Instant Pot Pinto Beans skip the long cook times and require no soaking to make a wholesome side dish or main course for busy weeknights.

Instant Pot Pinto Beans is an easy Fall side recipe

Instant Pot Pinto Beans is a quick and easy dish for busy weeknights. Making dried beans on the stovetop can take a long time. You have to soak them normally overnight and then let them simmer for a long time. With a pressure cooker, you need just a fraction of the time to prepare them.

Beans and legumes make a great addition to any meal because they are inexpensive, nutritious, and extremely versatile. We’ve made Instant Pot Boston Baked Beans, Instant Pot Navy Bean Soup, and Pressure Cooker Black Beans and Chorizo and whether they are the main course or a side dish they are all totally delicious!

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how to make Instant Pot Pinto Beans

What You’ll Need

  • 6 quart Instant Pot
  • Dried pinto beans – Dried are cheaper and aren’t packed in extra sodium like canned beans.
  • Bacon – Bacon adds flavor to everything. I cook the bacon first to bring out the smokey flavor before adding it to the pot.
  • Onion – Dice any kind of onion you prefer to add extra flavor to the beans.
  • Chicken broth – While you could use water, chicken broth adds some extra flavor. 
  • Tomatoes – Tomatoes add a bit of acidity and richness.
  • Green Chilies – Canned green chiles add some heat to the beans. If you don’t want as much heat, you can roast them first or skip them altogether.
  • Spices – Garlic, bay leaves, cumin and chili powder all add extra layers of flavor to this recipe.
Instant Pot Pinto Beans inside instant pot

New to using an Instant Pot? Make sure you read our beginner’s guide on “How to Use an Instant Pot” to get started!

How to Make It

Add the ingredients and mix. Place all the ingredients, beans, bacon, onion, garlic, bay leaves, cumin, chili powder, chicken broth and diced tomatoes in the inner pot and stir them together.

Set it and forget it. Place the lid on top and close it. Set the valve to SEALING. Select HIGH pressure and cook for 40 minutes. Relax while the Instant Pot does all the work.

Naturally release some steam. When the timer goes off, let the steam naturally release for 20 minutes. You might want to set a timer on your phone to help you keep track of the time. After 20 minutes, do a quick release by setting the vent to VENTING.

Remove the lid and bay leaves. Once all the pressure is released, carefully remove the lid to the Instant Pot. Use a fork, spoon, or tongs to remove the bay leaves (no one wants to bite into one). Serve the beans while they are still warm.

Instant Pot Pinto Beans is a comfort food recipe for Fall
How to Clean Dried Beans

An easy way to clean dried beans is to spread them out on a baking sheet first. When they are all spread out, you can remove broken and shriveled beans and any dirt and debris that may be mixed in with them.

Once you’ve removed all the bad beans and any other things, put the beans in a strainer and run cold water over them to rinse them off.

Do I Need to Soak the Beans?

The Instant Pot takes away the need to soak dried beans first. In most recipes, you have to soak beans for at least 6 hours. When you use the Instant Pot, you can make the same bean recipe in just over an hour with no soak time.Instant Pot Pinto Beans cooked with bacon

How Long Do You Cook Beans in the Instant Pot?

There is no question the Instant Pot makes beans very quickly. Here’s the break down:
– 8 minutes (give or take) to come up to pressure
– 40 minutes of high pressure cook time
– 20 minutes natural release
– 68 minutes total time

You are looking at just over an hour of cook time and about 10 minutes prep time to check and rinse the beans.

Instant Pot Pinto Beans is a perfect side recipe for BBQ's

How to Store Them

If you don’t eat the beans right away or want to meal prep, you can store them in the fridge for 4 to 5 days or for up to 6 months in the fridge. 

Before you store them, let them cool completely. When they are cool, place them into a sealed airtight container. Seal the container and place in the fridge. They are safe to store for 4 to 5 days.

You can reheat them on the stovetop over medium low heat or in the microwave. 

To freeze the beans,  place the cooked and cooled beans in a freezer bag making sure to remove all of the excess air before sealing. I like to portion mine out into 1-2 cup portions so I can quickly grab some to add to recipes. 

You can freeze the beans for up to 6 months. If you are adding them to a recipe, you can drop them in frozen and cook along with the rest of your dish. If you are using them as a side dish, let them thaw in the refrigerator overnight. You can then reheat them on the stovetop over medium high heat or in the microwave.

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Servings: 15
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 1 hr 5 mins

Instant Pot Pinto Beans

Instant Pot pinto beans cut out soaking and long cook times to make a wholesome side or main in a fraction of the time.

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces Dried pinto beans
  • 8 ounces Bacon, cooked
  • 1 small Onion, diced
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Cumin
  • 1 tablespoon Chili powder
  • 5 cups Chicken broth
  • 1 14.5 ounce can Tomatoes & Green Chilies

Instructions

  • Place beans, cooked bacon, onion, garlic, bay leaves, cumin, chili powder, chicken broth, and diced tomatoes in the Instant Pot and stir together.
  • Lock lid into place and turn the valve to SEALING.
  • Set to HIGH pressure 40 minutes.
  • When the timer goes off press cancel and do a natural release for 20 minutes.
  • Turn the valve to VENTING to release the remaining pressure.
  • Remove lid, and remove the bay leaves before stirring the beans.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 4ounces, Calories: 194kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 16mg, Sodium: 272mg, Potassium: 569mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 209IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 52mg, Iron: 3mg
Nutrition Disclaimer: We are not certified nutritionists. Nutrition facts are an estimate and are provided as a courtesy. They are generated by an online API which recognizes ingredient names and amounts and makes calculations based on the serving size. Results may vary.
Author: Kat Jeter & Melinda Caldwell
Course: Side
Cuisine: American
Keyword: instant pot pinto beans