Instant Pot Chili: This is the ultimate chili recipe! A classic beef and bean chili made in the pressure cooker speeds up the cooking process and results in a super rich and hearty chili. Your family will be begging for you to make this easy chili recipe again and again!
Can I let you in on a little secret?
I love chili.
And I apologize for waiting so long–this is an easy chili recipe you don’t want to miss!
Instant Pot Chili
My mom would make chili at least every other week when I was growing up. My entire family of six loved my mom’s bean and beef chili and she loved that she could cook it in the morning and let it simmer all day until dinner. She also loved that Chili was meal hearty enough to feed my hard working father–at over 6 feet and working 12 hour days doing manual labor, that man was hungry at the end of a long day!
The difference in my chili from my mom’s chili recipe is that instead of making it on the stove top, I make it in the pressure cooker. So while it tastes like it has been simmering all day, it is ready in about an hour from the minute you start prep to the minute you ladle up the chili to serve.
How To Make Chili in the Instant Pot
While I have shared with you how to make Instant Pot Chicken Chili with Dried beans, this recipe for Instant Pot Beef and Bean Chili is different–and not just because of using ground beef instead of chicken.
This chili is simple and classic in flavors–it is thick and hearty and just perfection.
Steps to make this Instant Pot Chili Recipe
- Turn your instant pot to the saute function and allow it to heat up.
- Brown your ground meat with the diced onions.
- Add in your liquid and scrape up the browned bits off the inner pot. This step is REALLY important–if you leave too many browned bits on the inner pot, your pressure cooker may not come to pressure correctly.
- Add in the remaining seasonings and beans and place lid on instant pot with valve closed to “sealing.”
- Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes for dried beans.
- Let pressure release naturally–about 15 minutes.
Can I use Turkey instead of Beef?
Absolutely, you can make this Instant Pot Turkey Chili! In fact, you could use ground pork or ground chicken in place of the ground beef if you like. In fact, I have made this with ground bison, for a lean and delicious chili.
Can I use Frozen Ground Meat for this Chili Recipe?
YES, you can make this Classic Chili with frozen ground beef!
I recommend, following my instructions for cooking frozen ground beef in your instant pot. Then crumble that meat up, place back into instant pot with remaining ingredients for the chili and cook on high for cook time.
However, if you are really in a bind, you can place your frozen beef right into your chili and the meat will cook as the chili cooks. I will warn you that your chili may be greasy if you use this method and you will still have to break up your beef into this chili once it has cooked–so this is my absolute LEAST favorite way to prepare Instant Pot Chili.
Looking for more ground beef recipes for you Instant Pot? Check out this recipe for Paleo Instant Pot Cheeseburger Soup from Perry’s Plate–it is delicious.
Can I use Canned Beans or Dried Beans for Pressure Cooker Chili?
Chili can be made with dried beans or canned beans in the instant pot. And while I prefer red beans or kidney beans in my classic chili, black beans and pinto beans are also good options for chili (and the cooking time remains the same for all these types of beans.)
Instant Pot Chili with Dried Beans
One of my favorite things about pressure cooking is the fact that I can cook dried beans in NO time. I use my instant pot to make beans and even cook chickpeas for hummus with no presoaking required. It is such a time saver. For red beans, black beans, pinto beans and kidney beans, you would use 1 cup dried beans in this Instant Pot Chili recipe.
Instant Pot Chili with Presoaked Beans
When you are cooking with presoaked beans, the cook time– on the chili is cut in half–to only 15 minutes. And yes, even in 15 minutes the chili will develop incredible flavor from pressure cooking.
Instant Pot Chili with Canned Beans
If you have canned beans on hand, you can easily use them in place of the dried beans in this chili recipe. Just decrease the cooking time to 15 minutes and use 4 cans drained and rinsed beans.
Is this Chili Recipe Freezer Friendly?
