Tasty southwest style chili with a twist. This Instant Pot black bean chili is creamier than a typical bean chili and with the addition of a bit of cocoa powder as my secret ingredient. There are so many levels of flavor in a relatively quick chili recipe that turns dried black beans into something tasty.
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Why Use Black Beans In Chili
There is always a debate among chili traditionalists as to what you put in any chili. If chili is made with beef and no beans, or with beans and no beef. I can only imagine what traditionalists think of making chili with black beans. I kind of don’t care.
Black beans make a perfect alternative to kidney beans for chili. I like black beans in chili because they are smaller, which makes them more creamy. Black bean and beef chili is just so soft and creamy and delicious.
Not only do we have this easy black bean chili recipe in an electric pressure cooker. I also frequently make a black beans chili recipe with pumpkin.
Check out some of our favorite black bean recipes:
Why Make Beef And Black Bean Chili In An Instant Pot
I love black beans. And, when in Spain we couldn’t find canned black beans easily. I almost always use canned black beans mostly because they are just quick and easy to make. I started cooking dried black beans when living in Spain and kind of hated doing it. I seemed to never get the process of soaking right.
Once we bought an Instant Pot, though, I realized how much easier it is to cook dried beans. This simple Instant Pot chili recipe makes cooking with dried beans so much easier. In this case, I do recommend soaking the black beans but only for about two hours. That’s so much easier than thinking about soaking the night before.
See some of our other recipes for Instant Pot chili with beans:
Instant Pot Black Bean Chili Ingredients
This black bean chili recipe includes a lot of pantry staples or ingredients that are normally found in your kitchen – with one secret ingredient. This is a black bean beef chili made with ground beef, but you can easily swap out ground turkey without any modifications. The dried black beans should be soaked in cool water for about two hours before cooking this beef chili with black beans.
The meat is cooked with a bit of olive oil, diced yellow onion, chopped garlic, and diced green pepper. All of the vegetables sort of blend into the final chili, but the smaller you cut them the more smooth the chili will be.
When using an Instant Pot, you always need to add liquid. That’s how the electric pressure cooker works. The chili cooks with just a bit of chicken broth, or vegetable broth. The other liquid comes from a can of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes can be used. The tomatoes also add some acidity to the dish.
Spices For Black Bean Chili With Beef
When we started cooking chili at home, years ago, we almost always used a little chili starter cook, like something from McCormick’s. Now that we cook so many bean recipes at home, though, it’s not all that difficult to find the right spices.
Season the chili generously with salt and black pepper. Don’t worry about using salt. It won’t make the chili salty but will bring all of the flavors together when cooking.
Other seasoning includes ground cumin, chili powder, cocoa powder, and crushed red pepper. If you don’t like spicy black bean chili, make sure to use mild chili powder and you can skip the crushed red pepper.
The cocoa powder is my secret ingredient for this black bean chili with ground beef. It doesn’t make the chili taste like chocolate, instead, it adds a nice depth of flavor that anyone who eats the chili will like without being able to identify the flavor.
How To Make Black Bean Chili In An Instant Pot
Soak the dried beans in cool water for about two hours. Drain the water and rinse the beans.
Turn the Instant Pot on the saute function. Add the olive oil and ground meat. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until it starts to brown. Add the onion, garlic, and green pepper. Saute the vegetables for 3-5 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften.
Turn the Instant Pot off (cancel) and add the broth. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bits of meat and vegetable from the bottom of the Instant Pot. Add salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, cocoa powder, and crushed red pepper if using and stir. Add the dried black beans and stir into the liquid. Place the tomato sauce or diced tomatoes on top.
Put the Instant Pot lid on and place it into a locked position. Pressure cook for 45 minutes. At the end of the 45 minutes, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release for about 10-15 minutes. Then, using a towel or oven mitt, press the release valve to finish releasing the steam. Open the lid away from the face to release the steam.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground beef or ground turkey
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 green pepper, diced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
- ½ cup chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 cups dried black beans, sorted and rinsed, soaked for two hours
- 1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- Turn the Instant Pot on the saute function. Add the olive oil, ground meat, onion, garlic, and pepper. Saute for 3-5 minutes or until the meat starts to brown.
- Turn the Instant Pot off (cancel) and add the broth. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bits of meat and vegetable from the bottom of the Instant Pot.
- Add salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, cocoa powder, and crushed red pepper if using. Stir.
- Add the dried black beans and stir into the liquid. Place the tomato sauce on top.
- Put the Instant Pot lid on and place it into a locked position. Pressure cook for 45 minutes.
- At the end of the 45 minutes, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release for about 10-15 minutes. Then, using a towel or oven mitt, press the release valve to finish releasing the steam. Open the lid away from the face to release the steam. Stir and serve.
If you are unfamiliar with how to use an Instant Pot, see the detailed instructions above. If the chili is a little too liquidy, see the notes above.
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Amount Per Serving Calories 549Total Fat 21gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 11gCholesterol 93mgSodium 760mgCarbohydrates 49gFiber 12gSugar 5gProtein 42g
This nutritional data is provided by a third-party source and should not be relied on if you are on a strict diet.
Tips For Instant Pot Chili
Sometimes when I open the Instant Pot, the chili is a little more liquid that I would like. This is just the nature of Instant Pot cooking, or could be because the dried black beans were soaked a little too long.
If there is too much liquid add a bit of cornstarch or flour. This uses the same technique as making a gravy. To do this, use a ladle to remove about a cup of the liquid from the pot. Place it into a mixing bowl and add a tablespoon of cornstarch or flour. Mix with a fork until blended and return the mixture to the Instant Pot. Stir well. Repeat again if needed.
If you plan on storing the black bean chili and re-heating, it will thicken on its own.