How to Cook Beans in a Rice Cooker


Cooking beans in a rice cooker is one of the most convenient and hassle-free ways to prepare this nutritious staple. Rice cookers, known for their simplicity and efficiency in cooking rice to perfection, can also be repurposed to cook a variety of beans, from black beans to chickpeas, with ease. If you’re looking to simplify your bean-cooking process, here’s a guide on how to cook beans in a rice cooker.

Can I Use My Rice Cooker to Cook Beans?

Yes, you can! A rice cooker is a versatile kitchen appliance. It’s primarily designed to cook rice but many models have settings that allow you to cook various grains, steam vegetables, make stew, prepare soups, and even bake bread. A rice cooker can be used to cook beans efficiently.

Directions on How to Cook Beans in a Rice Cooker

Do you struggle through the lengthy process involved with cooking beans on a stove? Fortunately, the rice cooker can help you prepare beans easily and without all the hassle. Here’s the step-by-step process of cooking beans in a rice cooker.

Select Your Beans

Similar to cooking, it’s important to know what type of beans you want to cook in your rice cooker. This is to help you know how long you’ll need to soak your beans, how much liquid you’ll need, and how long the cooking time will be. Whether you prefer black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, or chickpeas, make sure to rinse them thoroughly under cold water to remove any dirt or debris.

Soak the Beans

Soaking the beans is a common practice to reduce cooking time and improve their digestibility. Some rice cookers allow you to skip this step but it’s highly recommended to soak the beans before cooking them. Simply place beans such as red kidney beans or pinto beans in a bowl, cover them with water, and allow them to soak overnight. 

If you’re working with black beans, soak them for 12 hours. For chickpeas and navy beans, the recommended soak time is 8 hours. Lentils, on the other hand, don’t need to be soaked.

Prepare Rice Cooker

Measure your desired quantity of beans and add them to the rice cooker. For the beans-to-water ratio, the general rule is to add 2.5 cups of water for every cup of beans. This is also the step where you can add any desired seasonings or spices to enhance the flavor of the beans.

Cooking the Beans

Place the lid on the rice cooker and set it to the “Cook” or “Regular” or “White Rice” setting. Depending on the type of beans, the cooking time may vary between 30 to 45 minutes. Check occasionally for tenderness and to see if additional water is needed. 

Keep an eye on your rice cooker as well as may have switched to the Keep Warm mode too early. If it switches to the Keep Warm mode and your beans aren’t done cooking, simply press the cook button again.

Let the Beans Rest

After the beans have reached the desired consistency, switch off the rice cooker and let the fully cooked beans rest for 10 to 15 minutes. This allows them to absorb any remaining liquid and enhance the flavors.


Your cooked beans are now ready to be served! You can plate them as a side dish or add them to soups, stews, salads, use them in burritos or tacos, and more.

How Long Does It Take to Cook Beans in a Cooker?

Cooking beans in a rice cooker is a straightforward process that requires minimal supervision. The cooking time can vary depending on the type of beans and the desired tenderness.

Recipes with Rice Cooker Beans

Now that you know how to cook beans using your rice cooker, here are some recipes for you to enjoy!

Rice and Beans Recipe


  • 1 cup white rice
  • 2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1 15 oz canned beans (black beans are preferred)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt to taste


  1. Rinse beans.
  2. Using 3 cups of water, soak black beans overnight in a bowl or a pot. Drain the water in the morning.
  3. Put the black beans in the rice cooker pot. Add in 1 cup of rice, 2 cups water or broth, bay leaf, and seasonings. 
  4. Cook on the White Rice setting. Depending on your rice cooker, this can take about 25 to 35 minutes. You can continue cooking until the beans are tender.
  5. Once the rice is cooked, discard the bay leaf.
  6. Fluff the black beans and rice with a fork.
  7. Add salt to taste.
  8. Serve.

Rice Cooker Black Beans Recipe

A good pot of beans can make all the difference between a boring meal and a dinner that is full of flavor. You only need a few ingredients to pull this recipe off.


  • 1 cup dry beans
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Soak the dry beans in 3 cups of water and let sit for 10 minutes. Drain.
  2. Place the black beans in the rice cooker. Add 3 cups of water, chopped onion, and salt.
  3. Stir and close the lid.
  4. Depending on the rice cooker, select the “Porridge” setting to cook the beans. If your cooker doesn’t have this option, use the “Cook” button instead. 
  5. Check on the black beans occasionally. Add more water if needed.
  6. Cook until the black beans are tender or about two hours. 
  7. Once the black beans are cooked and there’s remaining liquid in the pot, drain them before serving.

Easy Beans in Rice Cooker Recipe

Cooking dried beans in a rice cooker or a crock pot is pretty easy! Just follow the steps below.


  • 1 pound dried beans
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons butter 
  • 1 medium onion
  • Bay leaves
  • Cumin and chili powder (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Rinse the dried beans.
  2. Place the beans and water in a rice cooker. Switch it on to cook.
  3. Check every now and then to see if it needs more liquid or if the cooker has switched to the Keep Warm mode early. Simply press the cook button again if it switches to the Warm mode.
  4. After two hours, add optional ingredients such as cumin or chili powder.
  5. Once the beans are cooked, add the tomatoes.
  6. Add additional goodies such as veggies, peppers, bacon, ham, and others to increase the flavor.

Recipe Tips

  • If you don’t have a rice cooker, you can also use the instructions in this guide to cook beans in a crockpot or a slow cooker.
  • Use the cooked beans for other recipes such as burritos, tacos, salads, stews, soups, and others.
  • When cooking beans and rice together in a rice cooker, the cooking time may be longer.
  • If your rice cooker cooks at a higher temperature, the beans may finish cooking in under 2 hours.
  • Don’t forget to drain the remaining liquid in the pot.
  • If you’re using the instructions in this guide to cook peas in a recipe, you won’t need to do the soaking procedure.
  • For any recipe, you can add seasonings to improve the taste of the beans.
  • If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Final Note

Cooking beans in a rice cooker is a simple, hands-off method that yields delicious and nutritious results every time. By following these steps and experimenting with different types of beans and seasonings, you can eat delicious bean dishes with minimal effort.

Want to use your rice cooker for other delicious recipes? Browse our collection.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the Aroma rice cooker cook beans?

Yes, any rice cooker from Aroma can cook beans.