Instant Pot Mexican Rice and Beans

Instant pot Mexican rice and beans is quick, easy, delicious and budget friendly meal great for weeknight dinners or meal prep for lunches. Mexican rice and beans in the instant pot are a great base for burritos, burrito bowls, salads or nachos and are made with pantry ingredients. This vegan comfort food is made in just one pot and is an easy and effortless meal.

Large silver spoon with big scoop of Mexican rice and beans.

Why you will love this recipe

  • Simple ingredients – you likely have all the ingredients you need to make this instant pot Mexican beans and rice recipe in your pantry/fridge right now. This recipe is made with very easy to find and budget friendly ingredients, making it great for weeknight meals.
  • One pot – Instant pot Mexican rice and beans is a dump it and forget it kind of meal, everything is made in the instant pot and requires almost no hands-on time.
  • Versatile – you can use the Mexican rice and beans in so many ways including in tacos, burritos, the base for burrito bowls, salads, nachos, or even served with eggs for breakfast. You will find so many ways to use these rice and beans.
  • Great for meal prep – this recipe is just as good the next day and even freezes well, making it great for meal prep. You can also double this base recipe in most instant pots so you can make even more in the same amount of time!
Ingredients to make instant pot Mexican rice and beans.
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Ingredients

  • Brown jasmine rice (or basmati rice) – I like cooking brown jasmine or basmati rice in the instant pot because it cooks quickly and it also is great for leftovers. You can also use white jasmine rice or white basmati rice, however you will want to change how much water you add to the instant pot and how long you cook this for.
  • Water – water helps the rice cook. If you wanted to infuse more flavor in the dish, you could use vegetable broth in place of the water. You will need less water if you are cooking white jasmine or white basmati rice.
  • Spices: Chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, salt – these spices are easy to find and available in most kitchens. You can also use your favorite taco seasoning or Tex-mex inspired blend of seasonings (you will want about 3 tablespoons).
  • Black Beans – for ease I use canned black beans that have been rinsed and drained. You can also use black beans you cook yourself (the best way is to cook them in the instant pot).
  • Diced tomatoes with chiles, drained – the diced tomatoes with chilis help to add a layer of flavor. The diced tomatoes with chiles is very mild, making this great for kids or anyone that doesn’t love spice. You can also use salsa in place of the diced tomatoes if you prefer. The heat of your salsa will change the heat of this recipe.
  • Frozen bell peppers (optional) – adding frozen bell pepper strips at the end of cooking is a great way to add vegetables to this dish. This is 100% optional though. I prefer the frozen bell pepper with just red, orange and yellow peppers if you can find them.

How to make instant pot Mexican rice and beans

Check out the step by step story on how to make Mexican rice and beans in the instant pot.

Start by rinsing the rice. If you are using a white jasmine or basmati, you may need to rinse it 3-4 times.

Rinsed jasmine rice in mesh strainer.

Add the rice to the instant pot with the water.

Add the spices to the rice as well as the rinse and drained black beans. Stir well.

Spices in instant pot with rice and beans.

Drain as much liquid as possible off the canned tomatoes, add them to the top of the rice and beans but do not stir.

Drained diced tomatoes added to instant pot with rice and beans.

Turn the instant pot on high pressure for 7 minutes. After cooking, allow the pressure to naturally release at least 10 minutes (I let it release the whole way).

After the pressure is released, open the instant pot and add the frozen bell peppers, stir well. Let the residual heat from the rice and beans cook the peppers (let sit 5 minutes).

Frozen bell peppers being added to instant pot with rice and beans.

Serve with tacos, as a base for burrito bowls, or on salads or any other way you want!

Instant pot filled with Mexican black beans and rice.

Top tips

  • Be sure to rinse your rice before adding it to the instant pot. This helps to remove the excess starch, making the rice fluffier.
  • Use jasmine rice or basmati rice (white or brown are both great) to ensure that the leftovers don’t get hard and crunchy. One reason I love making large batches of jasmine or basmati rice is that they are meal prep friendly and you can even eat them cold right out of the fridge.
  • Be sure to add the diced tomatoes or salsa last and don’t stir them in once added. When using the instant pot, tomatoes on the bottom of the insert can create a burn notice if you stir them in, which is why it’s best to add them last and only put them on top.
  • Depending on the size of your instant pot you should be able to easily double this recipe. You can serve the leftovers in many different ways or freeze them in individual servings making lunches or dinners later in the month even easier.
Three tacos filled with Mexican rice and beans on pink plate.

Other additions

  • Spice: Add crushed red pepper flakes, jalapenos (fresh or pickled) or chipotle peppers in adobo
  • Smokiness: Add 1 tablespoon smoked paprika or 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • Veggies: Frozen corn, chopped green onion, sauteed onions, sauteed zucchini and yellow squash
  • Creaminess: You can add cream cheese (dairy free if needed), shredded cheese or spicy tahini sauce to make this creamy Mexican rice and beans.

How to serve Mexican rice and beans

In tacos or burritos with Mexican veggies and your favorite salsa

As the base for burrito bowls with spicy tahini sauce or guacamole on top

With scrambled or fried eggs in the morning topped with chimichurri sauce

Over nachos with jalapeno cilantro hummus and chopped red onions and tomatoes

In salads with cilantro lime tahini dressing or cilantro lime dressing

Common questions

Can you use other beans?

