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Camellia Brand
a close up of a package of red beans next to a strainer full of beans

Pantry Red Beans & Rice

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This simplified recipe makes tasty red beans by relying solely on pantry staples and spices. It also comes together quickly in the Instant Pot, with no hands-on attention required and no soaking. Just dump everything in, set it, and forget it! If you’re lucky enough to have Zydeco Chop Chop on hand (a combination of blended, dehydrated herbs and vegetables), use it generously – if not, try the individual spices noted below.


  • 1 (1-pound) package Camellia Brand Red Kidney Beans
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder or dried minced onion
  • 3 teaspoons garlic powder or dried minced garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 6 cups chicken broth, or 6 cups boiling water blended with 6 bouillon cubes
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • Creole seasoning or hot sauce to taste
  • 1-3 tablespoons oil
  • Hot cooked rice
Total time:
1 hour, 10 minutes
Prep time:
5 minutes
Cook time:
1 hour, 5 minutes


  1. Rinse and sort beans.
  2. Add first 7 ingredients to the Instant Pot, and stir well. Twist to lock the lid, and turn the valve to sealing.
  3. Press the Manual button and set to 40 minutes at high pressure. When the timer beeps, allow the pressure to release naturally for 20 minutes. Then, turn the valve to venting.
  4. Remove lid.
  5. Add oil, stir well, and mash some beans against the side of the pot. This will help make the beans creamy.
  6. Add salt, pepper, and Creole seasoning or hot sauce to taste.
  7. Serve over hot cooked rice.

Instant Pot Tips:
* No soaking is needed if you cook the beans for 40 minutes at high pressure. If you do soak your beans, cut the cook time in half (20 minutes at high pressure).
* Always let the pressure release naturally for at least 20 minutes. This should ensure soft beans.
* If the beans are not soft after 40 minutes of high pressure cooking and 20 minutes of natural pressure release, then re-secure the lid, seal the vent, and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes at high pressure.
* If there’s too much liquid left in the pot after cooking, turn on Sauté mode and simmer for a few minutes so that excess liquid evaporates.