Use your Instant Pot pressure cooker to make the most delicious and fresh refried beans in under 90 minutes. You’ll never want to settle for the canned stuff again!
Instant Pot Ideal for Refried Beans
The Instant Pot is the perfect cooking appliance for so many great meals and dishes. Refried beans is definitely one of them. Most bean recipes require a long soak time and a long cooking time. But with this recipe, we’ll have fresh refried beans in a little over 1 hour.
Fresh Ingredients and No Lard
Most canned or commercial refried beans contain large amounts of lard or other fat. For this recipe we’re going to leave out the lard and other large amounts of fat and go completely fresh. One of the main ingredients is cumin seeds. The recipe starts with toasting the cumin seeds with the saute setting of your Instant Pot. By using whole cumin seeds and toasting them first, we’re creating a very bold and robust flavor that is awesome. We’ll round out the flavor profile with some fresh garlic, fresh onion, paprika, fresh jalapeno pepper, fresh cilantro, a bay leaf, a little taco seasoning and lime juice. Wow! Just writing this makes me want to dig right in!
Pressure Cook for 45 Minutes, 20 minute Natural Release
After we’ve toasted our cumin and other spices, it’s time to add the water and beans. Then we pressure cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. When the 45 minutes are up, let the pressure naturally release for at least 20 minutes. After that you can quick release any remaining pressure.
Drain and Mash
After the cooking process, it’s time to remove the lid and drain the beans. This is an important step and we’ll be reusing the liquid that we drain. Do this by placing a strainer or colander over a large bowl or pot and pour beans and liquid slowly from the Instant Pot liner to drain. You don’t have to completely drain it so don’t go too crazy with this part. Return the beans to the Instant Pot liner and begin mashing with a potato masher by hand or use an immersion blender. Blend or mash for a little bit and then add some salt to taste and the lime juice. Continue to mash/blend. Now, slowly add some of the reserved liquid. Please note that the beans will thicken after a few minutes and you will likely use a large portion of the reserved liquid – maybe all of it. But you can add the liquid to get your desired consistency. Also not that beans like salt! Even though we add 1 teaspoon of salt at the beginning, you may wind up adding another teaspoon at the end, but do this to your desired taste.
Garnish and Serve
Now you’re ready to garnish and serve your beans. Place them in a bowl and add your favorite toppings such as more fresh cilantro, diced onion, diced tomatoes, jalapeno slices and of course, some cheese always makes refried beans awesome!
- 1 lb pinto beans, dry
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 1/2 teaspoons taco seasoning
- 1/2 finely chopped and deseeded jalapeno pepper
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (plus extra for garnish)
- 1 teaspoon salt + more to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 5 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- Set Instant Pot to saute mode. When hot add oil, cumin seeds and bay leaf. Let sizzle for about 30 seconds.
- Next add the onion and jalapeno and saute for about 1 minute. Then add garlic, cilantro, paprika, taco seasoning and salt ans saute for 1 more minute.
- Press cancel to stop the saute mode and add 1 cup of water and scrape and stuck on bits off the bottom of the pot. Add remaining 4 cups of water and the beans. Secure lid and pressure cook on high for 45 minutes. Then do 20 minutes natural release.
- Carefully remove lid, remove the bay leaf, drain liquid and set it aside (important!). Use an immersion blender or a potato masher and mash/blend the beans until the become smooth or desired consistency. Add the reserve liquid in batches until you get the consistency you like. The beans will thicken quite a bit so you’ll wind up using most of the reserve liquid.
- Add any additional salt and the lime juice and serve with your favorite garnish.