Instant Pot Brown Rice and Black Bean Salad
This Instant Pot Brown Rice & Black Bean Salad is full of flavor and texture from hearty rice, juicy tomatoes, and a spicy lime dressing that give it a light kick.
❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe: This is an easy and refreshing grain salad that you can serve as a side dish all on its own or turn into a filing wrap or burrito. It’s a kid-approved dish that you can make all year long.
How to Make Instant Pot Brown Rice and Black Bean Salad
This Instant Pot Brown Rice and Black Bean Salad recipe will work in any brand of electric pressure cooker, including the Instant Pot, Ninja Foodi, or Power Pressure Cooker XL.
We first adapted this recipe from our good friend Dara, who writes the blog Cookin’ Canuck. We wanted to use the Instant Pot to make a healthy and light grain salad with some protein.
I love cooking rice in the Instant Pot. It’s a foolproof and hands-off method to make perfect grains every time. See our complete guide to cooking rice in an Instant Pot, as well as more detail on perfect Instant Pot white rice and brown rice.
This salad uses canned black beans. However, you can also use your pressure cooker to cook dried beans for the salad. Here is an easy recipe for Instant Pot black beans.
The best part about this rice dish is how well the grains and beans absorb the savory dressing. This dressing gets its flavor from:
- Lime juice. You can also use lemon or fresh orange juice in a pinch.
- Tabasco sauce for a bit of a kick. It won’t overpower the salad, but if you’re not a fan of spice you can omit the hot sauce.
- Garlic. I recommend using fresh garlic, but you can use a teaspoon of garlic powder if you’re out.
- Agave. This is a delicious liquid sweetener. If you can’t find it, use honey or maple syrup.
You can serve this salad as a side dish with Instant Pot Pulled Pork. Or turn it into a portable wrap or burrito with a large tortilla.
It’s even hearty enough to work as an entree. I like to serve it over a bed of lettuce with something crunchy, like tortilla chips, on the side for scooping.
This salad is best served straight away after dressing, as the avocado won’t hold up well during storage. However, you can prepare the Instant Pot rice and dressing ahead of time, then assemble everything just before serving.
More Grain Recipes for the Instant Pot
I love cooking grains and beans in my pressure cooker. If you do too, you’ll love:
- Kale and Harvest Grains Salad is a hearty dish for fall with bright kale, mixed grains and a savory dressing.
- Instant Pot Spanish Rice is a fiery and zesty rice side dish that gets flavor from jarred salsa.
- Instant Pot Taco Rice is a satisfying one-pot meal with grains and ground beef.
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Spicy Brown Rice Black Bean Salad
This healthy brown rice and black bean salad is an easy Instant Pot side dish or vegetarian entree with avocado and lime juice.
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 (14 oz.) can black beans, drained & rinsed
- 12 grape tomatoes, quartered
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1/4 cup minced cilantro
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 teaspoons Cholula or Tabasco
- 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, Tabasco, garlic, agave, and salt. While whisking, slowly pour in the olive oil. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Combine the rice, water, and salt in the pressure cooking pot. Lock the lid in place; select High Pressure and 22 minutes cook time.
- When the cook time ends, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then finish with a quick pressure release. When valve drops, carefully remove lid, tilting it away from you.
- Fluff rice with a fork. Cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to use.
- In a large bowl, stir together the brown rice, black beans, tomato, avocado and cilantro. Pour the dressing over the top and stir to combine.
Slightly adapted from Cookin' Canuck
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 296Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 300mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 8gSugar: 2gProtein: 6g
Nutrition information is calculated by Nutritionix and may not always be accurate.
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Hello, What section in the grocery store do you find the Agave nectar? Would love to try this recipe. 🙂
Hi Elizabeth – at my grocery store they have it next to the honey. Enjoy!
My store has it near the sugar and baking isle.
This dish sounds so good. I can’t wait to try it. I love that you and your daughter get to do this together. How fun. And I especially love that you answer each question right away. Very helpful.
Thanks Sherry. We are very lucky. Enjoy the recipe!
