You are going to love this cheap and easy recipe for Instant Pot Rice and Beans! Made with brown rice, dried beans, and a perfect combination of seasonings, the pressure cooker pot works its magic to deliver a wholesome, flavorful, affordable meal.
Just like my recipes for Instant Pot Brown Rice, Instant Pot Baked Potatoes, and Instant Pot Yogurt, this recipe for Instant Pot Rice and Beans is a staple at my house!
Thanks to the Instant Pot, Rice and Beans just got a whole lot easier (and cheaper) to make!
Just as I have shown in my recipe for Instant Pot Dried Beans, there is no need to soak your dried beans before pressure cooking them. Making this recipe for Instant Pot Rice and Beans one of the easiest recipes ever!
The pressure cooker cooks and softens the beans as the rice cooks. The beans become plump and tender and the rice stays nutty and chewy. It is almost magical.
Whether you serve Instant Pot Rice and Beans as a side dish to Beef Tacos or Chicken Enchiladas or paired with a Healthy Pina Colada Smoothie for a meatless main course, you are going to be in awe of this simple dish.
- Rice: In order for your rice to not be overcooked in the time it takes the beans to soften, you must use long-grain brown rice for this recipe.
- Beans: Use dried pinto or small red beans for the best results. Black beans and kidney beans take a bit too long to cook to work in this recipe.
- Peppers and Onions: Adding peppers and onions to your rice and beans is completely optional. It takes a few extra minutes to saute them, but it does add a nice flavor to the overall dish.
- Liquid: Use a combination of water and low-sodium or salt-free chicken or vegetable broth to cook the rice and beans. I often use just water to keep this dish really economical.
- Seasonings: To give these rice and beans a Tex-Mex flavor, I use a blend of spices to replicate Taco Seasoning. Cajun Seasoning is a great alternative. Just be sure to season your rice and beans AFTER pressure cooking, as salt can interfere with the beans' ability to soften.
- Salsa: Salsa adds so much flavor to this simple dish, as it is already packed full of flavor. Because we are adding it AFTER the bean and rice have cooked, it is a much better choice than diced tomatoes, which need to be cooked for the best flavor. Use homemade salsa or your favorite jarred salsa.
How to Make Instant Pot Rice and Beans
While this recipe is incredibly simple to make, if you are unfamiliar with cooking in an instant pot or the functions of your instant pot, be sure to start with How to Use an Instant Pot for the best results on this and future recipes.
Step One: Saute Onions and Peppers (Optional)
Starting this recipe for Instant Pot Rice and Beans by sauteeing onions and peppers adds a nice flavor, much like it does in my recipe for Instant Pot Spanish Rice. However, you can omit the onions and peppers, making this dish even FASTER to prepare and perfect for picky eaters.
- Turn the instant pot to saute, add in a bit of oil, and let it heat briefly.
- Add in the onions, and peppers and saute for 2-3 minutes or until onions begin to soften.
- Once the onion has softened, turn the Instant Pot OFF by hitting cancel.
Step Two: Deglaze Inner Pot
Any time you use the saute function, you must deglaze the inner pot to prevent a burn notice. NEVER skip this step!
- Pour in a bit of the water called for in the recipe, and use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the inner pot.
Step Three: Layer Ingredients
- Add the remaining broth/water to the inner pot.
- Add the rinsed dried beans to the inner pot.
- Finally, add the rinsed rice and gently push the rice down if needed, until just submerged in the liquid.
Remember: Always rinse your rice and beans in a fine mesh strainer before cooking. Rinsing rice removes the excess starch on the surface of the grains and helps the grains remain separate. Rinsing the beans will remove dust and dirt. It is a good idea to quickly sort through the beans as well as to look for any rocks.
Step Four: Pressure Cook
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and ensure the vent knob is sealed.
- Cook on HIGH PRESSURE for 25 minutes, using the manual or pressure cooker button. Do NOT use the rice function, as it typically defaults to low pressure.
- After the cooking time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally for at least 15 minutes. This is CRITICAL for the rice and beans to be done and to absorb all the liquid.
