Instant Pot Kidney Beans, a simple pressure cooker or Instant Pot recipe for cooking kidney beans in only 15 minutes after soaking. Easy and tasty!
Love kidney beans but not sure how to cook them from dried? Use your Instant Pot! Cooking dried beans like kidney beans is super simple in the pressure cooker and only takes 15 minutes active cooking time for plump and perfect beans for your next soup or stew.
👉 Ready to learn how to make dried kidney beans in the pressure cooker? Let’s do it!
- Dried kidney beans: dried kidney beans can be found in most bulk sections of grocery stores
- Water: Use 3 parts water for every 1 part dried beans (so for 1 cup, use 3 cups of water)
- Salt: A touch of salt in the water before pressure cooking helps the beans cook faster, and adds flavor
- Herbs: Optional, but fresh or dried herbs like oregano or bay leaves (pictured here) add a punch of flavor
- Oil: Optional, but a bit of oil in the cooking water helps soften beans and adds a deeper flavor
- Recommended tools: medium bowl, Instant Pot or other pressure cooker, colander for straining
🥣 How to make (step-by-step photos)
1️⃣ Step One: Rinse kidney beans (optional)
If you’d like beans to cook slightly faster and to potentially make them easier to digest, give the kidney beans a quick rinse and soak for 15-20 minutes before cooking.
To do this, simply add the dried kidney beans to a bowl and cover with water for 15-20 minutes. Then drain them before cooking in the pressure cooker.
👉 Why should you rinse your beans before cooking? Sometimes certain beans, peas, and pulses may have indigestible fibers that may cause bloating in some people. Giving your dried kidney beans a quick rise and soak will help to remove some of these compounds before cooking, which makes them easier to digest later (also see the questions and quick tips section below for safety tips on cooking kidney beans). However, if you don’t rinse them they are still perfectly fine to eat.
2️⃣ Step Two: Cook kidney beans in the pressure cooker
Add kidney beans, water, salt, any dried herbs you’d like, and a drizzle of olive oil to the Instant Pot.
Close the lid on securely, then pressure cook the beans on the high pressure or “beans” setting for 15 minutes. When time is up, release the pressure immediately.
👉 What is the correct ratio of beans to water in the pressure cooker? Generally I do 1 part beans and 3 parts water for a 1:3 ratio in the Instant Pot. So for this recipe we’re doing 2 cups of beans and 6 cups of water for 6 servings of beans (about 1/3 cup per serving). If you’d like more or less servings, use the servings adjuster in the recipe card at the bottom of the page or use the ratio of 1:3 for 1 cup of dried beans to give 3 servings.
3️⃣ Step Three: Serve or store beans
When the beans are done, remove them from the Instant Pot with a straining ladle or remove the pressure cooker pan from the pot and drain the beans in a colander.
Use the kidney beans immediately if adding to soups, stews, salads, or serving as a side dish.
🧊 How to store
- Refrigerator storage: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
- Freezer storage: We do not recommend freezing dried kidney beans after cooking because they will not retain texture after freezing and thawing.
❓ Recipe questions + quick tips
Raw kidney beans contain a lectin called phytohaemagglutinin, that can cause nausea, vomiting, and other digestive distress if consumed raw or not cooked completely. If cooking kidney beans from dry on the stovetop, experts recommend soaking for 5 hours and then boiling for several more hours. Kidney beans from cans are safe to eat without further cooking because they have been cooked and processed before canning.
Cooking dried kidney beans in a pressure cooker like an Instant Pot is a safe and quick way to cook kidney beans. You can optionally soak the beans ahead of time and then cook them at high pressure on the bean or chili setting for 12-15 minutes. Internal temperatures of reach anywhere from 320-415 degrees Fahrenheit, which is enough to break down lectins found in dried beans.
If stored in a cool, dry place in an airtight container, dried kidney beans will be stay shelf-stable for at least a year, and up to 2-3 years if stored properly.
Dried kidney beans will stay shelf-stable for year if store properly, but throw them out if they have visible mold, have a stale or offputting smell, or if there are signs of pantry bug infestation.
🍛 How to serve
- Add to a soup: use kidney beans in a soup or chili
- As a side dish: Serve immediately after cooking for a simple side dish, and add flavor with garlic and herbs
- Combine with rice: Spice it up with rice for a twist on traditional beans and rice
- Add to a simple salad: Add a serving of kidney beans to a salad with sturdy greens like chard or kale for a punch of protein and fiber
♻️ Sustainable kitchen tips
Store dried beans safely. To keep dried kidney beans shelf-stable when dried before cooking, store them in an airtight jar or container in the pantry in a cool, dry place and they will keep for a minimum of 1 year.
Reuse pea cooking water. Don’t throw out the cooking water for these beans! Instead use it in your garden to add extra nutrients to plants.
👉 More recipes using kidney beans
Instant Pot Kidney Beans
- 1 Instant Pot
- 1 mixing bowl
- 2 cups kidney beans dried
- 6 cups water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons herbs fresh or dried, optional
- 1 teaspoon oil optional
- Rinse kidney beans (optional): Add dried kidney beans to a bowl and cover with water for 15-20 minutes, the drain and set aside.
- Cook kidney beans: Add cranberry kidney, water, salt, herbs, and oil (if using) to an Instant Pot or pressure cooker and close the lid securely. Cook on on high pressure, or on the “Beans” setting, for 15 minutes. When done, release the pressure immediately.
- Drain and serve (or store): When the beans are done, remove them from the pressure cooker and drain. Serve immediately by mixing into salads, soups, or as a side dish, or store for later use (see storing instructions in notes).