Instant Pot Chili is the perfect hearty, people-pleasing meal! As much as we love a thick and hearty traditional chili recipe, this no-fuss Instant Pot chili recipe makes the perfect family dinner for busy weeknights. It’s also a great dish or to make ahead to refrigerate or freeze for later!
How to Make Chili in an Instant Pot
Instant Pot Chili shouldn’t take more than 60 minutes to cook from start to finish. Then, to thicken, you’ll need to add more time. The amount of time depends on what thickening method you use.
But first, you need to cook the chili in the Instant Pot:
- Brown Beef: Set the Instant Pot to sauté and brown the ground beef in two batches (drain fat).
- Deglaze Instant Pot: Add beer and beef broth and scrape up any brown bits in the bottom of the pan. This is important to avoid getting a “burn” message on the Instant Pot.
- Add Ingredients: Layer each of the other ingredients on top of the ground beef, then peppers, then beans, and ending with the tomatoes. I add tomatoes last, to prevent them from burning.
- How Long to Cook Chili in Instant Pot: Use the chili setting for 20 minutes and let the Instant Pot natural release when the cycle is done. (You can release it sooner if you’re in a hurry, the natural release allows the flavors to blend more).
How to Thicken Instant Pot Chili
This easy Instant Pot chili has a substantial amount of flavor-rich broth, thanks to the addition of beef broth and beer. When I make our favorite Stove Top Chili Recipe, a lot of the liquid evaporates while the recipe simmers away. In this recipe the liquid doesn’t have a chance to evaporate so the chili will need to be thickened before serving.
There are two ways you can do this.
- Thicken with Cornstarch (2 minutes): Make a cornstarch and water slurry by combining equal parts water and cornstarch. When the cook cycle is done and the pressure has released, bring the chili up to a boil using the saute button.Add the slurry a little bit at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
- Thicken by Simmering (20 minutes): Simmer your Instant Pot chili with the cover off using the sautee function for 20 minutes, or until the broth has reduced to your desired consistency.
More Recipes You’ll Love
- White Chicken Chili – super flavorful
- Easy Crock Pot Chili Recipe – SO easy!
- 15 Bean Slow Cooker Chili – family favorite!
- Turkey Chili – super healthy
- Homemade Chili Powder – great in this chili recipe!
What Goes With Chili
Easy Instant Pot chili is one-pot cooking at its best! The only thing you really need to round out your meal is some kind of starch on the side.
- Serve your Instant Pot chili over rice.
- Make homemade griddle-fried corn tortillas, or use store bought ones.
- Cornbread, warm from the oven with some honey butter. A little sweetness on the muffins is perfect with the warm spices in this Instant Pot chili.
To Freeze Instant Pot Chili: You can keep easy Instant Pot chili in the fridge for up to three days, or in the freezer for up to 4 months. Simply freeze in individual portions in freezer bags. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight and reheat on the stove top.
Instant Pot Chili
- 1.5 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 large onion or two smaller onions
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons chili powder divided
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 2 15 oz cans kidney beans
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2/3 cup beef broth
- 2/3 cup beer
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 28 oz canned whole tomatoes with juice
- Combine beef, onions, garlic and 1 tablespoon of the chili powder.
- Turn instant pot to SAUTE and cook half of the beef until browned. Repeat with remaining beef. Drain any fat.
Add beef broth and beer and stir to deglaze any bits stuck to the bottom of the Instant Pot making sure to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom.
- Spread cooked beef out in a layer on the bottom. Layer, in order, bell peppers, kidney beans, tomato paste, cumin and finally gently place tomatoes on top. Pour any juice from the tomatoes over top.
Seal the lid and valve of the Instant Pot and use the CHILI function (or set to high pressure for 25 minutes). Once completed, allow to naturally release 20 minutes. Open the valve to release any remaining pressure.
- Stir the chili which will likely need thickening.
To thicken the chili
- Remove lid, set to SAUTEE and allow to simmer 20 minutes or so until thickened
- Or create a slurry by combining 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water. Turn Instant Pot on to SAUTEE. Once chili begins bubbling, add the slurry a little bit at a time while mixing until chili reaches desired consistency. Allow to boil 1 minute.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)