Instant Pot Chipotle Beans. A quick, spicy side of beans, done in about an hour thanks to pressure cooking.
When I'm not busy being a food nerd, I'm a Science Fiction and Fantasy nerd. (I'm sure this is a shock to all of you.) One of my favorite authors is Ursala Vernon; her Clockwork Boys series were , and she mentioned “Chipotle Beans” on Twitter a while back. I immediately thought "What a great idea!" Instant Pot Chipotle Beans, here we come.
So I made a batch - saute some aromatics, add chipotle, cook the beans in my magic bean cooker, the Instant Pot. They were fantastic...and it looks like I'm not the only one to think so. It turns out, Ursula's husband Kevin got the recipe from the Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook. Which, I'm ashamed to say, has been on my Kindle for over a year now, but I never got around to opening it up. In other words, special thanks to Laurel Randolph's cookbook for indirectly inspiring this recipe...
This is a simple dried bean recipe, so the ingredients list is pretty basic
- Dried black beans
- Chipotle en adobo
Can't find chipotle en adobo? Look for the small cans in the Mexican aisle; they're one of my favorite pantry ingredients. If you can't find them, you can substitute dried chipotle chile powder, or ancho chile powder (milder), or even cayenne pepper.
If you want to cut the heat, skip the chipotle entirely.
A 6-quart pressure cooker. Pressure cooker dried beans are one of the reasons I became a pressure cooker convert. Try them - you’ll never go back to canned beans. (OK, maybe you will, for convenience - but see the Storage section for tips on make ahead freezer beans.)
This recipe scales down easily - cut everything in half if you don’t need as many beans, or have a 3-quart pressure cooker. Scaling up runs into space issues; if you have an 8-quart pressure cooker, you can double this recipe, but it’s too much to fit in a 6-quart pressure cooker.
🤨 Soaking black beans?
I get the “to soak, or not to soak?” question all the the time. I don’t soak my black beans. They don’t need an overnight soak, and cook to tenderness with 35 minutes at high pressure.
That doesn’t mean you can’t soak the beans. They turn out fine, though the bean broth isn’t quite as full bodied. Soaked beans cook much quicker, 15 minutes at high pressure. I use that when I’m cooking the beans with other ingredients, where the shorter cooking time keeps me from overcooking the whole dish just to get the beans tender - but it's not needed for this recipe.
💡Tips and Tricks
- Quick release the pressure for beans. The sudden drop in pressure throws the water into a boil, which roughs up the beans, releasing starch and thickening the pot liquid.
- Salt your bean water! “Salt toughens beans” is a myth. Salting before cooking helps season the beans all the way through as they cook.
- If your beans are still tough when the cooking time is over, especially any “floaters” at the top of the pot, give the beans a stir, lock the lid, and pressure cook for another five minutes. Older beans take longer to cook, and if the beans have been sitting in the shelf at your store for a while, they may need extra time.
- Simmer to thicken: If you have the time, and want thicker bean liquid, simmer the beans for 20 minutes after pressure cooking. I set my Instant Pot to Sauté mode adjusted to low, set the timer to 20 minutes, and leave the lid off to let the broth evaporate.
Instant Pot Chipotle Beans. Spicy black beans, from dried, in about an hour thanks to pressure cooking.
- 1 pound dried black beans, sorted and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon diced chipotle en adobo with sauce (or 2 teaspoons chipotle powder)
- 6 cups water
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- Sauté the aromatics: First, sort and rinse the beans. Heat the vegetable oil in the Instant Pot over Saute mode adjusted to high until the oil is shimmering. (Medium-high heat in a stovetop PC). Add the onion and garlic to the pot, sprinkle with the ½ teaspoon sea salt, and then add the diced chipotle. Sauté until the onion softens, about 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pot with a flat-edged wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits of onion.
- Everything in the pot: Stir the rinsed beans into the pot, pour in the water, and then add 1 teaspoon sea salt.
- Pressure cook for 35 minutes with a quick pressure release: Lock the lid and pressure cook on high pressure for 35 minutes in an Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker, or for 30 minutes in a stovetop pressure cooker. (On the Instant Pot, use the Manual or Pressure Cooking setting, and set the cook time for 35 minutes.) When the cooking time is over, quick release the pressure in the pot. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to avoid any hot steam. Serve and enjoy!.
I like to quick release the pressure on these beans. The sudden boil roughs up the beans and releases starch, thickening the cooking liquid. If you can't get to the pot right away, that's fine - you can use a natural pressure release, or release the pressure when you're ready to serve.
If you want to speed up the pressure cooking, soak the beans overnight. Drain the beans, then use the recipe as written, but cut the cooking time to 15 minutes at high pressure (still with a quick release). I don't bother soaking - it's quick enough with un-soaked beans.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 60 minutes
- Category: Side dish
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: Mexican
Keywords: Instant Pot Chipotle Beans, Pressure Cooker Chipotle Beans
A 2-cup container of beans, with cooking liquid, replaces a 15-ounce can of beans from the grocery store. They’ll last in the refrigerator for a few days, and freeze for up to 6 months. I always make extra beans, and freeze the leftovers for use in other recipes. Freezer beans are ready to use with about 5 minutes in the microwave, and are so much better than canned.
🤝 Related Posts
- Instant Pot Pinto Beans
- Pressure Cooker Refried Black Beans
- Pressure Cooker Turkey and Black Bean Chili
- My other Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Recipes
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