Home Instant PotRecipes The Best, and Easiest Classic Instant Pot Beef Chili

The Best, and Easiest Classic Instant Pot Beef Chili

by Mama's Real Meals

It’s finally chili season! This is the easiest, and the best classic beef instant pot chili ever! You can even make this chili with frozen beef if you forgot to take out your meat. Which happens like all the time right? 

Did you know you can make chili with frozen beef? Check out this easy dinner recipe-instant pot chili made with frozen beef! #easychili #instantpotrecipes #beefchili

We have a freezer full of ground beef but I always ‘forget’ to use it because I’m kinda sick of always eating the same old meatloaf or something. LOL. So, I’m on a mission to come up with tons of ground beef recipes that are still super easy, tasty and don’t take any time at all.

One thing that always stopped me from making chili was that I never thought about it early enough to put it in my crock pot. Yes, I know I could make it on my stove top but the flavors just aren’t the same then. 

But… then I got my instant pot and this was probably one of the first recipes I made in it! Not sure why it took me this long to post it but… better late than never right?

So here we go on me actually sharing the recipe.

How to cook instant pot chili 

1.Turn the saute button on on your instant pot, let it heat up and then add the ground meat, onions and peppers. Let it saute until the ground beef loses its color and the onions are clear.  Add the seasonings.

If your kids are like mine and get fussy about the kidney beans in the chili, then add your drained, rinsed beans after the ground beef is browned, then use your potato masher, or a chop and stir, to crush and smoosh the beans! My kids are much less likely to complain about the beans when they are smaller, and not nearly as obvious.

If you really don’t want to take the time to brown your beef and veggies, you can just dump everything in the pot, and cook. You’ll just have to break up the beef after it’s cooked. I find taking the extra 5 minutes to brown the beef really adds a lot of flavor! 

2.Then add the remaining ingredients. Use a flat bottom spatula to clean/scrape the bottom of the pan clean to make sure you don’t get the burn message. 

3.Close the lid, put the pressure valve to lock, press manual, then cook time and change the cook time to 20 minutes. (I leave the pressure on the default). 

Let it come to pressure, cook and then let the pressure naturally release for at least 15 minutes before moving the pressure valve to release the remaining pressure. With meat, you ALWAYS want to let it naturally release! 

Just be warned… this is a BIG pan of chili… as in my family will eat from here 3 times! So the pan is full, and it takes about 30 minutes for the pan to get to pressure. So you really need about an hour of cooking time, by the time you add up the time it takes for it to get to pressure, cook and then release the pressure. 

Don’t let that throw you off though! It’s totally passive, and you don’t have to babysit your pot during this time. 

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How to make instant pot chili with frozen beef

Forgot to take out your meat? That’s ok you can use frozen meat too! Skip the first step, add in all the ingredients except the beef. Stir the ingredients together. Drop in your frozen beef and add 5 minutes to the cooking time. 

After the chili is cooked, you’ll need to break up the beef!

How to use the instant pot chili button

All you’ll need to do is hit the chili button and then start. The pressure and the cook time is already set. 

How long is the instant pot chili setting?

The cook time on my instant pot for chili is 20 minutes. 

How to thicken instant pot chili 

If your chili isn’t as thick as you would like it, then add 1-2 cans of tomato paste. Start with one. Stir it in well, if its not thick enough yet, add the second can. 

Can I freeze Classic Beef Chili? 

Yes! I’ll portion it out into bags, lay them flat on a cookie sheet and then freeze. Once they are frozen I’ll stack them in the freezer. You can freeze them in whatever bags, portions or containers that work for your family.

How to reheat frozen beef chili in your instant pot 

Add the frozen chili to your instant pot, add ½ cup water or beef broth, then cook on manual for 25 minutes, or use the chili button setting. It will take at least 30 minutes for it to come to pressure though since the food is frozen!

We love to eat our chili on a crusty bun, check out these pictures to see how we get the kids to eat it without making a huge mess.

classic beef chili in a open bun held in a hand

How do you eat your chili?

Classic Beef Chili

Looking for a classic beef chili recipe? This simple, and so easy instant pot classic beef chili recipe is perfect for cold nights! Recipes instant pot, chili, ground beef European Print This
Serves: 8-10 Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 394 calories 6.6g fat
Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )


  • 2 lbs ground beef (or any ground meat)
  • 1 onion, diced.
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 3 tbsp diced jalapenos (optional)
  • 1 tsp each salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp italiano seasoning
  • 1 ½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 19 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 14 oz can tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 cup beer
  • 1-2 cans tomato paste


Heat instant pot on saute, brown ground beef, onions and peppers. Add remaining ingredients. With a flat bottom spatula, scrape the bottom of the pan clean to avoid burning. Cook on manual pressure, with a cook time of 20 minutes. Let naturally release for 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Looking for some more Easy Instant Pot Recipes?

instant pot mac n cheese
Broccoli and Sausage Mac N Cheese
Basic Creamy Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese

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