I use a older pressure cooker and I have a question about cooking times. When you “High Pressure and 24 minutes cook time” does that mean 24 minutes from the time I put the lid on and turn on the heat or is it 24 minutes after the whistle starts blowing? Thanks
Hi Rob – the electric pressure cooker doesn’t start counting down the time until the cooker is at pressure. So the time is the same as yours on the stove, it starts when the whistle starts to blow. Enjoy!
Stovetop pressure cookers cook at higher pressure, which means when you see a recipe that uses an electric pressure cooker, reduce the time by 10%, and make adjustments for the next time you cook if it needs a little bit less, or more. For this recipe, try 21 minutes for stovetop pressure cooker (after the whistle starts to toot). 🙂
Sorry, I hadn’t seen comments below mine previously. I read them, and see that others are cooking their beans, too.
In reference to your comment on May 15th, I have a question: Do you really have to cook the beans and rice separately? I read the article, but it doesn’t explain why, as I read it. Don’t they take about the same time?
I’ve often wondered if rice and beans were cooked together, because the rice, even with the beans removed and not eaten, used to make me ill. After two or three times, I just believed that they had been cooked together, in a single pot, over a single fire, but I really don’t know. Obviously, I only ate take-out and didn’t cook it myself, and they probably weren’t made traditionally.
Nonetheless, I gave up eating them, together or separated, for over 10 years. Funny how assumptions are formed.
Hi Jane – beans often require additional cooking or soaking time to get tender depending on the quality of the beans, and rice isn’t very forgiving to additional cooking time. Also, I’d be afraid that the rice would be an unappetizing color from cooking them together but you could certainly try it.
I made this salad as a side dish for some tamales. It was quite the hit, and so colorful. My daughter and grandsons swiped the leftovers to take with them on a camping trip. The avocados I bought were pretty soft and ready to eat immediately, so I diced them and passed them at the table to keep the avocados from dissolving in the salad and to keep the salad from becoming mushy. I also tossed the salad as gently as I could to avoid mushiness from the starches, even though the beans and rice were perfectly cooked.
FOR MARCI – I pressure-cooked 1 pound black beans (I never soak beans) for 23 minutes + a natural release in my stove-top Kuhn-Rikon cooker (your overall timing from turning on the heat will probably be longer for a digital cooker). I then used 1 1/2 cups cooked beans (rinsed) in the salad, and froze the remaining beans in 1 1/2-cup portions with their liquid in Ziploc bags to use when I need one can of beans for other recipes. Canned beans often contain more salt than homemade beans, so you might have to add salt to the salad. Here are the equivalents for most beans:
1/2 cup (about 4 ounces (113 g) dried beans = 1 1/2 cups cooked beans with liquid = 1 (15-ounce) can
This recipe is a keeper. Thanks, Barbara!
How match water do you use for un-soaked beans and how big is the PC you cooked them in?
Hi Rita – so glad you and your family enjoyed the recipe. Love that your daughter liked it so much she swiped the leftovers. Thanks for sharing your tips on pressure cooking the black beans.
Any idea how you would do it if you used uncooked beans? Also, would this be tasty warm too?
Hi Marci – you’d have to cook the beans separately first. https://www.pressurecookingtoday.com/cooking-up-a-pot-of-black-beans/ Yes, you could serve it warm. I would probably just serve the avocado as a topping rather than mixing it in if I served it warm though.
Oh YUM……I think I just found a side for the Chicken Enchiladas I was thinking about making tonight but really didn’t want Mexican Rice alongside-I was looking for something a little different. Just need to take ingredient inventory. Fingers crossed I have what I need.
Thank you Dara and Barbara-this looks delicious!
This sounds really good but I think I’ll include both the red pepper and the tomatoes. I thought you missed an opportunity to include directions for pressure cooking the black beans, as well, but I guess most experienced pressure cooking cooks would know to do that.
Thanks Gayle! Definitely include both if you love peppers. I’m sure it would be even better with pressure cooker black beans instead of canned beans.