What’s Cooking: Bean and vegetable chili

I didn’t know what to call this recipe. It’s more chili like – but this recipe contains vegetables. It’s my “end of the week” fridge clean out day – and I wanted to break in my new instant post / rice cooker with a great meal.

And it was delicious.

I was super stoked to see how fast the Instant Pot really is and just how well it cooked the beef. I’m still learning how to use it. Realized I turned it on “keep warm” instead of slow cooking – but it didn’t even need it. The whole dish took about 30 minutes to cook.

The reason I wanted the Instant Pot was two-fold. I hate turning the oven on in the summer time. This condo gets blazing hot and humid. And I wanted to experiment with more vegetable dishes and steaming.


  • 1 pound of lean ground beef
  • 1 cup of green onion diced
  • 1 medium red or yellow onion diced
  • 1.5 cups of zucchini sliced into halves
  • 1.5 cups of mushrooms sliced into halves
  • 1 can of beans with tomato sauce
  • 1/2 can of lentils
  • 1 can of red kidney beans
  • 2 teaspoons of minced or crushed garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce
  • Spices: oregano, basil, thyme, chives, black pepper, salt


  • Turn the InstantPot onto Saute (make sure to leave the lid open)
  • Add in the olive oil and heat for about a minute
  • Add in the onions, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook until onions start to soften.
  • Add in the mushrooms and zucchini. Cook for a couple of minutes – it won’t take long.
  • Remove the vegetables from the pot and put into a bowl.
  • Add the ground beef to the pot and break up into “crumbled” pieces.
  • Add in the lentils and beans. I also add in some of the sauce from the cans.
  • Add in spices as desired, ketchup, soy sauce, or Worcestershire sauce. Mix well and saute for about 5-10 minutes – the meat will brown very quickly.
  • Press the cancel button and switch over to slow cooking or low heat. Add more spices as desired. Close the lid and let cook for about 30-45 minutes or until beans and meat are fully cooked.

I paired this dish up with salted tortilla chips and some sour cream and it was delicious and filling. I was amazed at how fast the Instant Pot actually worked! It’s way better than slow-cooking and I’m looking forward to making more meals with it.

What’s your favorite meals to cook with beans? The great thing about beans is they’re so cheap and they last forever.


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