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Pressure cookers are great for making all sorts of delicious meals, from risotto to stews, curries, braises, soups, and even beyond to desserts like cheesecake. The exact cooking time will depend on what kind of bean and what kind of pressure cooker you have, but you can rest assured that you can cook a pot of tender, creamy beans an hour or less. One thing to note is that while dried beans are a staple, they do get old if left to sit around too long. I used an 8-quart Fissler Vitaquick pressure cooker to test my bean experiments and found it to be a joy to work with.
When they're cooked the usual way on the stove top, the greatest drawback with dried beans is the fact that they need to be soaked before cooking, sometimes up to 12 hours. Another advantage to presoaking beans is that most of the gas-causing sugars are leached out into the soaking water. For many years, cooks believed that salting dried beans as they cook contributes to their toughness. I usually presoak my beans overnight to be cooked the next morning as 8 hours in usually enough soaking time.
Because beans cook at different rates depending on variety, age, and whether or not they've been presoaked, quick-soaked or not soaked at all, there is no single timeframe for pressure cooking beans. One of the issues some cooks have with pressure cookers is not being able to check the food as its cooking. I'll admit that I tend to err on the shorter cooking times when making beans because I have a fear of over cooking them to a messy sludge.
Pressure cooking beans gives you superior results in less time than regular cooking methods and with less packaging than canned beans. Presoak the Beans: 6 to 8 hours before you cook the beans, dissolve 2 tablespoons of salt into 6 cups of water. Cook the Beans: Secure the lid according to instruction manual and turn the flame up to high. I always have a pot of beans around to make bean burritos and to toss in salads during the week. I plan on exploring many new pressure cooker recipes, make sure to get yours so you can play along. Glad you’re doing well and interesting that you are on the pressure cooker swing now! Love the pressure cooker and am excited that you’re going to post more ideas — thanks! I wanted to make a note here too, -pressure canners- are usually used for home canning as a home pressure cooker is a bit different. Oh, on the beans, we decided to cook them in the pressure cooker just in water, since they take less time.
A couple of good resources on pressure cooking – the site Hip Pressure Cooking is full of information, reviews, and recipes. Actually there isn’t really any difference between pressure cookers and canners other than size. Pressure cookers actually keep nutrients and flavor in, they are pressurized into the meat. We all have images in our minds either of real pressure cooker catastrophes that we have seen or those we have heard of.
You can purchase these at numerous select kitchen stores, but Amazon carries a nice selection as well including this smallerВ  Kuhn-Rikon Cooker.
I sure hope that I have gotten you thinking about a new way to cook and speed up your time in the kitchen. I was never nervous about using a pressure cooker until I started reading blogs about using them. For the Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker, it states it has a solid thermal aluminum sandwich in bottom for even browning and rapid heat absorption.
Brine the beans – In a large bowl, dissolve the tablespoon of salt in about a quart of water. After 10 minutes, turn off the heat and let the pressure cooker cool down for another 10 minutes.
Looking at various recipes, I find a lot of different methods for cooking beans and the timing as to when to salt beans.
You can always forgo the pressure cooker totally and simmer on the stovetop about 2 hours after brining until the beans are tender. But what really keeps the pressure cooker in full rotation in my kitchen is its workhorse function: nothing can beat it for quickly cooking grains, rice, stocks, and beans. For the chickpeas shown above, it took my pressure cooker 15 minutes to reach full pressure, then 10 minutes at full pressure to cook the beans, followed by a 20 minute natural release cool down — a total of roughly 45 minutes to achieve tender beans.
You can often pick up a pound of beans for a dollar or two, which, depending on the variety, will produce about 5 to 6 cups of beans (or about 3 to 4 cans worth).

