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instant pot meals

Black Bean Chili in Instant Pot

If you’re looking for an easy, comforting and delicious vegetarian chili recipe, this is it!

My family loves chili! We make a gazillion versions of it , and use it in another gazillion ways- this one’s straight out of our weeknight chili collection. With a 5-minute prep, which includes opening 4 cans, putting this chili together is a breeze! Possibilities are endless with this dish. You can swap the beans with your favorite kind, add your favorite toppings- sour cream, cheese, jalapeños, spring onions, avocados and enjoy it as-is, or, use it as a topping for some amazing Chili Nachos, or, mix it with rice, wrap it in a tortilla and you have a Bean & Chili Burrito. During football season, you will always find a version of this on my table, every Sunday!

It also makes for a great potluck dish. I make it in my Instant Pot, cover it and take the whole pot along- set it to SAUTE to warm it up and serve it right out of the pot- cannot get easier than that.

Stove-Top Instructions:This Chili can be made on the stove-top as well. Take a deep sauce pan or a stock-pot. Turn the flame to medium-high. Sauté onions and peppers for a minute. Add all ingredients, reduce the flame to medium and simmer for 15-20 minutes, covered.

Using dried- uncooked beans: Rinse and soak your preferred brand of dried beans (1 cup). I like to soak them overnight. Throw away the water in which they were soaked and rinse well. Follow the recipe and press BEAN mode for 20-22 minutes for Black Beans, 25 mins for Kidney/Pinto beans, NPR (natural pressure release).

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Black Bean Chili in Instant Pot

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 8 minutes


  • 2 15-16 oz can of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 14 oz can of diced tomatoes, or crushed
  • 1 4 oz can of fire-roasted diced green chillies
  • 1 pack of Taco Seasoning Mix (or less for mild) (see notes for substitute)
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder (optional, but highly recommended)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4-1 cup water(for thicker chili for Nachos, reduce water to 1/2 cup)



Heat Instant Pot on SAUTE till it reads HOT. Add olive oil, onions, green pepper and sauté for 1 minute. Add seasoning mix and stir for 30 seconds, this wakes up the spices. Add all remaining ingredients and stir. Close lid, vent set to SEALING. Cook on MANUAL (High) for 8 minutes, NPR or QR after 10 minutes. If you're short on time, you can dump all ingredients in and set the timer.


Open the lid, check for salt. Cool for 5 minutes. Garnish with your favorite chili toppings- cilantro, shredded cheese, sour cream, avocados, tortilla chips etc.


I use Trader Joe's Taco Seasoning mix. It is a bit on the spicier side. If you want to make it mild, you can substitute with: 2 tbsp chili powder, 1 t​sp paprika, ​1/2 tsp salt,​ 1 tsp cumin, ​1​ tsp coriander powder, 1.5 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 tsp​ brown sugar.

Sweet ‘n’ Spicy Lemon Pickle in Instant Pot

Sweet ‘n’ Spicy Lemon Pickle or lemon preserves are perhaps one of the most popular condiments in Indian cuisine. It’s popularly known as ‘Nimbu ka Achaar’ in the north. There are endless variations of this pickle. This is my father-in-law’s super-hit family recipe, that he inherited from his grandmother! It goes great with lentils, curries, biryani, rice pilaf, stuffed flatbreads, naan. Recently, I served it with my cheese platter, along with crackers and creamy brie- it was such a hit and so many of my friends asked me for this recipe. It is now a staple on my cheese plate appetizer!

Sweet'n'Spicy Lemon Pickle

Typically, lemon pickle is made in summer by brining lemons in their own juice, salt and a blend of spices, and sugar in some variations. The pickle is then matured in sunlight and this process takes a few weeks. This is my version, except this one got ready in 30 minutes!

Best Results:

This pickle tastes even more delicious as it ages. I make it and refrigerate it for a couple of weeks before taking it out. It stays good in the refrigerator for a few months at least!

In this video, I have made this pickle in my programmable pressure cooker, Instant Pot, but it can be made in a stove-top pressure cooker too by following the same directions.

Alternative Spice:

If you don’t have Panch Poran spice blend, you can substitute with 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds, 1 teaspoon methi seeds (fenugreek)  and 1 teaspoon Fennel Seeds instead.
If you like your pickle more spicy and/or sweet, you can always add more during the sauté process.

Variation using Meyer Lemons:

Recently, I picked up a bag of gorgeous Meyer Lemons from Trader Joe’s. I decided to try this recipe using those instead. But, I made one change though. Since I was out of Panch phoran, so I used a combination of mustard seeds, fennel seeds and fenugreek seeds instead. Meyer lemons are sweeter, juicier and have a thinner peel as compared to regular lemons. So, the pickle is naturally more sweeter, which was a plus 🙂 Since the peel was thinner and there was more juice and fibers in the lemon, the pickle is more like a chunky preserve, as you can see from the picture. This pickle with Meyer Lemons was a bigger hit in my house. My kids just loved it- they smeared it all over their Parantha (stuffed flat-bread) and enjoyed it! A keeper for us!

Sweet'n'Spicy Lemon Pickle instant pot

Sweet 'n' Spicy Lemon Pickle in Instant Pot

Print Recipe
Serves: 8 Cooking Time: 30 minutes




Wash and dry 6 lemons. Turn on the Instant Pot. Pour 1 cup water in the inner pot and place a trivet. Place lemons in a bowl and place on top of the trivet. Close the lid. Set the vent to Sealing position. Hit Manual (High Pressure) for 15 minutes.


In the meantime, roast the spice blend for grinding. Place spices listed under the "Roasting spices list" on a microwave safe plate and heat in microwave for 3 minutes in 30 second increments, stirring in between. Cool for 5 minutes and grind to a fine powder in a spice blender.


Wait for natural pressure release from the Instant Pot. Open lid and remove the lemons. Cut in halves and remove seeds. Turn on the Instant Pot on sauté mode and let it heat up, about 30 seconds. Add oil and mustard seeds. When mustard seeds begin to splutter, add lemons, salt, sugar and all spices. Stir well.


Continue to sauté for 4-5 minutes till the liquid reaches a jam like consistency. Turn off the Instant Pot. For best results, let the pickle rest in the refrigerator for 4-5 days before eating.

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