How To Make Refried Beans In Instant Pot

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How To Store Cooked Beans

Instant pot refried beans | NO SOAK method

The recipe makes about 6 cups of cooked beans. You can cut the recipe in half if you don’t need that many. But, I’ve found that it’s not that difficult to use 6 cups of beans in different dishes throughout the week.

You can also freeze leftover cooked beans. And having cooked beans in your freezer is almost as convenient as having cans of beans in your pantry.

You have two options when storing cooked beans in the refrigerator or freezer:

  • Store cooked beans in some of the cooking liquid. This will keep them moist and tender. Plus, the cooking liquid contains a lot of flavor. So, if you’re planning to use the beans in soups or stews, adding the cooking liquid along with the beans can give the whole dish a flavor boost.
  • Rinse and dry the beans before adding them to a storage container. This is a good option if you’re planning to freeze the beans and don’t have a particular use in mind. When beans are frozen after being rinsed and dried, you can add them straight into a recipe without thawing.
  • How To Make Refried Beans


    Youll need a few essential ingredients to make these Mexican Refried Beans, including:

    • Dry Pinto Beans. Make sure you have at least two cups of dry pinto beans before you get started.
    • Bacon Fat. Save the fat after cooking bacon. Youll need three tablespoons of it for this recipe.
    • Onion. Chop your onion into small pieces before you use it.
    • Garlic. Mince three cloves of garlic and add the garlic to your Instant Pot with the onion.
    • Chicken Stock. Use chicken stock for flavor. Its best to use the low-sodium kind.
    • Spices. You will need a variety of Mexican inspired spices. I used salt, cumin and pepper for these refried beans.
    • Garnishes. You can use your favorite garnishes for your refried beans. Some of my favorite toppings are sliced jalapenos, diced tomatoes and crumbly Mexican cheese.


    If youd like to make the Homemade Refried Beans, start by rinsing your beans and draining them before setting them off to the side.

    Grab your Instant Pot, add the onion and bacon fat, and saute these ingredients for three minutes before adding your garlic for an additional minute.

    Pour some of the chicken stock into the Instant Pot, deglaze the pot, and then add your pinto beans, more chicken stock, cumin, pepper, and salt. Make sure you scrap the bottom of your Instant Pot to get rid of any stuck on bits of food.

    Expert Tips

    How To Store + Reheat

    • Refrigerator: Leftovers will keep for 5 6 days in the refrigerator, stored in a covered container.
    • Freezer: Refried beans are freezer friendly and will freeze well for up to 2 3 months. To freeze, let cool completely and store in freezer safe containers , leaving ½ inch head space for expansion. You can also freeze larger portions in large ziplock bags or containers. Let thaw before reheating.
    • Reheat: Simply re-warm on the stovetop over low heat until warmed through, adding a little water as needed so the beans dont stick to the pan. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave, covered, using 30 60 second intervals, stirring after each, until warm.

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    What Are Refried Beans Are They Fried

    Traditionally, refried beans are pinto beans cooked twice once in boiling water, and then fried in a pan with lard.

    Want to try traditional refried beans? Make these authentic refried beans from Kevin is Cooking!

    More commonly, refried beans are made at home by adding cooked pinto beans to a pan with hot oil, onions, spices, and hot peppers.

    This nontraditional pressure cooker recipe cooks the beans along with onions, spices, and jalapeños, and then blends them until theyre creamy.

    Cooked Dried Beans Have Better Flavor Than Canned Beans

    Instant Pot Refried Beans, creamy and easy refried bean recipe

    Cooked, dried beans have a deep, complex flavor you’ll never get from a can. on the other hand, canned beans can sometimes have a slight metallic flavor. Also, certain brands somehow manage to be both too salty and bland.

    But the best reason to use dried beans is that you can season and flavor themhowever you wish, adapting their flavor profile to whatever dish you plan to use them in.

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    Ingredients For Refried Beans

    • Rinsed Beans–I use pinto beans for this recipe, but if you want refried black beans, feel free to use black beans and follow modifications.
    • Water or Stock–I use a combination of stock and water. Feel free to use all water if you don’t have stock on hand. Both vegetable broth and chicken stock work in this recipe.
    • Onion–A quartered yellow onion will add so much flavor to these refried beans. The onion will completely soften and mellow in flavor as it cooked.
    • Spices–I use a blend of spices that are found in my taco seasoning. If you have a batch of homemade taco seasoning on hand, add that in once the beans have been cooked. You don’t want to add salt to the beans before cooking. I like to add dried spices, except for salt, to the beans while cooking to help them absorb flavor. But this recipe is adaptable.
    • Garlic–Garlic cloves add a lot of additional depth of flavor. No need to mince the garlic, it will break down as the beans cook.
    • Jalapeno –A jalapeno adds a great amount of flavor. Remove the stems, ribs, and seeds to keep these beans on the more mild side, or leave the seed in the jalapeno for REALLY spicy refried beans.
    • Apple Cider Vinegar–The vinegar really helps the flavors pop and help the beans to break down.

