Stove Top Homemade Ranch Style Beans

homemade gluten-free ranch style beans

Gluten-Free Ranch Style Beans

I’m not sure if it is just a Texas thing, but we love our Ranch style beans.  They are usually made with pinto beans, jalapeño, garlic, lots of spices, beef broth and tomato sauce.   Savory, with a little kick of heat, Ranch beans make a perfect side dish.  

They especially make a great combo with restaurant style Tex-Mex rice (also very popular here in Texas).  And tasty beans and rice are a no-brainer for a Meatless Monday dinner.  So cheap and easy!  And tasty.   I also add them to my recipe for Clean Eating Bison Enchilada Soup.   

We use them on Southwestern salads or in burrito bowls.  They are so good. And they contain a lot of fiber, are low in fat and contain a ton of nutrients (including folate, iron and vitamin B6).  

Since we we are starting to eat less meat in our diet while increasing our bean and lentil intake, I adjusted the original recipe to remove the ham hock.  But we do get a hint of smokiness from using gluten-free liquid smoke  (mesquite).

You could easily make it vegetarian by using vegetable broth instead of beef broth.  I don’t think it would affect the flavor very much because the spices are what really give these gluten-free Ranch style beans the punch.

How to Cook the Beans

I like to make up a big batch of beans on the stove-top then freeze them in 1- or 2-cup jars so I have them on hand in the freezer.  

From what I’ve read, cooked beans seem to last for up to 6-8 months in the freezer.   Just thaw in the fridge and reheat on the stove or in the microwave.

You could always make this in the slow cooker.  The original recipe was developed for a slow cooker and I did it that way the first couple times.  I cooked the beans for 8 hours on low and about 2 hours on high before they were done.  

This time I wanted to double the recipe because we really love them, so I use 2 pounds of beans which makes about 15 cups of cooked beans.  

On the stove it took about 2 1/2 hours on low heat after bringing it to a boil (20 minutes) and then lowering the heat.  

Also, instead of pinto beans I found a little red chili bean that I really like better (it is a little smaller than a kidney bean).  But if you can’t find chili beans, then use the pinto beans instead.  

And don’t forget to soak the beans the night before.

I usually rinse, look for broken beans or rocks or any other weird things that you might find in dried beans.  Then soak in a glass bowl filled with water at least 3 inches above the beans.  Then I store it in the fridge overnight.  

Pour off the water and cook up the beans with all the spices for delicious homemade gluten-free Ranch style beans.  Yum!

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Ranch Style Beans | Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free

Texas Ranch Style Beans are a favorite gluten-free dairy-free savory side dish with a little kick of heat.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword beans, ranch style beans
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings 15 cups
Author Deana Larkin Evans


  • 2 pounds chili beans (or pinto beans)
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 4 cups water, divided
  • 2 cups organic tomato sauce
  • 2 large jalapeños
  • 1/2 cup dried minced onion
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 2 tbsp ancho chili powder
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp mesquite liquid smoke
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  1. Look for broken beans or stones in the beans to discard. Rinse then place into a bowl and cover with water (about 3 inches above the beans). Store in the fridge overnight.

  2. Drain the beans and place in a large stock pot.

  3. Rinse and chop the jalapeños, removing the stems and seeds. Gloves may help prevent the stems from burning your hands.

  4. Add the beef broth, 3 cups of water, tomato sauce, chopped jalapeños, spices and remaining ingredients.

  5. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally (about 20 minutes).

  6. Cover and lower heat to low and cook for 1 more hour. Remove the cover and cook for another 1 1/2 – 2 hours or until the beans are softened. Stir often. Remove from heat and add 1 cup of water (or more if too thick).

  7. Let cool a bit and add to containers to freeze.

Recipe Notes

This recipe will yield about 15 cups of cooked beans. They can be frozen for 6-8 months. Thaw in fridge and reheat before serving.

Adapted from Chowhound

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Deana Larkin Evans

You get one life - do your best to ENJOY IT! So hi, I'm Deana. This food blog is all about cooking wholesome real food and developing gluten-free recipes for some of our favorite comfort foods. I had to start eating gluten-free in 2010, then cut dairy and casein (except for the occasional Parmesan) in 2014. We learned A2 casein (goat, sheep and buffalo milk) is easier to digest than the predominate A1 form in cow milk. So we brought back goat milk dairy into our recipes in 2016. Thank goodness, right! So I'm kind of a science nerd, too. In the '90s, I earned an undergrad degree in biochemistry from The University of Texas at Austin. Hook 'em! Then followed up with a PhD in biochemistry and a law degree from the University of Houston. I recently earned a certificate in genomics/sequence analysis from Johns Hopkins University, where I also took a very cool food microbiology course. Currently, I'm learning about the microbiome and gut health. And trying to come up with healthy recipes to feed those gut bugs! #feedthegutbugs

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