Pressure Cooker Refried Beans
Thanks to the magic of a pressure cooker, dry pinto beans cook to perfection in less than 35 minutes (no pre-soaking required). Homemade refried beans have never been easier!
I’ve been promising you a pressure cooker homemade refried beans recipe and here it is!
I’ve used my trusty slow cooker method for several years to make them. Once I fell in love with homemade refried beans, there was no going back. I always have them waiting for me in the freezer.
But, since the excitement of pressure cooking is in full swing, it was time to give you a pressure cooker version.
Let’s detail the merits of making refried beans in the pressure cooker, shall we?
Fast (35 minutes or less cooking time)
No need to soak the beans beforehand
One more way to justify a pressure cooker in your life (<—this)
I’ve made these beans many times in both my InstantPot (electric pressure cooker) and my stovetop pressure cooker.
They cook a bit faster (30 minutes) in my beloved, sturdy stovetop model, but the convenience of the amazing InstantPot often makes an extra five minutes of cooking time worth it.
(For more information on why the timing is different between stovetop and electric pressure cookers, among other things, take a look at this Pressure Cooking 101 post).
Additionally, you can cut the cooking time in half for these delectable refried beans. To do that, remember to soak the dry beans for 8-10 hours. Spoiler alert: I never seem to remember to do that.
I usually spoon the finished refried beans into foodsaver bags, seal them right up, and pop them in the freezer. FYI: this is the foodsaver I bought last year and love more than life.
The beany beans defrost really quickly for easy weeknight dinners (bean and cheese quesadillas, anyone?) or to be used in recipes or dips or whatever creative way you feel like using them up.
The flavor and ease of this recipe is amazing! Even though I make tons and tons of recipes in my pressure cooker(s), there are a handful of recipes that actually make a pressure cooker worth having, if that makes sense, and these refried beans are definitely at the top of that list.
I’ve made them a million times like this, and still, every time, it just blows my mind that crunchy, dry, little beans can become soft, flavorful, delicious refried beans in less than an hour. I love ’em.
Since I know many of you will ask, I have to be honest, I haven’t made them in the slow cooker for ages thanks to the speediness of the pressure cooker. It just can’t be beat.
Pressure Cooker Refried Beans
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 jalapeño, cored, seeded and finely chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 3-4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 ½ pounds dry pinto beans, rinsed
- 8 cups water
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- In the insert of an electric pressure cooker (or in a stovetop pressure cooker), heat the oil (using the Sauté function on the InstantPot) and add the jalapeño, onion, and garlic, and sauté for 1-2 minutes, stirring often.
- Add the rinsed and drained beans, water, broth, salt and vinegar.
- Secure the lid on the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes (stovetop) and 35 minutes (electric).
- Let the pressure naturally release. Reserve two cups of the liquid in a separate bowl.
- Drain the rest of the liquid off the beans. Using an immersion blender, potato masher (or spooning the beans into a blender), process/mash to the desired consistency, adding reserved cooking water, if needed for a smoother/softer consistency.
- Refrigerate for up to a week or freeze for several months.
Recipe Source: from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe (adapted from my slow cooker refried bean recipe)
155 Comments on “Pressure Cooker Refried Beans”
Honestly the best recipe for pinto beans ever, puts local efforts to shame.
I add more salt, garlic, jalapeño, onion, and monosodium glutamate (stop being racist you 1970s weirdos). but that’s just for my peoples around here lol.
Just don’t forget to soak those beans over night for wildly better results.
I can’t have meats due to unfortunate health issues so I use veggie stock and butter. Always a smashing hit around these parts.
Throw those beans and mild cheddar into a tortilla, thank me later.
Just throw in authentic rojas and verde sauce you made and it all comes into focus. Again you’re welcome lol
I grew up in the Seventies in NYC and your comment about MSG and racism escapes me; (stupid ol’ me!) Are you referring to the “Chinese Restaurant Syndrome” headaches some people used to talk about? Thx…MT
I make these all the time for my family and they are always a hit! Thanks for putting so much work into your delicious recipes.
I like to cook my beans without the vegetables so that when I drain off the cooking water, none of the great vegetable flavors are drained away.
