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Refried beans pair so well with so many dishes. You can make instant pot refried beans faster than on the stovetop or in a slow cooker, without sacrificing flavor.
My kids love it when we go out to a Mexican restaurant and their meal comes with the refried beans and rice.
Making your own refried beans at home isn’t hard at all. It just takes dried pinto beans, spices, chicken broth, water, and patience. And making instant pot refried beans cuts down on the time compared to in a slower cooker or on the stove.
It’s easy to make this vegan by substituting vegetable broth in place of the chicken broth.
Homemade instant pot refried beans are so good, especially when compared to canned refried beans. If you are worried about the time it takes to make homemade refried beans (and yes, although the instant pot cuts down on the time, it still takes a bit), you can always make up a batch and store it in the freezer until you need it.
Another great things about making homemade refried beans is dry beans are super cheap. You can buy bags of the dried pinto beans or you can also get it in the bulk section at your grocery store.
This recipe does not require you to soak beans before cooking.
Why are they called refried beans?
Refried beans aren’t actually called refried because they are fried again, which might cause some confusion. In English we use the prefix “re” to mean something has been done again, but in Spanish “re” is sometimes used to give emphasis to a word.
What are refried beans made from?
Refried beans can be made with all sorts of different types of beans. Black beans and pinto beans are the most common ones and Pinto beans are the one used in the majority of restaurants in the US.
You can make refried black beans by substituting black beans in place of the pinto beans.
Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth to make these instant pot refried beans vegan.
If you want to spice up your refried beans, try adding some of these to instant pot before you cook the beans:
- green chili
- ham hock
Instant Pot Refried Beans Recipe
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ cup chicken broth
1 ½ cup water
1 pound dry pinto beans, rinsed and sorted
½ teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
Useful Tools and Equipment
Potato Masher or Immersion Blender
How to Make Refried Beans in Your Instant Pot:
Step 1: The first thing you are going to do is set your instant pot on the sauté mode and add in the olive oil. After the pot is heated, add in the diced onion and the minced garlic.
Cook until the onion is translucent.
Turn the Instant Pot off.
Next, add in the chicken broth and water. Using a spatula, scrape off any stuck-on onion or garlic bits from the bottom of the Instant Pot.
Now, add the dried beans to the instant pot and season with chili powder, cumin, oregano, and salt. Stir to combine.
Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set to Pressure Cook for 45 minutes.
Do a natural release when the cook time is over.
After the pressure has been released, remove the lid and carefully drain the cooking liquid from the beans, reserving some of this cooking liquid. Add the cooked beans back to the Instant Pot and pour in ½ to ¾ cup reserved liquid.
Using a potato masher or immersion blender, mash the beans until they are smooth, adding more of the cooking liquid if needed.
Serve in your favorite dish and enjoy!
Can you freeze refried beans?
Yes, you can. After the beans cool, you can put them in a mason jar (make sure to leave plenty of head space at the top so the jar doesn’t break once frozen) or into a freezer bag. They can be stored in the freezer for 3-6 months.
How long are refried beans good in the fridge for?
You can safely store refried beans in our fridge for about 3-4 days.
What do you eat with refried beans?
The ways to use refried beans are endless. Here are some of our favorites:
- Great as a side dish for many Mexican dishes. Sprinkle some cotija cheese over the top.
- Pair them with Spanish rice
- Add to burritos, tacos, or taco bowls
- Use them in a bean dip
- Make a burrito pizza – layer a tortilla, refried beans, cheese and top with a tortilla then heat in either the microwave, in the oven, or on the stove.
If you are eating refried beans without adding it to a dish, then pairing it with Spanish rice is delicious! The rice and beans complement each other really well. Some people like to mix up their rice and beans and others prefer just having them as two separate dishes on their plate when eating.
Instant Pot Refried Beans
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 ½ cup water
- 1 pound dry pinto beans rinsed & sorted
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1. Set the Instant Pot to Saute mode and add theolive oil. When the pot is heated, add the diced onion and minced garlic. Cookuntil the onion is translucent. Turn off the Instant Pot.
- 2. Add the chicken broth and water. Using aspatula, scrape off any stuck-on onion or garlic bits from the bottom of theInstant Pot.
- 3. Add the beans and season with chili powder,cumin, oregano, and salt. Stir to combine.
- 4. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set toPressure Cook for 45 minutes. Do a natural release when the cook time is over.
- 5. After the pressure has been released, remove thelid and carefully drain the beans, reserving some of the liquid. Add the beansback to the Instant Pot and pour in ½ to ¾ cup reserved liquid. Using a potatomasher or immersion blender, mash the beans until they are smooth, adding moreliquid if needed.