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Black beans are both savory and healthful in equal measure. They are often used in Mexican and Texas culinary recipes, particularly those using chili corn carne and other popular chile dishes.

Because of their high protein and carbohydrate content in addition to their low fat level, these beans are an excellent choice for a balanced diet.

However, there are a few individuals who are not very enthusiastic about ingesting these beans. In circumstances such as this one, it’s helpful to know that there are other alternatives to black beans that you may use.

Therefore, the fact that you do not have these beans in your pantry should not prevent you from making a robust Mexican chili dish. In this piece, we are going to provide you with a list of other foods that you may eat instead of black beans.

What Are Black Beans?

Black beans are a kind of legume that are about the size of peas and are often used in the cuisines of Mexico, the Caribbean, and South America. Since black beans are a kind of legume, it should come as no surprise that they contain a significant amount of both protein and fiber.

In addition to that, they are loaded with several vitamins and minerals. There are many different ways to obtain a great culinary experience with these beans, and one of those ways is through incorporating them into dishes.

Substitutes For Black Beans

If you’ve used up all of your supply of black beans, there’s no need to worry. The taste of black beans is not overpowering at all.

Because of this, a significant portion of the flavor of the foods is determined by the spices that are called for in the recipe. This is because black beans have a high capacity to take on the taste of whatever they are cooked in.

Here is a selection of other options, each one of which would be an excellent choice.

1. Kidney Beans

Both kidney beans and black beans may be used in place of one another; hence, when black beans are unavailable, kidney beans are the next best option.

It is black in color and has no flavor, thus it is impossible to tell the difference between the two. Because of their high levels of protein and fiber, kidney beans have the ability to enhance the nutritional profile of almost any cuisine.

When compared to black beans, kidney beans have a flavor that is much more subdued and a consistency that is only a little bit more yielding. You may prepare them in the same manner as you would with black beans.

2. Chickpeas

Are you seeking for an alternative for black beans that has a nutritional value that is almost identical to that of black beans? The salvation comes from chickpeas.

Chickpeas have a moderate flavor with a hint of nuttiness, and their nutritional profile is comparable to that of black peas in terms of the amount of dietary fiber and potassium they contain.

If you want to use chickpeas as a replacement, you need first soak them in water for a whole day before continuing with the recipe as directed.

3. Cauliflower

This is still another strategy that might be used to salvage the situation in the absence of black peas. In order to make use of cauliflower, you would first need to mash it into a finer texture, and then you would need to add some flavorful spice to your sauce in order to boost the flavorings.

Because of this, you should keep in mind that its nutritional worth is distinct from that of black peas, and that it requires a shorter amount of time to boil. Additionally, the taste is not overpowering, and it only has a trace of sweetness, so selecting this option is risk-free.

4. Lentils

Lentils are a fantastic alternative to black beans since they include similar amounts of fiber and protein without the added sodium.

There are many various kinds of lentils, and each kind has its own distinctive hue. The kind of lentils that you choose should mostly be determined by your own tastes.

All of the lentils have a taste that is similar to that of the soil, but the yellow and red kinds have a flavor that is more strong and nutty in nature. Last but not least, because lentils cook more quickly than black beans, you may need to make some adjustments to your recipe in order to accommodate them.

5. Nuts

Walnuts and cashew nuts are an additional choice that may be made in place of black beans. In dishes where these nuts are used to add taste, the ratio of nuts to other ingredients should be carefully considered.

They provide a more vibrant color as well as flavor to the dish. On the other hand, using too much of it might make the meal seem weighty. You have the freedom to be creative in the kitchen when you use nuts.

Note: Sunflower seeds are a suitable substitute for those who suffer from nut allergies.

6. Pinto Beans

In any dish calling for black beans, this replacement is a welcome addition. Pinto beans have a taste that is distinct from black beans and are thus often utilized as an ingredient in Mexican cuisine.

Additionally, it has a high concentration of protein and fiber. If you are thinking about going with this alternative, you should be aware that the amount of carbohydrates and fat it contains is double that of the black beans.

7. Great Northern Beans

This white bean type has the same consistency as black beans, despite its appearance. To get the flavor you want while using this option, you may adjust the amount of spices and seasonings you use.

This variation would give the dish a completely different appearance from the original.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Black Beans and Red Kidney Beans the Same?

The flavor is the sole distinguishing feature between the two. Both kidney beans and black beans provide almost the same amount of protein and other essential nutrients. They are quite similar to one another in terms of the number of calories, fiber, and vitamins that they contain.

Can You Substitute Kidney Beans for Black Beans In Chili?

The use of kidney beans in place of black beans in chili is not only possible but also highly recommended. To add insult to injury, you may substitute them with pinto beans instead, since they work just as well in the recipe.

Can I Substitute Black Beans For Red Beans?

Yes, certainly. The question of whether bean is safer, red or black, only applies to dried beans, and the answer is always that black beans are safer than red beans.

Why Are Beans Bad For You?

It is not true that eating beans will make you sick. The majority of beans and pulses include lectins, which are proteins with the potential to cause adverse health effects in humans.

However, the lectin concentration in beans may be reduced by soaking and boiling them. To guarantee that the beans are not harmful to consume, you need to simmer them for a minimum of ten minutes. Consuming beans is associated with a number of unpleasant side effects, the most prevalent of which being digestive pain and gas.

Can Kidney Beans Substitute For Black Beans?

There is no problem using kidney beans in place of black beans. You may prepare them in the same manner as you would normal black beans, and the flavor is not noticeably different from that of typical black beans.

Do I Drain Black Beans For Chili?

Yes. Draining and rinsing black beans is recommended if you want their color and taste to be more brilliant and tasty, respectively. When it comes to the other types of beans, you have the option of doing so or not since the differences are not significant.


It is impossible to overestimate the beneficial effect that black beans have on one’s health. Calcium and iron are both found in relatively high concentrations in black beans.

There might be a variety of reasons why you need to find a replacement for black beans. It’s possible that the flavor of these black beans is not to your liking, or it’s possible that you ran out of your go-to can of black beans.

You now know that you may use any other variety of bean, lentils, or chickpeas in lieu of black beans as a result of reading this page.