Instant Pot Red Beans (Fast, Tender, No Soaking!)

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Bowl of small red beans made in the Instant Pot

With an Instant Pot and about 1 hour, you can make perfectly cooked red beans every time! Let us show you how.

Spoon and bowl of Instant Pot red beans

About Red Beans

Red beans look similar to red kidney beans, but they’re smaller and more round. These mild-tasting, creamy beans are most commonly used to make Louisiana Red Beans and Rice. Learn about the history of this dish here.

Pouring water into an Instant Pot of dry red beans

Instant Pot Red Beans

The Instant Pot is our preferred method for cooking red beans because it’s quick and easy (no soaking required!), and yields perfectly tender beans!

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Ratio = 1 part red beans : 3 parts water
  • Cook Time = 28-30 minutes
  • Release = 15 minute natural release, then release any remaining pressure

Red beans are delicious with rice or Cajun baked fries or added to soups, stews, chili, or salads. They can also be used to make refried beans.

Using a wooden spoon to stir red beans in the Instant Pot

Did you find this helpful? If so, be sure to check out our Instant Pot Cooking Times Guide for perfectly cooked grains and beans every time!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Bowl of perfectly cooked red beans

Instant Pot Red Beans (Fast, Tender, No Soaking!)

A quick & simple method for making PERFECT red beans in the Instant Pot every time! Just 1 ingredient and 1 pot required!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Bowl of Instant Pot red beans
3.90 from 10 votes
Prep Time 23 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 53 minutes
Servings 4 (3/4-cup servings)
Course Helpful How-to, Side Dish
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Southern-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 5 Days

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Add red beans and water (or vegetable broth) to the Instant Pot and stir to prevent sticking. Pressure cook on high for 28-30 minutes (28 minutes for more firm, 30 for more tender // it will take about 8 minutes for the Instant Pot to pressurize before cooking begins).
  • Once the timer goes off, allow to naturally release for 15 minutes, then release any remaining pressure. Carefully remove lid once steam has fully escaped and strain off any excess cooking liquid.
  • Enjoy immediately with rice or Cajun baked fries or added to soups, stews, chili, or salads. They can also be used to make refried beans. Store cooled leftovers in the refrigerator up to 5 days or in the freezer up to 1 month. Reheat in a saucepan on the stovetop, adding a little water, as needed, to prevent sticking.

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.
*Total time includes active cook time, release time, and the time it takes for the Instant Pot to heat up (~8 minutes).

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 three-quarter-cup serving Calories: 160 Carbohydrates: 28 g Protein: 10 g Fat: 0 g Saturated Fat: 0 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0 g Monounsaturated Fat: 0 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 5 mg Fiber: 7 g Sugar: 1 g Vitamin A: 0 IU Vitamin C: 2.4 mg Calcium: 40 mg Iron: 2.7 mg

Reader Interactions

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  1. BJ says

    I’m from the South and have been cooking Red Beans for 30+ years. I wanted to find a recipe for Red Beans cooked in a pressure cooker and I ran across this recipe. I cooked on high for 28 minutes and they were perfect. I did make some changes: I chopped up an onion and a bell pepper. I seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic. I also sliced up some smoked sausage. I browned the onion, bell pepper and sausage in the pressure cooker (browning option) before adding the beans. Also I used 3 Cups of Beans instead of one cup and added 9 cups of water. I now have Red Beans for a crowd and hopefully some leftovers. These are even better the 2nd/3rd day. They also freeze really well. I’m giving this 3-stars for the lack of seasoning, smoked sausage and having to triple the quantity of beans. Thanks for the pressure cooker info.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi there, the recipe for Cajun fries was linked because both red beans and cajun-style fries are often enjoyed in Louisiana and the southern US. Hope this helps!

  2. Fabien says

    Thanks for this recipe and for the incredibly useful table with cooking times! I’m leaving this comment because I think I figured out why several readers below say that the unsoaked beans are undercooked after 30 minutes. Or at least I found confusing discrepancies between a few pages on red beans.

    The table says 28-30 minutes for “small red beans” and 38-40 minutes for “red kidney beans”, while the page on “kidney beans” (https://minimalistbaker.com/instant-pot-kidney-beans-fast-tender-no-soaking/) says 40-45 minutes. To add to the confusion, the pictures for “red kidney beans” (40-45 minutes) over there and “red beans” (28-30 minutes) here and are exactly the same!

    Could it be that the cooking time on this page is best for small red beans, but that some readers (understandably) believe it’s about kidney beans and therefore end up with undercooked beans?

    Thanks again for your spectacular work!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Fabien, thank you for sharing and sorry for the confusion! Red beans are a different bean than kidney beans – they are smaller and cook faster. We’ll get that chart updated for the kidney beans. Thanks for pointing it out!

  3. J Ravix says

    I am not sure, but the beans came out a little tough. If you can inform me of how to get my beans truly tender, it would have made a huge difference. Other then that, it was okay.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi J, did you happen to make any modifications? And do you happen to know the age of your beans? You could try increasing the cook time by 5 minutes or so next time to see if that makes enough of a difference.

  4. Katie P says

    I’ve tried making red beans in the instant pot for red beans and rice. I can never get my beans soft enough for me. They’re edible and delicious, but I’d like them softer. I’m scared to add too much extra time to the instant pot because everywhere I’ve looked says the same time! I’ve added a few minutes here and there. Is it OK to keep adding minutes or will soaking first help or make them too mushy?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Katie, is it possible you’re using older beans, hard water, or at elevation? These factors could all make them take longer to cook. We’d suggest trying 5 more minutes to see if that does the trick!

  5. Barb says

    Silly question…to stor or freeze the beans after cooking, do I freeze in liquid or dry?
    They are cooking as I type. Thanks for being there and providing your knowledge.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Either way is fine! We typically store in the liquid in case we want to use it in a recipe. You can drain it out later if not using it. Hope that helps!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes! If you adjust the default number of servings, the recipe will adjust accordingly. Just make sure not to fill past the 1/2 line of the Instant Pot when cooking beans. Hope that helps!

    • Tara says

      I made these a couple of days ago,… DELICIOUS! I soaked the beans overnight.. They were simple and no worry of constantly adding water. I added a link of sausage to mine as well. Everything cooked up tender. What a great time saver!

  6. Jen says

    30 minutes was absolutely not enough time and I was even only doing half the amount of beans. Luckily I factored extra time in before the ribs came off the smoker.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so sorry to hear that, Jen! Is it possible the beans were old or there was any salt or acidic ingredients added to them? Those factors can cause them to need additional time.

    • Bill says

      30 minutes of pressure cooking time followed by 15 minutes of natural pressure release worked out perfectly for me.

      1 cup of beans with 3 cups of vegetable stock.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for the request, Alperen. We found that most of the beans didn’t need soaking. But a few did, and those were included in this list!

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        So sorry to hear that, Karlen! Is it possible you have hard water, are at high altitude, or are using beans that are old? You could also try soaking them for next time to ensure they soften. We didn’t find it necessary in our testing though.

  7. Amrita says

    Please consider making a cooking time table for presoaked beans. They are easier to digest for some of us.
    Thank you very much,
    Amrita