If you enjoy fresh steamy boiled peanuts but don't have the time for the long boiling process then try Instant Pot boiled peanuts. It's the perfect southern snack that can be salty flavored or hot and spicy. Grab your brown bags and serve up hot cooked peanuts in the shell at the next game day or outdoor party.
Why make this recipe?
No road trip across the Southeast U.S. would be complete without stopping for boiled peanuts at a roadside stand. Boiled peanuts are definitely an acquired taste but southerners take their traditional snack seriously. They have a smooth creamy flavor similar to chickpeas. Some like their boiled peanuts mild and salty while others like theirs spicy cajun boiled.
When you crack open the shell and pop out the peanuts, they are slightly slimy in texture and very soft. Be sure and have a napkin nearby because the peanut juice tends to run down your arms to your elbows.
Some people crack the soggy shells open with their hands. They're also people that pop the whole peanut in their mouth, crack it open with their teeth, extract the nut, and spit out the shell. This way takes talent. Then there are those die-hard southerners that eat the whole thing, shell and all.
Boiled peanut shells are slightly soft because of the long boiling process. A hardcore southerner might say you should eat the shell. However, most people discard them after picking out the peanuts.
According to WebMD, lab tests on the peanut extracts show that boiled peanuts had higher antioxidants levels than the raw and roasted peanuts. When peanuts are boiled in their shell, the peanut kernel absorbs antioxidants in the peanut shells and skins. That can't happen with shelled, skinned peanut kernels, the researchers note.
Antioxidants, which come in many forms and are found in plants, may help prevent cancer, heart disease, and other chronic conditions, note the researchers.
What kind of peanuts to use?
To make boiled peanuts, you must use fresh raw or green peanuts. You can usually get these in the late summer months. Dried or roasted peanuts will not work.
Are raw peanuts the same as green?
Green Peanuts are just picked peanuts. It’s best to store them in a cool, dry place like a refrigerator until you are ready to cook them.
Raw Peanuts are raw but air-dried, so they are safe to sit out for a week or two at room temperature. These peanuts take a little longer to cook, so be sure and process them 15 minutes longer to active softness.
Where to buy green peanuts
Normally peanuts are harvest in late summer and you can get them at your local farmers market. You also order them off of Amazon in the off-season or if you live where they don't grow peanuts.
Using your Instant Pot is the quickest and easiest way to make a big batch of boiled peanuts.
How to prep the peanuts
Fill a big bowl or bucket with water, then dump in your peanuts. Pick out any stems or leaves as you run your hands through the peanuts and water. Rinse and do this several times until the water runs clear of dirt.
Cooking instructions in an Instant Pot
Making boiled peanuts in the Instant Pot is the quickest way to do it. You add water, vinegar, seasonings, salt, and peanuts to the Instant Pot. Cover and pressure cook for 65 minutes on high with a 30-minute natural pressure release.
This might seem like a long time on an instant pot, but it is much faster than cooking them on a stovetop.
What is a good Instant Pot to use?
I have had my Instant Pot so long that they now have an updated version of it. I would really like to get the new version, it has Wifi and works with an app on my phone if needed! The Instant Pot Smart Wifi combines 8 kitchen appliances in one: Pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, yogurt maker, cake maker, Saute pan, steamer, and warmer.
Tips for flavoring
Salt the water! – Salt is the key to a good southern boiled peanut. It might seem like a lot in the recipe, but don't skimp, make it salty like the ocean. Don't worry, most of the salt will remain in the water.
Seasoning – Many boiled peanut vendors offer either traditional or Cajun. You can infuse flavor in your boiled peanuts by adding seasonings, spices, and even aromatic vegetables like jalapeño peppers. My favorite is Old Bay Seasoning and Tony Chachere Seasoning Blends
Just make sure you add enough to flavor the cooking liquid. If you can’t taste it in the liquid, you won’t taste it in the peanuts.
How to store after cooking
Boiled peanuts are good for about 24 hours at room temperature. After that, you’ll want to refrigerate or freeze them. If you do not eat all your boiled peanuts, store them in an air-tight container in your refrigerator for up to 1 week. Be sure to keep them covered in the water they were cooked in. If not, they will dry out and not be as flavorful.
To freeze, cover the peanuts with their boiling juice a place them in a freezer-safe container. Freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then heat the peanuts and juice in a pan until they boil.
You might find your peanuts are a little firm after cooking. This happens when the peanut's moisture started to draw out before cooking, or you did not cook them long enough. It is perfectly fine to pressure cook them again for another 10 minutes and then allow the pressure to slow release for 20 minutes or so.
Other ways to cook boiled peanuts
If you would like to make your own CANNED BOILED PEANUTS, here are the instructions. It's very easy to do, but you must use a pressure canner (NOT AN INSTANT POT) because peanuts are a low acid food. They need to be processed at a high temperature and pressure for 90 minutes. The only thing else you will need for your canned boiled peanuts are green peanuts, figure one pound per quart jar, Canner Pressure Cooker, some canning salt, and spicy cajun seasoning if you want a kick to your boiled peanuts.
https://intentionalhospitality.com/crock-pot-boiled-peanuts/You can also make crockpot boiled peanuts. It takes a lot longer, but the results in flavor are equal. Head on over to my post for all the details.
Tips for serving
Do you eat boiled peanuts hot or cold?
Boiled peanuts are traditionally served warm in a paper bag. However, some people like them cold, right out of the fridge. If you like them warm, pour them in a pan and warm them up on the medium heat stovetop. Another way is to place the peanuts in a microwave-safe bowl and warm them that way.
How to reheat
Pour the peanuts and enough peanut juice to cover the peanuts in a pan. You might need to add a little water to cover the peanuts. If you do, I suggest adding a bit more salt and seasoning. Bring to a boil and then serve warm.
Recipes using leftover boiled peanuts
Y’all are going to love this Boiled Peanut Hummus! A smooth, nutty flavor with a punch of lemon and garlic makes this a southern hummus-boiled peanut recipe you will make again and again.
This creamy Thai Peanut Hummus Recipe is loaded with spicy Thai seasonings, hints of cilantro, and coconut all wrapped up with a nutty peanut flavor. It’s healthy, delicious, and great for dipping vegetables or pita chips.
More Insant Pot recipes
Instant Pot Boiled Peanuts
- 1 pound peanuts green raw
- 1/2 cup salt
- 10 cups water or more. The peanuts need to be covered with water.
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Seasoning Old Bay or Tony's Chachere's. Double or triple if you like it really spicy.
- Fill a big bowl or bucket with water, then dump in your raw peanuts. Pick out any stems or leaves as you run your hands through the peanuts and water. Rinse and do this several times until the water runs clear of dirt.
- Add salt, vinegar, peanuts, and water into the Instant Pot
- Add seasoning, if you want them a little spicy. Stir
- Cover the pot and lock the lid into place. Turn valve to sealing. Set the manual/pressure cook button to 65 minutes on high.
- When time is up let the pot sit for at least 30 minutes before removing the lid. The longer they sit the more they will absorb the salt and seasoning.