Instant Pot Chili

Today is meal prep day again. So far, I cooked chickpeas, made two batches of hummus, a bottle of iced tea and a nice pot of vegan chili. I seriously love chili and could eat it every day. It’s one of my samefoods.

My chili is made with dried red kidney beans, because why spend a fortune on tinned beans when it’s so easy to make beans in your instant pot?

This chili is seriously easy to make. I’ve seen lots of chili recipes online that require the use of cooked beans. And most of them use tinned beans. None of that with my recipe. It’s basically a “throw everything in the Instant Pot and let the thing work its magic” kind of recipe.

You will however need to soak your beans, so there is definitely some planning involved. But if you forgot to plan, there’s a workaround for that. I will describe the quick-soak method, though I hardly ever used it myself.

Why soak? Two reasons:

  1. It cuts the cooking time in half
  2. It removes the toxins that cause bloating and indigestion

So don’t skip the soaking. Ever. It’s important.


  • 1 cup dried kidney beans
  • 1 onion
  • garlic
  • fresh ginger
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 nectarine
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen vegetables (I used bell peppers, courgette and garden peas)
  • 1 tsp sambal oelek
  • 1 tsp molasses
  • 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • a splash of balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup tomato puree
  • 1 tsp coconut oil or other cooking oil
  • water
  • salt and pepper to taste


Rinse 1 cup of dried kidney beans and put them in a large bowl with plenty of cold water. Soak overnight.

soaked kidney beans

Forgot to soak?

Rinse your beans, put them in a large saucepan and cover with plenty of cold water. Bring to the boil, cook for one minute, then remove from heat. Allow to soak for 1 hour. Drain. Your beans are ready to be cooked now.

Now that your beans are soaked, peel and chop your onion, peel and mince the garlic (use as many cloves as you like, or even use garlic puree or garlic powder), cut off a piece of ginger, peel it and cut it up very finely.

Ginger, garlic, sambal oelek, onion, bay leaf

Rinse and cube your tomatoes and nectarine. If you are using fresh vegetables, rinse and cube them.

cubed vegetables, nectarine and tomato

Heat some coconut oil in a frying pan and saute onions, garlic and ginger. Alternatively, you can use the saute setting of your instant pot, but you’ll have to make sure to deglaze your pot before adding the other ingredients, or you may get a “burn” warning. I find it faster and easier to just use my frying pan.

Add all ingredients to your instant pot. Add enough water so your ingredients are just covered. You don’t want your chili to burn, but you also don’t want it to become chili-soup.

Pressure cook for 25 minutes and allow for a natural release.

vegan chili

Serve with rice. Or enjoy it just as is. It’s delicious either way.


I added too much water. But I didn’t want soup, so I dissolved 4 tsp corn starch in 4 tbsp of the cooking liquid and stirred that – gently – into my chili. That solved the problem. 🙂

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