Step Five: Season
Remember we did not add salt to our rice and beans before COOKING, as salt can interfere with the cooking time. You want to add salt to the beans after pressure cooking to keep the beans nice and soft.
- Once the pressure has been released, open up the inner pot and add the taco seasoning and salsa.
- Use a fork to fluff the rice and mix the rice into the beans. Using a fork will help keep the rice nice and fluffy.
- Place the lid back on the pressure cooker for a few minutes, just to let the salsa warm through.
Instant Pot Rice and Beans make the perfect side dish to any Mexican or Tex-Mex meal. In fact, I often find myself making a meal out of my rice and beans. There are truly endless ways to serve this dish! Below are a few of my favorites.
- Instant Pot Rice and Beans make an obvious side dish to dishes like Pork Carnitas, Instant Pot Steak Fajitas, Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas, Beef Tacos, or Shrimp Tacos.
- Serve the rice and beans as a healthy, hearty, meatless meal. You can add additional flavor by topping it with shredded cheese, sour cream, and pickled jalapenos.
- Roll up ⅓ to ½ cup of the rice and bean mixture in a flour tortilla with a scoop of guacamole and cheese.
- Serve the rice and beans with fried eggs for a Tex-Mex-style breakfast.
- Instead of using meat, toss the rice and beans with chopped romaine, fresh tomatoes, and avocado slices for a quick Taco Salad.
FAQs on Pressure Cooker Rice and Beans
No, not when pressure cooking. Many people state that soaking the beans aids in digestion, but I have not noticed any difference.
Absolutely! Place your dried beans in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Soak the dried beans for 12 hours, or overnight. When ready to prepare this recipe, drain and rinse the soaked beans. Proceed with the recipe as directed, reducing the liquid from 5 cups to 3 cups. The cooking time will remain the same.
If you want to use white rice to prepare Instant Pot Rice and Beans, you will need to either separately prepare the dried beans in the instant pot or use canned beans. Follow the modifications for this recipe listed in the recipe card, as the cooking time and amounts of liquid will change.
Yes. If you want to make this recipe using canned beans, combine 2 cups of rinsed rice with 2 cups of broth or water with ½ tablespoon of taco seasoning in the inner pot. Cook on high pressure for 22 minutes for long-grain brown rice, and 3 minutes for long-grain white rice. Once the rice has been cooked and pressure has been released naturally, open the instant pot and stir in 1 cup of salsa, and 2-4 cups of canned beans that have been drained and rinsed.
Yes. The trick to cooking dried beans with rice is to season the dish AFTER it pressure cooks. Salt can inhibit dried beans' ability to soften, so by seasoning after cook time, the beans will soften perfectly in the time it takes for the rice to cook.
More Instant Pot Rice Recipes
- Instant Pot Brown Rice
- Instant Pot Chicken and Rice
- Instant Pot Rice Pilaf
- Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice
- Instant Pot Spanish Rice
- Instant Pot Jambalaya
- Instant Pot Jasmine Rice
If you gave this recipe for Instant Pot Rice and Beans a try, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
Instant Pot Rice and Beans
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion minced
- 1 large yellow, green, or red pepper seeded and diced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 cups long-grain brown rice rinsed well and drained
- 1 cup dried small red or pinto beans rinsed and sorted
- 2 cups low-sodium or salt-free chicken or vegetable broth
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup salsa
- 1 tablespoon taco seasoning
- cheese, sour cream, cilantro for serving optional
- Turn Instant Pot to saute by hitting the saute function, add in oil, and let heat briefly.
- Once heated, add in the minced onions and diced peppers and saute for 2-3 minutes until they are just beginning to soften up. Add in garlic and saute for 30 seconds longer. Turn off the saute function by hitting cancel.
- Add in ½ cup of water and be sure to scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of the inner pot.
- Add in the remaining water and broth. Add the rinsed dried beans to the liquid and top with the rinsed rice. If needed, gently push the rice down with a spoon to just submerge the rice. DO NOT STIR! Place the lid on Instant Pot and be sure the venting knob is closed.
- Cook on High Pressure for 25 minutes. Hit the manual or pressure cook button and use the +/- buttons to adjust until the screen read 25.
- Once cook time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally.
