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5 from 2 votes

Instant Pot Refried Beans

These delicious homemade refried beans take just 30 minutes to cook and are healthier and cheaper than store bought refried beans. There are also instructions for how to make them using your Crockpot if you prefer that.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Time till pressure releases40 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 10 cups
Author: ThriftyFrugalMom.com


  • 2 lbs. dry pinto beans (not canned!)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp. jarred minced garlic*
  • 1 to 1 1/2 Tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice opt.
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 4 cups water


  • Sort and rinse the beans, removing any stones, dirt and shriveled beans.
  • Dump the rinsed beans into the Instant Pot (this is the one I have); add water to cover the beans plus approximately an additional 2 inches. Let set 8 hours or overnight.
  • Drain the water and thoroughly rinse the beans.**
  • Dump beans back into the Instant Pot and add the remaining ingredients.
  • Put on the Instant Pot lid, making sure that the vent is turned to "sealing".
  • Cook beans on high pressure for 30 minutes. When finished cooking, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release pressure. (This takes my pot about 40 min.)
  • Mash beans using a potato masher or blender. (This hand blender is what I use and it makes so easy!) Beans will appear quite soupy, but will thicken up a lot as they cool. If you follow this recipe exactly, once cooled, your beans should be about as thick as store bought canned refried beans. If you prefer a thinner consistency, simply mix in a bit of water until you get the desired consistency.
  • Beans will store in your fridge for 1 1/2 weeks or you can freeze them, too.


* Alternatively, you could use 3 tsp. granulated garlic or 2 Tbsp. garlic powder.
** I prefer soaking the beans before I cook them because it makes them easier for our bodies to digest, allowing us to get more nutrition from them. It also helps reduce gassiness that often goes along with eating beans. However, if you prefer to skip soaking them, you can. But you will need to adjust both the cooking time and the amount of water added. I would try adding 6 c. of water and cook for 45 min. From what I've read, that should work.
Follow soaking instructions. Add all ingredients to Crockpot but increase the amount of water to 6 c. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours and then on low for 1 hour.
If you choose not to soak the beans and want to do the Crockpot method, use 10 cups of hot water instead of the 6 cups and then adjust the cooking time to 4 hours on high and 2 hours on low. You may also need to drain some of the liquid off at the end of cooking to get a good consistency.