You know how chili only gets better after it sits? In my opinion, leftover chili is better then freshly made chili. And since chili lasts safely in the fridge for 3-4 days, my family will eat this chili over baked potatoes or sweet potatoes for lunch during the week or use the leftovers in a chili cheese stromboli, so we rarely have leftovers to freeze.
However, it is very smart to freeze this chili for future quick meals. I need to take my own advice!
To Freeze Chili:
- Allow chili to cool completely.
- Place in freezer safe containers or freezer safe bags, being sure to leave at least 1/2 cup space for chili to expand while frozen.
- Freeze for up to 6 months.
To Reheat Frozen Chili:
You have a couple options to reheat frozen chili.
- Thaw overnight in fridge and reheat on stove or in microwave until warmed through.
- Remove frozen chili (frozen as solid brick) and place into oven safe glass container that fits into your instant pot. Place trivet in instant pot and pour in 1 cup water. Place bowl with frozen chili in instant pot and cook on high for 25 minutes.
Do you Have to use the Chili Function on the Instant Pot to Cook Chili?
As I have shared in my Instant Pot 101, the functions on your instant pot are set as guides–your pressure cooker has no way of knowing if you used dried beans, canned beans or frozen meat. I RARELY use any of these functions, but instead default to cooking on high pressure and manually adjusting with the manual or pressure cook button on a pressure cooker.
A few more tips on how to make the BEST Instant Pot Chili
- This chili recipe uses crushed tomatoes instead of diced tomatoes or tomato sauce. The reason for this is that tomato sauce will make the chili more watered down, since no liquid is evaporated in pressure cooking. I also prefer the rich flavor of the crushed tomatoes over the diced tomatoes–not to mention my kids prefer the texture!
- Crushed tomatoes is not liquid enough for pressure cooker chili. You need at least 1 cup additional liquid. I like to use beer for a rich flavor, but beef stock or chicken stock is a great substitute. Even a dry red wine would work. I would not recommend water, but it can be used in a pinch.
- If you like thinner chili, use more stock or beer–up to 2 cups total. If you like thicker chili, do not decrease the liquid, as that is needed for pressure cooking. Instead once your chili has cooked and pressure has been released, remove the lid and turn your instant pot back to saute and allow to boil for a few minutes to thicken up, as some of the liquid evaporates.
- I personally do not care for diced peppers in my basic chili, however if you like peppers, feel free to add them to the chili along with the onions.
- If you don’t care for onions or do not have any on hand, use 2 teaspoons onion powder and add along with the chili seasoning blend.
- If you want to add sweetness to your chili, add in one tablespoon honey. This will also help cut down on the acidity of the chili and is a great thing to add for anyone suffering from acid reflux.
- If you like really spicy chili, add in 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes OR 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce.
The Best Instant Pot Chili Recipe
Instant Pot Chili
A classic beef and bean chili made in the pressure cooker speeds up the cooking process and results in a super rich and hearty chili.
- 1 pound ground meat
- 1 small onion diced
- 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup beer
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon Chili Seasoning Blend
- 2 cups dried red beans
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Turn your instant pot to the saute function and allow it to heat up until it reads "Hot"
Brown the ground meat with the diced onions, until just browned through--about 5 minutes.
Add in your liquid and scrape up the browned bits off the inner pot. This step is REALLY important--if you leave too many browned bits on the inner pot, your pressure cooker may not come to pressure correctly.
Add in the garlic, chili seasoning, and beans and place lid on instant pot with valve closed to "sealing."
Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes for dried beans.
Let pressure release naturally--about 15-20 minutes. Remove lid and stir In Worcestershire sauce.
If using canned beans or presoaked dried beans, decrease cooking time to 15 minutes.
In place of beer, feel free to use wine or beef/chicken stock.
Be sure Worcestershire sauce is gluten-free if you need this chili to be gluten-free.
Use black beans, kidney beans, or pinto beans in place of red beans--cook time remains the same.
To Make Classic Chili in the Instant Pot, You May Need
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