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    Instant Pot Beans Faqs

    Q: I like my beans to be super soft. How much longer should I cook them?

    A: If you want beans that are super soft and falling apart, cook them for an additional 10 minutes on high pressure.

    Q: How long should I cook beans if I’ve already pre-soaked them?

    A: If you’ve soaked your beans in water for at least 12 hours, reduce the cook time by 10 minutes.

    Q: How many beans can I cook in my Instant Pot at one time?

    A: This depends entirely on the capacity of your Instant Pot, but a good rule of thumb is to never fill your Instant Pot more than ½ full -this includes beans PLUS liquid. As the beans cook, there will be some foaming and filling the instant pot more than halfway can cause overflow.

    Q: Can I use the “quick release” option when the beans are finished cooking?

    A: Choosing the natural release option for your instant pot ensures the best texture and helps the beans retain their shape. The foam that is created while beans cook can come through the pressure release knob, clogging it and creating a mess.In general, you want to allow at least 20 minutes of natural release time. However, if you’re in a hurry, you can cut the natural release time down to 10 minutes before pressing the top steam valve to release the remaining pressure. If you do this, please protect your hands and face with oven mits or by loosely wrapping a kitchen towel around the steam valve to catch splatters.

    Q: What if my beans are still hard after cooking?

    Are Cooked Dried Beans Really Better Than Canned

    Homemade Refried Beans Instant Pot

    I’ve got nothing against canned beans and keep a small stockpile in my pantry at all times. They are essential to those nights when you need a tasty, nutritious meal lickety-split.

    But, cooked dried beans are unquestionably better in pretty much every way. Here are three reasons why I generally prefer cooked dried beans over canned:

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    Cooked Dried Beans Have A Better Texture Than Canned Beans

    While canned beans can be on the mushy side, the consistency of cooked, dried beans is tender and creamy. Almost buttery.

    Cooking with dried beans also allows you to control how long you cook them. If you’re making tacos and want your beans to be on the firm side, cook them less. If you’re making something like hummus, refried beans, or soup, cook them a bit longer.

    What Type Of Beans For Refried Beans

    This Instant Pot refried beans recipe uses dried pinto beans, which is commonly used for refried beans in the US. As we shopped for this recipe, Alex and I found a lot of variation in the dry beans labeled as pinto beans. There are lots of different varieties, with a range of colors. Feel free to use any type of pinto bean you like!

    You can also make refried beans using black beans. Feel free to use black beans in this recipe: just taste when finished and if the beans arent tender, pressure cook a few more minutes. Or, use canned: follow our Refried Black Beans recipe to make a quick and simple version.

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    What Can I Make With Instant Pot Refried Beans

    Thats the best part you can make so many things!

    • Tacos use corn or flour tortillas
    • Nachos you could even air fry cut corn tortillas to make them healthier
    • Burritos or get extra healthy and use collards or lettuce to wrap them up
    • Enchiladas make an easy sauce with dried chilies
    • Use them as a side top with vegan cheese or sour cream
    • Add them to a sandwich
    • Make a dip by adding in vegan sour cream and non dairy cheese
    • Anything else you think of!

    How To Make Instant Pot Pinto Beans

    The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans

    Start by using the sauté feature on your Instant Pot.

    Press the sauté button, and then add diced onion, along with some spices and jalapeño peppers.

    If you dont like a lot of spice, dont worry: youre adding A LOT of beans, so yes, you can taste the flavor of the peppers, but these beans are not incredibly spicy.

    Once the onions are translucent, and the spices are fragrant, youre ready to move on.

    Add water, bay leaves, and the beans .

    Next, seal the Instant Pot.

    Make sure the valve is turned to sealing position, and press the pressure cook button.

    Some model Instant Pots have a pressure cook button, and others have a manual button. They do exactly the same thing.

    If you soaked the beans, set the timer for 20 minutes.

    If you didnt soak the beans, set the timer for 45 minutes.

    The Instant Pot will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure, and then the timer will count down.

    When it finishes counting down, your pot will beep and begin counting up.

    Dont touch your Instant Pot at this point let it count up for ten minutes.