I either saute the vegetables first in the pressure cooker or I fry them up in a pan while the beans are cooking. I then blend the vegetables in the blender before stirring them into the mashed beans.
I completely drain the beans and never have to add back any bean water. That is because I also use a tomato in the vegetable mix, and that adds plenty of liquid. I also added cilantro to the vegetables in the blender. If you don’t like the heat of a jalapeno, use an Anaheim chili or canned green chilis.
Do you start the 30 minutes when the pressure starts rockin? Or from the moment you turn on the stove?
Start timing the 30 minutes after it comes to full pressure.
I think that dry beans need to cook longer when you’re cooking them in hard water. 35 minutes wasn’t enough time to completely soften the beans, they still had a slightly firm texture to them. I used an immersion blender to purée them but there were still a few chunky parts. I also added the two cups of liquid back into the beans and they could have used more to get a restaurant quality texture. The flavor was pretty mild, they could have used a bit more jalapeño and onion. With that being said, I would make them again but with a few changes to cook time and seasonings and I will add some seeds from the jalapeño in to give it a kick. Thanks!
There is no way to know how old your beans are. I cook them longer for refried beans because they will get smashed anyway.
If you leave the seeds and membrane in your jalapeno, it will make it hotter.
I also use more onion, tomato, and cilantro. I saute the vegetables separately from the beans and then place in a blender. If you use a tomato, you won’t be adding any of the bean water back.
A person has no idea how old their dried beans are. This is true if you buy them in a bag, in the bulk section, or you’re using old beans from your parents’ food storage! Beware that your beans might take much longer to cook if they are old. However, I still don’t soak them first. I just allow extra time when preparing in case I need to cook them longer after the natural release.
I really like the bean chart at this site. It is way down the page after the pictures. The chart is highlighted in blue. I can’t seem to paste the chart here, so I will paste the link.
The chart is called “InstantPot Ultimate cooking time chart for dried beans.”
I have read that adding vinegar to beans before cooking, increases the cooking time.
One great thing about this recipe is that if your beans aren’t cooked soft enough, you can restart your pressure cooker for a few more minutes. I like them pretty mushy before I smash them with my potato masher.
Thank you for a slightly alternative recipe from the way I make them.
Can you sub black beans for pinto beans and keep everything else the same?
Delicious, easy, and fast recipe! Thank you!
So good. Even my husband who doesn’t like beans liked them. I put them on bean tostadas. I did have to add an extra 10 minutes to the cook time but that might be due to altitude.
Just finding this recipe now and wow! My favorite refried bean recipe I’ve tried! Great flavor, and I love how easy this was to put together!!!
I use my immersion blender all the time and yet for some reason I was still transferring my beans from the Instant Pot to the food processor (I’ve been doing a similar recipe for IP refried beans for a few years now; they’re great!). Definitely trying the immersion blender next time – thanks!
I’ll be making these this afternoon! I found it because I was searching to see what info you had on using a food saver. I just got one and would love to know what else you use it for.
Erica, I have been using my food saver for several years and my two favorites are:
l. – Storing brown sugar. After opening the bag and removing what you need, slip the bag into a sealer bag and vacuum seal it in the machine. Next time you need brown sugar, use scissors to cut open the bag. Your sugar will be moist, soft and fresh. After removing what you need, reseal it and your sugar will remain soft until all used up.
Oops…didn’t get to finish posting my second favorite use for the food saver before hitting post. Sorry for the goof. But here it is:
#2 – Storing cheese. I always buy large blocks of cheese from either Sam’s Club or the grocery store because I shred my own. Thing is that it will get moldy if not used up right away and needs to have mold cut off before getting to the clean, safe useable portion. So messy. So…by slipping the cheese into a food saver bag and sealing out all the air, the cheese will stay mold-free and ready-to-use when pulling from the fridge.
I have commented about this recipe before and wanted to say again, that it is 100% my go to recipe. I don’t buy canned beans anymore ever! I love this recipe and wanted you to know just how often I use it. It has become one of my must have staple recipes. Thank you again for sharing it.
Thank you so much, Jamie!!
