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 or Jerk 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.
Turned out great! Thanks!
Thank you Becky! So glad you enjoyed!
Hi! Can you make it with Basmati rice and if so, how should I adjust the time for cooking? Also, if I soak the beans then should I reduce my cooking time and liquid? I have pinto and kidney on hand ( I think they are kidney, but they can be red - I can't tell them apart despite googling) Thanks
Hi Olga! Basmati white rice takes 3 minutes on high pressure so you definitely want to use with canned beans. Or cook your dried beans first then cook rice and beans together. If you soak your beans, I find you can take off 10 minutes of the cook time. Sometimes half the cook time, but personally I find 10 minutes off total time is best. Hope that helps
Hi, I have a quick question. How much liquid would you recommend if I am using canned beans and brown rice? I know you said 2 cups with canned beans and white rice. Does this change if I have brown rice? Thanks! Can't wait to try this in burrito bowls!
Hi Shruti! The amount of water does not change, just the timing. I find it takes 24 minutes to cook brown rice and 10-15 minutes for pressure to release. I hope you enjoy!
Made this and it was the best rice and beans we've ever had. I used long grain brown rice (rinsed it) and I soaked black beans for 6 hours and it came out perfect following all the other directions with the 25 minutes on regular high pressure in an Instant Pot.
Oh I love hearing how much you enjoyed this recipe Cameron! I hope you find more recipes to enjoy here. Take care.
I only had white rice on hand so I decided to cook it separately. Even though I reduced the liquid I still had a lot of extra in the pot. I am going to use that to make a bean soup today for lunch with the leftover beans and a can of beans.
Soaking beans is an important step for the nutrition of them. All seeds are naturally coated with phytonutrients. They prevent sprouting in storage but are an antinutrient. Soaking beans, rice etc. Breaks them down and also makes them more nutritious. It is an important step for those reasons.
I will be adding this recipe to my rotation as it is delicious and diverse. My nephue was over for supper. He said "I don't like beans but I will take a little." He had seconds.
Hi Debbie! I am glad you and your nephew enjoyed. If you already soaked your beans, you won't need as much liquid--hence your extra liquid. I would only use 2 cups stock.
If I’m using white rice and canned beans, do I set the timer for 24 minutes ?
Hi Erica! For canned beans with white rice, you only need to cook on High Pressure for 3 minutes.
Oh my gosh is this recipe delicious!! We just got done eating it. We started by putting it in tortillas but it was so delicious that we ended up eating it was forks. I didn't have salsa so I used a can of diced tomatoes. Also didn't add the onion (one in our household hates onions) in with the rice and beans and instead whoever likes onions just sprinkled them raw across the top. I also had made some homemade cooked salsa which we drizzled across the top. Fabulous.
I am so glad you and your family enjoyed! And thank you for sharing your modifications--I love when you can take a recipe and make it your own!
Hi! Thank you for the recipe. I needed a quick rice a and beans recipe and found this. I used your instructions for the white rice, canned beans. I used 1 can pinto, 1 can black, 1 can fire roasted. I served it as a bowl with toppings. This made a quick dinner and yummy dinner for my husband and I with what I had on hand. With enough for leftovers to take for lunch. Will make again!
YAY! I love hearing that! So glad you shared your success.
I feel like an idiot but if I’m using white rice and canned beans you say to only cook for 3 minutes on high pressure instead of 35 min with brown rice and dry beans. Am I reading that correctly? I’m not very good at using the instant pot and still understand NOTHING about it. Thanks!
You are NOT an idiot--the Instant Pot can be overwhelming. You may want to read my Instant Pot 101 for some tips to help! But you did the recipe correctly, for white rice and canned beans it is 3 minutes on high pressure.
Which is an amazing super fast nutritious meal.
I have only one cup of brown rice, Do you have recommendations for downsizing this recipe?
Hi there! Simply cut the recipe in half and enjoy
Red beans are kidney beans! 🙁 I already put kidney beans in by the time I got to the bottom of the recipe where you clarify not to use kidney beans! Please include the types of beans that are acceptable in the recipe ingredients themselves please 🙂
Hi Annalisa, I am sorry for the confusion, but red beans are not the same as kidney beans. Red beans are smaller, but kidney beans will work--you may an extra 1/2 cup water and 10 minutes longer. I hope you can still enjoy!
I have a 3qt instapot and am totally new to it. Do I just Cut this in recipe in half? Also for the canned tomatoes with chili’s instead of salsa, what amount is that?
Hi Beth! It is typically not as easy as cutting recipes in half. You need to be sure that the recipe has at least 3/4 cup-1 cup liquid for your 3 quart instant pot. This recipe though can be cut in half. For the canned tomatoes, use a 10 ounce can.