If you've ever made a batch of beans that does not want to soften properly no matter how long you cook them, it is probably because they're too old. This is because pressure cookers have strict limits on how little and how much they need to be filled in order to work properly — smaller pressure cookers can't be used to cook a whole pound of beans.
So when you drain off the soaking water, you are also saying goodbye to this unpleasant side effect to eating beans! These days, we know that soaking dried beans in salted water really helps to season them all the way through.
Beans are notorious for producing foam which can clog the pressure valve, and the oil will help to keep that down. Since there are some variables that published charts can't account for, such as age of the beans, your stove's performance, and your pressure cooker's performance, it's good to track your personal experience.
One of the pleasures of pressure cooing beans, though, is to stock your freezer with several can's worth of deliciously cooked beans.
Add the beans (you may want to rinse them first to remove any residual dust and dirt) and cover with a plate or a towel. If you are using an electric pressure cooker, then follow your cooker's instructions and method for bringing the pressure cooker up pressure and cook as directed above. I always pre-soak my beans though…it helps get rid of the gas-producing starches of the toot-toot nature. Pour beans in pressure cooker and add chili powder, onion powder, cumin, salt, garlic powder and black pepper. I have plenty of time to cook things the normal way and have even begun doing traditional ramen recipes that take days to finish lol. After reading all the reviews of lots of pressure cookers most people who bought a smaller one were sorry they did. You can cook a large portion of chili or stew directly in a pressure canner without Ball jars just like it was a much smaller pressure cooker. Someone we know once made spaghetti sauce in a pressure cooker or was pressure canning in the kitchen when the lid blew off of the pressure cooker and food ended up on the ceiling. My father had told me of a time when his mother, in her small kitchen in Ireland, had a pressure cooker explode while under her care.
I was looking for a way to get things done in the kitchen faster and was intrigued by a cookbook author whom I had not heard about until that time. In his opinion, he thinks that pressure cooking has a role in healthy kitchens and that the main concern is when cooking vegetables, not to overcook them. Our family loves winter squash and I feel that it is such a hassle to heat up the oven just to cook a butternut or spaghetti squash.
I’d be more than happy to answer any questions that you may have about pressure cooking in general, recipes to try, as well as choosing cooker. I do love beans and try to have at least one meal a week with beans of some kind – like bolita beans and pinto beans. If the water doesn’t completely cover the beans and then some, add more water until the beans are completely covered and the water is about an inch above the top of the beans. Add enough water to completely cover the beans and then a couple of inches above the top of the beans. First of all, I always forget and the few times that I have remembered, the outcome always resulted in beans with busted skins that overcook easily. I couldn’t without bacon though Bacon and beans are a perfect paring (in general I find that any smoked meat or sausages go well with beans). I must admit that for black beans I often turn to canned, but I have to agree that starting with dried beans is much more versatile.
Today we'll look at how you can cook a pound of beans in the pressure cooker in significantly less than an hour. Even if you pay more for premium quality beans, you will still be saving money, as well as packaging, when you cook them in the pressure cooker. Try to purchase your beans from a reputable source that has a lot of turnover in order to avoid old beans. I worked with its bulk and weight by always leaving it in place on the stove — carrying the water to the pot, leaving it on the stove to cool down (with the flame off, of course), leaving it there while I ladled the beans and broth into my jars.
There is a quick-soaking method where the beans and water are brought to a boil and then left to soak for an hour or so (as opposed to overnight).
Presoaked beans will (mostly) stay intact when they are pressure cooked, while unsoaked beans tend to split open some. You should consult your pressure cooker's manual to determine the manufacturer's psi for high and low pressure for your particular make and model. Or you can use the quick release method which means you depressurize manually, usually by pressing a valve on the cooker (consult your manual) or by running cold water over the cover for several minutes.
I like to use Hip Pressure Cooking's bean chart, which breaks down by variety, presoaked or unsoaked, pressure, and release method.

Obviously, you have to wait and trust, and occasionally, you will open the lid after depressurizing only to find the beans aren't as tender as you would wish. And now, instead of cooking all night in my slow cooker…they are done in minutes in this amazing appliance.
The pressure cooker though is like this magical thing that allows you to do things so quickly. I then put the bones in with enough water to cook them, and then I add an onion, celery, carrot, and a couple of peppercorns. Along with Mexican and southwestern cuisine (which I absolutely love!), black beans can be used in salads, casseroles, soups, dips, and just by themselves. If they aren’t done, then return to the heat and cook, uncovered, for another 10 minutes or more if needed. The following is based on how I like my beans cooked, so you’ll have to test it out for yourself. Since I grew up in a household where a pressure cooker was used weekly, I’ve been comfortable with it from the start. I never made them in pressure cooker before and since I own (never use) pressure cooker I need to try it.
I’ve always wanted a pressure cooker, although they kind of scare me a little… you can do some fabulous stuff with them though! I really like Rancho Gordo beans and will often splurge for a packet or two, especially because they offer unusual beans that are hard to find anywhere else. This helps to cut the cooking time down considerably, but we're still talking a couple of hours before you have a pot of edible beans. While the quick-soaking method helps somewhat to alleviate the splitting, if you want whole, tender beans then your best bet is to presoak.
You can add any aromatics to suit your palate or recipe, but just remember to keep it subtle: pressure cooking will really emphasize the flavors, so keep strong flavored additions to a minimum.
Most pressure cooker experts agree: letting the beans depressurize naturally is the way to go if you want whole, un-split beans.
Lorna Sass' excellent pressure cooker books are another good source (she's a fan of cooking beans unsoaked, so all her charts reflect this).
You can simply turn the heat back on and cook them in the regular way, with the lid off of the pot, until they reach your desired tenderness. There is a fill line you can’t go past in a pressure cook so this gives you more space. I used to cook a lot more vegetables in my cooker than I do now and we suffered from pale green broccoli numerous nights. This is where the pressure cooker shines: without presoaking, a pound of dried beans can be done in anywhere from 6 to 40 minutes, depending on the variety. You can use the quick-soak and unsoaked beans for those times when the splitting isn't such a big deal, like when you're making hummus or in soups. Keep the aromatics whole as the flavor of finely chopped ingredients will just get lost in the pressure cooking process. Or, if they're really off the mark, you can secure the lid and bring them back up to pressure for another 3 to 5 minutes. With the things I have cooked so far, there has been no loss in flavor, everything so far has been wonderful. One of my favorite books in my cookbook library is Recipes from an Ecological Kitchen: Healthy Meals for You and the Planet. Most times the beans come out perfect after the 10 minutes pressure cooking and 10 minutes of rest. So with as many beans as we eat, it’s much more economical to use dried beans and cook them myself. But I've had wonderful results with ordinary beans, too, and since economy is one of the reasons for pressure cooking beans, I am happy to use them as well.
Black beans also lend themselves to a variety of seasoning options, not that they need much since they are delicious with just a little salt and pepper. I say experience, because originally I was using the timing charts in the instruction manual for the pressure cooker and ended up with WAY overcooked beans.
At this point you should follow the instructions for your pressure cooker, but here is the timing that I use for a great pot of beans.
If you buy them from the bulk aisle, you can also cut back a bit on waste by using your own container and eliminating the cans of ready-made canned beans. I’d rather the beans come out of the pressure cooker undercooked rather than overcooked.

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