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Chili Mac in a white bowl with spoon on wooden board

Instant Pot Chili Mac

Instant Pot Chili Mac is a hearty and filling blend of chili and macaroni. It has lots of flavor and is a great family dinner, or a Game Day meal!

Course Dinner
Cuisine American, Mexican
Keyword pressure cooker chili mac recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 10 1-cup servings
Calories 360 kcal
Author Sandy Clifton


  • 1 lb 93% Lean Ground Beef or Ground Turkey (you won't need to drain as very little fat)
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1/2 cup Celery, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder, mild
  • 3 tsp Cumin
  • 2 tsp Oregano, dried
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Chipotle Powder (optional, or cayenne pepper)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt (or 1 tsp table salt)
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups Beef or Chicken Broth
  • 1 (4 oz) can Green Chiles (mild, fire roasted are good)
  • 2 (15.5 oz) cans Red Kidney Beans (rinsed & drained)
  • 8 oz Elbow Pasta (macaroni)
  • 1/2 (15 oz) jar Roasted Red Bell Peppers, drained & chopped
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can Diced Tomatoes (juice and all)
  • 1 (15 oz) can Tomato Sauce

Optional - To Make Cheesy Chili Mac

  • 2 1/2 cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded


  1. Press the Sauté (Normal) button on the Instant Pot. Add the ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost done.

  2. Add onion, bay leaf, and celery. Sauté until almost translucent, stirring occasionally. Make sure to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pot (deglaze).

  3. Add garlic and the spices. Stir.

  4. Add in the broth, chiles, and beans Stir to combine. Let the contents come to a simmer.

  5. Add the pasta, do not stir, just gently press and submerge it a little.

  6. Press the Cancel/Keep Warm button to cancel the sauté mode.
  7. Add the red peppers, tomatoes and tomato sauce, and let them stay on top. DO NOT STIR (this helps alleviate the potential burning that can happen with tomatoes).

To Pressure Cook

  1. Put the lid on the pot and set the steam release knob to “Sealing” position.
  2. Press the Manual (or Pressure Cook) button and the + or - button to select 4 minutes* (or 1/2 of the time on the pasta package directions), and make sure that High Pressure is also selected.

  3. When cooking time ends and the unit beeps, do a Controlled Quick Release (QR) (slowly at first, in small bursts so sauce doesn't spew out of the knob) of the steam.

  4. When the steam is all out and the pin in the lid drops, carefully open the lid, facing away from your face. Stir contents.

  5. Add cheese, if using, and stir. Let sit a minute until melted.

  6. Season with more salt & pepper to taste, if desired.

  7. Garnish as desired. Serve it right away!

Recipe Notes

*Cook time does not include the time the pot takes to come to pressure. It could take 10-15 minutes as the pot will be pretty full.
------Calories calculated without cheese.