Instant Pot Black Bean Soup

This Instant Pot black bean soup is packed with bold, well-balanced, and full-bodied flavor. Not to mention almost a mouthful of bacon in every bite!

It feels like the best of Southern food and Mexican food came together for this dish. And it’s a match made in soup heaven.

Black bean soup in brown bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.

 

Dried or Canned Beans?

There’s always a tradeoff when it comes to making bean soups. Do we save a dollar or two and use dried beans? Or do we save time and effort by using canned beans? I’ve tried this recipe both ways and I’m happy to say there’s little to no difference in taste or texture between the two, which means I’m definitely on Team Canned Beans. Whenever we can save time without sacrificing quality it’s a win. However, I have included instructions for both methods for those who prefer dried beans.

 

To Soak or Not to Soak…

There is no right or wrong way to go about cooking dried beans in an Instant Pot. While we all know that you do not need to soak the beans in order for them to cook thoroughly, I tried it both ways, and my digestive system tells me that soaking is ALWAYS the preferred way. You catch my drift? Some people seem to not be affected by not soaking, but we are in our house. And it makes for some humorous evening. So you can literally do it either way. Here’s a great article on which beans to soak and why.

 

Black bean soup in brown bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.

 

The Process

Uncooked bacon pieces in Instant Pot.

Using sauté setting – add bacon to pot…

 

Crispy bacon pieces in Instant Pot.

…and cook until almost crispy.

 

Bacon pieces topped with diced onions.

Then add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes, until soft and translucent. You can drain some of the fat if you like.

 

Sautéed bacon and onions topped with thyme sprigs, garlic, and bay leaves.

Next, add garlic, thyme, bay leaves, and Worcestershire sauce.

 

Sautéed bacon and aromatics with wooden spatula.

Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, making sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom.

 

Canned black beans in pot.

Then add black beans…

 

Diced canned tomatoes on top of black beans.

…Rotel…

 

Spices on top of black beans and dice tomatoes.

…spices…

 

Chicken broth and soup veggies.

…and chicken stock. Give a good mix, lock lid, and cook for 5 minutes at high pressure.

 

Cooked black bean soup in Instant Pot with ladle.

Once cook time is complete, quick-release pressure. Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Serve topped with your choice of toppings, like sour cream, cheddar cheese, and green onions.

 

And the AMAZING Result…

Black bean soup in brown bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.

 

Tips for Making this Instant Pot Black Bean Soup

If you choose to use dry beans, here’s how you’ll need to modify the process. First, I highly recommend soaking the beans, but it’s not imperative. Just be sure to remove any broken ones or small stones. Then give a good rinse. There are 3 changes that you must make to the method for dried beans.

  1. Add 8 cups of unsalted chicken broth instead of 4 cups of salted broth.
  2. Cook the soup for 40 minutes at high pressure with 20 minutes of natural release. 
  3. Do not add any salt until beans are fully cooked. Then add 2 teaspoons of salt, mix well, and let soup sit for at least 10 minutes.

 

FAQs

Why do I wait until the end to add salt when using dried beans? There’s 2 thing that happen is you salt beans before they’re cooked. It makes the skins tougher and makes them take longer to cook.

 

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Black bean soup in brown bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.

Instant Pot Black Bean Soup

This soup is packed with bold, well-balanced, and full-bodied flavor. Not to mention almost a mouthful of bacon in every bite!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: black bean soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 360kcal
Author: Gary White

Ingredients

  • 12 oz. bacon cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup yellow onions diced
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 60 oz. canned black beans drained, not rinsed (or 1 lb. soaked dry beans)
  • 10 oz. Rotel
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 2 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 4 cups chicken stock (or 8 cups of unsalted chicken broth if using dry beans)

Instructions

  • Using sauté setting – add bacon to pot and cook until almost crispy.
  • Then add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes, until soft and translucent. You could drain some of the fat if you like.
  • Next, add garlic, thyme, bay leaves, and Worcestershire sauce. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, making sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom.
  • Then add black beans, Rotel, spices, and chicken stock. Give a good mix, lock lid, and cook for 5 minutes at high pressure.
  • Once cook time is complete, quick-release pressure. Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaves.
  • Serve topped with your choice of toppings, like sour cream, cheddar cheese, and green onions.

Notes

There are 3 changes that you must make for dried beans.
  1. Add 8 cups of unsalted chicken broth instead of 4 cups of salted broth.
  2. Cook the soup for 40 minutes at high pressure with 20 minutes of natural release. 
  3. Do not add any salt until beans are fully cooked. Then add 2 teaspoons of sea salt, mix well, and let soup sit for at least 10 minutes.
Why do I wait until the end to add salt when using dried beans? There are two things that happen is you salt beans before they're cooked: It makes the skins tougher and makes them take longer to cook.

Nutrition

Calories: 360kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 1070mg | Potassium: 832mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 935IU | Vitamin C: 6.7mg | Calcium: 108mg | Iron: 6.1mg

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Linda Geinitz
    August 13, 2019 at 6:59 pm

    The recipe left out the rotel. How much and what size can do should we use?

    • Reply
      Gary White
      August 14, 2019 at 8:26 am

      So sorry about that. Thanks for the heads up! Add one 10oz can.

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