Instant Pot Baked Beans

5 from 1 vote

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Instant Pot Baked Baked Beans can be made in just over an hour and for just a few dollars. One of my favorite side dishes, you’re going to love these homemade baked beans from scratch that taste just like you remember, or maybe even better!

Read on and discover another one of the magical recipes you can make using an Instant Pot.

Instant pot baked beans are just like Grandma’s. But maybe better.

About this instant pot recipe

Get ready to journey through the secrets of a beloved classic – Instant Pot Baked Beans. This delicious side dish is a crowd-pleaser at any gathering, be it a summer BBQ or a cozy winter dinner.

Believe me when I say, I’ve made this so many times, and each time the pot gets scraped clean. Cooking under high pressure in an electric pressure cooker, we shorten the traditional cook time dramatically, resulting in beans that are tender, flavorful, and cooked to perfection in a fraction of the time.

One of the things that I love most about my Instant Pot is that I can make instant pot beans from scratch.

There’s no pre-soaking involved, no unknown preservatives in the can, and homemade baked beans are super inexpensive to make.

Some baked beans and other food.

Instant pot baked beans ingredients

Here are the key players that contribute to the sweet and savory goodness of this recipe:

  • Great Northern Beans: Our bean of choice, known for their ability to become incredibly tender under pressure. They also absorb flavors very well. Don’t fret if you can’t find them though; navy beans or even small white beans would work too! Shameless Plug: I’m partial to Great Northern Beans, largely because of my famous white chicken chili recipe.
  • Low-Sodium Beef Broth: It gives our beans that rich, meaty flavor. Chicken broth works great with this recipe as well. But, for our plant-based protein lovers, switch it out with vegetable broth for an Instant Pot Vegan Baked Beans version.
  • Olive Oil: This isn’t just for frying, it also lends a wonderful taste that forms the base of our flavor building.
  • Onion: We’ve all been told an onion a day keeps everyone away, unless you cook them right, like in this recipe where they provide a sweet undertone. You can sautee the onions in the olive oil, or just toss them into the beans after they are finished cooking.
  • Prosciutto: My secret ingredient! Adds a salty twist to the dish, but traditional bacon or even salt pork can be used too.
  • Ginger: This brings a refreshing zing that contrasts and compliments the sweetness of the other ingredients.
  • Garlic: Adds a punch of flavor and warmth, marrying well with the ginger.
  • Maple Syrup: A touch of sweet smokiness to balance the savory elements.
  • BBQ Sauce: The tangy, smoky, sweet trifecta that truly differentiates baked beans from just beans.

Instant Pot Beans are a Kid-Friendly Food

On top of all the other reasons that I like these instant pot beans: Our kids (teenage boys) will not only eat them, but they like eating them!

How to Make These

We start with the olive oil, prosciutto (or extra bacon), and sweet onion in the inner pot using the sauté function of the Instant Pot. (This can also be done using a skillet on your stove top.)

Sauteing some onions and bacon in an instant pot.

Add a touch of brown sugar to help caramelize and capture those browned bits at the bottom of the pot. Then toss in the rest of the recipe ingredients (except for the beans and broth) along with some optional ingredients like

  • A dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • Some tomato paste
  • A sprinkle of chili powder and black pepper for some heat

Next, remove those ingredients and set aside. Add the dried beans and broth to your Instant Pot.

You’ll want a minimum of one to two inches of broth to cover the dried beans.

Expert Cooking Tip: If you don’t have broth, some Better than Bouillon with a couple quarts of water works great. (Be sure it is all completely disolved before cooking.)

Set your Instant Pot to high pressure for 35 minutes, and make sure at least an inch of broth covers the beans. This will prevent the dreaded burn notice.

After the cook time is done, allow a natural pressure release over 10 to 15 minutes. You might want to use a wooden spoon to carefully shift the valve to release any remaining pressure.

Combine the reserved ingredients with the cooked beans and mix well. You can serve these instant pot baked beans as is, or let them soak up more flavor and juice by finishing them off in the oven for a couple of hours at 350° F.

Key points

  • Use dry beans
    • You do not have to pre-soak them overnight!
  • Allow for a natural release (NR) of your Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker
  • Baking at the end is optional
    • For a traditional look, texture, and taste, I prefer to finish my instant pot beans off in the oven, but you don’t have to bake them.

