This easy Instant Pot Chili is a comforting dinner chock full of beef, beans, and smoky flavors! Ready in less than 1 hour, you can garnish each bowl with all kinds of toppings or use it for chili cheese dogs, chili nachos, and more.
Is there anything more comforting than a big bowl of homemade chili? I don’t think so! My Three Bean Vegetarian Chili and Instant Pot Supersonic Chili always come in handy during the chilly months, but this classic Instant Pot Chili is perfect for when you’re craving the extra hearty bites.
It’s an easy Instant Pot chili recipe made with ground beef, beans, tomatoes, and a mouthwatering blend of chili spices. It’s seriously the best; altogether a deliciously hearty, healthy, balanced, and nutrient-dense meal.
The best part is the Instant Pot does most of the work for you! And if you don’t have a pressure cooker, I included stovetop and slow cooker instructions so everyone can enjoy this warming, award-worthy chili.
Enjoy the leftover beef chili for lunches, freeze it for later, or dump them on burgers, fries, potatoes, or nachos. After all, chili is the best way to spruce up any meal!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Ground beef - I like using grass-fed ground beef because it’s a great source of iron and high-quality animal protein. 80/20 ground beef, like ground chuck, stays juicy and brings great flavor to a pot of chili. If you don’t want to use beef, substitute it for ground turkey, chicken, bison, pork sausage, or venison. Or omit the meat entirely to make vegan chili.
- Beef broth - Use a great-tasting broth or make your own! My Homemade Bone Broth would be perfect here.
- Flour - All purpose flour is used as a thickening agent to thicken the chili. If you’re gluten free, use gluten free all purpose flour instead.
- Beans - I like using three types of canned beans to load the chili with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and protein. Kidney, pinto, and black beans are my favorite, but you can also use chickpeas, great northern beans, cannellini, or navy beans.
- Salsa - Use your favorite jar of chunky salsa, mild, medium, or hot.
- Hot peppers - Use green chilis, jalapenos, or habanero peppers, depending on how much heat you can handle. If spicy food isn’t your thing, use a green bell pepper instead.
- Chili seasonings - A blend of chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, cayenne, salt, and pepper gives the chili the right amount of spicy, smoky, and dry heat. A pre-mixed chili seasoning works just as well - use between 3 and 4 tablespoons instead.
How to make beef chili in an Instant Pot
Step 1: Set the Instant Pot to Saute mode and pour in the oil. Once it’s hot, add the ground beef, onions, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until the meat is no longer pink. Add the chili seasonings and give the mixture a good stir.
Step 2: Whisk in the broth, tomato paste, and flour. Finally, add the beans, salsa, tomato sauce, and jalapenos and stir well.
Step 3: Cancel Saute mode, then lock the lid in place and set the steam valve to the Sealing position. Pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. When the timer stops, allow the steam to naturally release for 10 minutes before quick releasing the remaining pressure.
Step 4: Remove the lid and ladle the beef chili into bowls topped with shredded Gruyere cheese, a dollop of sour cream, or any of your favorite chili toppings. Enjoy!
Brown the ground beef, onion, and garlic in a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven, then add the remaining ingredients. Bring it up to a simmer and let it cook uncovered until it thickens into a thick, meaty chili (1 to 2 hours).
Slow cooker instructions
Brown the ground beef, onion, and garlic separately in a skillet, then add the mixture and the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 5 to 6 hours or High for 3 to 4 hours. For the full instructions, use the directions in my Slow Cooker Turkey Chili recipe, but substitute ground beef.
This beef and bean chili is a satisfying meal on its own, especially when loaded with toppings, like:
- Green onions
- Diced jalapenos
- Tortilla chips
- Sour cream or Greek yogurt
- Diced red onion
- Roasted chickpeas
When it’s ready, serve the beef chili as-is or take the meal a step further by pouring a scoop over a baked potato, on top of french fries, or on top of loaded nachos. You can even mix it into mac and cheese to make homemade chili mac!
Frequently asked questions
My Instant Pot gave me a Burn Notice! What should I do?
There are a few ways you can avoid the dreaded burn notice: (1) Coat the inner pot with quality oil and stir the meat often while it’s browning to keep it from sticking to the inner pot; (2) don’t drain the fat after browning the beef. It not only adds flavor, but the added moisture plays a role in preventing the burn notice; and (3) stir and scrape the pot really well after adding the broth. If there are any stuck-on browned bits, the pressure cooker will mistake it for burning food.
If you’re still receiving a burn notice, try adding 1 to 2 extra cups of broth. If that doesn’t work, then there may be a problem with your Instant Pot.
How long does it take to make chili in the Instant Pot?
Beef chili comes out perfectly cooked on high pressure for 15 minutes, plus 10 minutes of natural pressure release. The time it takes to brown the beef and the Instant Pot to reach pressure will be about 20 minutes. From start to finish, this recipe takes about 45 minutes.
Can you make chili with frozen ground beef?
You can! I almost always use frozen ground beef for this easy Instant Pot chili. The only downside is that frozen ground beef doesn’t brown as nicely as thawed ground beef, which is important for flavor.
Can you use dried beans instead of canned beans?
You can, but you will need to add more broth to avoid a burn notice. I suggest soaking the beans beforehand to reduce cooking times. Use my Mexican Rice and Beans recipe for more information.
Storing and freezing
Storing: Let the chili cool to room temperature, then store the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days.
Freezing: The chili also freezes very well for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge before reheating.
Reheating: To reheat chili in the Instant Pot, set it to Saute and warm the chili, stirring frequently, until it just starts to simmer. Switch to Keep Warm mode and enjoy.
Hungry for more Instant Pot beef recipes?
- Beef Short Ribs with Creamy Polenta
- Instant Pot Beef Stew
- Beef Vegetable Soup
- Cabbage Roll Soup
- Stuffed Peppers Soup
Instant Pot Chili
- Instant pot
- 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pinch salt and pepper to taste
- 1 onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup beef broth
- 3 tablespoon tomato paste
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour sub for GF flour
- 15 oz kidney beans drained
- 15 oz pinto beans drained
- 15 oz black beans drained
- 15 oz medium chunky salsa
- 28 oz tomato sauce
- 4 oz diced jalapeno, habanero peppers or green chilis
- 2 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon each, cumin, paprika, garlic and onion powder
- ½ teaspoon each, red pepper flakes and cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Turn instant pot on saute mode. Add oil, when hot add ground beef, chopped onions, minced garlic and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir and sauté until no longer pink (about 7 mins)
- Add chili seasonings and once again stir well.
- Next add in cup of broth, tomato paste and flour. Whisk to combine and incorporate the flour.
- Now add remining ingredients; beans, salsa, tomato sauce and jalapeños. Give it a good stir.
- Cancel saute mode, lock the lid and cook on HP for 15 minutes. When done allow for 10 mins of NPR then quickly release remaining pressure.
- Serve chili with shredded Gruyere cheese, sour cream, cilantro, crusty bread or whatever you like