Instant Pot Refried Beans
This Instant Pot refried beans recipe is virtually hands-free! Everyone loves restaurant quality refried beans and this version is quick, easy, and full of flavor. Instant pot refried beans are gluten-free and I’ve got instructions below for a vegan or vegetarian version.
Watch my Instant Pot refried beans story here.
The Best Instant Pot Refried Beans
Once you’ve had homemade refried beans, you’ll never want to open a can of beans again.
Not only are they tastier, but they also cost about half as much as canned beans, and they’re so, so easy to make in a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot! You only need a handful of readily available ingredients and you’re on your way to the best refried beans ever.
How to make Instant Pot Refried Beans
Once you see how easy this recipe is, you won’t ever buy another can of refried beans again!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Dried Beans (not soaked)
- White onion
- Chicken broth or water
- Lard or other fat
Two steps for Instant Pot Refried Beans
Making refried beans in a pressure cooker or instant pot is a two part process.
- Step one: Combine all the ingredients except for the fat in the pressure cooker or instant pot. Cover and cook on high-pressure for 45 minutes. Allow for natural release.
- Step two: Use a spoon to remove extra liquid from the beans. Add the lard or fat of your choice and blend with an immersion blender. Add back in more cooking liquid from the beans if necessary to make them easier to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
That’s it! Two steps is all you need for restaurant-quality beans.
Storing and Freezing Refried Beans
Refried beans can be kept refrigerated for up to 5 days and can be reheated over low heat on the stovetop or in the microwave. I always add a little bit of water when reheating so that they aren’t dry.
To freeze: Once your refried beans are room temperature, store them in a freezer-safe ziplock bag and press all the air out before sealing. Freeze flat to save space. Refried beans can be frozen for up to 6 months.
Making Refried Beans Vegan or Vegetarian
You can easily adapt this recipe for Instant Pot refried beans to be vegan or vegetarian. Simply swap the lard for another fat like olive oil, vegan butter, or refined coconut oil.
Instead of using chicken stock, use water or vegetable stock/broth.
Refried Beans FAQs
What kind of beans are best for refried beans?
Pinto beans are always going to be the best, in my opinion. You can also make this recipe with dried black beans with excellent results.
What kind of fat should I use?
Lard or bacon fat are my favorites! Both have great flavor and bacon fat adds a bit of smokiness. That being said, if you want to make this recipe vegan or vegetarian I would use olive oil, vegan butter, or refined coconut oil.
Should I soak the beans before cooking?
The best part of this recipe is that you don’t have to soak the beans before cooking them! The instant pot or pressure cooker does all the work, so all they need is quick rinse before cooking.
Can I use canned beans?
Please don’t! Using dried beans makes this recipe extra special. Dried beans have way better texture than canned beans.
More Mexican-Inspired Recipes to Try
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Instant Pot Refried Beans
- 1 lb dried pinto beans
- ½ white onion, diced
- 1 jalapeño, sliced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 cups chicken stock or water
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 1/4 cup lard or bacon fat
- Rinse the beans in a colander and discard any beans that are old or discolored.
- Add the beans, onion, jalapeño, spices, bay leaf, and water or chicken stock to the pot of an instant pot or pressure cooker. Add the salt and stir well to combine.
- Lock the lid in place and cook on high-pressure for 45 minutes. Allow for a natural pressure release.
- Once the pressure has released, remove the lid and stir the beans well. If they aren't cooked all the way, add 1 cup of water and cook for another 10 minutes. Use a spoon to remove any excess liquid from the beans and set it aside.
- Add the lard to the beans and use an immersion blender to puree the beans to your desired thickness, adding the cooking liquid back in as necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.