Substitutions and Variations

  • If Great Northern beans are unavailable, pinto beans or kidney beans can substitute nicely.
  • For a vegan twist, replace the prosciutto with smoked paprika or liquid smoke, and use vegetable broth instead of beef broth.
  • Molasses adds a nice touch of flavor to these homemade baked beans. A couple of tablespoons will do you nicely.

 What to Serve With Baked Beans

Hot and hearty right out of the pot is the easiest way to serve these baked beans.

Instant Pot Beans with potato salad fried chicken, and cole slaw.
Instant Pot Beans are a fast and inexpensive way to make your next family get-together even more enjoyable.

They’re a perfect accompaniment to hot dogs or grilled or smoked meats. I always serve instant pot baked beans with great recipes like my smoked brisket flat, Cornell chicken barbecue, and grilled jerked beef.

The beans are even more flavorful the next time, so leftovers are a win!


FAQ for making Instant Pot Baked Beans

1. Can canned beans replace dried beans?

While canned beans can be used for convenience, using dried beans and the quick soak method gives a far superior texture and flavor.

2. How can I store these Instant Pot Baked Beans?

The beans can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. For longer storage, transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze.

3. Can this recipe be made in a slow cooker?

Absolutely! While it will take longer, slow cooking the beans on low heat for about 6-8 hours will yield equally delicious results.

4. Do I have to bake these?

No, once the instant pot beans are cooked, you can just add the rest of the ingredients in the recipe, and you are good to go!

Next time you want to make homemade baked beans try this instant pot bean recipe.

I know you’re going to like it!

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Instant Pot Baked Beans

5 from 1 vote
This recipe for instant pot baked beans can be made in less than two hours, and no pre-soaking is necessary!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 2 hours 55 minutes
Yield: 10 people

Equipment

  • Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker
  • Iron Skillet

Ingredients 

  • 12 oz great northern beans, dry and rinsed
  • 32 oz low-sodium beef broth, may use chicken or vegetable broth as well
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, large, coarse dice
  • 4 oz prosciutto , fried, chopped (or bacon)
  • 2 tbsp ginger, fresh, peeled, fine chop
  • 4 cloves garlic, fresh, peeled, fine chop
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 18 oz barbecue sauce

Instructions 

  • Rinse the beans and place in the Instant Pot along with about 32 oz of beef, chicken, or vegetable broth. Pressure cook on high for 35 minutes and allow a natural release (NR) of at least 15 minutes.
  • While the instant pot beans are pressure cooking, prepare the other ingredients.
  • Coarsely dice and sauté your onion in some olive oil, using a 9-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat, until the onion is soft and translucent . Remove the onion and set aside. Fry the prosciutto or bacon till crisp, over medium heat then drain and chop coarsely. If you want to finish your instant pot baked beans in the oven, preheat the oven to 350°.
  • When the bean are done, use a rubber spatula and gently stir them in any remaining broth. Add your sautéed onion, the chopped prosciutto or bacon the garlic, ginger, barbecue sauce and maple syrup. Mix it all gently with a rubber spatula and then transfer back to the iron skillet. You can eat them now, or for a traditional baked bean, go to the next step.
  • Place skillet in oven at 350° F for two hours. At this point you can cover the skillet with foil and reduce the oven temp to 175° (or lowest setting) to keep warm, or serve them.

Notes

If you finish these instant pot baked beans in the oven, check them every 30 minutes or so to make sure they are not too dry. If they start to look parched, add a little more broth (or water) to them.
More Tips for The Best Instant Pot Baked Beans:
  1. Layer the Flavors: Sauté onions, garlic, and bacon directly in the Instant Pot using the sauté function before adding the beans and other ingredients. This step builds a rich, savory base for your baked beans.
  2. Use Molasses for Depth: Incorporate molasses into your recipe to add a rich, deep sweetness and a touch of smokiness that enhances the overall flavor of the baked beans.
  3. Natural Release: After cooking, allow the Instant Pot to release pressure naturally for about 15 minutes. This ensures the beans are tender and the flavors meld together perfectly. If you find the sauce too thin, use the sauté function to reduce it to your desired consistency.

Nutrition

Calories: 230kcal, Carbohydrates: 37g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 7mg, Sodium: 768mg, Potassium: 506mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 114IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 56mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!

Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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