Kalyn's Kitchen

Instant Pot Refried Beans

It’s the onion, garlic, and chiles I use to season the beans that make these the BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans; you’ll make them over and over! 

PIN Instant Pot Refried Beans to try them later!

The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles

Way back in 2009 I got a stovetop pressure cooker and started trying out Pressure Cooker Recipes for the blog. It was at a time when I was having extensive house renovations on my old house, and there was definitely more comfort food on the menu than usual. It was during that time that I first made refried beans in the pressure cooker, and loved them!

Fast forward quite a few years and a new house later, and of course I would make refried beans in the Instant Pot (affiliate link) now. Refried beans are definitely not low in carbs, but they’re low-glycemic and South Beach Diet friendly, and this is something I love for an occasional treat. I made them recently and decided to take some new photos to update this favorite recipe. And they were so good that I’m calling them The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans!

If you’ve only had refried beans from a can, I can’t emphasize strongly enough how there is something completely special about homemade from-scratch refried beans, especially my recipe where the beans are cooked in the pressure cooker, then pressure-cooked a second time with onion, garlic, and chiles, and then fried. When we took these photos, Kara and I kept commenting about how amazing the refried beans were, and I ate my share of the leftovers in bean burritos with low-carb tortillas and enjoyed every bite.

If the pressure cooker is never going to be your thing, you might like Slow Cooker Refried Beans, which are also really delicious. And if you’ve never made homemade refried beans, I hope this recipe for The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans will be the recipe that’s going to get you to try them!

What size Instant Pot did I use?

I use a 6 Quart Instant Pot (affiliate link) for all my Instant Pot Recipes. Check out my growing collection of Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot Recipes!Find more Pressure Cooker/Slow Cooker Recipes on my other site!

What ingredients do you need for this recipe?

  • dried pinto beans
  • olive oil
  • onion
  • Minced Garlic (affiliate link)
  • diced green chiles (affiliate link)
  • salt
  • grated cheese
  • green onions, for serving (optional)

The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles process shots collage

How to Make Instant Pot Refried Beans:

(Scroll down for complete printable recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. Use two cups of dried pinto beans; no need to soak them but beans that have been on the shelf or in your pantry for a while will take a little longer to cook.
  2. Put beans in the Instant Pot and cover with water 2 inches above the beans. Add 1 T olive oil to slow cooker, then lock lid.
  3. Set Instant Pot to MANUAL, HIGH PRESSURE and 30 minutes.
  4. When 30 minutes is up, use QUICK RELEASE to release the pressure. (Be sure to add 5-10 minutes cooking time if your beans are old.)
  5. While the beans are cooking, chop the onion, mince garlic (or use Minced Garlic (affiliate link) from a jar), and get the can of diced green chiles (affiliate link) and salt ready.
  6. Add those ingredients to the cooked beans. Lock lid again, set Instant Pot to MANUAL, HIGH PRESSURE, and 10 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally.
  7. When the pressure has released, use an immersion blender (affiliate link) or a food processor (affiliate link) to puree the beans, making them as creamy or chunky as you prefer. (Beans may seem watery, but any extra water will cook out when they’re fried.)
  8. Heat olive oil (or fat of your preference) in a large non-stick frying pan.
  9. Add the pureed beans and simmer over low heat, stirring often, until beans have thickened to the desired consistency.
  10. Serve The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles hot, with grated cheese and sliced green onions if desired.

The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles found on KalynsKitchen.com.

Other Ideas for Pinto Beans:

Pressure Cooker (or Stovetop Pinto Bean and Ground Beef Stew ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Pressure Cooker Smoky Ham Hock and Pinto Bean Soup ~ Pressure Cooking Today
Cauliflower Rice and Pinto Bean Vegan Burrito Bowl ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Slow Cooker Cowboy Pinto Bean Soup ~ The Food Charlatan
Pressure Cooker Mexican Beans with Avocado-Poblano Salsa ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Tex-Mex Mash ~ Foodie with Family

Weekend Food Prep:

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

The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles

Instant Pot Refried Beans

Yield 8 servings (1/2 cup serving size)
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

You'll love these delicious refried beans, made in the Instant Pot, and I think the special way I season the beans really does make them The BEST Instant Pot refried beans!


