Skip to Content

Instant Pot Refried Beans

These Instant Pot Refried Beans Recipe from Allergy Free Alaska are superb!

These Instant Pot Refried Beans are a staple in our house. They are creamy and satisfying, yet incredibly affordable and freeze well. Enjoy these flavorful pinto beans over rice, in tortillas, or however you desire. You won’t believe how easy this recipe is!

These Instant Pot Refried Beans are a staple in our house. They are creamy and satisfying, yet incredibly affordable and freeze well.

When I first got my Instant Pot, I was so excited that it would cook dried beans so quickly. After cooking several batches of beans, I realized I needed to replicate a homemade refried beans recipe that would equal or surpass restaurant quality beans. The first time I made this recipe, my family was ecstatic. My kids inhaled gluten-free tortilla after tortilla filled with refried beans and topped with fresh ingredients.

How to freeze these pressure cooker refried beans:

Make beans per recipe instructions and cool completely. Portion into gallon or quart sized resealable freezer bags. Gently remove as much air from the bags as you possible can. Store in the freezer flat (this way they don’t take up as much space). To thaw quickly, place frozen bag of beans in a large baking dish or bowl with hot water.

I’ve also frozen the beans in quart sized canning jars or other glass storage containers. If using glass is your preference, just make sure you ONLY fill the container 3/4 of the way full. Otherwise, as the beans freeze and expand, they will potentially shatter your glass container.

Crowd Pleasing Instant Pot Pulled Pork with Dry Rub Recipe

From Reader Carole:
“I made these today: the BEST beans I’ve ever made. I’ve been searching for a recipe that tasted like the restaurant. My search is over. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou!!”

I make these instant refried beans a few times a month. They are a cheap and hearty dish (perfect for growing kids) that can be used in a myriad of ways. Try pairing them with my Paleo Instant Pot Pulled Pork or with my Grain Free Vegan Tortillas.

Cutting down on the gas these Instant Pot Refried Beans may produce:

Let’s be real, beans can be a smelly situation! So how do you eliminate that, or drastically reduce that issue? We’ve all been taught to soak our beans overnight for 8-12 hours. BUT, what I didn’t know, and recently discovered, is that you need to drain, rinse and resoak the beans every 3ish hours. Apparently, doing this, and discarding the soaking water consistently clears the beans of excess sugar starch. Those sugar molecules can’t be broken down or digested by your body, which ultimately leads to… gas.

I do not call for you to soak your Instant Pot beans in this recipe; however, you absolutely can. I would just reduce the liquid by 1-2 cups. FYI, you want the liquid to be about 1/2 inch above the beans, at minimum.

A reader commented and said she substituted pinto beans for Mayocoba beans in this recipe (I had never heard of them prior to this). Apparently they are creamier beans than pinto beans, and she has reported that this worked well.

FAQ about this Instant Pot Refried Beans recipe:

Q: How many cups is 2 lbs. of pinto beans?
A: Roughly 4-5 cups. I normally use 5 cups because we purchase pinto beans in the 25 lbs. bags from Costco. 😉

Q: Does freezing change the taste/texture at all?
I haven’t found that freezing changes the texture at all. I just warm them up in the microwave or stovetop with a little water (they get really thick, so the water thins them out a little). They’re perfect!

Q: Why are my beans so runny?
A: When these beans are done cooking, they will be very runny, but as they cool, they will thicken up.

Q: Can I substitute black beans for the pinto beans?
A: I haven’t tried this, but I’m sure it would work just fine. You just might need to reduce your liquid to accommodate for the smaller beans.

Q: Why do you call for fat in this recipe? Can I omit it?
A: I add fat for 2 reasons – 1.) Flavor. Fat always adds flavor, especially when it’s leftover bacon fat. 😉 2.) Fat adds a creaminess or smoothness to bean recipes that I personally enjoy. If you are eating low-fat, or would rather omit the fat from the recipe, you definitely can do that.

Q: When I opened my Instant Pot, my pinto beans had a dark layer on the top of them. Is this normal?
A: Yes, totally normal!

Q: If I half the recipe, do I need to decrease the cooking time?
A: No, keep the cooking time the same.

Q: How many servings does this recipe produce?
A: This recipe makes a WHOLE LOTTA beans. Each cup of dried beans produces 3 cups in volume of cooked beans. There’s roughly 4-5 cups in 2 lbs. of dried beans, so you’re looking at 12-15 cups cooked. Assuming a serving of beans is 1/2 cup, there would be 24-30 servings in this recipe.

Q: I don’t have an immersion blender, and I’m afraid my Vitamix/Blendtec will blend them too much. What do you suggest?
A: You might try blending half of the beans in your blender, and then keeping the other half of the beans whole, or further mashing by hand. That way you get some creaminess, but don’t take away that chunky texture completely.

