This Instant Pot Great Northern Beans recipe is a delicious and easy way to make beans in a pressure cooker with no soaking required!
Looking for a delicious and easy way to make dry northern beans? Instant Pot or Ninja Foodi to the rescue! With this no-soak recipe, you’ll have tender, flavorful, and perfectly cooked beans in no time.
Serve them up as is, or use them in your favorite recipes. Make this easy Instant Pot Great Northern beans recipe today for dinner or meal prep.
Content Covered Here
Great Northern Beans in the Instant Pot
Great northern beans are a white bean named after the region where they are grown – the Great Northern Plains of North America.
These beans are a good source of fiber and protein. They are also low in fat and calories and have a mild flavor and a creamy texture. You can use them in place of cannellini beans or navy beans.
Instant Pot Great Northern beans are a great place to start if you’ve never cooked dried beans before. They’re relatively small, cook quickly, and don’t require any presoaking.
Great Northern beans are perfect as is or in any number of recipes. Serve them up as a side dish, add them to soups or salads, or use them in place of canned beans in your favorite recipes.
These beans are also a great way to stretch your food budget. A pound of dried beans costs just a few dollars and yields about eight cups of cooked beans. That’s a lot of bang for your buck!
Ingredient Needed for Cooking Great Northern Beans in Pressure Cooker
- Dry great northern beans – may be called northern beans
- Hot water
- Hot chicken broth – can be swapped with more water
Optional, but highly recommended:
- Onion – adds more flavor
Note: Presoaking is optional with this recipe. If you use presoaked great northern beans, reduce the natural pressure release time to 10 minutes.
How to Cook Great Northern Beans in Instant Pot
Prepare the beans. Rinse your great northern beans and remove any shriveled beans or rocks.
Put the beans in the Instant Pot liner then add salt, broth, and water.
TFN Tip: Using hot water and broth in the pot helps it to reach pressure faster, which reduces your cooking time.
Pressure cook the Northern Beans. Twist the pressure cooker lid, turn or press the pressure lever if needed, and set the timer on high pressure for 35 minutes.
Once the timer goes off, let the pot sit for 20 minutes for natural release. After that, you can quickly release the pressure by twisting or pushing the lever/button.
Ready to serve. Carefully remove the pot liner with pot holders and drain the northern beans into a colander. Rinse the beans until the water runs clear.
You can serve the beans on their own, add them to salads, cook them with other food, or store them in the fridge or freezer for later. I love using them in place of canned beans!
Recipe Variations and Add-ins
Try these add-ins:
- Try adding garlic, onion, or herbs when cooking the beans for a little more flavor.
- Use broth instead of water for more flavor.
- Add ham hock, bacon, or sausage when cooking the beans for a heartier dish.
- For a little spice, stir in a teaspoon or two of chili powder, cumin, or smoked paprika when cooking the beans.
Try these delicious variations:
- Instant Pot great northern beans with bacon, cook a few strips of bacon in the Instant Pot until crisp. Remove the bacon, then cook the beans according to the recipe instructions. Stir in the bacon before serving.
- Instant Pot great northern beans with ham – stir in a cup or so of diced ham when you add the broth and water.
- Instant Pot great northern beans and rice – stir in some cooked rice and add a little diced ham, sausage, or vegetables, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Instant Pot great northern bean soup – add a few cups of chopped vegetables (celery, carrots, onion, etc.) when you add the broth and water. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
How to Serve Instant Pot Great Northern Beans
- This recipe makes a delicious and healthy side dish. Serve them with roasted or grilled chicken, fish, or meat.
- Use Great Northern beans instead of canned beans in any recipe. Try them in soups, stews, salads, or chili.
- These beans are also delicious and served as a main dish. Serve them with rice, quinoa, or pasta. Top with shredded cheese, diced avocado, or a dollop of sour cream.
- They are also delicious in tacos or burritos. Simply mash the beans and stir in some salsa, diced onion, and shredded cheese. Serve with tortillas, sour cream, and diced avocado.
- This also makes a delicious and healthy dip. Simply mash the beans and stir in some salsa, diced onion, chopped cilantro, and lime juice. Serve with chips or vegetables.
Storage, Freezing, and Reheating Instructions
Store pressure cooked great northern beans in the fridge for up to four days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To freeze, let the beans cool completely. Then transfer them to a Ziplock freezer bag or an air-tight storage container.
To reheat, thaw the beans overnight in the fridge. Then reheat them in the Instant Pot on the saute setting or in the microwave. You can also reheat them by adding them to soups, stews, or chili.
Frequently Asked Questions
It takes 35 minutes to cook Great Northern dry beans in the Instant Pot. The time it takes for the Instant Pot to release pressure naturally is not included in this calculation, so the total time for cooking will be about 55 minutes.
The ratio of northern beans to water in the Instant Pot is about 1 pound of dry beans to 6 cups of liquid. This recipe uses 3 cups of broth and 3 cups of water, which is the perfect ratio for great northern beans.
Yes, you can pressure cook great northern beans without soaking them. Add them to the Instant Pot with the appropriate amount of liquid and cook for the recommended time.
Instant Pot Great Northern Beans
- 1 pound dry great northern beans (may be called northern beans)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups hot water (preheating your liquid saves time)
- 3 cups hot chicken broth (can substitute with more water)
- 1 onion cut into quarters
- Rinse and pick through your dried beans, removing any shriveled beans or rocks. Place the dry beans in the Instant Pot liner, then add the salt, broth, water, and onion. Using hot water and broth helps bring the pot to pressure faster, reducing your cooking time.
- Twist on the pressure cooker lid, turn or press the pressure lever (if needed), and set on high pressure for 35 minutes. When done, allow a 20 minute natural pressure release (leave pot undisturbed), then do a quick release my twisting or pressing the pressure lever/button.
- Using pot holders, carefully remove the pot liner and drain the northern beans into a colander. Rinse the beans until the water runs clear. Serve the beans alone, use them in another recipe (as you could canned beans), or store them in the refrigerator or freezer for later (see notes below).