Pressure cooker, Side dish, Weeknight dinner
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Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas

Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas |
Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas

Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas. Looking for good luck in the New Year? A pressure cooker prepares black-eyed peas in less than an hour.

Black-eyed peas are a Southern tradition on New Year’s Day. (If you want to be sure you’re getting all the luck the South can offer, eat them with collard greens and cornbread.)

Am I from the South? No, I’m a Midwestern boy, with Polish side of the family that believes in Pork and Sauerkraut for luck in the New Year. I’ve never had the nerve to mash the Southern and Polish New Years Day dinners together – greens and beans and pork and sauerkraut seems like a bit too much all at once.

That’s why I’m glad Black-eyed peas are also a soul food classic and a common barbecue side dish. I don’t have to wait for New Year’s Day to have a pot of these beans.

As always, my secret weapon for cooking dried beans is the pressure cooker. Black-eyed peas are surprisingly quick to cook in the pressure cooker. There’s no soaking necessary; they only take 15 minutes at high pressure, directly from dry beans. That makes them a side dish I’m willing to try on a weeknight – I can have them on the table inside of an hour, and most of that time is hands-off.

Recipe: Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas

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Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas |

Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups 1x


Pressure Cooker Black-Eyed Peas recipe. Looking for good luck in the New Year? Or a simple Southern-style side dish? A pressure cooker prepares black-eyed peas in less than an hour.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 pound dried black-eyed peas, sorted and rinsed
  • 1 smoked ham hock
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 6 cups water
  • More salt and fresh ground black pepper for seasoning


  1. Sauté the aromatics: Heat the tablespoon of oil in the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat until the oil is shimmering (Sauté mode adjusted to high in my Instant Pot.) Add the onion and garlic to the pot and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Saute until the onion softens, about five minutes.
  2. Everything in the pot:Add the black-eyed peas and nestle in the ham hock. Pour in the water, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt, and lock the pressure cooker lid.
  3. Pressure cook for 15 minutes with a Natural Pressure Release: Lock the lid and pressure cook for 15 minutes in an electric pressure cooker, or 12 minutes in a stovetop pressure cooker. (On the Instant Pot, use the Manual or Pressure Cook setting, and set the cook time to 15 minutes.) When the cooking time is over, let the pressure come down naturally, about 20 minutes. (You can quick release any remaining pressure after 15 minutes if you’re in a hurry.) Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to avoid any hot steam.
  4. Season and serve: Discard the ham hock, and stir the pot. Taste and stir in salt and pepper until the beans go from bland to fully seasoned. (I usually add another half teaspoon to teaspoon of fine sea salt to the pot, plus a lot of fresh ground black pepper.) Serve and enjoy!


  • Yes, only 15 minutes under pressure. Black-eyed peas cook fast.
  • Shred the meat on the ham hock? The ham hock adds smoky pork flavor to the beans. Once the beans are cooked, the hock has done its job. Most hocks don’t have enough meat to be worth shredding and should be thrown away after cooking. If you can see a lot of meat on the hock, and you don’t mind the extra work, separate it from the skin, fat, gristle, and bone. Shred the meat and stir it into the beans.
  • To halve the recipe, halve all the ingredients (½ pound beans and 3 cups water). To double this recipe, you need an 8-quart or larger pressure cooker, and double the ingredients. Either way, the cooking time remains the same – 15 minutes at high pressure.


  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: American

What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

Related Posts

Pressure Cooker Collard Greens
Pressure Cooker Pork and Sauerkraut
Pressure Cooker Red Beans and Rice
My other Pressure Cooker Recipes
My other Pressure Cooker Time Lapse Videos

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Filed under: Pressure cooker, Side dish, Weeknight dinner


Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.


  1. DeeDee Brown says

    This was delicious! My husband and I had two bowls of it. I added 4 strips of cooked crispy bacon to it while cooking. 17 minutes high press with 15 minutes natural release.

  2. Lisa Romo says

    This has been my go to recipe for several years now, it always comes out perfect.
    The only change I make is I omit the ham (am vegetarian) and add some liquid smoke.

  3. Mike McCallum says

    What about combining the pressure cooker and collard greens recipe?

