These Instant Pot Refried Beans are a great place to start if you’re nervous about making dry beans in a pressure cooker! Plus, they taste a million times better than canned refried beans. If you have any extras, they freeze beautifully.
- 1 pound pinto beans, sorted for rocks, debris, and shriveled beans and rinsed
- 6 cups water
- 1/4 cup vinegar or liquid from jarred banana or jalapeno peppers, divided
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 onions, divided
- 8–10 cloves garlic
- 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded
- 5–6 tablespoons flavorful fat (I use bacon grease, but lard or your vegetarian oil of choice will work)
- Place the rinsed beans in the Instant Pot. Add an onion that’s been peeled and cut in half, 6 smashed, peeled garlic cloves, the seeded jalapeño, 2 tablespoons of vinegar (or liquid from pickled peppers), 6 cups of water, and a teaspoon of kosher salt. Use your manual setting to cook for 50 minutes, then allow a natural pressure release (when it’s done cooking, leave the vent closed and allow the pressure to come down naturally–it will take about 15-20 minutes and you’ll know it’s done when, if you try to open the vent, no steam hisses out.) If you live at a high elevation, cook for 60-65 minutes before allowing the pressure to release naturally.
- When the beans are tender, remove the lid and ladle out 1/3-1/2 cup of the cooking liquid. Add the remaining vinegar or liquid from the jarred peppers to the reserved liquid. Drain the beans, discarding the rest of the liquid. Place the beans (and cooked vegetables) in the jar of your blender. Add 1/3 cup of liquid and blend until the desired consistency is reached (I like mine pretty smooth), adding more liquid if necessary.
- Mince the remaining 1/2 onion and 2-4 cloves of garlic. Heat the bacon drippings in a large cast iron skillet (if you have one) over medium heat. When the drippings are hot, add the onions and garlic and cook until tender. Add the bean puree and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently until the drippings and beans are incorporated and are light, fluffy, and hot. Salt to taste. Serve alongside Mexican food, wrapped in tortillas with cheese, or by themselves.