Save time and money with these perfectly tender Instant Pot Black Beans. Guaranteed perfect each and every time, these no-soak pressure cooker black beans are easy to make and taste delicious as a healthy snack or mixed in your favorite salads, soups, burritos, or tacos.
Black beans are the most loved, and most often consumed, type of bean in my house – at least for me and my husband (my child has yet to see the benefit from eating any type of bean). Delicious and tremendously versatile, not to mention highly nutritious, black beans are also filled with fiber and plant-based protein.
Basically, black beans are pretty awesome.
For busy weeknight dinners or lazy weekend lunches, I will always keep my pantry stocked full of canned beans. But – and this is speaking from personal experience – canned beans simply aren’t as tasty as dried beans cooked on the stovetop or in the Instant Pot.
The overall texture and flavor of beans cooked in a pressure cooker versus canned beans can’t be compared.
It’s also better for your wallet:
1 (15.5 ounce) can of black beans (Target brand) is $0.49. One (15-ounce) can of black beans equals approximately 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans or 1/2 cup of dried beans.
1 (1-lb) bag of dried black beans (Target brans) is $0.99. One (1-lb) bag of dried black beans contains approximately 2 cups of dried beans. Once cooked, this equals approximately 6 cups of cooked black beans.
- What does this mean, exactly? It would take 4 (15.5 ounce) cans of black beans to get the same amount of cooked beans as 1 (1-lb) bag of dried cooked beans (in other words, twice as much).
Now that we know all the awesome benefits of cooking black beans in the Instant Pot, let’s make some!
How to Make Instant Pot Black Beans
- Rinse your dried beans and remove any pebbles, stones, or damaged/cracked beans.
- Add the beans, 4 cups of broth (vegetable or chicken broth), 2 cups of water, and salt to the inner bowl of your Instant Pot/pressure cooker. Stir.
- Secure the lid and set the venting knob to the sealing position.
- Cook on manual, high pressure for 50 minutes. Once the cooking time is complete, allow the pressure to release naturally for 20 minutes, then pressure release manually.
- Carefully remove the lid and gently stir your cooked beans.
- Drain or reserve the cooking liquid and season with additional salt, to taste.
For a complete list of recipe notes, tips, & FAQ, please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of the page.
How to Add Flavor to Cooked Black Beans
It should be noted/mentioned that these Instant Pot black beans are pretty plain. Depending on how you plan to use them, this may (or may not) be exactly what you’re looking for. Either way, it’s easy to turn these humble beans into something amazing.
First, add some diced onion. Onion adds amazing flavor. And you can sauté diced onion in a little bit of olive oil directly in your Instant Pot! Simply set your Instant Pot to SAUTÉ mode and cook your onion until softened.
From there, you may add –
- 4-5 cloves of minced garlic
- 1-2 teaspoons of cumin, chili powder, and dried oregano
- Fresh or canned tomatoes
- A little fresh cilantro
- 1-2 bay leaves
- Maybe a jalapeño
Once you’ve added your seasoning, add the beans and about 1 cup of water or broth. Be sure to scrape up any burnt bits stuck to the bottom of your pot before cooking your beans as those little brown bits can lead to a burn notification midway through cooking.
Add the rest of the cooking liquid and then continue cooking according to the recipe instructions outline above (and below).
How to Use Black Beans?
What are Black Beans?
Black beans are a type of legume. They are seeds from the flowering plant family Fabaceae, a category that also includes peas, lentils, and even peanuts.
Also known as “black turtle beans”, black beans are one of the most popular ingredients in Latin American cuisine, as well as Cajun, Creole, and Cuban cooking.
Are Black Beans Healthy?
Black beans are considered very healthy. In addition to high levels of folate, iron, and magnesium, they also have a low glycemic index, helping to reduce or minimize a sudden spike in blood sugar after eating.
How Many Cups in 1 Pound of Dried Beans?
1 pound of dried beans = 2 cups of dried beans = approximately 5-6 cups of cooked beans
In general, 1 (15-ounce) can of cook beans = 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans
Try these other Instant Pot recipes,
Have you tried making black beans in the Instant Pot?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts.
Instant Pot Black Beans - No Soaking Required
- 1 pound dried black beans (unsoaked)
- 4 cups (1L) low-sodium vegetable broth (or water, chicken broth, or a combination)
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt (optional)
- Rinse the dried beans under cold running water and pick out any visible pebbles, stones, or cracked beans. Drain thoroughly and set aside.
- Optional - see note section below for optional seasonings.
- Add the dry beans, vegetable broth, water, and salt to your Instant Pot. Stir.
- Secure the lid on top of your pressure cooker, with the venting knob in the venting position. Pressure cook on MANUAL MODE, high pressure for 50 minutes with a Natural Release of 20 minutes. After the 20 minutes is complete, manually release (quick release) the remaining pressure by turning the venting knob to the venting position.
- Once the Floating Valve drops, carefully open the lid. Strain off any excess cooking liquid (or save if planning to make soup).
- Season with additional salt, to taste. Enjoy!
- To add flavor to your beans - As written, this recipe will make pretty plain black beans perfect for just about any recipe from savory to sweet. To add some yummy flavor, try sauteeing a diced onion in olive oil directly in your Instant Pot set on SAUTÉ mode until it's softened. From there, add 4-5 cloves of minced garlic, and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon cumin, chili powder, and dried oregano. Dump in a can of diced tomatoes and some fresh cilantro (if you'd like) and 1-2 bay leaves followed by your rinsed black beans. Add the water or broth and follow the cooking instructions from there.
- Remember that it takes approximately 15 minutes for the Instant Pot to reach full pressure before it starts cooking.
- Reasons why your beans may still be firm after cooking:
- You're cooking with old beans or beans that were not stored properly.
- You live at altitude. Higher altitudes require an additional 5 minutes or so of cooking time.
- Plan to double the recipe? Use the same cook time.
- For firmer beans, reduce the cooking time to 30 minutes with a 20-minute natural release.
- As written, these cooked beans are gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian.
- What if your cooking pre-soaked beans? Soaked beans will require a shorter cooking time AND less cooking liquid. Although it should be noted that I have never tried pressure cooking pre-soaked black beans, I would reduce the cooking time by half (25 minutes) and perform a manual release of pressure. There is no need to reduce the total amount of liquid, but going as low as 3 cups of cooking liquid (or half) should be fine.
- Will this method work for all types of beans? No. This is only for dried black beans. Other beans may require longer cooking times.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)