Pereda was born in Valladolid. He was the eldest of three brothers from an artistic family. His father, mother and two brothers were all painters. He was educated in Madrid by Pedro de las Cuevas and was taken under the protective wing of the influential Giovanni Battista Crescenzi. After Crescenzi's death in 1635, Pereda was expelled from the court and began to take commissions from religious institutions. As well as still lifes and religious paintings, Pereda was known for his historical paintings such as the Relief of Genoa (1635) which was painted for the Salón de Reinos of the Buen Retiro Palace in Madrid as part of the same series as Velázquez's Surrender of Breda.
Immaculate (Immaculada), several paintings now at several museums including the Prado (1636 painting), the Museo de Ponce, Puerto Rico (1654 painting), the Hospital ed la Orden Tercera Church in Madrid (1657 painting), Lyon, Budapest, etc.
Annunciation, 1637, Prado
Los desposorios de la Virgen con San José, 1640
San Jerónimo penitente and San Pedro liberado por el ángel, 1643, Prado.
Profesión de la infanta Margarita con San Agustín y la Virgen en gloria, 1650, Convento de la Encarnación, Madrid.
Curación de Tobías, Barnard Castle, Bowes Museum, 1652.
San José (Saint Joseph), Madrid, Royal Palace, 1654.
El Salvador, 1655, now at the Capilla del Cristo and at San Ginés church, Madrid.
Santo Domingo en Soriano (St. Dominic in Soriano), 1655, Museo Cerralbo.
Elías y los profetas de Baal (Elijah and the Prophets of Baal), 1659, Madrid, parroquia del Carmen y San Luis
The Sacrifice of Isaac, Dallas Museum of Art
San Francisco de Asís en la Porciúncula (St. Francis of Assisi and the Porziuncola), 1664, Museo de Valladolid.
San jerónimo y la visión del Juicio Final, 1668, private collection.
San Guillermo de Aquitania (St. William of Aquitaine), 1672, Museum of Fine Arts, San Fernando.
Several paintings of Bodegon including the Museo d'Arte Antiga, Lisbon, Helsinki (bodegón de frutas y bodegón de cocina) and the Pushkin Museum, Moscow (bodegón de legumbres, 1651).
Vanitas, Uffizi, Florence, also attributed by Valdés Leal and at the Museum of Fine Arts, Zaragoza
The Knight's Dream (El sueño del caballero), Museo de la Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando