Chili con Carne (with Chipotle, of course)

Chili con Carne

Chile con carne translates to "Meat with chilies".   With a vague name like that, it's no wonder there are scores of ways to make this versatile one dish meal.   I've created a chili powder spice blend using my Hot Smokey Chipotle combined with a blend of Mexican chilies, Mexican oregano and other spices.  You can purchase it from the store here or use your favourite store brand chili powder.   
This recipe is tailored for the Instant Pot, but you can make chili in any pot you like.  Because I prefer to make this with cubed beef, the pressure cooking ensures the meat is fall-apart tender and the flavour will make everyone think you simmered it for hours.  If you make chili with ground beef, you can use the Instant Pot for that too. 
I like to serve it with a helping of oven baked tortilla chips.   
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Bluewater Pepper Farm hot smokey chipotle, chili con carne, Instant Pot
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8


  • 1 1/2 tbsp Bluewater Pepper Farm Chipotle Chile powder Adjust to your taste
  • 1 lb beef or veal cut into small cubes You can use ground beef, turkey or chicken instead
  • 1 15 oz can red kidney beans + 1/2 cup liquid I like to cook mine from dried beans using the Instant Pot. Check out my post on cooking dried beans. You can sub in some black beans for variety and colour.
  • 1 lg onion, finely chopped
  • 1 med carrot, finely chopped this is optional – it adds more flavour imho
  • 1 lg can diced tomato
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp cooking oil


  • Set the Instant Pot to sauté, medium and add 2 tsp of cooking oil.
    When it's heated, toss in the chopped onion and carrot and saute for 4 or 5 minutes until softened.   
    Instant Pot
  • Add the cubed beef (or ground) along with the chili powder and salt. Stir to coat the meat and sauté for another 5 minutes or so, stirring every few minutes to brown the meat evenly.
  • Add the tomatoes and the crushed garlic and bring up to a boil
  • Put the lid on the Instant Pot, be sure to set the vent to the 'sealed' (pressure cook) position.  The photo shows the correct position.  Hit Cancel, then press Pressure, set it to high for 20 minutes.
    Instant Pot lock
  • Once the pressure cycle is done, the pot will beep. Press Cancel.  You can use the quick release method to release the steam and open the lid. 
  • Hit the Saute button and add the tomato paste and kidney beans, giving it a good stir.
  • At this point, you just need to bring it up to simmer for 10 or 15 minutes and it's ready to enjoy!  Serve sprinkled with chopped cilantro and a side of tortilla chips.


If you have the luxury of 3 hours cooking time, you can use a dutch oven or any large pot on the stove.  Just let it simmer long enough for the flavours to build.  That’s why i like the Instant Pot pressure setting even when using ground beef for my chili.