Narayan’s Instant Pot Chili

A super-simple, easy-to-make, and consistent recipe for chili.

I think everyone should have a super simple, easy-to make and consistent chili recipe. The Instant Pot takes care of super simple and easy-to-make; this recipe takes care of consistent. I iterated on this chili for about 8 months and consider this final version a solid, delicious, “I have a taste for chili” kind of chili, good by itself or over baked potatoes or hot dogs. There are no tricks or gimmicks in this recipe—basically the chili powder and meat carry most of the flavor and everything else just augments the mix to my personal taste.

The most common way to ruin chili is for it to be too salty, which is easy to do because the sodium content of many of the prepackaged ingredients vary greatly from brand to brand or variety to variety. So I’ve developed this recipe with very specific ingredients, most of which I can obtain from the Trader Joe’s about 5 minutes from my house—the only exceptions To this are the chili powder (which, oddly, I can only find locally at the hardware store) and the Sazon Goya packets (which you should be able to find most places).

Not pictured: Sazon Goya packets

By all means make it your own. Want more beans or less beef, go for it. Have a favorite chili powder? Use it. Have some corn? Throw it in. Want it spicier? So do I (most of the time I have to make chili that the kids will eat). See the notes afterwards if you’re looking for a basic chili formula.

I believe in making bulk chili, so this is for an 8-quart Instant Pot. After a few days, if there is any chili left (there usually isn’t), I vacuum pack and freeze it in single-serve portions and reheat via sous-vide at 155ºF.

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