Instant Pot Black Beans: Turning Up The Flavor
While you can use this method to make regular ol Instant Pot Black Beans , I wanted to make them extra special and flavorful.
I took inspiration from the islands and made these Instant Pot Black Beans Cuban by incorporating a few star ingredients in Cuban cuisine: bell pepper, onion, cumin, bay leaves, and oregano. I loved the extra depth of flavor and caught myself eating these right out of the pot.
While these black beans are Cuban inspired, you certainly dont need a Cuban recipe to use them.
The flavors and ingredients are fairly ubiquitous in Mexican cuisine too, so any Southwest style of recipe would be excellent with these seasoned black beans swapped in place of plain.
Want to make Instant Pot Black Beans Mexican? Try adding chili powder and, if you are feeling dangerous, a pinch of cayenne.
How To Cook Dry Black Beans In The Instant Pot:
Plug in your Instant Pot and press the Saute button. Add the oil, onion, garlic, and jalapeno. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion turns transluscent, about 3 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients and stir well. Secure the lid on the Instant Pot.
Press Manual and pressure cook on high for 35 minutes, leaving the steam valve sealed.
Once the pressure cooker has run its course, allow it to naturally release for 20 minutes.
Taste the beans for flavor and add more salt, lime juice, and/or seasonings to taste.
Tips For The Best Black Beans
- Only season with salt if youre going to use in recipes that it wont overpower, for something like a black bean salsa leave them plain.
- You can enjoy these beans in your favorite black bean recipes, like our black bean tacos or our vegan nachos if making recipes like this you can season while cooking. We highly recommend our Mexican Black Beans.
- Allow the beans to come to room temperature before placing in the refrigerator.
- The Beans will stay fresh in the fridge for about 3-5 days but can be frozen safely for up to 8 months.
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A Few Hints For Cooking Instant Pot Dried Beans
- If you like your beans SUPER soft, without a bite left to them, cook for an additional 10 minutes on high pressure.
- If you have pre-soaked your beans, reduce the cooking time by 10 minutes.
- Never fill the inner pot of your pressure cooker more than ½ full when cooking beans.
- It is best to let the pressure release naturally for beans to retain shape. However, you may do a rapid release after 10 minutes, by putting on oven mitts and pushing the steam valve to release. Just be careful not to stand too close–that steam can burn your face!
- If you find beans to be hard on your stomach or make you gassy, either pre-soak beans overnight first and/or add in ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar after cooking.
- You will most likely have liquid left after cooking the beans in the instant pot, just drain off the liquid before using in recipes.
What Types Of Beans Can You Cook In An Instant Pot
That’s a great question! And the answer is most. There’s really only one type of bean I wouldn’t bother cooking in the Instant Pot and that’s red lentils. Red lentils are super delicate, cook very quickly on the stove already and you’ll end up spending more time cooking them in your pressure cooker.
All other beans are fair game!
If you’re wondering where to get dried beans, my friends at Bob’s Red Mill are always my go-to! Their beans are super high quality and they have an amazing selection to choose from. Just check out the bean section on their site to see what I’m talking about!
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Does Salt Affect The Cooking Time
I used to think adding salt to dry beans might slow down the cooking time, but over time Ive learned that the age of your dry beans has more to do with fluctuating cooking times than the salt does. So, feel free to use salt and enjoy more flavorful beans! The recipe below is my go-to seasoning combination.
How Long Boil Black Beans
Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes, then reduce heat low and cover. Let beans lightly simmer until tender, 1 to 2 hours depending on the size and age of the beans. Stir occasionally and add more water if necessary. When beans are tender, remove aromatics and season to taste with salt and pepper.
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Help I Overcooked My Beans Now What
I know it seems like all is lost, but take a deep breath and prepare to pivot dinner. Youve got this and you will be able to make something with soupy or even cooked-down-to-a-puree beans.
What do I mean by pivot dinner? Maybe you had envisioned a beautiful cassoulet, but opened up your Instant Pot to find complete mush. First, congratulations on finding a source for super fresh beans, and make a mental note to cook the rest of that batch for less time.
Now lets turn that frown upside down! If you made a stew with beautiful flavors, put it in a blender and now you have a wonderful dip or pate for bread, crackers, or veggies.
