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Venezuelan-Style Black Beans

These saucy, savory Venezuelan-Style Black Beans are a wonderful side dish with rice, chicken or whatever you’re serving.

Venezuelan-Style Black Beans

When I discovered that my Progressive Eats blogging group, a group that blogs together around a theme once a month, was tackling Latin American cooking this month, I began looking at foods in search of just the right recipe to highlight.

I found it in this side dish — Venezuelan-Style Black Beans. They are savory and saucy, flavorful but simple. I love how simple ingredients and flavors can come together to make something amazing — and that’s the case with this dish.

Looking at recipes on The Spruce Eats, Cooking Light, Goya and a blog called Venezuelan Cooking, I got a feel for the flavors and ingredients. Sometimes this is made with bacon, sometimes not. Sometimes they have red bell peppers. Sometimes there’s a lot more sugar to the recipe. Using the recipes I read as a guide, I devised this recipe featuring green peppers, molasses (though not a lot) and no bacon.

Canned black beans make this a quick and easy dish, although fresh ones would be nice too. An onion, a green pepper, garlic, cumin, molasses. These are what give the beans flavor.

How to Make Venezuelan-Style Black Beans

These beans begin with peppers and onions, diced. Saute them in a skillet until they are softened and beginning to brown.

Then add the garlic and molasses and stir thoroughly to combine.

Next comes the black beans, water, cumin, salt and pepper. The beans cook together for a while, allowing the flavors to develop.

Finally, they are finished off with a swirl of finely chopped cilantro.


These beans are excellent with rice. They’d also be excellent with other dishes from the Progressive Eats bloggers.

What would YOU eat these with?

Progressive Eats

Welcome to Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a Progressive Dinner Party. This month’s theme is Late Summer Latin American Cuisine — casual warm-weather fare — salads, grilled foods, summer cocktails, and our host is Tamara who blogs at Beyond Mere Sustenance.

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner involves going from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats it’s a virtual party. A theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out. Come along and see all of the deliciousness we’ve put together for our celebration inspired dishes!

Late Summer Latin American Cuisine!



Main Courses



Yield: 6 servings

Venezuelan-Style Black Beans

Venezuelan-Style Black Beans

These saucy, savory Venezuelan-Style Black Beans are a wonderful side dish with rice, chicken or whatever you’re serving.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Cooking oil spray
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 tbsp molasses
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 15.5-oz cans black beans (do not drain)
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp finely minced fresh cilantro


    1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, for 7-10 minutes, until softened.
    2. Add the garlic and molasses to the skillet and stir well to combine. Add the black beans (and their liquid) to the skillet with 1 cup of water and the cumin, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
    3. Uncover, stir and taste. Adjust seasonings as needed. Cook (uncovered) for an additional 5 minutes. The sauce will cook down and thicken.
    4. Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro. Serve.


Thursday 28th of May 2020

These are SO good! Just a quick note.. you forgot to list the cans of black beans in the ingredient list. The only reason I know is that I took a picture of the recipe before going to the store and since they weren't on there I forgot to buy the beans! haha luckily I found some in the basement. Thank goodness because this recipe is fantastic! :)

Sarah Walker Caron

Friday 29th of May 2020

So glad you liked them — and OOOOF! Of all the ingredients to forget! Thank you for the heads-up. I have updated the recipe.

Tamara Andersen

Sunday 1st of September 2019

I love black beans, and I'm really looking forward to your Venezuelan version! I think they'd be a perfect side for my pork chops... Great recipe!

Barb | Creative Culinary

Thursday 29th of August 2019

These sound fantastic Sarah. I only hesitate because of my nemesis green pepper but I'm making them anyhow! I think a red pepper or a poblano would do it for me nicely!

Sarah Walker Caron

Sunday 1st of September 2019

You could totally use a different pepper. Several of the versions I saw used red bell peppers, but since I had a green one, I decided to just use that.

Dorothy Reinhold

Wednesday 28th of August 2019

What a great spin on plain old baked beans. I can't wait to try these!

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Wednesday 28th of August 2019

[…] Venezuelan-Style Black Beans (Caraotas Negras) – Sarah’s Cucina Bella […]

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