Yes! This recipe uses black beans because they are easy to find and I almost always have them on hand. You can also use cooked kidney beans, pinto beans, white beans or even lentils.

Instant pot Mexican rice and beans in white bowl with lime in front of bowl.

Can you use different rice?

This recipe is written with brown jasmine rice, but you can swap out brown basmati rice without changing anything.

If you have white jasmine or white basmati rice, you will want to change the recipe slightly, as you will need less water and cook the rice for less time.

This recipe calls for 1.5 cups of rice, which will need 2 cups of water for white jasmine rice or white basmati rice. You will only have to cook this for 3 minutes on high pressure (natural release at least 10 minutes).

Is this a good recipe for meal prep?

Yes! Not only is this super simple to make, but the leftovers can be used in so many ways, making it perfect for meal prep! You can even freeze leftovers for later.

Can you use dried beans?

The dried beans will need more time to cook than the rice, so you cannot cook them together. If you only have dried beans on hand, make those first then drain the instant pot and make the Mexican rice and beans with drained beans from the instant pot.

Can you double this recipe?

Yes you can easily double this recipe in a 6 qt. or 8 qt. instant pot. I do not recommend doubling the recipe in a 3 qt. instant pot. If you choose to double the recipe, it will cook in the same amount of time, although it may take longer to come up to pressure and release all the pressure.

Hand holding a taco filled with instant pot Mexican rice and beans.

Storing leftovers

Fridge: You can store leftover instant pot Mexican rice and beans for up to 5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.

Freezer: Store leftovers in the freezer for up to 3 months. I recommend storing them in ½ or 1 cup portions so you can use them easily for leftover meals. Be sure to label your meals in the freezer with the name, date and use by date to avoid any confusion.

Substitutions

  • Brown jasmine rice (or brown basmati rice) – you can also use white jasmine rice or white basmati rice, you will just need to change the water and cooking time. See tips above.
  • Spices: Most of the spices listed are easy to find. You can also use 3 tablespoons of your favorite taco seasoning if you would like.
  • Diced tomatoes with green chiles – if you don’t have this on hand, you can use a can of diced tomatoes (drained) + a can of green chiles (drained) or 1.5 cups of your favorite salsa in place of the tomatoes.
  • Frozen bell peppers – you can also use fresh bell peppers cut into very thin slices and chopped into bite size pieces. If the fresh peppers are too large, they will not cook down in time.

If you love this recipe, you should try

Cauliflower Black Bean Tacos

Cauliflower Lentil Tacos

Walnut Taco Meat

Instant Pot Shredded Mexican Chicken

Sweet Potato Black Bean Nachos

★ Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating below!

  • 1.5 cups brown jasmine rice (or basmati)$0.70
  • 2.25 cups water$0.00
  • 2 cans black beans (rinsed and drained)$1.98
  • 2 tbsp chili powder$0.60
  • 1.5 tsp salt$0.07
  • 1.5 tsp ground cumin$0.15
  • 1.5 tsp garlic powder$0.15
  • 1 can diced tomatoes and green chile (drained)$1.29
  • 2 cups frozen bell peppers$1.00
  • Rinse the rice well (I use a mesh strainer).

  • Add rice, water, rinsed and drained black beans, chili powder, salt, ground cumin and garlic powder to instant pot. Stir well.

  • Drain the liquid from the canned tomatoes, add them on top of the rice and beans, do not stir.

  • Put lid on and cook high pressure 7 minutes. After the instant pot is done, allow the pressure to release naturally at least 10 minutes.

  • Once all the pressure is released, add the frozen bell peppers and stir well. Let sit 4-5 minutes.

Top tips:

  • Be sure to rinse your rice before adding it to the instant pot. This helps to remove the excess starch, making the rice fluffier.
  • Use jasmine rice or basmati rice (white or brown are both great) to ensure that the leftovers don’t get hard and crunchy. One reason I love making large batches of jasmine or basmati rice is that they are meal prep friendly and you can even eat them cold right out of the fridge.
  • Be sure to add the diced tomatoes or salsa last and don’t stir them in once added. When using the instant pot, tomatoes on the bottom of the insert can create a burn notice if you stir them in, which is why it’s best to add them last and only put them on top.
  • Depending on the size of your instant pot you should be able to easily double this recipe. You can serve the leftovers in many different ways or freeze them in individual servings making lunches or dinners later in the month even easier.

If you use white jasmine rice or white basmati rice:
If you have white jasmine or white basmati rice, you will want to change the recipe slightly, as you will need less water and cook the rice for less time.
This recipe calls for 1.5 cups of rice, which will need 2 cups of water for white jasmine rice or white basmati rice. You will only have to cook this for 3 minutes on high pressure (natural release at least 10 minutes).
Storing leftovers

  • Fridge: You can store leftover instant pot Mexican rice and beans for up to 5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.
  • Freezer: Store leftovers in the freezer for up to 3 months. I recommend storing them in ½ or 1 cup portions so you can use them easily for leftover meals. Be sure to label your meals in the freezer with the name, date and use by date to avoid any confusion.

See how I calculate food cost.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts

Amount per Serving

Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.

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