These creamy, flavorful Instant Pot Refried Beans are easy to make in just 1 hour with dried beans and no pre-soaking!
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Instant Pot refried beans are just one of the amazing side dishes I can throw together in a pinch for a fun Mexican-themed night!
Making refried beans in Instant Pot from scratch is easy, in one pot, with no soaking of beans necessary. It’s affordable, no lard, no MSG and low in sodium recipe. Beans taste fresh, flavorful plus you can customize the seasonings to your taste.
Ingredients for Instant Pot Refried Beans
To make Instant Pot refried beans you will need just a handful of simple ingredients.
- Dried pinto beans are a traditional choice. They are pink beans. No need to soak, I just rinse them.
- Water: You can also use low sodium vegetable broth, chicken broth or Instant Pot chicken broth for added taste.
- Diced onion and minced garlic: Classic aromatics that always add incredible flavor.
- Small can of diced green chilies: They are not spicy, so a good substitute would be seeded and minced jalapeno.
- Seasoning: Cumin, chili powder, dried bay leaves, salt and pepper.
How to Make Instant Pot Refried Beans
Generally, black beans in Instant Pot, pinto beans, and white beans take about 12 minutes to cook. However, Instant Pot refried beans require about 40 minutes for maximum creaminess and flavor.
- Rinse and drain dried beans. No need to soak them, which if you’ve ever worked with dried beans before, you’ll know how much time this saves.
- Add all ingredients to Instant Pot. To the bottom of Instant Pot, add pinto beans, water, onion, garlic, green chilies, cumin, chili powder, bay leaves, salt and pepper. No need to stir.
- Cook refried beans in Instant Pot on high pressure for 40 minutes. Release the pressure right away and drain the beans. Reserve the liquid, we need about a cup for pureeing.
- Puree beans with reserved liquid until desired consistency is reached.
No immersion blender? Mash refried beans in Instant Pot with a potato masher for a chunkier texture or transfer to a regular blender. If using a regular blender, remember to keep the lid slightly open and use a hand towel to release the steam but not burn yourself.
Ways to Customize This Recipe
Here are a few ideas to make Instant Pot refried beans recipe the way you like it.
- Serve with a garnish of chopped fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime for added zest!
- Substitute black beans. It’s a different flavor but just as good. If you love black bean soup, you’ll love this version.
- More spice. The green chilies aren’t spicy at all, so if you are looking for some heat, you can use jalapenos leaving in as many seeds as you can handle.
- Sprinkle in chipotle seasoning or smoked paprika for a smoky note.
- If you miss the added fat for flavor, you can drizzle in some olive oil, or swirl in some butter or ghee before blending.
Serving and Pairing
Instant Pot refried beans can be used as a dip for veggies, side dish or main dish.crackers, and tortilla chips, and used as a topping or filling in all kinds of traditional Mexican and Tex Mex dishes like tacos, quesadillas, burritos, and more! It is so good!
- Tacos, burritos and fajitas: Serve refried beans with chicken burritos, shrimp tacos, carne asada tacos, chicken enchiladas and many more tacos. I also have this delicious steak fajitas recipe.
- Salsas: Alongside other Mexican side dishes like pico de gallo, shrimp ceviche and mango salsa.
- Guacamole: Alongside basic guacamole, salsa guacamole and Greek yogurt guacamole.
- Tostadas: As your base layer for shrimp tostadas or chicken tostadas.
- With Instant Pot ribs recipe.
How to Store and Reheat
Refrigerate: Once completely cooled, store Instant Pot refried beans for up to 5 days in the fridge. I like to store my food in airtight glass containers. If using plastic, allow your food to cool completely before transferring it to the container to minimize exposure to chemicals.
Freeze: Place beans in any airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months. You can also freeze portions in resealable silicone bags which save so much space. Thaw refried beans overnight in the fridge or for 6 hours on the counter.
Reheat: Simmer on low i na small saucepan. Cold refried beans thicken, so it’s a good idea to add a splash of water, chicken stock, or any remaining cooking liquid.
Pinto beans are a classic. They’re creamy and almost buttery, which makes them a great choice. Plus, they taste amazing. However, black beans are more common in stores and pantries and are also used to make refried beans. So, you can definitely choose either.
Yes and no. It is a short cut and can possibly save you time, but the freshness, the creaminess and the downright deliciousness starts from using dried beans. Plus you are already saving time not having to pre-soak them. This Instant Pot refried beans recipe is already so much faster than other methods that it’s totally worth using dried beans!
I have never tried using a blend of both pinto and black beans but I think the recipe might work.
Pinto beans are such a healthy, filling, high fibre, high protein ingredient. If you have leftover refried beans in Instant Pot, make mushroom bean soup with them. Toss them in your Instant Pot vegetarian chili or add to your Instant Pot beef and barley soup.
More Instant Pot Recipes to Try
- Instant Pot chickpeas
- Instant Pot carnitas
- Instant Pot chicken tacos
- Instant Pot corn on the cob
- Instant Pot black bean soup
Instant Pot Refried Beans
- To any size Instant Pot, add beans, water/broth, onion, garlic, diced green chiles, cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper and bay leaves.
- Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cook on High or Manual for 40 minutes.
- When Instant Pot says Off or switches to Keep Warm mode, do Quick Release by turning sealing valve to Venting position until the pin drops down.
- Open the lid and drain the beans over a colander set over bowl (we need some of the liquid). Return beans to Instant Pot along with 1 cup liquid.
- Using an immersion blender, puree until desired consistency. You can adjust thickness with more broth, if you wish.
- Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
- Freeze: In airtight container for up to 3 months.
- Reheat: Reheat by simmering on low on the stove or in Instant Pot with a splash of that broth or water. If frozen, thaw on the counter for hours first.
- Canned beans? No, you will need different amount of water which I have not tested.
- No immersion blender? Mash with a potato masher for a chunkier texture or transfer to a regular blender. If using a regular blender, remember to keep the lid slightly open and use a hand towel to release the steam but not burn yourself.