Tacu Tacu: Peruvian Refried Beans and Rice

Tacu Tacu: Peruvian Refried Beans and Rice

Tacu Tacu: Peruvian Refried Beans and Rice

Tacu Tacu is the Peruvian version of refried beans and rice—a simple, nutritious, and savory combination that just about anyone can make. In fact, my earliest memory or this dish was when one morning my dad surprised us by making Tacu Tacu for brunch using left overs.

There are many variations of this dish, using different types of beans or lentils, and typically it is served with a fried egg on top and a piece of steak. Last time I cooked Tacu Tacu, I served it with grilled shrimp on top and a salad on the side.

Make sure the rice and beans are cooked ahead of time, preferably the day before. This recipe is my own and is only for the rice and beans. As usual, Gaston Acurio’s recipes inspired the use of aji amarillo.

  1. Mince the garlic and onion. Mash the beans in a bowl using a fork. Add the rice to the bowl and mix with beans by hand.
  2. Saute garlic, onion, and aji amarillo with 1 tablespoon canola oil in a pan over medium heat until onion is translucent. Remove from heat and add saute to bowl with rice and beans. Mix in by hand.
  3. Shape the rice and beans mixture into two pancakes by hand. Each pancake should be about 4-5 inches in diameter.
  4. Brown the pancakes in a non-stick pan with 1 tablespoon canola oil over high heat. Flip over using a spatula, about 2 minutes each side.
  5. Serve each pancake with a drizzle of olive oil.

This recipe makes 2 servings.


The rice and beans mixture should be thick enough to stay together while being browned and flipped over with the spatula. The key to the consistency is the ratio of beans to rice. I found through trial and error that a 2 to 1 ratio of beans to rice works well.