I have made these so many times and I don’t think I’ve ever left a review or feedback on it yet. These are so delicious! My 8 year old’s favorite meal (she’s chosen it her last TWO birthdays!) is bean burritos – just refried beans and some shredded cheese in a tortilla and crisped up in a skillet. She loves these so much and asks for them weekly. One time I thought I’d save myself a little time and I bought store bought refried beans. She excitedly took a bite, looked at me and asked “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?” She can be slightly dramatic, but they weren’t nearly as delicious so we haven’t gone the store bought route again. I honestly don’t know how many times I’ve made these – it’s a lot! We love them!
Excellent recipe. Easy directions. Perfect results. Thanks.
These turned out great! I plan on using them in your mom’s freezer burritos. I can’t wait to see how they turn out:)
This recipe is okay, but I had to modify a bit. I added 1 can of diced green chilies instead of jalapenos. I added 2 tsp of chili powder, 1 tsp of ground cumin and 1 tsp of taco seasoning. Also I cooked for 35 minutes and the beans were not cooked and tasted bland. I added a pinch of salt and several shakes of hot sauce. After another 30 minutes in the instant pot it turned out perfect!
I don’t have an instant pot, would this work in a crockpot?
Here is a slow cooker version – http://melkitchencafe.com/the-best-refried-beans-made-in-the-slow-cooker-and-fat-free/
I had a four-pound bag of pinto beans that I soaked overnight. Used half per batch in my 8qt IP. Maybe about ten cups of water. Could have done less but I wanted them plenty covered. I cooked them on high for 12 minutes.
If you use this recipe using black beans, you will get the best flavor if you use 6 cups of water instead of 8.
Made these tonight and they were absolutely fantastic. The recipe is easy to follow and the beans were delicious. Next time, I’ll leave in a few jalapeño seeds to add a bit of a kick to them.
My go-to recipe for refried beans every time! I was worried about the jalapeño being too Spivey for my kiddos, but it’s perfect. Thank you for making taco night so much more yummy!
This was WAY too much liquid for my beans and IP. Having never made them before, I didn’t think to take out more than the cups. It was a soupy mess.
The recipe says to drain off the liquid after you pressure cook them.
Hi Mel! Since we end up draining the water, wouldn’t it be easier to make it with less liquid? Say 8 or even 10 cups total instead of 12? did make it as you directed and it was great, but I just felt silly pouring in that much liquid just to pour it all out later.
You could try that, but I’ve found that the beans I use soak up a lot of the liquid, so keep that in mind – different varieties or brands of beans may need more water.
How many dry beans do you cook in the 8qt? Like can you do a 2lb bag all at once? What amount of liquid would be good? Thanks!
I’ve made a 1 1/2 batch of this recipe in the 8 quart.
We love this recipe and make it often. I do add a bit more liquid, but not much and it always takes longer for the pressure to come down at high altitude.
I LOVE this recipe! This is my favorite recipe EVER for refried beans. Thank you so much! I really think the vinegar helps the ” musical fruit,”
We made this last night and the flavor was good but the beans were not cooked all the way and were dry . I’m going to try it again but cook for 40 minutes and add 2 1/2 cups of liquid. We live at a high altitude so I’m guessing that may be part of the problem.
A person never knows how old their dried beans are. I have some very old beans from my parents’ food storage and I also buy from the bulk section at Winco. You just need to plan on some extra cooking time. Remove the lid after natural release and check a few beans for softness level. I like mine pretty mushy for refried beans. You may need to add as much as 20 more minutes of cooking time depending on how old your beans are. I never soak my beans anymore like I previously did on the stovetop.
I could not paste the chart I use.
The chart is highlighted in blue a ways down the page after the pictures.
OMG! I just took the beans out of the pot and mashed them. They are fabulous! I added a sprig of epazote and I was advised correctly, you can’t taste it.
OH and added bonus! THE BROTH/LIQUOR! OMG this is soo good. I think it’s going to be frozen and used for a wonderful soup or stew. At the moment a chunk of bread in it is heavenly!
I soak my beans in boiling water for one hour before cooking in the instapot. You then can reduce the liquid amount to 5 cups and cook time down to 12 mins, if anyone is wondering. I do two cups of broth and three water.