  4. Mike, I grew up on black eyed peas (and lots of other peas) in Tennessee. But as an adult I went for French, Italian and Spanish cooking and left Southern cooking behind. Last Saturday we hosted friends for a Southern dinner with catfish, hush puppies, coleslaw, hickory smoked pork shoulder, okra, collards and black eyed peas. Amazingly it was difficult to find dried black eyed peas in Los Angeles. Then my Korean wife went to the Korean market and came home with three packages. At 1 pm for a 6 pm dinner there was no way I could do the traditional long soak or hot water hot soak and get the peas done. So I looked up pressure cooker black eyed peas and found your recipe. My friend from Louisiana, had told me his mom was a bad cook, except for her black eyed peas. So the pressure was on. I followed your recipe, making sure not to overcook the peas, and served them. I added a little of the drippings from the smoked pork shoulder, otherwise followed your recipe. He said they were the best black eye peas he ever tasted. Thank you for your help with this.

  5. Kathy says

    Made this last night and to our delight this simple, easy dish was delicious! We’re adding it to our regular rotation. Thanks for sharing. PS We subbed a slice of bacon for the ham hock.

  6. Paul says

    In south Texas so everything we cook includes bacon. I put it in an sautés it with the onion garlic and jalapeños. The bacon does not completely cook before the onions start to stick. Next time I’ll try cooking the bacon in the pot first then add the onion and garlic. Recipe is right on point. Thanks another dad cooker!

    • Discard the ham hock?!?! NO WAY!! That would cause a fight in my house! The second fight would be about who gets the ham hock! I pressure cook the hamhock until tender, then add the peas and pressure cook until tender!

  7. SheB says

    Perfect in every way!! I added cooked chopped up bacon, but it would have been spot on without it as well. Just like Grandma used to make.

  8. Lauren says

    Made this a few times, and making it again today. Couldn’t find a ham hock in my local grocery store so I just bought a ham steak and cut it into cubes – it doesn’t have the same flavor hit a hock would provide but it is still really really good! I also pre-soak my beans out of habit for the health benefits, and still cook it for the fifteen minutes in my instant pot. If I have an extra can of diced tomatoes, sometimes I’ll throw those in too. Comes out perfect! Thank you for sharing!

  9. Donna Christian-Bruce says

    Great recipe! I used the leftover spiral ham bone from Christmas. Substituted chicken broth for the water and added poultry season and a touch of cumin. Once cooked there was plenty of ham that fell off the bone to make it substantial. I did not add the greens. Definitely a keeper.

  10. Janet says

    Seriously good. Followed the recipe exactly except I used leftover ham chunks instead of ham hocks.

  11. I just made these in my electric pressure cooker and this dish is PERFECTION!! I am a southerner and am experimenting with pressure cooking. This recipe is a definite keeper!!

  12. Heather says

    Just made this tonight. Perfect cook time and amount of liquid. The peas weren’t mushy and it was kind of stewy. I had veggie broth and turkey broth on hand as a sub for lacking a ham hock. Thanks for the great recipe!

  13. Mark J says

    Just made this for our traditional Southern Black-Eyed Pea lunch. Excellent. I admit to being worried about the 15 min cook time. But it turned out perfect. This recipe is a keeper. Thanks.

  14. Jeff says

    Tried this, but had no ham. I used one package of Lil’ Smokies cut in half. I also added 3 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning for some added flavor. Very tasty and quick. Love my pressure cooker for beans.

  15. T.J. says

    Made this today! Used hock from smoked Christmas ham. Perfect! Thank you so much!

  16. Barbara says

    New to pressure cooking. Can I do 2 lbs with12 cups of water? Cook it longer?

    • Same cooking time, add only add water up to the max fill line on your pressure cooker pot. As long as you get at least 10 cups in there, it should be enough water – I think 12 cups of water + 2 pounds of beans will go above the max fill line on a 6 quart PC.

  17. Yum! I like to grind about 1/2 teaspoon of celery seed with the pepper for additional pop. Also, left over ham or hambone, or leftover sausage works nicely too . I have even made this with polish sausage 😀

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