Instant Pot Black Beans

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My Instant Pot Black Beans recipe is full of Mexican flavors and makes a great side dish. Plus, it’s quick and easy to pressure cook black beans compared to boiling water on the stove top.

Bowl of Instant Pot Mexican Black Beans.

Get perfectly cooked black beans every time with my simple cooking process. You’ll never want to buy canned black beans again after trying this easy recipe for the first time.

There’s no need to soak the beans and you can freeze leftovers for another night. Plus, they’re full of so much flavor the kids won’t realize how many veggies are in them!

Next time you need a delicious side dish for Taco Tuesday or Mexican Food night, give this easy Instant Pot recipe a try.


  • 2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup of chopped onion
  • ½ cup of chopped bell pepper
  • ½ cup of chopped tomato
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of minced jalapeno
  • ¼ cup of chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of taco seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound of dried black beans
  • 4 cups of chicken stock


  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing spoon
  • Instant Pot

By the Numbers: How to Make Instant Pot Black Beans

Follow these simple step-by-step instructions to learn how to make the best Mexican black beans in your Instant Pot electric pressure cooker.

Step 1: Saute Onion and Bell Pepper.

Press the Saute function button on your Instant Pot, then add 2 teaspoons of olive oil to the pot. Once warm, add ½ cup of chopped onion and ½ cup of chopped bell pepper to the pot. Saute until the onions start becoming translucent.

Red onion and bell pepper being cooked in Instant Pot inner pan.

Step 2: Add Tomato, Garlic, Jalapeno and Cilantro.

Next, stir in ½ cup of chopped tomato, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon of minced jalapeno and ¼ cup of chopped cilantro. Cook for about 60 seconds, then press the Cancel button.

Tomato, garlic, jalapeno and cilantro being stirred into the onion and bell pepper mixture in the Instant Pot inner pan.

Step 3: Add Seasoning, Stock and Beans.

Stir in 1 ½ teaspoons of taco seasoning and ½ teaspoon of sea salt, then pour in 4 cups of chicken stock and stir in 1 pound of dry beans and 1 bay leaf. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bottom of the pot and make nothing is stuck to it so you don’t get a burn notice.

Beans, chicken stock and spices added to the cooked vegetables in the Instant Pot inner pan.

Step 4: Pressure Cook Black Beans.

Seal the lid onto your Instant Pot and make sure the pressure release valve is in the sealing position. Press the Pressure Cook button and set it to cook on High Pressure for 60 minutes. Use a full natural pressure release, then carefully open the lid. Stir, taste the beans and add more salt and spices, if necessary.

Cooked black beans in Instant Pot.

Step 5: Serve Black Beans.

Drain beans with a slotted spoon and serve as a side dish or ladle into a bowl topped with more chopped cilantro and cheese for a hearty lunch.

Close up of black beans cooked in an Instant Pot, topped with a jalapeno slice.

Tips for the Best Instant Pot Black Beans

Answers to all of your questions about making delicious black beans in your Instant Pot, including tips and substitution ideas.

1. How are these different from Cuban black beans?

They’re not! A lot of cultures use similar ingredients. If you do a quick search for Cuban black beans, you’ll see they have pretty much the exact same ingredients as Mexican black beans.

2. Can I double this recipe?

Yes, you should be able to double this recipe as long as it does not go over the max line in your Instant Pot inner pan. Keep the same bean to water ratio if this is your first time making them.

3. Why use bay leaves?

I usually add a bay leaf or two to my black bean recipes. It’s not a required ingredient, but they add another level of flavor to black beans.

4. Are these black beans vegetarian?

To make these flavorful black beans vegetarian, simply substitute vegetable broth or filtered water for chicken broth and your black beans are not only vegetarian, but vegan too.

5. My beans were over or undercooked…

After extensive testing, I discovered that I need to cook unsoaked beans for much longer than the recommended cook times.

Every Instant Pot cooks a little bit differently and older beans also take longer to cook, so there are a few factors to consider when pressure cooking beans.

  1. If your beans still weren’t cooked as thoroughly as you’d like, just put them back on for longer. Beans are very forgiving.
  2. If your beans were too soft for your taste, next time you’ll need to cook them for less time than recommended. You can also turn them into refried beans, eat them as a soup (see below) or just drain them and eat. Soft beans still taste amazing.

6. Do I soak the beans first?

No, that’s one of the great things about making beans in an electric pressure cooker – no soaking necessary. If you do soak them first, they’ll cook faster and absorb less water during cooking.

