Pressure Cooker Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto

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Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto takes a southwestern turn, with the addition of green chiles and spicy pepper cheese. This easy pressure cooker risotto recipe can be made in just 4 minutes!

Pressure Cooker (Instant Pot) Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto served in a white bowl

Risotto is one of my favorite dishes to make in the pressure cooker. Quick and infinitely adaptable by changing out ingredients and seasonings, a pressure cooker transforms short-grain rice from raw to creamy-toothy in 4 minutes. 

large white bowl filled with Southwest Pinto Bean and Chard Risotto

Hi there. I’m Letty from Letty’s Kitchen, the blog about seasonal vegetarian cooking and desserts with a healthier twist. I’m delighted to share this pressure cooker recipe with you, because it’s true, risotto is one of my favorites!

How to Make Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto in an Instant Pot

An Instant Pot is one of the most popular brands of electric pressure cookers. They are easy to use and your Instapot can help you create this Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto!

Make this vegetarian risotto recipe vegan by leaving out the pepper cheese, adding another pinch of red pepper flakes instead. Feel free to switch out the green, as in this Bok Choy Risotto, or this Spinach and Goat Cheese Risotto.

If you eat meat, try adding shrimp or bacon. Really, risotto is a culinary canvas to paint however you like.

close up photo of Southwest Pinto Bean and Chard Risotto in a white bowl

Your finished risotto should be creamy, but not soupy. To get there, I like to cook the rice under pressure with not all of the vegetable broth, and then, after a quick release of pressure, stir in the remaining broth along with the beans and greens. While the beans heat through and the greens wilt, the starchy rice makes its own creamy sauce.

Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto Recipe

Pressure Cooker (Instant Pot) Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto served in a white bowl

Pressure Cooker Southwest Pinto Bean Chard Risotto

Yield: 6 servings


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onions, about ½ large onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ cups short grain Italian Arborio rice
  • 3 ½ to 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 ¾ cups (one 15-ounce can) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup diced green chiles
  • 1 small bunch chard, stems removed, leaves sliced into ¼-inch wide ribbons
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, or ½ cup grated pepper jack cheese (see note)
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon sea salt


  1. Heat the oil in a pressure cooker. Sauté the onions and garlic about 5 minutes, until the onions are translucent. Add the rice and continue to stir to coat the grains. Stir in 3 ½ cups of the vegetable broth.
  2. Lock the lid in place. Over high heat, bring to high pressure and cook for four minutes. Release the pressure immediately, following the directions for your pressure cooker.
  3. Return to the heat and stir in the pinto beans, green chiles, chard ribbons, and remaining ½ cup of vegetable broth. Cook, stirring constantly until the chard has wilted and the beans are heated through. The risotto should be creamy yet still al dente, with a bite to your tongue. Stir in the cheese, if using. Taste and add salt if you think its needed, and pinch more red pepper flakes, if you like more spice.

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originally published March 19, 2017 — last updated January 1, 2019
Categories: Beans