These homemade Instant Pot Baked Beans are packed with deep, rich flavor and take a third of the time as traditional cooking methods. They’re a great make-ahead side, buffet, BBQ or potluck dish.
I served the baked beans at a dinner party last week with ribs to thumbs-up reviews. I made them the day before and reheated them on the stove. The consistency was perfect as the sauce thickened up overnight. The tender beans were coated in a slightly sweet savory sauce, boosted with maple syrup, molasses, brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce. If you like baked beans from the can, I think you’ll like this recipe even better, especially knowing there are no added preservatives.
Most recipes for instant pot baked beans are quite similar. This one comes from This Old Gal with a few minor tweaks such as using a shortcut method to quick-soak the beans that cuts the prep time way down. I made the baked beans in my new Instant Pot (gift from Kook Jenna) on a high pressure setting, so technically these beans are not “baked”, but I couldn’t tell the difference.
From a nutrition standpoint, baked beans are super healthy – high in protein and fiber and low in fat. One cup of beans has 12 grams of fiber (huge!), but the trade-off is – um – a bit of stomach gas. And they’re not low calorie.
The recipe calls for bacon, but you can easily leave that out for a vegetarian version. Baked beans go really well with ribs, fresh rolls or toast for dipping, eggs, spinach mac and cheese, quinoa mac and cheese and hamburgers/hot dogs. My husband loves baked beans with almost anything.
Tailor To Your Taste
- Play with the flavors you prefer – less molasses, more maple syrup, more dried mustard, more Worcestershire, etc.
- Eliminate the bacon for a vegetarian version. Or add sausage instead.
- If you prefer softer beans, pressure cook them for a bit longer. Apparently older beans will take longer to cook.
- Thicken the sauce more by cooking on Saute setting for several minutes in the final stage of cooking. Keep in mind, though, the beans thicken in the fridge if you’re making them ahead.
Make Ahead Instant Pot Baked Beans
- Store in a sealed container in the fridge for 3-5 days.
Instant Pot Baked Beans
- 2 cups dry navy beans (1 pound)
- 1 tbsp kosher salt for soaking beans
- OPTIONAL: 5-6 slices thick cut bacon, chopped (omit for vegetarian version)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 tsp minced garlic (1/2 tsp garlic powder)
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup ketchup
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 1/4 tsp dried mustard
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp ground pepper
- 3 cup water
- PREPARE BEANS: Rinse beans and add to pot with salt. Add water to cover 2 inches above beans. For QUICK SOAK method: Bring to boil, then boil for two minutes. Remove from heat and let set covered for 1 hour. For SLOW SOAK method: Soak for 3 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse.
- GATHER INGREDIENTS FOR INSTANT POT: Put all ingredients from 'molasses' to 'pepper' in a small bowl. Set aside.
- SAUTE AROMATICS AND BACON (if using): Choose SAUTE function on Instant Pot (IP) or BROWNING on Pressure Cooker and let it heat up. Add onions and bacon (if using). Saute for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally until onions are translucent and bacon is beginning to brown. Add a few tablespoons water, then continue cooking until evaporated. Add garlic and saute another 30 seconds.
- PRESSURE COOK: Add beans, all other ingredients in bowl, and water to Instant Pot. Stir. Lock lid and set spout to Sealing (or close pressure valve). Choose High Pressure for 50-55 minutes. When machine beeps, allow natural release for 15 minutes, then turn to Venting to allow release of remaining pressure. Open lid. Stir in salt. Taste for tenderness and sweetness. Add more molasses or maple syrup if desired. If beans are not soft enough, lock on lid and pressure cook on high pressure for another 10 minutes. Sauce will thicken on standing or in fridge. Note 1.