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Pressure cooker Pima "baked" beans

Pima baked beans: a Native American dish adapted for the pressure cooker.

Have I told you about my love affair with my electric pressure cooker? I never thought I'd say this, but I can't imagine life without pressure cooking some of my own homemade pantry ingredients: beans, lots of beans, and chicken broth. I make other things, like risotto, soups, and roasts, too. I adapted the recipe for these Pima "baked" beans from a small booklet of Southwest Indian recipes. (The Pima people currently live primarily on two reservations in south and central Arizona.) It almost looked like a traditional New England baked bean recipe, except that it called for corn syrup. Usually I don't keep corn syrup in the house, but I had a bottle left over from Ted's gummy-bear making episode with our grandson a few months ago. Beans, bacon, two forms of sugar -- I knew Ted would love these. I used the pressure cooker to cook the dry beans (no pre-soaking), and then switched to the stove-top settings to brown the onion and bacon before combining everything with the beans for a final simmer. These Pima baked beans are best served hot from the pressure cooker; they get a bit clumpy when reheated. What a fine Thanksgiving side dish these would be, bringing some Native American tradition to the table.

The pressure cooker makes easy work of these Pima baked beans, a Native American recipe.

Pressure cooker Pima "baked" beans {gluten-free}

From the pantry, you'll need: dry pinto beans, light brown sugar, kosher salt, onion, bacon.

Adapted from a recipe in Southwestern Indian Recipe Book by Zora Hesse. Serves 8-10.


2 cups (1 lb) dry pinto beans
2-3 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, diced
1 cup diced uncooked bacon
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp kosher salt


Rinse the beans and add them to the pressure cooker with 8 cups of water and the vegetable oil.

Set the cooker to High Pressure for 32 minutes. After the cook time, use Natural Pressure Release for 15 minutes, then release the remaining pressure. Carefully remove the cover from the pressure cooker. Drain the beans in a sieve, and set aside.

Set the cooker to Browning, and cook the onion and bacon together until the bacon has rendered some of its fat and the onions are translucent and soft.

Return the beans to the pot, along with the sugar, corn syrup and salt. Set the pot to Simmer, and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. (If you want the syrup to be thicker, continue to cook, uncovered, until it's as thick as you'd like it.)

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More beans, baked or "baked":
Slow cooker vegetarian chipotle baked beans, from The Perfect Pantry
Stove-top baked beans, from Simply Recipes
Slow cooker maple bacon beer baked beans, from The Beeroness
Smoky apple baked beans, from FatFree Vegan Kitchen

Pima baked beans, a Native American recipe made easy in the pressure cooker.

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So glad you are enjoying the pressure cooker; I need to make a vow to use mine a lot more! The beans sound delicious.

Kalyn, my husband with a sweet tooth really loved these! Sugar and bacon, his ideal combination.

I like to make traditional Boston Baked Beans which I formerly used the New England glazed brown clay bean pot and 8-hours of slow baking back in New England. Now I make them in my pressure cooker sitting on my induction stovetop with countdown timer which automatically shuts the stovetop off taking only 45 min. to cook plus 1 hour to boil dry Navy beans to soften before pressure cooking. Electric rates in Hawaii are the highest in the nation so you have to be inventive cooking and baking to keep your electric bills down.

Ken, you are becoming a very clever cook!

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