The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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Heart of the Blue Ridge

Pinto Bean Pie & Rhubarb Jam

By Susan M. Thigpen © 1984-2012

Issue: October, 1984

Just when you think you've seen it all, here comes something else. This month we received a recipe for yet another use for pinto beans - a pie! It was sent in by Kayt Linville who said it was given to her by her niece from Charlotte, North Carolina. The niece added, "It's so good, you'd never know what it was unless someone told you!"

Pinto Bean Pie

2 cups cooked pintos & broth (mashed)
3 cups sugar
4 eggs, beaten
2 sticks margarine, melted
2 teasp. Vanilla
1 cup grated coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

Pour into unbaked pie shell and bake at 350 degrees for one hour. Makes 3 pies.


Rhubarb is a plant that once planted, comes back year after year. It has been an old standby for country cooks for a long time. You can still find rhubarb plants growing at old homeplaces that have been long abandoned. The leaves are poisonous, but it is the stalks you use. By themselves, they are very sour, but may be cooked in a variety of ways. The most common one is to cook it as a side dish like you would applesauce, adding butter and sugar.

Many people are quick to tell you that rhubarb can taste like many different fruits, depending on how you season it. Here is a recipe from Lena Conner of Meadows of Dan, Virginia for Rhubarb Jam.

Rhubarb Jam

8 cups diced rhubarb, small amount of water.
Simmer 8 minutes and add 8 cups of sugar.
Cook 15 minutes. Set off stove.
Add 3 small boxes of wild strawberry Jell-O.
Mix well, then pour into jars and seal.

Makes about six pints. Other Jell-O flavors can be used if desired.

[See IMPORTANT CORRECTION for Rhubarb Jam recipe!]