Love this recipe! I have been making the crockpot version for a few years, I’m trying this Instant pot version today. So excited!
Wanted to share what I do to freeze them. I use silicone ice cube trays that I used for homemade baby food. So put bean in the trays, freeze, pop out of trays and into plastic baggies. Anyway, they are perfect because they are in cubes and you can grab a couple or however many you need at a time and not have to thaw a large amount. 2-3 cubes are perfect for a burrito, and they are super fast to defrost is the microwave this way.
I love this recipe! Whenever I’m in a pinch for dinner I whip these up for bean and cheese burritos. If I have it, I’ll add in 2-3 tablespoons of bacon fat for extra flavor. Yumo!
*I meant to say 2-3 teaspoons of bacon fat, not tablespoons. But I always half the recipe.
This recipe is a keeper!!!!!!
Glad you loved it!
This recipe was very yummy! Thanks for sharing. I also used my ninja. There was a lot of extra broth which I re-purposed to make another dish.
These beans turned out very good. I left out the jalapeno (because I didn’t have one) and only used 4 cups of water instead of 8. Followed the recipe otherwise. So yummy.
This was fantastic!!!
I use the cooking time charts from two websites I check almost every time I use my electric pressure cooker.
The first one below gives high altitude time adjustments, and also gives times recommended for both soaked and unsoaked beans of various kinds, including pinto and black beans.
I almost never soak any beans before pressure cooking. To me, black beans always seem to cook better when not soaked.
The only one I always try to soak first is chickpeas, since they can stay very small when not pre-soaked.
The one I use the most is hippressurecooking.com. I have to add about 20% to the time, since I live at an altitude of about 6,000 feet. I don’t know hot accurate their times are at low altitudes, but I do know that the time required can vary a lot from one batch of beans to another, depending on factors such as the age and dryness.
So pinto beans take me usually about 30 to 40 minutes to cook, with no soaking ahead of time, in an electric pressure cooker at this altitude.
The other website I compare info and times to is fastcooking.ca
Those two sites have lots of good pressure cooking info, but they don’t have a whole lot of recipes, so I am glad you have a recipe here that looks good, and that everyone seems to like.
I will try it out today.
This is for black bean lovers!! We love LOVE this recipe and I wanted an equally amazing recipe for black beans so I tried this one! I followed the recipe subbing in black beans for pinto beans. I cooked them in my stove top pressure cooker for 25 minutes. They turned out just how I was hoping! The best black beans I’ve ever tasted!! Instead of blending them up, we scooped them out with a slotted spoon and put them on rice with our favorite toppings. Heavenly!!! Thank you Mel for another winning recipe!!! We love you!!!
These refried beans were amazing! We live at a high altitude so I had to do 10 extra min cooking time, but such flavor!! We all loved it
These were the best refried beans I ever made! They tasted like they were from a good Mexican restaurant! For sure reserve the cooking liquid to keep them creamy and smooth. I blended mine in my Ninja. So fast and simple and so delicious! I never want to misplace this recipe! I served them with quest shredded cheese. I made them in my stove top pressure cooker for 30 minutes.
I made these just almost as described (see note on high altitude) in my 6 qt. IP. I was a little concerned about how full the pot was, but it was not a problem. I’m at 7600 feet and cooked for 75 minutes and they weren’t quite done, so I put in another 10 minutes and they were perfect. They have a wonderful flavor, but I added a bit more salt to my liking. Thanks so much for a great recipe.
Delicious and easy recipe! Thanks or sharing! My family LOVED it.
I love this recipe! I also have a Food Saver but I don’t use it very often. I’m wondering how you sealed the bags of beans. I’m assuming you don’t vacuum seal them. Also how do you get the beans into the bags without a mess.? I had beans all over!
Hi Sarah – I do vacuum seal them on the “wet” setting of my food saver – the key is to leave a couple inches of space before you seal; it helps with the mess. As for the mess of getting them in the bag, I turn the top third of the bag inside out and scoop the beans into the bottom of the bag and then fold the top of the bag back up like normal, press into an even layer, and seal. Does that make sense?