  • 2 cups dried pinto beans (see notes)
  • 3 T olive oil, divided (see notes)
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 T minced garlic
  • 1 4 oz. can diced green chiles (see notes)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • grated cheese, for serving (optional)
  • thinly sliced green onions, for serving (optional)


  1. Put beans in pressure cooker with enough water to cover by about 2 inches.
  2. Add 1 T olive oil to cooker, then lock lid, choose MANUAL SETTING and HIGH PRESSURE, and set time for 30 minutes. (Remember to add a few minutes if your beans are old.)
  3. After 30 minutes, use QUICK RELEASE to release the pressure.
  4. While beans cook, chop the onion, and prepare minced garlic and green chiles, and measure the salt.
  5. Add those ingredients to the pressure cooker with the cooked beans.
  6. Lock lid again and set to MANUAL, HIGH PRESSURE, and 10 minutes.
  7. Let pressure release naturally when the time is up.
  8. When pressure has released, remove lid and without draining, use an immersion blender (affiliate link) or a food processor (affiliate link) to puree the beans, being careful not to over-blend.
  9. At this point, beans will definitely be more runny than you want, but I like the idea of keeping the flavor that’s in the cooking water and excess liquid will cook off when the beans are fried.
  10. Heat 2 T oil of your choice in a heavy, nonstick pan.
  11. Add beans and simmer over low heat, stirring often, until beans have thickened to desired consistency.
  12. For me this took about 10 minutes.
  13. Serve hot, topped with grated cheese and thinly sliced green onions if desired.


There is no need to soak the beans, but beans that are fresher will cook more quickly. If your beans have been sitting on the shelf for a while, add 5-10 minutes cooking time.

You can also use lard, bacon grease, or any other fat you prefer for frying the beans. I used Anaheim chiles, called diced green chiles (affiliate link) in U.S. stores, but you can use hotter chiles if you prefer. I used Four Cheese Mexican Blend for the cheese.

I originally created this recipe with a stovetop pressure cooker, but recently I made it again in the Instant Pot and you can certainly use a Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker or another electric pressure cooker if that’s what you have. (affiliate links)

This recipe was created by Kalyn.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 142Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 317mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 5gSugar: 2gProtein: 5g

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:
Many people don’t realize that low-glycemic dried beans are approved for any phase of the original South Beach Diet, which makes The BEST Instant Pot Refried Beans with Onion, Garlic, and Chiles (and other recipes with dried beans) perfect for South Beach Diet meals. Beans are probably too high in carbs for traditional low-carb diet plans.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Pressure Cooker index to find more recipes like this one. Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages 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.

Pinterest image of Instant Pot Refried Beans

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    49 Comments on “Instant Pot Refried Beans”

  1. I just received a 3 qt instant pot a week ago and am excited to use it. Many of the recipes are for the larger instant pita and I have no idea how to reduce the recipes. I would love to make the refried beans, could you please explain how I can do that? Thank you!! 

    • I haven’t ever tried cutting down a recipe for a 6 quart Instant Pot into one suitable for a 3 quart. I would guess that some recipes will still work, as long as the amount doesn’t go above the fill line in the pot. But other than that I’d have to suggest googling it to see what you can find.

  2. Made these today – everyone loved them!

  3. Question ; to instead prepare recipe with canned beans, what would be the substitution of drained/rinsed canned beans? Would one progress straight to adding the other ingredients to the canned beans and cooking for 10 minutes? Thank you.

    • Personally I think the flavor of cooking the beans from scratch is well worth the time for this recipe; they are so much better than canned refried beans. And I haven’t made it with canned beans so I’m not sure how much advice I can give you. I know that one can of beans is 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans, but I don’t know how many cups of cooked beans you’d get from 2 cups of dried beans, maybe you can google to find that. I think that the canned beans probably need a little cooking under pressure to give the soft texture of refried beans, then I would add the other ingredients and finish it.