These vegan black eyes peas made in the Instant pot make a perfect pot of beans. They have a ham-like flavor served with rice. A great, healthy, filling vegan dinner.
The old saying goes that if you eat black eye peas on New Year's day, you'll have good fortune in the coming year. I can't say if that's true, but I can say these instant pot black-eyed peas are WAY too good to just eat on New Year's.
Do black eyed peas weird you out? They used to weird me out with that little black eye in the center. I'm over it. Mainly because of this recipe and maybe from my cowboy caviar.
I'm not sure, but I'm glad I got over myself because these are surprisingly tasty.
When I was making this recipe, I wanted them to resemble more of a ham flavor. I don't know if I accomplished that or not. But I know it's a delicious meal that made our monthly rotation.
Why you'll love this recipe
- This makes a great New Years Day recipe if you're into good luck *don't hold me to this
- It's a great way to add more beans to your diet.
- It's an affordable meal made with dry beans.
- It makes a large batch.
- It tastes great on its own or on a bed of rice.
Ingredients and substitutions
Although there are a lot of ingredients, they are all simple ingredients you likely have on hand.
- Dried black eyed peas- this makes it super affordable, and they soak up the flavor nicely. There is no need to presoak the beans. I wouldn't substitute another bean for this because it wouldn't be black eyed peas.
- Oil- you can use vegetable, canola, avocado, or olive oil for this. Whichever oil you prefer.
- Onion- I like to use a yellow or white onion, but you can use whatever onion is your favorite; sweet or red onion would work just fine. Dice them small, so they are more of an accent.
- Fresh garlic- four garlic cloves may seem like a lot, but it's not overly garlicky and is the perfect amount.
- Sea salt- or whatever salt you like but don't leave this out. Salt helps bring the flavors together. You can add more if needed when you taste it.
- Black pepper adds the perfect amount of peppery flavor without being overwhelming. Don't leave it out.
- Vegetable broth- make sure you use a good vegetable broth or vegetable bullion; there are some yucky ones out there. The flavor does come through because that's a lot of liquid to soak up.
- Tomato paste- I would leave this in if you have to sub it out for something, you can try using ketchup which isn't the same, and I haven't tried it, but I think it needs just a bit of that tomato taste to balance out the flavor.
- Nutritional yeast- this helps give it a bit of a ham flavor. There is no good substitution for nutritional yeast in this specific recipe.
- White sugar- you could use brown sugar or maple syrup if you would rather. It's a very small amount of sugar. You could leave it out if you'd rather, but I prefer it in.
- Onion powder- it might seem overkill to have onion powder and onion, but it's not. You need both in this recipe.
- Garlic powder- the same goes for garlic powder; it adds a slightly different flavor than fresh garlic.
- Smoked paprika- gives the beans a subtle smokey flavor. If all you have is regular paprika, that will work but go for smokey if you can.
- Nutmeg- I know nutmeg sounds weird, but this helps give it that more of a ham flavor. Don't add over the ⅛ tsp; too much nutmeg gets overkill really fast.
- Allspice- this is another spice that helps add to the ham flavor, and you don't want to overdo it, but I think it's an essential flavor.
- Dried mustard- adds a different flavor profile and gives a bit of a tang to the recipe. You could use prepared yellow mustard, but I have never done so.
Check out the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the full recipe.
Taste and Texture
This makes a big pot of creamy beans that still hold their shape. To me, it tastes a little bit like it was cooked with a ham hock (but obviously isn't)
How to make this black eyed peas recipe
Get your Instant pot pressure cooker out and add the oil and chopped onion; switch it to saute and saute until the onion is translucent.
Add your minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring until fragrant. Then add all your seasoning and tomato paste and stir, then add the vegetable broth. Last, add the dried black eyed peas, and stir.
Turn off the saute and switch to the Manuel setting (high pressure) for 15 minutes, then when the instant pot beeps that it's done, let the pressure natural release. The remaining pressure will take about 20 minutes to release. Remove the lid carefully and stir; let cool a bit before serving.
Expert Tips and Tricks
- Make sure your black eyed peas are fresh, and no small sticks or stones are in them.
- Use a flavorful broth; I prefer using the gooey vegetable stock you keep in the fridge.
- Make sure your spices aren't too old, so the flavor comes through.
How to Serve
These are best served on warm rice. I've also eaten them with tortilla chips or more of a soup with saltine crackers. Whichever way you enjoy eating them.
You can serve them with a side of vegetables. Often times people eat black-eyed peas with collard greens or swiss chard; those people are not me, so I don't have a tasty recipe.
We enjoy this as a main dish; you could also use it as a side dish.
How to store and freeze
Let these come to room temperature, then place them in an air tight container for up to 5 days.
These freeze well. Just let them cool before adding them to a freezer-safe airtight container and place them in the freezer for up to 4 months. Let them defrost in the fridge before reheating them in the microwave or stove top.
Variations and Ad-ons
- If you want these to have more of a smoky flavor, you can add a small amount of liquid smoke.
- If you want them to be more like a mashed bean, you can cook them longer, but I like them as softer beans but still whole beans.
- You could add some creole seasoning if you like to make it a bit cajun.
Recipes you may like
Here are some more Instant Pot Recipes
Black Eyed Peas in the Instant Pot
- 1 TB Oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound dried black eyed peas
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- 1 TB tomato paste
- 1 TB nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon all spice
- ¼ teaspoon dried mustard
- Get your Instant pot out; add the oil and chopped onion; switch it to saute until the onion is translucent.
- Add your minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring until fragrant. Then add all your seasoning and tomato paste and stir, then add the vegetable broth and stir. Last, add the dried black eyed peas, and stir.
- Turn off the saute and switch to manual for 15 minutes, then let the pressure manually release. Remove the lid carefully and stir; let cool a bit before serving.
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