An avid cook and photographer, from The Sruly Kitchen, read her blog to find out who gets “surly” when they’re hungry, offers the easiest recipe for refried beans that I’ve ever seen! It’s just three ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen, plus salt and pepper.

In her own words:

Have you ever made your own refried beans? Once you make them you are unable to go back the canned kind. They are easy to make in a pressure cooker. I don’t really use an exact recipe. I just throw the stuff in my pressure cooker, cook and season to taste. One cup of dry beans would be good for serving about 4-6 people. I make one cup for both of use because Mr. Surly likes to have a lot of beans in his tacos. And we always have left over beans for the next couple days. These beans are good on their on with a little bit of cheese and a dollop of greek yogurt (or sour cream).

Surly Kitchn’s Pressure Cooker Refried Beans

1 cup dry pinto beans
3-4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
olive oilMake sure your beans are free of stones, then add to pressure cooker. Pour in about 1½ c water; you want enough water to cover the beans by about an inch. Add some salt and pepper, and a couple drizzles of olive oil. Cook for 30 minutes at high pressure. Carefully, open the release valve, allow the steam to escape and check your beans, usually they need to cook for 15 more minutes at high pressure. You want them to be soft and starting to break open. If you feel you need to add more water you could add some. Just judge by how soft your beans are and how much liquid remains. Don’t worry about adding too much liquid, your beans won’t be watery, I promise.After cooking for the 15 additional minutes at high pressure, the beans should be ready to go. Take a potato masher and mash the beans to your desired consistency. If you beans are too watery, simmer them about 5-10 minutes to allow water to evaporate and thicken the beans; stir occasionally so the beans don’t stick to the bottom or sides of the pan. Once thickened, add any additional salt, pepper and olive oil to taste.Serve and enjoy the best refried beans ever.

Photo and Recipe credit The Sruly Kitchen

Want to share your pressure recipe or technique, too?
Use the handy-dandy recipe submission form and let everyone know what is cooking in your pressure cooker!


  1. It never occurred to me to tr to make my own refried beans! I’m definitely going to give this a try!

  2. When do you add the garlic? You add salt as you pressure cook?not after? Always hear it’ll make beans hard if you add salt while cooking.

  3. i put everything in at once and walk away, salt and all and i have never had any problems with my beans getting hard. this recipe is fool proof, you really can’t mess it up

  4. I needed WAY more water for this recipe..

  5. Read a can ingredients one time, the sodium is so HIGH! It is great for a quick fix meal to use a can. The alternative is to cook enough beans to fix and freeze. I use a quart zip loc and make the bag flat to freeze the 16 ounces you need. Forget to thaw them out, just immerse your bag-o-refried-beans in water. They thaw quickly.

  6. WARNING! The suggested 1.5 cups of water is WAY TOO LOW! After the 30 minutes in the pressure cooker almost 99 of the water was gone and had to add an additional 1.5 cups of water for the remainder of the cooking time.

    1. What brand and model pressure cooker do you have? Evaporating 1 1/2 cups of water in half an hour does not sound right. Also, did the cooker reach pressure?



  7. I make these with pintos or blacks but living at 8000 ft I cook for almost an hour. To make them truly crazy good do the following. Blacken about 5 cloves of garlic in their paper skins in a dry skillet, remove and add to pan 2-3 tbls lard. Smash up the garlic and add back to the pan for few minutes then add your beans without liquid to the pan and smash all together. It’s crazy good.

  8. Awesome and easy recipe. Suggest 2 cups of water. Came out with a perfect spice to it from the garlic. Some of the best beans I ever tasted.

  9. I’m pretty new to the pressure cooker scene. I’ve already done baby backs, they were great! Now I’m going to experiment with refried beans. I’m going to try this recipe first. But, I’m I’ll throw a whole jalapeño in for flavor and slight heat. I wonder if onions, cheese, other spices would be good too!

    1. Those are interesting additions – but don’t add the cheese until after pressure cooking.



  10. I want to make some beans for beans and cornbread..Got any ideas..Just got a cooker for Christmas..

    1. If you look at the top of the page, you will see a link to a whole section on beans.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *