Quick and easy no-soak Instant Pot Black Beans! This recipe takes all of five minutes to prepare and just 28 minutes in the Instant Pot for perfectly cooked spicy black bean ragout. Serve it with tacos, over rice, or as a topping for vegan nachos.
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If you’re vegetarian and are wondering why you should get an instant pot, here is your answer: BEANS, BABY!
This recipe for Spicy Instant Pot Black Beans is the first thing I ever tried making in an electric pressure cooker, and man oh man it knocked my socks off. I’ve been making these black beans for years and years, but always did them on stove top and it took HOURS to get them to tender perfection.
A couple of years ago my mom suggested we try making them in her Instant Pot, and, you guys, they were done in 30 freaking minutes. And I mean, *perfectly* done.
I went out and bought my own Instant Pot the very next day.
These are delicious, spicy, tender, perfectly cooked black beans that replicate that amazing puddle of beans you get on the side of your plate at a Mexican restaurant. They’re easy, with just five minutes of prep time, and don’t require any soaking before you cook the beans.
Are you ready for this?
What’s in this recipe?
Time to gather up your ingredients! Here’s what you need:
- Black beans –> We’re using a pound of dried black beans today.
- Onion –> One big ol’ yellow onion.
- Garlic –> Going in with a few cloves.
- Tomato paste –> Bringing a bit of tang.
- Spices –> Smoked paprika, oregano, bay leaves, and ground cumin.
- Chili flakes –> Optional, to bring the heat.
- Lime –> I used the world’s oldest lime in those photos. Treat yourself to a fresh one!
- Salt –> For balance, yo.
You’re definitely going to need an Instant Pot (or other brand of electric pressure cooker) to make these Instant Pot Black Beans. However, I did make them on the stovetop for many years, so I’ll of course include instructions for both methods in the recipe card below.
How do you make instant pot black beans?
You guys, it’s so easy you’re not going to believe it. Let me talk you through it step by step.
Step 1: Give your beans a good rise, and put them into your Instant Pot.
Step 2: Add the onions, garlic, spices, tomato paste, salt, and water. Do NOT add the lime juice.
Step 3: Set your Instant Pot to Manual / High Pressure for 28 minutes. Be sure that the vent is flipped to “sealing” and then let it do its business.
Step 4: Once the pressure cooking cycle has finished, allow the Instant Pot to release naturally. If you’re in a rush, you can release the remaining pressure at around the 20 minute mark.
Step 5: Stir in the lime juice.
Ways to use Instant Pot Black Beans:
- As a vegetarian protein in a Meal Bowl. (Related: How to Make a Meal Bowl Without a Recipe)
- As part of your vegetarian taco spread. (Related: Tempeh Tacos)
- With some loaded vegetarian nachos
- As a big plate of rice and beans.
- In some tasty Black Bean Burritos.
- In a Vegan Wrap.
Really, you can use them in, or beside, or on top of whatever you like!
Can I freeze these beans?
You sure can! I love to make a big pot of them as a part of my weekly batch cooking (related: Batch Cooking For Beginners) and will use what I need during the week and then freeze the rest.
To freeze, I simply scoop out one-cup portions and smoosh them into freezer bags. These reusable silicon freezer bags are my favourite!
These beans will last 3-5 days in your fridge, and up to 3 months in the freezer.
Hey Nutrition Lady, are black beans good for you?
Yes my friends, yes they are.
The protein-plus-fiber combination in black beans is one of the things that makes them special. A one cup serving contains 15g of fiber (over half of the daily recommended intake), and 15g of protein.
Much of the fiber is indigestible, which supports digestive health, particularly in the lower part of our digestive tract. The protein-fiber combination is also key in stabilizing blood sugar levels, as both protein and fiber move through our digestive systems at a moderate pace.
Black beans are also rich in soluble fiber, which is helpful for lowering blood cholesterol levels and supporting cardiovascular health.
Other vegetarian Instant Pot Recipes:
Spicy Instant Pot Black Beans
- 1 pound dried black beans
- 3 cups water
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 3-4 cloves garlic minced or crushed
- 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 2 medium bay leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon dried chili flakes optional - use more to dial up the heat
- 2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice
- Start by preparing all of your ingredients. Chop the onion, crush the garlic, and measure out the spices.
- Rinse the black beans well, and then add them to the Instant Pot insert.
- Add the diced onion, garlic, spices, tomato paste, salt, and water to the instant pot. Do NOT add the lime juice at this stage.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot, and ensure the vent is flipped to "sealing".
- Set the Instant Pot to Manual / High Pressure for 28 minutes. It will take about 20 minutes to come to pressure. When the cooking cycle is complete, allow to vent naturally. If you're in a hurry, you can release the remaining pressure after 20 minutes.
- Add the lime juice to the beans, and stir through.
- Allow to cool slightly, and then serve.
- To make this recipe on the stove top, increase the water to 6 cups. Place all of the ingredients except for the lime juice in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, and simmer with the lid ajar until the beans are tender - this could take between 4-6 hours.
- Nutrition values are an estimate only
- Cooked black beans will last 3-5 days in your fridge.
- Leftovers can be frozen for up to 3 months.
This recipe was originally published September 9, 2013. It was retested, rephotographed, and updated with instructions for the Instant Pot on August 12, 2020.