Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

They say the third time’s a charm but in my baked bean pursuit it would be more like the ninth or tenth time.  I knew I had a winner when my picky husband told me to not change a thing with this recipe. It’s a perfect balance of sweet and spicy with a just a hint of mustard. I pretty much won his heart by including three of my husband’s favorite things: jalapeno peppers, mustard, and BACON.

I dutiful documented the recipe so I could recreate his favorite baked beans (out of the ones I’ve prepared for him). Then I deviated because that’s what I do … just in case I can make an even better batch of baked beans. When I made the original batch we only had one-quarter cup of molasses left in the container. I was curious how one-half cup of molasses would alter the taste.  The picture below is the original recipe with just the one-quarter cup of molasses used and it was slightly less sweet and lighter in color. The original was also our favorite since I don’t like beans overly sweet.

Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

I gotta say that I prefer the look of the baked beans with the additional molasses. Visually they are just prettier. I mean if a baked bean can be pretty this one would be win the crown. So if you like yours slightly sweeter then you should add the extra one-quarter cup of molasses. We like our food a little spicy so if adding additional heat to your baked beans isn’t your thing (or if you have little ones), then you can eliminate the jalapeno pepper and still end up with a tasty batch of beans.

I honestly can’t imagine cooking beans the traditional method since using the Instant Pot. You can make a large batch of delicious beans in less than an hour. Plus the beans taste even better the next day.

Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

The baked beans made a perfect side to go with kalua pork sliders which I paired with a creamy & crunchy coleslaw.

Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)


  • 1 pound northern beans, dried
  • Water to cover beans during soak
  • 1 12-ounce package uncooked peppered bacon (about 12 slices), chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped (or ¼ cup dried chopped onions)
  • 2 ½ cups water
  • ¼ cup real Maple Syrup
  • ¼ to ½ cup molasses
  • ⅓ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Soak beans in a large container overnight (or at least 6-8 hours) in just enough water to totally cover them.
  2. Drain and rinse beans (discard soak water).
  3. Turn your Instant Pot onto the “Sauté” mode.
  4. Add chopped bacon and sauté until the bacon is almost crisp.
  5. Sauté the onions and jalapenos, with the bacon, until they soften.
  6. Slowly add the water to the Instant Pot.
  7. Using a wooden spoon, scrap bottom of Instant Pot to remove the brown bits from the bottom of the pan and to release more bacon goodness.
  8. Add maple syrup, molasses, dark brown sugar, ketchup, dry mustard, Worcestershire sauce, spicy brown mustard, salt, and pepper to the pot and stir to combine.
  9. Stir in the soaked beans.
  10. On your Instant Pot, select the “Manual” mode and press the ‘+’ button until it reads 42 minutes. Set the top knob to “Sealing” and not “Venting”.
  11. The Instant Pot will beep at you when it finishes cooking the beans and sets itself to “Keep Warm” mode.
  12. Turn off the pressure cooker and let rest for at least 10 minutes.
  13. Use the quick pressure release to release any residual pressure.
  14. Check the tenderness of the beans. If necessary, cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.

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21 thoughts on “Picky Husband Approved Baked Beans (in the Instant Pot)

  1. Dolly Garnecki says:

    We LOVE this recipe! Top notch! We didn’t use the jalepenos, but other than that followed your recipe exactly. I’d agree that setting the IP at 45 min would’ve been perfect. 40 min was just a few too min shy.

    SO delicious!

    I look froward to trying more of your awesome recipes, Tanya!!

  2. Karen says:

    Looks good, but not being a mustard fan I may not add that much spicy mustard. Your prior recipe looked yummy also.

    • Tanya says:

      Thank you Karen! I’ve made the baked beans with less spicy brown mustard and it’s just as delicious. My picky husband loves mustard so I add more to please his taste buds. 🙂

    • Tanya says:

      Hi Rosanna! If there’s too much liquid you can reduce the amount of water to 2 cups versus 2½ cups of water. I’ve tried both and prefer using 2½ cups because the beans were very thick at 2 cups. It may be worth trying 2 ¼ cups. Since we’re a small family we have a week’s worth of leftovers and I’ve noticed that the baked beans thicken up with time. You can also cook off some of the residual liquid by selecting the manual mode and cooking the beans a few minutes longer with the lid open. Thanks! Tanya

  3. Victoria says:

    I don’t think I’ve had better tasting baked beans! Mine turned out a bit watery but letting them go with the top off did the trick. They weren’t too mustardy (which was a concern).

    I used cottage bacon because it has less fat and all the bacony goodness.

    • Tanya says:

      YAY!! I’m so happy you loved these baked beans as much as we do. These are definitely my favorite too. I’ve never had cottage bacon. I need to look into it! Thank you for letting me know how how the baked beans turned out! Tanya

  4. Lauren Robertson says:

    One of the perks I’ve read about doing beans in the Instant Pot is not having to soak them. Can this step be skipped with a longer cook time?

    • Tanya says:

      Hi Lauren, yes, you can skip soaking the beans and cook the beans longer in the IP. I do this when I cook with black beans and pinto beans. For me, soaked northern beans take about 40 to 45 minutes to fully cook in the IP. You would need to add at least another 20-25 minutes (maybe more) if they are not soaked. Thank you! Tanya

  5. Susan M says:

    Although I like the taste of the beans in the IP, I did have to cook them longer than 45 min. I let them rest 10 minutes and then every 10 min intervals under pressure the total time was close to double. In between that time I let them saute for 5 minutes or so to thicken up. I followed the recipe to the “t” and soaked the beans overnight for more than 8 hours. I am still keeping this recipe but have noted the length of time to cook. Thanks

  6. Florence Baird says:

    Hi Tanya. Love these beans. It this is the second time I have made them and they are not close to being done after 45 minutes in the IP. I put them in for another 30. I let them sit in the frig overnight and then heat them in the slow cook mode. They come out great. Not sure why it takes so long using my IP. I pre soaked the beans.

    • Tanya says:

      Hi Florence! I’m sorry to hear that the beans are taking much longer to cook in the IP. When I soak them overnight I let them sit on the counter versus in the refrigerator. I’ve read that soaking them in the refrigerator doesn’t allow the beans to absorb as much of the water therefore taking longer to cook. It may be worth the try? I’m happy you love the taste of the beans! 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend! Tanya

  7. Millie says:

    Hi Tanya,
    The beans seem to be taking a long time to cook, but I notice it is on low pressure. Should I have it on high pressure?

    • Tanya says:

      Hi Millie! Yes, it should be high pressure. My Instant Pot defaults to high pressure so I’m sorry I didn’t specify. Hope you enjoyed them! Have a wonderful weekend. Tanya

  8. Crystal says:

    If I wanted to make these vegetarian would I need to add anything in place of the bacon? I’ve seen on other recipes that you need to add oil and or salt to keep the texture or the beans. What would you recommend?

    • Tanya says:

      Hi Crystal! I love to use smoked dried tomatoes when I have my vegetarian friends over for dinner. They have the smokey taste of bacon without the meat. You can also leave out the bacon and they’ll still taste great. I’ve done that when I have forgotten the bacon. Have a great weekend. Tanya

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