7. Topping ideas?

You can serve these black beans as a side dish. However, they’re also absolutely delicious in a bowl as a meal on their own. A squeeze of fresh lime juice really takes them over the top.

Some of my favorite toppings are homemade sour cream or queso fresco, fresh cilantro and green Cholula hot sauce. You can also use guacamole, shredded cheese, green onions, chopped red onion, tomatoes or anything else you desire.

8. Can I make refried black beans?

Of course. Simply follow the recipe above, then follow the instructions in our Instant Pot Refried Beans recipe for using an immersion blender to turn them into refried black beans.

9. Can I use pinto beans instead?

You can use pinto beans instead of black beans in this recipe. However, I find that Instant Pot Pinto Beans take longer to cook, so you’ll want to increase the cook time.

10. How to cook plain black beans?

Beans will cook faster in the Instant Pot without a lot of other ingredients – just plain beans and water. See my post on cooking beans in the Instant Pot for more information on the fastest way to make beans in a pressure cooker. It also covers cooking other types of beans with recipes.

11. How to store black beans?

If you have leftover black beans, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Use within 3-4 days.

12. Can you freeze cooked black beans?

If you want to make Instant Pot Black Beans to use later, that’s no problem. Drain most of the cooking liquid, then freeze in an airtight container or plastic bags with the extra air removed.

If I know I’m going to make a big batch to freeze for later use, I like to decrease the cook time on my electric pressure cooker by 5-10 minutes so the beans don’t break down as much.

13. How to reheat black beans?

Simply put cooked beans in a small saucepan on the stove on low to reheat beans from the fridge. Add more liquid if needed.

For frozen beans, I like to let them defrost before reheating. It helps keep the structure of the bean more intact.

14. Ways to use black beans:

There are so many ways to eat black beans! Here are some of my favorite recipes:

  1. Instant Pot Chicken Burrito Bowls
  2. Sweet Potato & Black Bean Vegetarian Tacos
  3. Black Bean Brownies
  4. Homemade Tamales
  5. Nachos with tortilla chips

15. Can I make Instant Pot Black Bean Soup?

If you don’t drain the beans first, you can serve this recipe as a black bean soup by adding more liquid. You can also substitute black beans for pinto beans in our Spicy Instant Pot Bean Soup Recipe.

16. Make it a meal!

These are my favorite Mexican food recipes including main dish, side dish and topping ideas for family taco night:

  1. Instant Pot Spanish Rice
  2. Chicken Enchiladas
  3. Instant Pot Carne Asada
  4. Instant Pot Barbacoa
  5. Sour Cream

17. Where to buy groceries online?

I love the convenience of ordering groceries online to keep our freezer and pantry well stocked. Learn more about where I order produce delivery and buy meat online.



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Black beans garnished with a jalapeno slice in a bowl with Instant Pot in background.

Instant Pot Black Beans Recipe

Learn how to make the absolute best Instant Pot Black Beans in this easy pressure cooker recipe.
5 from 2 votes
Print Recipe
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Pressure Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Recipe Servings: 6


  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup onion - chopped
  • ½ cup bell pepper - chopped
  • ½ cup tomato - chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1 teaspoon jalapeno - minced
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro - chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons taco seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound black beans - rinsed and sorted
  • 4 cups chicken stock - or filtered water


  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing spoon
  • Instant Pot


  • Warm the olive oil using the Instant Pot on Sauté function. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook until the onions are almost translucent.
    Red onion and bell pepper being cooked in Instant Pot inner pan.
  • Stir in the tomato, garlic, jalapeno and cilantro and cook for about 60 seconds, then turn off the heat.
    Tomato, garlic, jalapeno and cilantro being stirred into the onion and bell pepper mixture in the Instant Pot inner pan.
  • Stir in the taco seasoning, sea salt, chicken stock, dry beans and bay leaf. Be sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot to prevent a burn warning.
    Beans, chicken stock and spices added to the cooked vegetables in the Instant Pot inner pan.
  • Close the lid and cook on High Pressure for 60 minutes. Use a full natural pressure release, then open the lid. Stir, taste and adjust spices.
    Cooked black beans in Instant Pot.
  • Serve as a side dish with your favorite meal or in a bowl on their own for lunch.
    Black beans ladled from Instant Pot into a white serving bowl.

Nutrition Information Per Serving

Calories: 183kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 428mg | Potassium: 521mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 559IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg

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