Pressure cooker, Side dish
comments 15

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans |
Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans recipe. A taste of Santa Maria, ready in about an hour in the pressure cooker.

My wife knows me. What did she get me on a trip to San Fransisco? Beans. Not just any beans – pinquito beans from Rancho Gordo at the Ferry Market. I have wanted to try these beans for years; they are an essential side dish for Santa Maria Tri-Tip Barbecue, but I’ve never been able to find them locally.

Enter Rancho Gordo, the internet’s gourmet bean source – except, instead of ordering them online, my wife bought them at the source and flew them home to Ohio.

Now, to make sure I had the recipe right, I needed more than one bag of beans…so I did order a few more online. Plus some black beans, red beans, and pintos. Hey, I need them for research.

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans |
Rancho Gordo Beans

The pinquito beans were worth the extra effort – they’re smaller and meatier than pinto beans. I know, I know, that description doesn’t help much. Trust me – they taste fantastic, and are worth seeking out. I can see why they’re such a hit in Santa Maria.

I used my bean secret weapon – my pressure cooker – to cook them in about an hour. Ready for a brothy bowl of pinquito beans, perfect to serve with Santa Maria Tri-Tip? Here they are.

Video: Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans – Time Lapse (1:25)

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans – Time Lapse []

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Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans |

Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 27 minute
  • Yield: 6 cups beans 1x


Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans recipe. A taste of Santa Maria, ready in about an hour in the pressure cooker.


  • 4 ounces bacon, diced (can I get that at the grocery store?)
  • 1 large onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 pound Santa Maria Pinquito Beans, sorted and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 cups water
  • 8-ounce can Tomato Sauce


  1. Brown the bacon: Spread the bacon out in the bottom of the pressure cooker pot, then put it over medium-low heat (or, in an electric PC, turn on Sauté mode). Cook the bacon, stirring often, until the bacon is starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
  2. Sauté the aromatics in the bacon fat: Stir the onion and garlic into the bacon in the pressure cooker pot, and sprinkle with the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Sauté until the onion softens, about five minutes.
  3. Everything in the pot: Add the sorted and rinsed pinquito beans to the pot, then sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt, the mustard powder, and the baking soda. Stir in the water, and then stir in the tomatoes.
  4. Pressure cook the beans: Lock the lid on the pressure cooker and pressure cook at high pressure for 35 minutes in an electric pressure cooker, or 30 minutes in a stovetop PC. (On the Instant Pot, use the Manual setting, and set the cook time for 35 minutes.) Let the pressure come down naturally, about 20 minutes more. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to avoid any hot steam.
  5. Season, and serve: Taste the soup, then add salt and pepper until you just taste the salt on the tip of your tongue. (I usually add another teaspoon or two of salt to the pot.) Serve, passing hot sauce at the table if you want an extra kick of heat.



  • This recipe fits in a 6 quart or larger pressure cooker. (I love my 6 quart Instant Pot – though if you pay close attention to the video, you’ll notice that I use a Fagor Lux that I was testing.)
  • Thickening the beans: If you want to thicken up the bean broth, scoop 2 cups of cooked beans and cooking liquid out of the cooker and puree them, then stir the pureed beans back into the pot. I put them in a quart measuring cup and use my stick blender.
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: American
Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans |
Pressure Cooker Santa Maria Pinquito Beans

What do you think?

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

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My other Pressure Cooker Time Lapse Videos

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Filed under: Pressure cooker, Side dish


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. Janet Goff says

    I think Rancho Gordo beans are well worth the extra price. I love this recipe Mike, I’m a fan of pinquitos. Thanks again for another great recipe!

  2. You’ve got me hooked on Rancho Gordo beans. So good.
    If I soak/brine these pinquito beans overnight, would the pressure cooker time be about 15 minutes like pinto beans?

  3. Tanya says

    Interesting recipe! I found it while doing a search for recipes that I could cook in my new Instant Pot. I’m a Santa Maria native and am used to the pinquito recipes that do not have any tomato sauce or mustard in them, although your recipe sounds very good! The recipe I use calls for some diced green chilies instead. I mostly use the Jocko’s Steakhouse Restaurant (Nipomo, CA) or Shaw’s Steakhouse (Santa Maria, CA) recipes (I think you can find them online). Also, if you are having trouble finding the pinquito beans, Lompoc Valley Seed & Milling is an excellent option! They have many other bean varieties as well.

  4. Would this work with regular pintos? I, alas, have no pinquitos at the moment, but I’m going to order some ASAP! However, I do have diced bacon in need of a pot of beans.

  5. ebacklund says

    Love Rancho Gordo! I’ve been a member of their bean club for about 2 years now, and always look forward to my quarterly box of beans.

  6. Astra says

    Yes, be warned: Rancho Gordo is hugely addictive. Our favorites so far are the piquinto and the Royal Corona (although I made the Rio Zape beans this week and they had the best bean broth I have ever tasted).

  7. The Good Mother Stallards are really good, I agree, but you need to try the Rio Zapes (super meaty tasting) and the Yellow Indian Woman (ridiculously creamy).

  8. Razzy 7 says

    Glad to hear you’re trying beans from Rancho Gordo. Love, love, love their beans and I love that they are heirloom beans. They’re always fresh because when a season’s beans are sold out, that’s it. No more until the next season’s beans are available. I love too that they have bean varieties I’ve never heard of. A favorite variety I’d recommend to you is Good Mother Stallard beans.

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