Gluten free recipes with refried beans:
Crispy Baked Sweet Potato Nachos from Fearless Dining
Easy Ground Beef and Bean Dip by Hot Pan Kitchen
Mexican Style Baked Potatoes from Faithfully Gluten free
Plant Based Nachos from My Plant Based Family

Other gluten free Instant Pot recipes to check out:
Easy Instant Pot Coconut Milk Yogurt
Instant Pot White Bean Chicken Chili
Dairy Free Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes

overhead instant refried beans

Instant Pot Refried Beans

Yield: 24-30 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

These Instant Pot Refried Beans are a staple in our house. They are creamy and satisfying, yet incredibly affordable and freeze well.


  • 2 pounds dried pinto beans, sorted (roughly 4-5 cups, I use 5 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening (or bacon grease or lard for non-vegan)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (or chicken broth for non-vegan)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1-2 teaspoons sea salt


  1. In a large mixing bowl, add the sorted dried pinto beans and fill the bowl with enough water to cover the beans by several inches. Set aside to soak for 15 minutes while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  2. To the Instant Pot bowl, add the chopped onion, garlic cloves, jalapeno, dried oregano, ground cumin, ground black pepper, vegetable shortening, vegetable broth, and water.
  3. Use a colander to strain the beans and discard the soaking liquid. Rinse with fresh water.
  4. Now add the beans to the Instant Pot bowl, and stir all of the ingredients together. It’s okay if the shortening is in a solid lump, as soon as the Instant Pot comes up to pressure/temperature, the fat will melt.
  5. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and ensure the steam release valve is set to sealing. Set the Instant Pot to cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. Now walk away. When the Instant Pot is done cooking, it will come down from pressure naturally, which takes about 40 minutes.
  6. When the pressure is finally released, open the lid of the Instant Pot and add the sea salt to taste. Use an immersion blender to blend the beans to the desired consistency. The beans will appear soupy, but don’t worry – they will thicken as they cool.


I do not call for you to soak your Instant Pot beans in this recipe; however, you absolutely can. I would just reduce the liquid by 1-2 cups.

Recommended Products

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.
Best Gluten Free Pizza Crust
← Previous
Gluten Free Sweet Tortilla Pizza
Next →

Tom Thorfinnson

Friday 9th of April 2021


The Rotary Foundation Of Rotary International, Inc. was referred to your company for vegetable cooking oil. Kindly send a formal quote for 20L VEGETABLE COOKING OIL (any brand you have available) for immediate procurement.

Please quote your ordinary unit price for supplying these products together with your discount for volume purchase. Please also indicate; (a) Whether your quotes are inclusive or exclusive of sales taxes, (b) Estimated time of arrival on receipt of our purchase order. All price quotations must be firm and state when they expire.


Tom Thorfinnson General Procurement & Chief Strategic Officer The Rotary Foundation Of Rotary International, Inc. 1560 Sherman Avenue, One Rotary Center, Evanston, Illinois, 60201 847 242 8493


Saturday 20th of February 2021

Hi! I'm excited to try this! When you say vegetable shortening, can I use olive oil? Or vegetable oil? Will this change the flavor drastically and if so how many tables spoons of oil? Thank u so much in advance!


Monday 22nd of February 2021

Hi Shellby, so the fat added (sometimes I use bacon fat) is really just to impart flavor and creaminess. So you can use whatever oil you don't mind the taste of, or simply omit it altogether. If you used olive oil or vegetable oil, I would only use 1 tablespoon.


Saturday 1st of August 2020

Four years later and I’m still coming back to this recipe! My coworkers always have me bring them when we do taco bar at work (unfortunately not this year). I feel that I have better results by soaking the beans at least a couple hours.


Monday 10th of August 2020

That's awesome, Meagan! And thanks for your tips on soaking the beans!


Monday 23rd of December 2019

Just wanted to pop by and state that I have tried with with both pinto and black beans, soaked overnight, and both have turned out so well. Because I soak them before cooking, when they're done I use a slotted scoop to to scoop them into the blender and just slowly add the cooking liquid as needed to get the consistency I want. There is always a bit of the cooking liquid leftover, but we then use that for black bean soup for the next night's dinner (we do a big batch a retired beans for lunches through the week).


Thursday 17th of October 2019

This is the best bean recipe I believe I've ever made! Now, I'm old school southern. Been cooking a long time, set in my ways and the mister is worse than me. I have recently started eating a vegetarian diet and just decided that I needed a wham bam new recipe! Honey, your recipe does not disappoint! And he even had a fit over it and he doesn't like anything new! I keep them whole and then I can make different dishes with them. Taco salad is my favorite. He eats them with cornbread. Good job with this one!


Tuesday 29th of October 2019

Carmen, you are sweet! Thank you so much for saying that! I'm glad you liked them!