If they are too runny for dips you have two choices. First, turn on the sauté on your Instant Pot, cover mostly with a lid to prevent splatters, and cook until the consistency you want or, at least the one that you can work with.
The second is to use this water beanie goodness as a broth. Add more spices because I suspect they arent coming through at this point, throw in some veggies and cook on the sauté setting on low until done, or pressure cook for the longest cooking veggie you threw in. Everyone loves soup and not wasting food!
How To Cook Black Beans In The Slow Cooker
Ive found that cooking the beans in the slow cooker allows them to get really nice and tender. The black beans turn out perfect every single time!
To cook them in the crockpot:
Flavor Tip: Ive found that adding in diced sweet potatoes really makes the black beans really hearty. It also works great when I am meal prepping and making a few batches of my favorite sweet potato and black bean enchiladas!
Do You Soak Beans Covered Or Uncovered
If you do want to soak your black beans before you cook them, its very easy to do:
You dont need to cover the bowl, but I usually put a clean kitchen towel on top because Im a germaphobe.
Instant Pot Black Eyed Peas
The Instant Pot is our preferred method for cooking black eyed peas because its quick, easy, and yields perfectly tender beans!
Heres what you need to know:
- Ratio = 1 part black eyed peas : 3 parts water
- Cook Time = 15-17 minutes
- Release = 15 minute natural release, then release any remaining pressure
Did you find this helpful? If so, be sure to check out our Instant Pot Cooking Times Guide for perfectly cooked grains and beans every time!If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and dont forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
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How Long Cook Soaked Beans
Place beans in a large pot cover with fresh water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer gently until beans are tender but firm. Most beans will cook in 45 minutes to 2 hours depending on the variety. Periodically, try a taste test or mash a bean against the side of the pot with a fork or spoon.
How To Cook Black Beans On The Stove Top:
Rinse the dry black beans in a colander then transfer black beans in a large bowl and cover with water. Soak 8 to 24 hours. To speed up this process, soak the beans in boiling water for 2 hours.
Drain the black beans and rinse again. Transfer soaked beans to a saucepan and add 8 cups of water . Add any additional seasonings and bring to a full boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer and cook covered for 1 hour to 1.5 hours, until beans are fully cooked.
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How To Make Dry Black Beans Instant Pot
Place the black beans along with the water in the instant pot.
Place the lid, lock in place, turn the release knob to the sealing position, or dont press the release knob for newer models. Set the time to 30 minutes on high pressure.
When the time is up, let the pot sit undisturbed to release naturally for 20 minutes, then do a quick release of the remaining pressure. Open de lid facing away from you.
What Are Approximate Cooking Times
- Once the cooker is up to pressure, soaked black beans, with the pressure released naturally, take 5 to 6 minutes to cook.
- Soaked black beans with quick release, cook in about 9 minutes, once the cooker comes to pressure.
- Beans not soaked but pressure quick-released, cook in about 20 minutes, once the cooker comes to pressure.
- Without a pressure cooker it takes about 2 ½ hours to cook black beans until the beans are tender.
- Keep in mind that cooking times can vary a few minutes either way, depending on your pressure cooker, the size of the beans, and the age of the dried beans.
- Sometimes you have to bring the cooker back up to pressure for another minute or two.
- Other smaller dried beans like navy or cannellini, cook about the same as black beans.
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Seasoning Instant Pot Black Beans
Once youre ready to cook your beans, pile them in the pot along with the other ingredients. The recipe includes whole garlic cloves, oregano, cumin, chili flakes, and salt. Once cooked, the beans are mildly spiced and pleasingly salted. You can tinker with the seasonings however you like. The options are endless. Add a ham bone or a few strips of bacon for added smoke to the flavor. Turn up the heat by adding more chiles. Or cut the salt in half and skip the seasonings altogether, so your beans can be used in both savory and sweet dishes .
Should I Soak Dried Beans
The first consideration in cooking beans, no matter what method youre using, is whether or not to soak them first. That means immersing them in a generous bowl of water for about eight hours or overnight, during which time they expand. Soaking cuts down on cooking time and some believe it improves digestibility . Others say soaking is unnecessary and that the improved digestion is an old wives tale. I found this to be an enlightening write up on the topic, but overall recommend you do what works best for you.
