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Whether you’re cooking for a weeknight meal, a potluck or a barbecue, Instant Pot Baked Beans are the perfect side to serve! This twist on a traditional barbecue recipe utilizes the electric slow cooker to cook faster while cooking the beans perfectly. Spicier and less sweet than the canned version, these vegetarian baked beans burst with flavor. Instant Pot Baked Beans pair perfectly with any barbecue dishes and make a flavorful summer side!
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You may not know this about me, but I’m a Memphis girl.
This means I basically grew up eating barbecue. Memphis-style barbecue. (Which, in my opinion, is the best there is, but I’m a wee bit biased.)
Recently, I’ve made it my mission to make barbecue in the Instant Pot. Because while traditional barbecue is amazingly delicious, not all of us have a smoker, nor do we have the time to spend hours/days on barbecue dishes.
Baked Beans have been on my list of Instant Pot dishes to make ever since it showed up beneath our Christmas tree.
Why? I cannot seem to ever make a bean dish that incorporates dried beans without messing them up. Either they turn to mush or they don’t cook enough and are hard as rocks. There’s no happy in between.
Well, y’all will be happy to know that these Instant Pot Baked Beans are the perfect in between… and you don’t have to soak the beans overnight, either! WIN.
As an added bonus, these Instant Pot Baked Beans are a little less sweet and a little spicier than the traditional jarred beans. They’re also vegetarian.
Quite honestly, they remind me of the beans I love at the Rendezvous, a Memphis barbecue institution.
And they’re perfect to serve to the family on a weeknight or at an outdoor barbecue.
What are Baked Beans?
Baked Beans are a dish that contains beans. Sometimes, it’s baked. Other times, it’s not. The beans cook in a sauce, which is normally includes molasses.
Fun fact: One of Boston’s nicknames is “Beantown.” Apparently, it got this name because of the Colonists love for beans baked in molasses and salt pork. (Which is the traditional way to make Boston Baked Beans.)
How are Instant Pot Baked Beans different than Slow Cooker Baked Beans?
They cook in significantly less time! If you’re making slow cooker baked beans, they have to cook for 6-8 hours… and you still might have to soak them beforehand. The Instant Pot cooks them in 2 hours without an overnight soak needed.
Why make the Baked Beans in the Instant Pot?
When you’re making Baked Beans from scratch, you either have to soak the beans overnight (which requires some planning ahead) or they cook for forever. Cooking baked beans in the Instant Pot (or any other electric pressure cooker) makes for less hands-on time, and less cooking time… even though they still cook for 2 hours.
What can I pair with these Baked Beans?
- Apple Cider Pulled Pork with Apple Cabbage Slaw
- Watermelon Blue Cheese Salad with Creamy Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Instant Pot BBQ Brisket
- Slow Cooker Refined Sugar Free Pulled Pork
- No Mayo Potato Salad
- Honey Mustard Coleslaw
- Patriotic Tom Collins Punch
What do I need to make these Instant Pot Vegetarian Baked Beans?
- Instant Pot.
- Rubber spatula: For stirring the veggies as the saute and for mixing everything up before the lid goes on.
- Dried beans: These are a MUST, y’all. If you decide to make this recipe with canned beans, I assure you they will turn to mush, and you will not be happy.
- Lower sugar ketchup: I really like this because it makes the beans less sweet and lets the spice sing a bit more. If you can get your hands on some, I totally recommend it!
Y’all ready to make these beauties?
Here you go…
Whether you're cooking for a weeknight meal, a potluck or a barbecue, Instant Pot Baked Beans are the perfect side to serve! This twist on a traditional barbecue recipe utilizes the electric slow cooker to cook faster while cooking the beans perfectly. Spicier and less sweet than the canned version, these vegetarian baked beans burst with flavor. Instant Pot Baked Beans pair perfectly with any barbecue dishes and make a flavorful summer side!
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 yellow onion, large, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ lb. great northern beans, dried
- ¾ cup tomato juice
- ¾ cup vegetable stock (low sodium if possible)
- 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
- ¼ cup ketchup (low sugar if possible)
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce
- 1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce*
- Set the Instant Pot to the Sauté setting for 15 minutes.
- Add the oil and let heat.
- Sauté the onion and garlic, stirring constantly until the vegetables have softened.
- Measure in the dried beans, tomato juice, vegetable stock, barbecue sauce, ketchup, maple syrup, Dijon mustard, Sriracha sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Stir until combined.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot.
- Manually set to high pressure for 2 hours.
- Once the beans have cooked, let the pressure naturally release for 5-10 minutes, then quick release until all the pressure is gone.
- Serve warm with your favorite barbecue dishes.
This recipe calls for DRIED beans. Please don't substitute canned beans and cook them for 2 hours. They will be the mushiest mess and oh-so-sad.
Worcestershire sauce is NOT vegetarian. Please find vegan Worcestershire sauce to make these beans vegetarian-friendly.
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Serving Size:½ cup serving
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 176 Total Fat: 3g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 2g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 728mg Carbohydrates: 35g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 21g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 4g
This post originally appeared on Julie’s Eats and Treats, where I am a contributor.