You are just mere steps away from the easiest, foolproof, way to perfectly cooked Instant Pot Black Beans. With only 2 ingredients and 15 minutes in the pressure cooker, this simple recipe uses dried beans and no pre-soaking. It’s the recipe you’ve been waiting for!
I love that I can make a big batch of healthy black beans for way less money than store-bought! I use them for things like black bean salsa, black bean brownies, and healthy black bean burgers. Whatever I don’t use, I freeze for later. There is no shortage of recipes for these little guys, so I’m happy to always have them on hand.
Table of contents
- Pressure Cooker Black Beans
- Why This Recipe Works (Like Magic!)
- Ingredients for Instant Pot Black Beans
- How to Cook Beans in 6 Quart Pot
- How to Cook Beans in 8 Quart Pot
- Tips for Foolproof Black Beans
- Add-ins and Variations
- Delicious and Healthy Ways to Use Instant Pot Black Beans
- Making Black Beans in Advance
- Further Freezing Tips
- More Easy Instant Pot Recipes
Pressure Cooker Black Beans
Presoaking and cooking beans on the stovetop can be very time-consuming but what if I told you this pressure cooker black beans recipe lets you in on a secret? The simple science behind perfectly firm, non-mushy beans, is something I stumbled upon after trying over 10 times! And what if I told you, you could achieve it all with only 2 ingredients, 15 minutes, and no pre-soaking? True story for this Instant Pot black bean recipe, keep reading!
I am so excited to share with you this simple process of cooking dry black beans in the Instant Pot. I’ve done the leg work, so all you need to do is follow my easy simple-step guide on how to cook black beans in an Instant Pot and achieve perfectly cooked beans every time. I also explain the slight differences between how to get the same results using different-sized Instant Pots which means you can make a big batch for pennies! Ready to use for rice and beans, black bean casseroles, soups, quinoa black bean salads, nachos, and more!
So many nutrients come in one little bean. They’re naturally gluten-free, high in fibre and protein, and they are super cheap. Making your own cooked black beans is so much more cost-effective than buying from a can but they’re also way healthier because you’re avoiding all of that sodium – same goes for Instant Pot homemade baked beans, which you need to put on your must try list!
Why This Recipe Works (Like Magic!)
- Budget-friendly which means you can make a lot more than comes in a can from the store.
- Quick and easy so these can actually be done on any busy weeknight.
- Vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan-friendly.
- Effortless recipe because it’s really just a set-it-and-forget-it recipe! There is very minimal clean-up as well.
- Healthy beans have so many health benefits. They’re also gluten-free and perfect for meatless meals.
- Make-ahead to streamline meal prep. Lunches for days!
- Freezer friendly which is nice because if you lots leftover you can save yourself a little time down the road.
- Can easily be doubled or tripled for when you want to make more.
- Versatile beans can be used in so many recipes.
Ingredients for Instant Pot Black Beans
- Dried black beans: No soaking required. You will need to rinse and drain with cold water just to make sure to get all of the dirt off.
- Cold water: It is very important not to use warm water, so the cooking time is not thrown off. You’ll soon understand why.
- Salt is optional: Sometimes I add a pinch to bring out flavour but more often than not, I leave it out. This is especially important when I know I’ll be using my beans for baking.
Tip: Testing how to cook black beans in the Instant Pot in 2 different size pots was life changing.
How to Cook Beans in 6 Quart Pot
- Prep the beans by rinsing in a colander under cold water. Drain completely and don’t soak.
- Combine beans and cold water in Instant Pot. No need to stir and you can add a pinch of salt.
- Cook on High Pressure for 12 minutes. Some models have a “pressure cook” button and make sure you select “high” pressure. The simpler model, Lux, has a Manual button and cooks only with high pressure.
- Let pressure come down on its own – Natural Release. Do not do Quick Release, your beans will be undercooked or fall apart.
- Drain, rinse and cool black beans: When float pin is down, it is safe to open the pot. I like to rinse cooked beans under gentle stream of cold water. Then drain, cool and use in recipes.
How to Cook Beans in 8 Quart Pot
8 quart is larger, how long to cook beans in Instant Pot stays the same but release differs from 6 quart recipe.
- Prep beans by rinsing them under cold water. Drain immediately, do not let them sit in water even for 10 mins as it will change the recipe.
- Dump beans and cold water into Instant Pot and don’t stir. Put the lid on and turn the valve to Sealing.
- Cook on high pressure for 12 minutes: Depending on a model, you will either have a Pressure Cook or Manual button to press.
- Release the pressure after 10 minutes: Important difference from 6 quart! If you let your 8 Quart Instant Pot release pressure naturally all the way, black beans will be overcooked.
Tips for Foolproof Black Beans
- Cold water: Always use cold water. Warm or hot water will change cook time.
- 3 quart Instant Pot: I don’t have one, so can’t say how long. I would try 15 minutes with natural release and adjust accordingly for the future.
- Stovetop: Check out my stovetop dried beans recipe I used for years. And if you are thinking to buy an Instant Pot, see which Instant Pot to buy.
- Be gentle: Handle cooked black beans carefully with a metal spoon. They are delicate and tender.
- More help: Still intimidated? Check out my Instant Pot guide. Once you use it a couple of times, you’ll wonder how you survived without it!
- Broth: Do not discard the liquid. It is a delicious and nutritious veggie broth. Use as a base for making any soup. Especially, Instant Pot black bean soup.
Add-ins and Variations
This is a basic straightforward recipe that will get you straight-up cooked black beans. If you would like to add a little extra flavour to them, there are some things you could try.
- Add a few wedges of white onion in there just to infuse some flavour. You can even leave the skin on.
- Whole cloves of garlic would be another aromatic you could use.
- Use broth instead of water.
- Toss in some bay leaves and added seasoning (cumin, oregano, cayenne) for added taste.
This recipe is specific to 3 cups of water to every 1 cup of black beans. To double the recipe it would become 6 cups of water to every 2 cups of black beans, and so on. Always keeping the same cook time.
Definitely not! Canned beans have already been cooked, so there really isn’t a point to that. It would create a big mushy mess!
I would love to say yes, but this recipe was specifically tested for black beans only! Go ahead and give it a try and let me know what comes of it. In the meantime, here is a recipe for Instant Pot chickpeas to tide you over.
Much the same way using canned beans would create mushy beans, so would using presoaked beans, IF you were to follow this recipe exactly. If you really want to presoak your beans, for improved digestion, you could but then you would need to adjust the cook time.
Delicious and Healthy Ways to Use Instant Pot Black Beans
Black beans are my favorite beans because of their mild taste, small size and ability to hold their shape. They are also highly nutritious and satisfying and because they are a good source of protein they keep me full longer.
Try your new favourite Instant Pot black beans in our family favorite recipes:
Making Black Beans in Advance
Fridge: Cooked black beans refrigerate well for up to 5 days. You can use them in place of canned black beans with a ratio of 1.5 cups drained cooked beans = 15 oz can.
Freezer: I like to triple the recipe at a time and freeze black beans for later.
To thaw: Place the bag with frozen black beans on a counter for a few hours or in the fridge overnight. You could also place it in a bowl with hot water for 5 minutes and then drain it.
Further Freezing Tips
- Measure in 1.5 cups portions into resealable sandwich bags
- Let the air out and seal well to avoid freezer burn.
- Freeze for up to 6 months.
- Re-use bags: I rinse, dry, and put away bags to use for next time. It is more environmentally friendly.
Enjoy! And please let me know in the comments below if my magic recipe worked for you too.
More Easy Instant Pot Recipes
- Instant Pot chickpeas
- Instant Pot brown rice
- Instant Pot quinoa
- Instant Pot bone broth
- Instant Pot yogurt
Alternately, you can browse my collection of 30 healthy Instant Pot recipes.
Instant Pot Black Beans
- 1 cup dried black beans rinsed & drained
- 3 cups cold water
- Pinch of salt is optional
- In Instant Pot, add black beans and cold water. You can eyeball water just enough to cover beans by an inch.
- For 6 Quart Instant Pot: Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cooking on High for 12 minutes.
- After cooking is done, let 6 quart Instant Pot bring pressure down on its own – Natural Release. Do not do Quick Release, your beans will be undercooked or fall apart.
- For 8 Quart Instant Pot: Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cooking on High for 12 minutes.
- After cooking is done, let 8 quart Instant Pot bring pressure down on its own for 10 minutes and then release remaining pressure immediately. If you let your 8 Quart Instant Pot release pressure naturally all the way, black beans will be overcooked.
- Open the lid. That’s it! Your Instant Pot black beans are ready.
Store: Cooked black beans refrigerate well for up to 5 days. You can use them in place of canned black beans with a ratio of 1.5 cups drained cooked beans = 15 oz can.
Freeze for Later: Transfer black beans with a slotted spoon to a large colander placed in a sink, drain and rinse with cold water. Measure 1.5 cups (equal to a 15 oz can drained) into sandwich bags, let air out, seal and freeze for up to 6 months.
To Thaw: Place bag with frozen black beans on a counter for a few hours or in the fridge overnight. You could also place it in a bowl with hot water for 5 minutes and then drain it.
Broth: Do not discard the liquid. Use as a base for making any soup. Especially, Instant Pot black bean soup
- It is super important to use cold water not to alter cook time.
- For 3 quart Instant Pot, I would cook beans for 15 minutes with natural release and go from there.
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