    This is called a natural release the pressure is naturally releasing.

    After ten minutes, you can use a long-handled spoon to move the valve to venting, and quick release the remaining pressure.

    Next, open the Instant Pot.

    Remove the bay leaves, and ladle out two cups of the liquid.

    Use an immersion blender to purée the beans, adding back some of the bean liquid if desired.

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    Serving And Pairing Refried Beans

    I dont know about you but Taco Tuesday happens in our household whenever I feel like it. Im making Taco Monday a thing! And here is what we whip out based on stock. Dont worry, I never make it all. Although, if youre feeding a very hungry crowd or hosting a party, why not?!

    Please enjoy and I would love to hear how you like this recipe!

    How Do I Cook Dried Beans On A Cooktop

    To cook your beans on a cooktop, you will need to soak them overnight. Rinse them, place them in a large pot, then add enough water to cover them. Keep the water level one or two inches above your beans.

    Drain before cooking, place them into a stockpot, and add fresh water. Cover the beans by 1 or 2 inches. Cover, then bring to a boil and simmer for an hour. Drain, then fry.

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    Why Youll Love This Instant Pot Refried Beans Recipe

    The great thing about refried beans is that you can use them for so many different things, and it doesnt feel like youre just eating pinto beans.

    • Super easy to make. Refried beans are so easy to make in your Instant Pot. Youll wonder why youve ever bought them in a can.
    • Adds variety to your meals. You can make tacos, tostadas, chip dip, Nachos, Enchiladas, burritos, hot dog toppings, and more with refried beans.
    • Delicious. Making your own refried beans means they arent bland like the canned stuff. With delicious seasonings like onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, and more, these refried beans taste delicious.
    • Homemade Refried Beans are budget friendly and you get much more for your money than buying canned beans.

    What Beans Can I Use To Make Refried Beans

    How To Make Instant Pot Refried Beans

    We use pinto beans in this recipe and tons of heirloom beans are a great swap for them, but in addition to those options, black beans and mayacoba are traditional beans used for refried beans.

    Heirloom varieties that work in this recipe:

    • Rio zape
    • Rattlesnake
    • Moro

    I like to try out new beans and play around with the seasonings. You can even make your own homemade chili powder by removing the seeds and stems from guajillo and ancho peppers that are mild. Then dehydrate in your oven or a dehydrator until brittle and grind in a spice grinder or repurposed coffee grinder.

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    Why Soak Dried Beans

    Soaking dried beans allows the beans to absorb water which helps the dried beans cook faster. And in my opinion, the case of pinto beans is the best way to make them in the pressure cooker.

    Soaking dried beans before cooking helps to make dried beans more digestible and helps with the gassiness some people experience when eating beans.

    How To Cook Dried Beans In The Instant Pot

    Whether I cook beans in the instant pot or on the stove, I dont soak them. Ive read that soaking them helps them cook faster and makes them easier to digest. But honestly I never remember to soak my beans overnight and my in-laws never do.

    However, you do want to rinse and sort your beans prior to cooking. This step is very important, because I actually found a small pebble in the beans before. Nobody needs to eat a rock in their beans.

    Once the beans are rinsed and any broken pieces picked out, place them in the instant pot.

    Add 6 cups of water for every pound of dried beans.

    Then add 2 tablespoon of oil, any neutral oil, to prevent foaming of the beans.

    Thats it! I always add the salt after cooking, because salt will extend the cooking time.

    Set the instant pot timer to 30 minutes and once the timer goes off, leave it alone for another 20 minutes .

    Before you start cooking, if the beans look dried and shriveled then you will need to add on extra time. 3-5 min extra so 33-35 min, with a 20 min rest of keep warm after the timer goes off.

    After the 20 min rest, remove the instant pot lid and season the beans with salt. I start with 1 tablespoon, taste and add more if needed. The longer the beans sit in the broth, they will absorb more salt.

    You can serve the beans right away whole, or once cooled, store them in the fridge or freezer.

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    What Makes This A Healthy Spin On Refried Beans

    Refried beans can have quite a bit of added fat, and usually its lard. These Instant Pot refried beans are incredibly delicious without a lot of added fat. Theres just 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil added to 3 cups beans . Adding butter makes for a creamier overall consistency, so wed recommend if you eat dairy. For a fully plant-based recipe, olive oil works too.

    How to add flavor but still keep the recipe healthy? Onion, garlic, jalapeño, and spices! These ingredients are low calorie, but big on flavor. The cumin and smoked paprika add complexity and depth that make these beans seriously satisfying.

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