- After the pressure has fully released, open the lid. Add in the taco seasoning and salsa, and use a fork to fluff the rice and stir in the salsa and seasonings. Place the lid back on the pressure cooker to let the ingredients warm through for just a few minutes.
- Serve with desired toppings.
This post was originally published in 2018 and updated in 2023.
Thanks for this and all your recipes. I retired several years ago and, it turns out, I’ve taken to my new role as kitchen commander. Your recipes, tips and videos make me look like a rock star when the meals hit the table. I appreciate your efforts and commitment. You make life easier for me, and a lot of others, from reading through the comments.
Thanks so much Jim! I love hearing I am helping you to rock your kitchen!
Hi Kristen was curious how much a serving was of this?
Hi Brian! This recipe makes a total of 8 servings. Each serving is just shy of 2 cups.
Thank you Kristen!!!!
What kind of salsa do you recommend? I am going for eating all natural ingredients and I would have to buy salsa in a jar. Thank you.
Jarred salsa is actually best for this recipe so any jar you like works great. If you meant you don't care for jarred salsa (I look for an organic brand that has no additives), use fresh salsa chunky salsa from the refrigerated section or even homemade will work.
We used organic refrigerated salsa works great.
I followed the recipe with a mix of vegetable and chicken stock and added slices of about 12 oz. chicken Cajun-style sausage and 6 oz. Italian turkey sausage on top. It was a big hit. (The turkey sausage was frozen, but it all cooked up fine.)
I have made this recipe two times. Both times, the liquid wasn't absorbed enough even after letting pressure release naturally for about twenty five minutes. I just put it back on high pressure for six minutes and then it's perfect. The flavor is great and it's a great side dish or stuffed into a burrito. I will surely make this again with the added cook time. Thanks!
Thanks for the feedback Andrea! I would worry the rice would be overcooked, but I am so happy to hear it is perfect for you.
Can you make this with long brown rice? Or what kind of adjustments would you do? Thanks 😊
Yes, for this particular recipe cook for 25 minutes.
The rice is delicious. The beans were under cooked, and hard. I followed the recipe, in a 6-qt pot. Help?
Hi Beth! I am sorry the beans did not soften for you. It may have been that they were older or that your stock had a lot of sodium in it, which can interfere with the beans softening. Also, be sure to not add the taco seasoning or salsa until AFTER cook time has elapsed.
Tastes amazing, I used brown basmati rice and dried red beans. Rice cooked perfectly, red beans are slightly al dente, which we prefer. Only thing is I drained the water/chicken broth because there was so much liquid left, probably 2-3 cups of liquid that didn't absorb. Cooked on manual high for 24 minutes and 10 minute release. Can't imagine that basmati vs long grain would make that much difference? Will do again, but try with 2 cups less liquid.
Hi Sandi! I am so glad you enjoyed the flavor and results. I have not had issues with liquid left. Let us know how it goes with less liquid.
Hi!! Just finished making and it smells wonderful!! Followed recipe exactly, but my rice is mushy!! And ideas why!! Thanks!! Would love to make again!!
Hi Cyrena! I hope you are still able to enjoy the flavors. Were your beans dry or soaked or canned? The extra water accounts for using dried beans. If you used dried beans and your rice was still mushy, try decreasing the water by 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup the next time you make it.
Tasty!!! I will definitely make it again but I’ll use canned beans or soaked dry. For some reason the red beans I used didn’t cook fully. Also, I am just wondering how long it takes your IP to naturally release when you cook this. I waited 27 minutes before it was ready. Which actually was great for me bc the husband was late coming home so dinner was hot when he got here!!! 🙂
Hi Tara! It may have been the brand of red beans or the age of beans, but using soaked/canned in the future will prevent that issue. As for time to release, it can take that long, but after 15 minutes, you are safe to do a quick release if you want to eat 🙂
I just made this but only had 2 cups of chicken stock so I used 4 cups of water. It turned out okay but there is so much rice! Can I freeze this? I think it’s a little bland but probably because I used 4 cups of water.
Hi Jo! This freezes beautifully for up to 2-3 months. I would add some salsa or extra taco seasoning when serving to account for the lack of flavor from the water.