We love this recipe. The beans are amazing. They are not spicy at all. The recipe is very adaptable for those who want more spice.
Help! :)) please.
I’ve made these so many times and they have never cooked through at 35 min. I let them naturally release for 25 min and have tried cooking them at 45 and 60 min as well. What the heck?! So frustrating. I’m not sure why it doesn’t work for me. I’m in Utah so high altitude but??? Any advice? I know I can soak them but not ideal since that’s the point of an IP. I’m stumped. My friend in the same neighborhood said she cooks hers 45 min and they turn out, I have a regular 6 qt instant pot brand and it seems to work for ever other recipe.
Make sure you do NOT add any salt to beans until after they are soft. So if you use stock or bullion, both might have salt. Also if dried beans are old from supermarket, they might never soften. In states with hard water, you might need to add a pinch of baking soda to the cooking water to help with softening. I also always pre-soak my beans.
How many cups of beans would you use? We buy in bulk from the grocer so we don’t typically measure accurately!
It’s probably right around 3 cups.
Will not go back to canned refried beans ever again.
The best refried beans I have ever made.
I love this recipe. It’s so tasty!
Our church is doing a Mexican luncheon on Sunday foe about 200 people. I’ve been working all morning to get 8#’s of these prepared. I’m putting them into full size aluminum pans.
Do you think that’s enough?
How long do you think to reheat them in the oven?
Yes, I think that will be enough! And I’d probably reheat them for an hour in a 275 degree oven (stirring once, maybe?).
The refried beans turned out great!!! We used them as a side dish for taco Thursday. Really wonderful! Thank you for sharing this recipe!
Is it necessary to use the white vinegar?
I think so. But you could experiment leaving it out.
What a great recipe! I’m new to pressure cooking, and I have to say, this recipe is one of the relatively few I’ve found so far that works perfectly, exactly as it’s written. Perfect texture, very good flavor, cooking times and everything absolutely on the money!
Now headed off to explore some more of your recipes, because you’re obviously a standout in the vast sea of Instant Pot bloggers.
These are the best homemade refried beans I’ve ever had! I’ve tested so many recipes and I am so happy to have found this one- thank you!!
What cooking time (electric) would you use for soaked beans?
I think you could get away with 20 minutes.
Does the cooking time change based on the elevation at all?
I think it might – but I’m not sure. I don’t live at high elevation, but I think I heard that some pressure cooker recipes might need to be modified because of that?
I was excited to read all of the good reviews and am trying this recipe. I soaked the beans overnight (as mentioned in the article and also because overnight soaking is good for someone following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet). I had forgotten that the beans will expand and I found that they do not fit into the 6-quart Instant Pot since that would fill it more than half-way. So, besides needing a larger pot, I’m wondering if the amount of liquid should be changed for beans that have been soaked for 8 hours. Thanks!
Hey Debbie – to be honest, I think I tend to overfill my IP over the halfway mark when making this recipe with soaked beans (and a lot of time I use my larger IP or my stovetop pressure cooker which is one quart larger)…but if following that halfway full rule, you might want to soak 1 pound of beans (and reduce the liquid to six cups water and three cups broth).
Hi! Read the beans recipe and wanted to know what size of Instsnt Pot (Rl Pressure cooker) you used… & can it be pared down toa 3 cup one???
PS: I use the bigger pressure cooker to make beans for my family of 6.. W/ leftovers. Now it’s just for me or me & 1 other w/ some leftovers….
Hi there, I use the 6-quart or 8-quart Instant Pot. And yes, I think you can definitely cut the recipe down for a smaller cooker!
These are soooo good! My children love when I make refried beans, and these definitely have the best flavor of all the recipes I have used. And what can beat the time allotment the instant pot gives? I do add about 3 tbsp butter, just to make them slightly more authentic in flavor. Thanks, Mel!
Made these today and they were perfect!
I didn’t have a fresh jalapeno, so used some pickled ones I had, I also went with the recommendation to cook for 45 minutes as I wanted them pretty smooth and figured I was better of cooking longer rather than undercooking 🙂
I made these tonight! Awesome! I did 45 minutes because of some of the reviews. Perfect! I didn’t see and devain the jalapeno. Just had a nice bite. Lots of broth left over think I’m going to make a soup with it! So much flavor in the broth, I didn’t want it to go to waste! Will definetly make again! Plan on more time then you think!
