I think the reason more people don't cook pinto beans, or other dried beans for that matter, is it takes too long on the stove and you have to watch them, for sure they will boil dry and burn. I have never been a big fan of pinto beans in the slow cooker, because they don't get soft enough or creamy enough or something. Anyway, I found this Paula Deen recipe several years ago and just loved it. You don't have to check it all the time to see if more liquid is needed, just go on about your business. Get your hair cut and a manicure and pedicure, you have plenty of time. Make some coleslaw before you leave!
If you have gotten one of those big ham bones from Heavenly Ham or Honey Baked Ham like I told you, there will be plenty of meat to pick off the bone and put back in the beans for a one pot meal.
FYI, Julia Child says that the slow cooker is the only way to cook dried pinto beans, after they have been soaked at least 10-12 hours.
Slower Cooker Pinto Beans
Serves 10-12 (You know these are better two or three days from now)
1 pound dried pinto beans
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 pound ham hocks, or
1/4 pound streak o' lean (you don't need this with the ham bone)
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter), Paula's says optional, I say not.
1 tablespoon House Seasoning, recipe is on the blog
Wash the beans and soak overnight in sold water. Or use the quick method and boil the beans in plenty of water for 2 minutes, then allow to sit for 1 hour.
Drain the beans and dump them into the slow cooker. Stir in chili powder and oregano.
If using ham hocks, soak in a separate pot in 4 cups water for 2 hours. Add the ham hocks and soaking liquid to the slow cooker. If using streak o' lean, cut the meat and put it in the slow cooker with the beans. If using the ham bone, just throw it in the slow cooker with the beans.
Saute' the onion in the fat in the skillet or saute' the onion in 2 tablespoons butter. Add the onion to the beans. Add the House Seasoning, start with half the amount, correct it later. Stir well.
Cover and cook on high until the beans are tender and have absorbed most of the liquid, about 5-6 hours.
If using ham bone, remove from beans and let cool until you can handle. Pick off the meat and return to beans. Throw the bone to the dog.