How many times have you watched someone on YouTube buy their groceries from the bulk section and make a ton of recipes from scratch? They display the immaculate interior of their fridge filled with freshly made foods all organized in wide-mouthed mason jars looking like a magazine cover. Sigh. I’ve always viewed these videos with a deep longing and an equal amount of laziness.
Just this once, let’s pretend that we have the courage to go out to the grocery store, brave the bulk section, and make our own d*mn vegan beans! Don’t be intimidated by this Instant Pot refried beans recipe. It’s so easy, you’ll be amazed at your own ability to handle anything homemade.
Buying beans in bulk is not only easier on the environment, but it will also put more money in your pocket. You’ll certainly save time and energy by using the Instant Pot and we’ll get you in gear for chucking pre-packaged products for good.
Ready to make really tasty vegan refried beans?Print
Put aside your canned beans and pull out the Instant Pot! This rich and creamy recipe for vegan refried beans is infinitely better homemade. Seasoned to pair perfectly with tortillas, salsa, and any other Mexican-inspired dishes, these pressure cooker refried beans will be devoured before you know it!
- 16 oz of dry pinto beans (or 2 cups)
- 1 teaspoon of chipotle
- 1 teaspoon of cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon of cayenne pepper (optional)
- 3 cups of vegetable broth
- The night before you want to make the beans, place the dry beans in a large bowl and cover with water until level reaches 2 inches above beans. Let sit at least 8 hours or overnight.
- Drain the bean water and rinse the soaked beans thoroughly.
- Plug in your Instant Pot and pour the rinsed beans into the pot.
- Pour in 3 cups of vegetable broth and add in spices. Mix well.
- Secure the lid onto the Instant Pot and make sure it’s in the sealed position.
- Select the manual button and adjust time to 25 minutes. When the pot beeps, it’s started the pressure and you can leave it until done.
- When the Instant Pot is done cooking, let it sit in natural release for 20 minutes. Move the indicator into the release position to release any extra pressure/steam. Press the off button to turn off.
- At this point the beans are done. You can either keep the beans as they are, blending or mashing until desired consistency, or you can drain any excess liquid before mashing the beans. It depends if you like the texture of your beans smooth and creamy or thick and chunky.
- If you don’t have pre-made or homemade vegetable broth, feel free to use 2 teaspoons of bouillon paste in 3 cups of water instead.
- Vary the amount of spices to your taste.
- Add a few drops of Cholula or your favorite hot sauce for extra spiciness.
Keywords: instant pot, refried beans, beans, homemade, sustainable, dinner, mexican
Equipment You’ll Need for Instant Pot Refried Beans
- Instant Pot
- Large bowl for soaking beans
- Measuring cups
- Measuring spoons
- Colander or strainer
- Mixing spoon
- Potato masher or immersion blender (optional)
Sustainability = Saying No to Package Waste
By choosing bulk foods and ingredients, you not only get the satisfaction of saving a bunch of single use plastic from cluttering up Mother Earth and our beautiful oceans, but this conscious choice can save you money as well.
Sure, you can buy cans that can be recycled, but (sadly) many cans do not end up at recycling center. Recycling also uses an incredible amount of natural resources and is not the best option on the eco-friendly scale. Choose package-free, if at all possible. Remember to refuse plastic first!
Buying Bulk Beans Is Cost-Effective
Did you know that canned pinto beans are almost 6 times higher in price per pound than dry pinto beans? It’s wild! Have you ever tried to compare bulk vs. packaged prices? A real eye-opener.
I never even thought about this until my husband (who loves to look at the price per pound labels at the grocery store) mentioned it to me. At the time, it was hard to do an equal comparison of a small can of cooked beans to a pound bag of dried beans. But, I love math, so I decided to figure it out when I got home.
Results: You can buy a can of organic cooked pinto beans for around $1.50 (if you’re lucky), which gives you a little under 1.5 cups of beans. This adds up to about 50 cents per cup. If you bought a pound of organic dry pinto beans for the same price and cooked them up yourself, you would get about 7 cups cooked––for the same price or cheaper! Big thumbs up for bulk beans.
These refried beans are pictured above topped with shredded vegan pepperjack cheese from Miyoko’s and fresh cilantro.
How to Serve Up Vegan Refried Beans
Although you may think that these Instant Pot refried beans will be a tad tame, you’ll be delightfully surprised by their rich flavor profile. Especially being oil-free! Here are some delicious ways to ramp up your refried beans even more:
- Tuck Into Tortillas – Beans (and maybe a little red rice?) rolled up in a tortilla is a no-brainer. Quick, easy, and incredibly satisfying. You can sprinkle in some shredded vegan cheese, shredded lettuce, and a few corn kernels. Bake, pan fry, or eat on the go – they’re all good!
- Nosh With Nachos – To me, nothing is better than a plate of crispy corn chips topped with melted vegan cheddar cheese, chunks of fresh tomato, warm refried beans, and sprinkled with scallions. The ultimate Friday night treat!
- Toast Topper – My teenage son loves this variation! Grab your favorite bread (perhaps a piece of focaccia), toast a slice or two, spread the top with a spoonful of refried beans, a glob of guacamole (or sliced avocado), and a few drops of your favorite hot sauce. Also a great lunch idea.
- Veggie Dip – Cut up some crunchy veggies (cucumbers, carrots, peppers, etc.) and serve alongside a small cupful each of refried beans, smooth salsa, and even a bit of vegan buffalo queso. A really super snack option.
Simple Storage for Your Instant Pot Refried Beans
Instant Pot refried beans are super easy to store in the fridge. Plop them into a covered glass container or serving bowl. They should stay fresh for at least 3-4 days.
To re-heat, simply add them to a small saucepan and cook over medium low until desired temperature. You can also microwave them for a minute or so. If they seem a little dry, add a tablespoon at a time of water or vegetable broth and mix until you have the texture you want.
If you made too many beans that you can’t eat within a few days, feel free to freeze them. Wait until the beans are at room temperature and place them in a freezer-safe bag (like a Stasher bag) or container. They’ll keep for 3-6 months. To defrost, take the beans out and refrigerate them overnight or place in a saucepan and heat on low until heated.
More Incredible Instant Pot Recipes:
- Instant Pot Pasta With Vegan Meatballs
- Easy Vegan Instant Pot Soup With Lentils & Vegetables
- Instant Pot Guide
Vegan Instant Pot Refried Beans Recipe by Gina House and photos by JJ Steele, copyright of World of Vegan™, all rights reserved. Article edited by Amanda Meth. Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which helps support our work at World of Vegan.