I used to jalapeno peppers instead and there is not much of any hotness to it. I would use three next time. 45 minutes in the pressure cooker with just right. It tastes really good, but it would be better as a side instead of a main meal as its not tasty enough by itself imo.
I have had my Instant Pot for 2 weeks. I made this recipe today. Easy and delicious!! Thank you!!!
Making these for my first instantpot! I had to call my sis in law for help. lol I’ll be an expert in no time! Plus my husband is sad bc we’re out of beans. Ha
Do you know if these can be canned in jars instead of frozen? If yes, what pressure and time? Thanks.
I’ve never tried it – sorry, Mary!
I pressure can beans whole (super easy) there are guidelines on the Ball site & most county Extension sites. You can’t pressure can them already pureed, though, they are too thick to safely process.
Thank you. These were great and my family enjoyed them but they took much longer than I expected. I followed the directions except no jalapeño and I set my Instant Pot for 40 minutes high pressure. It took at least 15 minutes to come to pressure then the 40 minutes then I finally did a quick release after 20 minutes of natural release. The quick release took 4 minutes itself! Just sharing so others can plan if they are including these as part of a meal.
Thank you for your comment! Wish I had read it before starting. I’m into this now for 45 minutes, just as you stated (between prep time, bringing the IP to pressure, cook time, and pressure release). I opened up the IP and my beans are no where near cooked. I’m putting them back in for more time. 🙁 Bummer.
10 extra min in pressure cooker and these are awesome.
We love these refried beans! We leave out the oil, and saute in a bit of broth; we also use 2-3 jalapeños. 3= hot! So 2 is a good number for a bit of kick! I’ve made them over and over again. They are good as a dip for chips, just add more of the bean broth back in to make them softer. So good! Great recipe Mel! Thanks.
I made these refried beans in my IP the other night. I don’t think I drained the beans very well before I blended them. Do you have any tricks for how you drained your beans?
I usually put a strainer over a bowl and pour them in the strainer so I can reserve the liquid and use it if needed.
I want to make these but leave some as whole pinto beans for soups, as opposed to mashed. Do you think this recipe would work well for that?
I have a slow cooker recipe that I love, but I am going to try yours for my instant pot. I’m just curious about why you use vinegar. I haven’t seen that in a refried bean recipe before and wondered if it was just for flavor and acidity or if it serves another purpose?
It helps tenderize the beans as they cook. 🙂
So if I happen to be out of white vinegar could I substitute ACV? Or leave it out and just cook longer?
I haven’t tried it, but yes, I think you could sub another vinegar
How long should it take the Instant Pot to come to pressure when making these beans? I’m still very new to pressure cooking, so it still makes me a bit nervous…
It can take anywhere from 5-10 minutes to come to pressure.
Thank you so much for all your instapot recipes. I’ve tried your applesauce and now the refried beans and I love both. I’m making your tortilla soup tonight and I’m sure it will turn out great just like every other recipe I have gotten from you. I’ve really loved my instapot so far. Thank you for showing me all the ways I can use it.
I did it…or rather you did it. You finally got me to use the pressure cooker that I have had and never once used in 10 years. I asked for it not really knowing much about them except that I loved a dish my sister-in-law frequently made with it, but then I panicked when I started reading about pressure cookers and was too afraid to use it. Admittedly I did have a bit of a panic session while making these beans and probably terrified my children as I explained why they could not come anywhere near the kitchen while they were cooking, but thanks to the trusty list of helpful sites you complied a while back I managed to keep everything from exploding and these were delicious! I wish I had a video of the surprised look on my husband’s face as he tasted a bite. He was shocked and overcome by how good they were. It was pretty funny actually. Thank you for another delicious recipe and for helping me get over another kitchen fear!
Haha, I loved this, Lindsey! That sounds like me with my kids when I first used my pressure cooker. I’m so glad it was a success!
I don’t want to loose all the flavor of the pepper and garlic out into the bean water.
I cook the beans in water, and drain off ALL the water.
