The Heat is On: Red Beans in an Instant Pot
One of our go-to bean dishes is Red Beans & Rice. I posted about it a long time ago and you can find the original, slow-simmered recipe here. Well, the spring rains have stopped, the heat is on and we have a lot of gardens to tend to. I can’t afford to be tethered to the stove with so much going on outside. Besides, who wants to stay inside when the sun is shining? I wanted to make a few bean stews to keep in the freezer and decided to try my hand at adapting them for the Instant Pot. The beauty of an Instant Pot (or any electric pressure cooker) is that you can set it and forget it. So while Bruce was starting to weed outside, I made short work of my Red Beans recipe. The original recipe called for measured amounts of onions, peppers and celery. I didn’t feel like taking the extra time and clean-up for measuring so I opted for using whole vegetable amounts instead. I sauteed the vegetables right in the instant pot with no oil; then added the beans, water and seasonings; pressed a few buttons and walked away. For one pound of dry beans, I used 4 cups of water. The beans came out too watery for my liking so I ended up reducing the liquid by cooking for additional time on the saute setting. I would use about 2-1/2 cups of water the next time I make it. (Based on your experience with pressure cooking and your personal preference, you can adjust the amount of liquid accordingly.) Another “cool” tip is to make your rice in an electric rice cooker. Again, you can set it, forget and walk away with perfectly-cooked rice in an appliance that doesn’t heat up the kitchen. When the heat is on outside you can get out of the kitchen quicker with Red Beans & Rice made in an Instant Pot. Thanks for being Vegi-curious.
Red Beans and Rice
• 1 pound dried red beans, rinsed and sorted over
• 1 large onion
• 2 celery stalks, chopped
• 1 small green bell pepper, chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
• 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• Pinch cayenne
• 3 bay leaves
• 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
• 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
• 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
• 2 to 4 cups of Better Than Boullion No Chicken stock or water
• Liquid smoke to taste
• 4 cups cooked rice
Place the beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with water by 2 inches. Let soak for 8 hours or overnight. Drain and set aside.
Set an Instant Pot to sauté , add the onions, celery and bell peppers and cook until lightly browned. Season with the salt, pepper, and cayenne, and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the bay leaves, parsley, thyme, beans, liquid smoke and stock or water. Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook on high for 8 to 10 minutes, then let pressure come down naturally. When safe, remove lid and with the back of a heavy spoon, mash about 1/4 of the beans against the side of the pot. Remove the bay leaves.
Serve over rice.