Kalyn's Kitchen

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef

Make Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef in the Instant Pot or stovetop pressure cooker or in a regular pan on the stove. 

PIN Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef to make it later!

Pressure Cooker (or Stovetop) Pinto Bean and Ground Beef Stew with Cumin and Cilantro found on KalynsKitchen.com

This delightful recipe for Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef is something I had for lunch three days in a row, and I completely enjoyed it each time. If you’re not an Instant Pot or pressure cooker fan, read after the recipe to see how the stew can be made in a regular pot on the stove. And I’m excited to add this great stew to the growing collection of Instant Pot Recipes on the blog!

And by the way, if anyone looked at the photo of Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef and thought about chili, there’s no chili powder in this, so it’s definitely not chili! Actually cilantro is the predominant flavor here, so if you’re one of those poor cilantro-impaired folks, maybe you’ll want to search for a different stew recipe!

Pressure Cooker Pinto Bean and Ground Beef Stew with Cumin and Cilantro found on KalynsKitchen.com

Tips for making Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef:

(Scroll down for complete recipe, including nutritional information and options for making this in a pan on the stove.)

  1. One thing I love about the Instant Pot is how you can start with unsoaked beans! See the recipe for how I cooked beans from scratch, or use canned beans if you prefer. 
  2. Since the beans were in the Instant Pot, I cooked the ground beef in a pan and put it in a bowl.
  3. Then I cooked the onions and garlic in the same pan. I added the dried and ground herbs and sauteed for a few minutes to release the flavor.
  4. Here’s how the stew looked in the Instant Pot before I put the lid on and pressure cooked for just 2 minutes, before letting pressure release slowly for about 15 minutes.
  5. You could also simmer on top of stove for about 45 minutes, adding a bit more liquid. Stir in the chopped cilantro right before you serve it and enjoy!

More Soups or Stews with Cilantro:

Crockpot Black Bean Chili with Lime and Cilantro 
Slow Cooker Black Bean and Rice Soup 
Chicken and Pinto Bean Soup with Lime and Cilantro 

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef

Yield 6 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 52 minutes
Additional Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 52 minutes

This Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef is something I had for lunch three days in a row, and I completely enjoyed it each time.


  • 1 cup dried pinto beans, unsoaked (see notes)
  • 2 T olive oil, divided (will depend on your pan)
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 tsp. Spike seasoning
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 T minced garlic
  • 2 tsp. dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 T ground cumin
  • 1 T dried cilantro (optional, but recommended)
  • 3 cups homemade chicken stock (see notes)
  • 1 cup liquid from pressure cooking beans (or 1 cup water)
  • 2 T tomato paste
  • one 14.5 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (or more)
  • 2 T fresh squeezed lime juice


  1. Put 1 cup dried pinto beans in Instant Pot or pressure cooker with 2 tsp. olive oil, add water to fill half full, lock lid, and pressure cook beans at high pressure for 15 minutes. (Start to time after high pressure is reached for stovetop pressure cooker.)
  2. Turn off heat and let pressure release naturally (about 15 minutes.)
  3. When pressure is released, drain beans into colander, reserving 1 cup bean cooking liquid. (You can also use 2 cans pinto beans, rinsed well in a colander placed in the sink, then drained.)
  4. While beans are cooking, heat 2 tsp. olive oil in large heavy frying pan, add ground beef and season with Spike seasoning, then saute until beef is well-browned, breaking apart with back of the turner as it cooks. When it’s well browned, remove beef to a bowl.
  5. Heat 2 tsp. more olive oil in frying pan, then add onion and saute about 5 minutes, or until onion is starting to brown.
  6. Add minced garlic and saute 2 minutes more, then add Mexican oregano, cumin, and dried cilantro and saute about 2 minutes more.
  7. When beans have finished cooking and been drained into a colander, add cooked ground beef to Instant Pot or pressure cooker, followed by onion/garlic/herb mixture.
  8. Add chicken stock to frying pan and simmer a minute, scraping off any browned bits and adding that liquid to pressure cooker, along with 1 cup reserved bean cooking liquid (or water, if using canned beans.)
  9. Add beans, tomato paste and can of tomatoes to Instant Pot or pressure cooker.
  10. Lock lid and pressure cook for 2 minutes at high pressure. (Start to time after high pressure is reached for stovetop pressure cooker.)
  11. Turn off heat and let pressure release naturally, about 15 minutes.
  12. When pressure is released, add sliced green onion, chopped fresh cilantro, and lime juice, turn heat on and cook with lid off for about 5 minutes. Serve hot, with additional chopped cilantro to add at the table if desired.

How to Cook in a regular soup pot on the stove:

  1. For canned beans, rinse and drain as described above.
  2. To use dried beans, you will need to soak beans overnight, drain, add fresh water to cover by a few inches and simmer until beans are soft, about 45 minutes.
  3. Follow directions as above for browning meat, browning onions with garlic and herbs, and deglazing frying pan with chicken stock.
  4. Combine browned meat, onion mixture, chicken stock, water, cooked beans, tomato paste, and canned tomatoes in heavy soup pot, adding 1 cup more chicken stock for cooking in open pan.
  5. Simmer over low heat about 45 minutes, adding a bit more water if needed.
  6. When stew seems done, add green onion, chopped cilantro, and lime juice as above and cook a few more minutes.


You can use 2 cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained if you prefer. If you don't have homemade chicken stock, use 2 cans chicken broth and reduce slightly to 3 cups.

I made this in my 3.7 quart Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker back in 2008, but now I’d use my Instant Pot or Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker.

Recipe created by Kalyn when she had a new pressure cooker!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 404Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 731mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 7gSugar: 9gProtein: 30g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet . Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
As long as you use lean ground beef, everything in this Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef is approved for all phases of the original South Beach Diet.  Beans are a limited food for Phase One, but in a stew like this with lots of other low-glycemic ingredients, you can have a regular serving. If you’d like a lower-carb version of this dish, use less beans and double the amount of ground beef, but recipes with dried beans won’t work for a strict low-carb diet plan.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Stew Recipes or Instant Pot Recipes for more recipes like this one! Use the Diet Type Index to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there. Click here to see more Pressure Cooker / Slow Cooker Recipes on my other site!

Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This recipe was first posted in 2009 when I had a new stovetop pressure cooker. Now it’s perfect to make in the Instant Pot. The recipe was last updated in 2021.

Pinterest image of Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef

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    79 Comments on “Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef”

  1. So glad you liked it!. I think this is one of the best things I've made so far on my pressure cooker!

  2. I made this the other day, even though it's still in the 90's here in Tucson. All the ingredients were in the house, so I whipped it up per your pressure cooker instructions. Yum, Yum!! Even better the second time around. Served it with chopped red onion, chunks of avocado, sour cream, a squeeze of lime and my favorite hot sauce, Arizona Gunslinger. Next time, I'll make this ahead and freeze it for a quick company dinner. Thanks!

  3. Claire, of course I would always vote for cilantro but good to know it was okay with parsley.

  4. I did make this a few weeks ago. Pink beans were fine. At the last minute I discovered that I had grabbed parsley not cilantro at the grocery store. It tasted great with parsley. Now I’ll have to try cilantro.

  5. This is a healthy and tasty looking stew!

  6. Wrestling with whether to make this or the Chili with Black Beans and Lime. (I have some ground beef I need to cook). No pinto beans, but I have pink beans which I presume wouldn’t be that different. I also have some open beef stock – see that this recipe uses chicken stock. Wonder what impact that change would have? Maybe I’ll just have to try it…

  7. Love hearing that there are so many pressure cooker fans.

    Anonymous, I’ve heard good things about the electric pressure cookers. Hope you like the recipe.

  8. Visited your blog today. I am a new owner of a ELECTRIC pressure cooker and just re-learning about cooking with a pressure cooker.
    I am anxious to try the bean recipe.

  9. This is a great recipe for a lot of reasons– I LOVE cilantro, pinto beans and fresh lime juice. I also adore my pressure cooker. I’d choose that kitchen tool over my crockpot anyday!
    Great blog!

  10. pressure cooking is the best, hands down! I cook ALL MY BEANS in the pressure cooker. I sure hope you’ll come by and take a look! Oh and cumin is my fave spice to use in my most my foods.

  11. This looks great! My mom is Colombian, and we cook with a lot of cilantro so this is right up my alley! I will be making this soon!

  12. BC, in general you can adapt most any soup or stew recipe for a slow cooker by reducing the stock (for more concentrated flavor) and maybe increasing the amount of dried herbs a little. I’d start with the same amount of stock, then simmer the stock until it’s reduced by about 1/3. Canned beans would be great for the slow cooker, but if you want to use dried beans, cook them before adding to the slow cooker.

    I’d guess about 2-3 hours on high or 4-5 hours on low in the slow cooker after you make those changes. Let me know how it turns out if you try it.

    Sorry, but I don’t know anything about other brands of pressure cookers, but if anyone else does, please chime in!

  13. How would this do in a slow cooker? I don’t have a pressure cooker right now, but would like to try this out. If not good in the slow cooker, can anyone recommend a low cost but decent pressure cooker?

  14. I have a friend who loves Mexican food but somehow hates cilantro. When you accompany her to a Mexican restaurant you have to plan for a very long meal; she meticulously picks out every speck of cilantro from every dish where it happens to show up.

    You’d think she would just change her eating habits and decide to like something else, Greek cuisine maybe.

    And for the person who was asking about tough beans: I’ve always heard that leaving the salt and seasonings out during the soaking and initial cooking stages is essential to get tender beans.

    • Can’t just change or eating habits because we dislike cilantro! Lol I live in south Texas… just order it without! Makes the whole dish taste like chemicals for us. 

  15. I love slow cooked dishes. The flavor is always so good. Can’t wait to give this a try. Thanks!

  16. This has everything I love..cilantro and a pressure cooker! Plus I have about 50 pounds of ground beef in my freezer!

  17. This looks absolutely delicious! Cilantro is also my favorite herb 🙂

    Thanks for Sharing!

  18. Cilantro is one of my favorite herbs!! Happy V-day to you!

  19. Hi Kalyn!

    I just wanted to let you know that you and your site have made South Beach so great with all of your recipes. Thanks so much and keep up the great work with everything!

  20. Kalyn
    I thought of you this morning – the “human interest” story on the front page of the Wall Street Journal was about the Cilantro Haters and how it is such a love it or hate it sort of herb. Who knew??? I’ve always loved Cilantro and until recently had no idea it inspired such hatred! Now the WSJ is talking about it. Go figure.