Instant Pot White Beans have become one of my favorite recipes to pull out regularly. Being able to cook dry beans in 30 minutes without soaking is amazing to me and the taste is superb. This delicious dish is a southern favorite, made with cured meat to add flavor is a great side dish for any main!
Next time try my Crock Pot Pinto Beans, if you like beans you'll love this recipe.
There's different types of white beans that can be used for this recipe. I think the biggest battle is between navy beans and great northern white beans. If you're like us and like small white beans then the navy beans are for you. They hold their shape well when cooked and require being smashed against the side of the pot to add creaminess.
The great northern beans don't hold their shape as much and will fall apart on their own to add the creaminess - if you prefer that. They're milder and have a slight nutty flavor.
See recipe card for quantities.
The basic white beans and ham recipe is a one pot meal that's quite flexible and you can adjust to your own preferences. Here's the substitutions I feel are common:
- Beans - the three main types of white beans are Navy Beans, Cannellini Beans and Great Northerns. To make white beans you should pick either of these two types.
- Salt Meat - Our family uses the term 'salt meat' in reference of pickled pork or salted pork. There are a few variations of this, but you could substitute any seasoned ham e.g. smoked sausage instead. I like to use Tasso too, as it adds another flavor profile. This could all be based on what you have in your refrigerator!
- Vegetarian - To make this dish vegetarian omit the ham altogether and season using spices only.
These beans are so easy to make it makes supper time super easy and a dish that would normally take hours to cook is instead made in 30 minutes. A lot of people like to saute their onions first in olive oil, before adding the rest - can enhance sweetness and make them softer. I don't do that solely to save time, I don't feel it really changes things too much.
- Step 1: Place all ingredients into the instant pot.
- Step 2: Add chicken stock and stir all ingredients to combine well.
- Step 3: Close lid and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes. After the cooking time the Instant Pot will slow release the pressure. (If you quick release you may not have tender beans and they'll need more cooking time).
- Step 4: Once all the pressure has been released serve over rice!
Hint: If you like some more creaminess to your white beans recipe feel free to smash the beans on the side of the pot and stir well.
Here are some variations you could make to your beans to change things up:
- Spicy - add hot sauce before cooking to imbue heat into the dish.
- Deluxe - add some smoked sausage coins to your ingredients.
- Kid friendly - make sure the onions are chopped really fine, even in the food processor so that they melt during cooking. If your kids are like mine and find one onion.... it's over!
Your will need an instant pot (electric pressure cookers) to make this recipe. You can find a link to the type I have here.
Once cooled completely this dish will need to be stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
This recipe freezes excellently. Add to a freezer safe container and freeze for up to 3 months.
Some types of salt meats can be more salty than others. Be careful here because you could ruin your beans if you are not careful. I used to see my mother-in-law touch the salt meat then lick her finger to check the level of saltiness. It's pickled, so it's fine.... although I don't recommend it and I could never do it. I just rinse my salt meat before cooking with it just to be on the safe side. That way I can always add salt if needed.
- 1lb Navy Beans (or Great Northerns)
- 4oz Tasso, diced
- 4oz Salted Picnic Pork, rinsed and diced
- 1 Yellow Onion, diced
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- ½ Tablespoon Onion Powder
- ½ Tablespoon Garlic Powder
- 1 Large Bay Leaf (or 2 small)
- 5 Cups Chicken Broth, low sodium
- Once all your onions and salted meats have been diced add all ingredients to the instant pot.
- Pour in the chicken broth and give the ingredients a good stir.
- Lock the lid into place and make sure the valve is pointed to "sealing".
- Press the Beans/Chili button (if yours has one) or press Pressure Cook for 30 minutes.
- After the 30 minutes is up allow the instant pot to release the pressure naturally for 15-20 minutes. After that switch the valve to "Venting".
- Depending on how creamy you like your white beans you can smush some of the beans against the side of the instant pot to create a creamier texture.
- Sometimes that salted pork can be more salty than usual. Wash the pork to rinse under cold water, it will help.
- I am a firm believer that one bean is superior to another. I prefer the Camellia brand over any other!
- We like to use Navy Beans for our white beans recipe, a lot of other folks prefer Great Northerns - they're a bigger bean and have a slightly nuttier flavor. I like them either way... but those small white beans are our favorite.
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Nutrition InformationYield 10 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 128Total Fat 3gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 13mgSodium 398mgCarbohydrates 15gFiber 5gSugar 1gProtein 11g