Pressure Cooker Everyday Chili

 A Quick, Smoky Chili


I know the chili police could have my hide for this one. TOMATOES! BEANS! And hang on to your hats, CORN!

No, this isn’t a super-traditional chili recipe. I like to keep this one a little on the lighter side, which is why I don’t add any thickeners such as masa. If you want it to be a little thicker, cook it down a bit after pressure cooking.

I have made more versions of chili than I can remember, but out of all of them, my wife likes this one the best.Chili_Ingredients

The smokiness comes from a combination of fire-roasted corn and fire-roasted tomatoes.

This was also my first try using my new instant-pot electric pressure cooker.


And since I was feeling experimental, I decided to take the pictures on my phone (since I got my new phone, I have been impressed by the camera so I thought I would take the pictures on my phone and see how they turned out). In the interest of full disclosure, I did have some pictures from the last time I made this which I had taken on the camera, and I used a couple of them on this post. Play along at home! See if you can spot the difference!

So, let’s get started!

Get the vegetables chopped. I like to use this method for chopping green peppers.


I usually use jalapeños for this, but the store was out so I used serrano chiles. The serranos are a little hotter. I usually leave the seeds in, but if you prefer it a bit milder remove the seeds.

I know some people frown upon it, but I use one of these to crush the garlic:


In a couple tablespoons of oil, brown the beef over medium-high heat. Drain the fat, if you must (you’re pouring out flavor, you know! But as we all know fat is evil!) But be sure to leave a few tablespoons in the pot.

Scooch the beef over to one side (yes, I said scooch! Don’t most culinary institutions offer extensive classes devoted to scooching?).


Add the onions and peppers to the area cleared out by the aforementioned scooching. Sauté until vegetables start to soften. Add the garlic which has been crushed by the evil garlic-crushing mechanism (if you use one. If not, finely chopping it is fine.) Sauté for another minute or two.

Mix the pepper mixture and the beef together.

Add the spices, Worcestershire Sauce and honey and stir until combined with the beef-pepper mixture.

Now add the beans, corn, tomatoes and stock. I used low-sodium tomatoes and stock. By using low-sodium it gives you a little more control over the salt content. If you don’t use low sodium, use less salt.


Stir the whole kit and kaboodle together, toss in the bay leaves and slap the top on your pressure cooker.

When high pressure is reached, turn down the heat to maintain high pressure and set timer to twelve minutes.

After the time is up, remove from heat and let pressure come down naturally. If you would like it a bit thicker, put back on medium-high heat without the cover and cook down for 10-12 minutes.

Serve in bowls with your choice of toppings. I usually like cheddar and sour cream (and sometimes diced red onions).

Makes four-five entree-sized portions.



Pressure Cooker Everyday Chili
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
A quick and smokey chili, perfect for "school nights"
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 green peppers, chopped
  • 2 jalapeño or serrano chiles, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1½ cups fire-roasted corn
  • 2 cans fire roasted tomatoes (I use low-sodium)
  • 2 cups beef stock (I use low-sodium)
  1. In pressure cooker pot, heat the oil and brown ground beef over medium-high heat
  2. Drain all but a few tablespoons of fat, if desired
  3. Move beef to the side, add onions, green peppers and chiles
  4. Sauté for a few minutes until softened
  5. Add garlic, Sauté for another minute or so
  6. Mix onion mixture and beef together
  7. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, Worcestershire Sauce and honey
  8. Stir until spices, Worcestershire and honey are mixed in with other ingredients
  9. Add beans, corn, tomatoes and stock
  10. Stir chili, add bay leaves, then put top on pressure cooker
  11. When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure
  12. Set timer for twelve minutes
  13. When timer sounds, turn off heat
  14. Allow pressure to release naturally
  15. Remove cover
  16. If you would like chili a little thicker, put over medium-high heat and simmer for 10-12 minutes until cooked down a little
  17. Spoon into bowls and serve


8 thoughts on “Pressure Cooker Everyday Chili

  1. What are the Instant Pot instructions? Did you only push the “chili” button on the front? What did you think of it? I got one for Christmas, too, but I haven’t used it yet.

    • Katherine, I used the “sauté” button to brown the beef and onion/pepper mixture. After adding the rest of the ingredients I used the “chili” button, but I used the “- (minus)” button to lower the time to 12 minutes, because the default time for chili is for if you are using dried beans.
      This was my first time using it, but so far I like it. I can see how someone new to pressure cooking might find it less intimidating than a stovetop model.
      I hope you enjoy yours!

  2. Hey Mike,
    Glad to see you like the new IP Duo PCkr, I bought one for my daughter she is in college and figured it would be very handy, Had to get one for myself to, I like my stove top PC’s but this has some interesting features to play with. Great recipe I will be trying it soon

    • Thanks, Gary. I hope you and your daughter enjoy your new pressure cookers. I have used the Instant Pot several times so far, and I have found things good and bad about it. It won’t be replacing my stovetop cookers anytime soon, but I am already finding that certain things turn out better in the electric for some reason.

  3. Glad to see you are back at it. I have heard great things about “insta pot”. There are several varieties of electric pressure cookers out there (Breville and Cusinart). Love them too. I was excited (kitchen gadget nerd alert) to see the Rosle garlic press and MAC knives on your post. Top quality utensils!

    • Thanks, Bob. You’ve probably noticed that I am a bit of a gadget nerd as well. Generally, I agree with Alton Brown about not buying “unitasker” gadgets, but as much garlic as I use, I think it is worth it to have the top of the line garlic press.

      Also, I have found the MAC knives are about the best bang for the buck for chef’s knives.

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