I put a tomato, onion, Anaheim chili, garlic and cilantro in the blender. I then saute it in a tiny bit olive oil. It may sound silly to saute liquid, but that’s what I’m doing.
Then I add that vegetable herb mixture to the beans. If you didn’t use a tomato, you would probably need to put some bean broth back in. I season with salt and cumin to taste. Sometimes instead of salt I use chicken bouillon powder.
If you let them simmer for a while the flavor improves.
Yes, it dirties up another pan, and yes you have to wait a little longer for all the flavors to combine, but I love it. I will have to try it your way, now!
My former electric pressure cooker (that I got for under $20 off of Craigs List over 10 years ago) died a few months ago. I have been mulling over many different pressure cooker brands and models. For months I have gone back to slow cooker or dutch oven. Refried beans and quick tender meat are the two reasons I finally budgeted for an Instant Pot Duo. I got a six quart one with a small cosmetic dent on the outside for $70 on E-bay with free shipping!
I made your recipe – following your directions – and these are the best refried beans I’ve ever had and, unlike the canned versions, I know what is in them!!! SO SO SO easy too. I have a Cuisinart electric pressure cooker and cooked the (unsoaked) beans for 35 minutes. They were perfectly cooked – tender yet not mushy. Thank you!
I made these tonight and they were a hit! I had to add 10 minutes to the time, but I usually do when I cook beans in my instant pot.
This was the first actual recipe for beans that I’ve followed, and consequently the first time they haven’t been too salty, or onion-y, or to cumin-y etc, so thank you!
I just have to tell you… I saw the picture of the refried beans, and before I read what they were, I thought it was a picture of hot Cocoa Wheats cereal!! Just struck my funny bone when I realized what it actually was, be cause I was thinking: You mean someone needs instructions on how to cook Cocoa Wheats cereal??!! Anyway, it his recipe sounds really good. I will have to try this! 🙂
Do you know how many cups 1.5 lbs would be? I’ve transferred the beans to another container and don’t know the weight of the package, and my food scale disappeared when we moved.
Also, can you halve the recipe? Same cooking time?
Yes, you can definitely halve the recipe – the main thing to consider with a pressure cooker is to make sure there is still at least a cup of liquid; I’d keep the same cooking time. 1 1/2 pounds of beans is about 3 cups.
I want to halve the recipe too because there are only three of us and I have a small freezer. I was thinking of doing one pound of beans but don’t know how much water/broth to use?
If you are going to do 1 pound, I’d use 6 cups water.
I’m new to pressure cooking and I never know if you’re supposed to have it set to “venting” or “sealing”.
You want to set it to sealing if you are pressure cooking (otherwise it won’t come to pressure). Venting is to release the pressure.
I LOVE these beans in the crockpot and am super excited to try them in the IP. Thank you so much for another winner of a recipe! I don’t comment much, but I feel like I should…cause I make your food all the time! This recipe is a winner for sure!!! I don’t have a pepper so I am gonna try it without (hope it is still yummy).
oh! and i would totally be interested in a more in depth talk/blog post about your food saver!!! give me all the deets!! 😉
Thanks, Janet! 🙂
I have the same Instant Pot you do and I’m wondering if I can safely double the recipe? If so, would you increase the cooking time? I’ve been using your slow cooker version for a while now and am excited to try this one. Thanks!
Hey Amanda – unfortunately, you aren’t supposed to fill the IP up more than halfway with beans so the amount in this recipe maxes out the 6-quart IP size.
I made these yesterday and they were so good! I loved them so much that I wondered if they would work with black beans as well. (I served a mission to Guatemala so am a huge fan of black beans now.) I tried it and oh my gosh they were so fabulous! I liked them even better than the pinto variety, and that’s saying something! Thanks, Mel.
Made these last night. Had the seal on my pressure cooker go out so I finished them in the crackpot overnight. Hit them with the immersion blender and they were fantastic! Thanks for another great recipe.
You are making me want an Instant Pot even more…all my friends and favorite bloggers have them! I still won’t even cook beans unless I’ve remembered to soak them though – it’s just what I’m comfortable with in terms of digestion or gut health. I love restaurant refried beans and never get them, so this recipe will be awesome 🙂
Thanks for posting this! If one does remember to soak the beans — how long would you cook them in the instant pot? 17 minutes?
