cooking in a tiny bit of oil in your saucepan. Next, add in the black soy beans.
Now, these soybeans are already cooked (classic Cuban style beans are made with dried beans that have been pre-soaked). Once you essentially heat the mixture through it is “done”. However, like I mentioned above, the longer you let these hang out on low heat, the more flavor they will have.
To the beans I add salt, pepper, cumin, and dried oregano and a few bay leaves. Let this cook on low heat and marinade for as long as possible. This would also make a great meal prep recipe because it would taste better days later.
Remove the bay leaves before serving and add a splash of white vinegar (just adds a tiny tang to the dish but doesn’t taste like vinegar) before serving.
Now, these black beans can be served as is. If you like the beans thicker, smash some of them with a potato masher or add a little stock or water to the mixture (no more than 1/4-1.3 cup) to make them thinner. I’ve learned people have a lot of preferences when it comes to eating their black beans, so eat them how you like!
If you like your black beans served with rice but are on a lower carb diet, you can sub for riced cauliflower.
Grab all the recipe details below and leave feedback in a comment or in a rating too! Enjoy!
Low Carb Cuban Style Black Beans
- 2, 15 oz. cans Black Soy Beans I used the Eden Organic brand *DO NOT drain or rinse*
- 1 tsp. Oil olive or avocado
- 1/2 Green Pepper diced small
- 1/2 Red Onion diced small
- 1 Small Jalapeno seeds removed, diced small
- 2-3 Garlic Cloves minced
- 1 tsp Cumin
- 1 tsp Oregano
- 2 Bay Leaves
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 1 tsp White Vinegar
- Add the oil to the saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add the diced veggies and sauté for about 5 minutes. Be careful not to let the garlic burn.
- Add in the two cans of black soy beans (do not drain or rinse). Mix in the seasonings and then add the bay leaves.
- Allow the mixture to simmer over low heat for as long as possible to develop the flavors (I like a solid 30-45 minutes if possible).
- Before serving, remove the bay leaves and stir in the vinegar. Serve over your favorite rice substitute (if low carb), see the post above for tips on cooking cauliflower rice!