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How To Cook Instant Pot Black Beans
By Step Instructions For Instant Pot Beans
- Rinse beans well: Rinse your beans over cool water in a strainer, removing any particles or pebbles.
- Add beans and water: Add beans and water to the Instant Pot, as well as any seasonings or additional vegetables.
- Set cooking time: Close the lid on sealing position. Using the above cheat-sheet, set the cooking time on High Pressure.
- Let Instant Pot naturally release: Allow the pressure cooker to natural pressure release . Open the lid once the pin drops.
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Black Beans Instant Pot Water Ratio
I tested two different water ratios:
- 1 pound dried beans + 8 cups water: After 30 minutes of pressure and 20 minutes of natural release, my beans were perfectly cooked, BUT there was an excess of water in the Instant Pot that needed to be drained. I wouldnt have minded for just plain old black beans, but the excess water diluted the wonderful bonus Cuban flavors Id added. Plus, draining the beans was an extra step that I wanted to see if I could eliminate.
- 1 pound dried beans + 3 cups water: The winner! This ratio took 35 minutes of pressure cooking + 20 minutes of natural release, but no draining was required, as the beans absorbed nearly all the liquid. There was a bit of extra liquid in the Instant Pot, but I found that once I stirred the beans, I like having it there for serving, as it ensured the beans were not at all dry.
Why Cook Beans & Chickpeas In The Instant Pot
I prefer to cook my beans and chickpeas in the Instant Pot rather than using other methods because:
- It’s quick and easy! Rather than hovering over a stovetop for long periods of time, using a pressure cooker allows you to cook your beans virtually hands-free.
- Your beans and chickpeas can be cooked with or without soaking them first. Both dry and pre-soaked beans work well in the Instant Pot.
- The beans always end up perfectly tender.
- You get to control the salt and add other flavors in the beans.
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How To Make Beans In A Slow Cooker:
Rinse the dry black beans well in a colander then transfer black beans in a large bowl and fill with water. Soak 8 to 24 hours. To speed up this process, soak the beans in boiling water for 2 hours.
Add the soaked black beans to your slow cooker, along with the remaining ingredients . Stir well and secure the lid on the slow cooker.
Slow cook on high for 3 to 4 hours, until black beans are cooked through. Taste for flavor and add more sea salt, and/or lime juice to taste.
What Are Black Beans
Black beans were new to me when I moved to US 12 years back. We did not see black beans growing up in India. Although I bet now they are popular there too.
Black beans, also called black turtle beans, are a black colored legume that is native to the Americas. They’re most popular in Latin American and Caribbean cuisine, such as Cuban black beans, but can often be found in Creole cooking too.
Black beans are a versatile and healthy food that has become so popular for nutrition reasons, you can now find them at markets and restaurants all across the world.
You can find black beans canned or dried by the pound at nearly any grocery store local to you. When in doubt, check the Latin or International aisle at your local market. You can also find black beans at any Latin American or Caribbean specialty store, as well as in the bulk dried foods section at most specialty foods stores such as Whole Foods.
You should store dry beans in a cool, dark place. Make sure that they’re packed in a plastic or glass container with an airtight lid. Dried beans can be stored for 2-3 years without losing valuable nutrients.
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Instant Pot Black Beans
We debuted our Instant Pot by making brown rice, so it was only natural that we try its perfect match: black beans!
Making homemade black beans is cost-effective and delicious, but it can be a little time consuming on the stovetop.
But with a little help from the Instant Pot, perfectly tender black beans are ready in under 1 hour with just 1 pot and 3 ingredients !
How To Prep Your Black Beans
Before cooking, we will do a tiny bit of prep work to get them ready.
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How To Flavor Beans
Instead of just cooking dried beans in water alone, I like to add a little flavor to my beans. This step of course is optional but highly encouraged.
- Along with beans and water, add a half an onion and bay leaf.
- You will want to add salt or homemade taco seasoning AFTER your beans have been cooked. Adding salt BEFORE cooking dried beans can make it harder for your beans to break down and soften properly.
What To Serve With Black Beans
If you’re looking for a great way to serve your pressure cooker black beans, consider one of these options:
- Use them as a topping or on the inside of enchiladas
- Serve them inside tacos or as a side dish to make a complete meal
- Serve them with fajitas
- Mix them with brown rice to make a rice and bean casserole
- Add them to a salad for extra protein, fiber, and flavor
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