Hi Carrie – looks like the note I included in the recipe somehow got deleted, so I’ll readd it, but yes, right around 17 minutes for an electric pressure cooker and 15 minutes for a stovetop.
I don’t see that you added this to the recipe or notes. Would be helpful (I persisted and read through the comments to find the info!).
Also, no mention to the reason beans are soaked: the gas factor. It lessens tummy troubles. Anyone know if these no soak recipes differ in that vs the soak recipes?
Amazing!! Thank you, Mel!!
Hi Mel, this may be a dumb question, but would this recipe work for black beans as well as pinto? Any changes you think I’d have to make, or could I just substitute black for pinto beans?
Yes! It should work great!
It’s been a few months (way too long!) since I’ve made your slow cooker refried beans. We love making homemade freezer bean and cheese burritoes with them. I’ll have to try them with the IP version now.
I’m adding a follow up comment – I just made these and had soaked the beans over night. I had to decreased the liquid by about 4 cups since the beans grew and had already absorbed water. If you try to add all the water called for, the IP is too full and could potentially cause problems.
You must have read my mind!! I was going to make your slow cooker version again (love them), but was wanting to speed things up. I am looking forward to trying out this version. Thanks!!
With the pressure cooker – do you wait until the top thing bobbles and then go thirty minutes from there or thirty minutes from putting the lid and turning to high.
Hi Julie – the two pressure cookers I have don’t have a gauge that rocks back and forth (only my pressure CANNER has that). Does your every day pressure cooker have a gauge that rocks back and forth like that?
Yes it does. But it’s ok I let it go an extra ten minutes and it worked out fine!
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I can not wait to try your version! I have made refried beans in my IP using a recipe that was in an IP cookbook I purchased on Amazon and they are so much better than the can. Also, thank you for the foodsaver link, I have been thinking about purchasing one for some time and needed a good recommendation. My questions is~ which refill rolls do you buy? The Food Saver ones or one of the off brands? Thank you for the help!
Off brand all the way. 🙂
Is there a particular off-brand you recommend? There are quite a few options on Amazon, and I’m not sure which ones to choose.
I’ve had good luck with these:
Whereas I go for the Food Saver brand. I’m in my chest freezer nearly every day and the off brand ones I’ve tried just don’t hold up. One tiny hole is all it takes to lose the seal & find all your hard work for naught. After throwing out an entire pork loin that freezerburned because yet again the generic bag got pinprick hole in it, I gave up on the generic bags.
I wait for Black Friday when they run a BOGO on bags. I buy enough for an entire year then so it’s cheaper AND I get the quality of the Food Saver bags.
I never thought of using broth – wonderful! I like to add a bit of cumin and cinnamon in “refrieds” … just a bit of extra oomph to flavor.
Thanks for the foodsaver link. I’ve been looking at them and dithering about which way to go – “automatic”, size, etc. I am happy to see the basic model is working well for you so it just found its way into my Amazon cart!
I, too, went the rounds of which foodsaver I wanted but I have loved this model. It doesn’t have many bells and whistles but it is perfect for what I need…and I use it a lot. I love that it has the port so you can seal mason jars (if you have the attachment; it’s super handy).
I wondered about the mason jar sealer – thanks for that tip!
Oh…when (or if 🙂 ) you get in the pumpkin mood … I just did a pie pumpkin in the instant pot. I had already split and removed seeds before I thought of looking it up. Split did wonderfully and the flesh falling off the skin. Reading says you can just put a pie pumpkin in the pot with water and 13 min – will try that next time. Maybe not enough pumpkin for your requirements but I usually do 1 pie pumpkin at a time and this is perfect!
I love that, Liz! I’ll definitely be trying it (I have a couple savory pumpkin chili recipes that would be great in). And you probably “know” me well enough by now to know that my pumpkin rant was a lot tongue in cheek (with some serious pumpkin anxiety thrown in there). Rest assured I’ll be trying your pumpkin method in the IP, though, if only because I’m obsessed with pressure cooking! 🙂