I’ve updated this recipe for Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef so it now has more beef and is a bit lower in carbs! And you can make this tasty stew in the Instant Pot or in a regular pan on the stove.

PIN Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef to make it later!

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef shown in two bowls with avocado

A few weeks ago I updated the photos for the oldest pressure cooker recipe on my site, and this recipe for Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef is the second-oldest recipe that I first made years ago when I had a stovetop pressure cooker. Of course now I’d make it in the Instant Pot, but there are also instructions in the recipe for making it on the stove if you prefer that method.

I first made this back in the day when I ate a lot more dried beans. But now I wouldn’t want so many carbs, so when we updated the photos we also adapted this recipe into a version with more ground beef so it’s lower in carbs. And Kara and I both though that was a delicious change, and it also made the recipe have eight servings. (If you were a fan of the original version, you can use that link to see the printer-friendly recipe.) 

And by the way, if you looked at the photo of Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef and wondered why it wasn’t called chili, there’s no chili powder in this, so it’s definitely not chili! Actually cilantro is one of the predominant flavors here, so if you’re one of those people who doesn’t enjoy cilantro, maybe you’ll want to replace the cilantro with thinly-sliced green onion or just search for a different stew recipe!

What ingredients do you need?

  • canned pinto beans (or see note below to start with dried beans)
  • Olive Oil (affiliate link)
  • ground beef
  • Spike Seasoning (affiliate link)
  • onion
  • Minced Garlic (affiliate link)
  • dried Mexican Oregano (affiliate link)
  • ground Cumin (affiliate link)
  • dried cilantro (affiliate link) (optional, but recommended)
  • chicken broth or homemade chicken stock
  • tomato paste
  • canned petite diced tomatoes
  • sliced green onions
  • chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  • fresh squeezed lime juice
  • salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste
  • avocado for serving (optional)

How to start with dried beans and cook them in the Instant Pot:

If you’re not a fan of canned beans, you can easily cook dried beans in the slow cooker or in the Instant Pot. You will need to cook about one cup of dried beans to replace the two cans of beans.

Want to make Instant Pot Pinto Beans and Ground Beef even lower in carbs?

If you check the nutritional information you’ll see that our change of doubling the ground beef and adding a bit more stock made this a recipe with about 22 net carbs in a serving. If you’d like a version with even fewer carbs, just reduce the pinto beans to one can and add about another cup of chicken broth, for a soupier version.

What if you don’t want to use cilantro?

You can omit both the dried and fresh cilantro for this recipe if you prefer, but if you don’t use fresh cilantro I’d recommend doubling the amount of sliced green onion.

What size Instant Pot did I use?

I use a 6 Quart Instant Pot (affiliate link) for all my Instant Pot Recipes. Check out my growing collection of Instant Pot Recipes!

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef process shots collage

How to make Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef:

(Scroll down for complete recipe, including nutritional information and options for making this in a pan on the stove.)

  1. Since we were using two pounds of ground beef, we cooked the ground beef in a pan for best browning. Season the beef with Spike Seasoning or another all-purpose seasoning blend. I love the Hamburger Meat Chopper (affiliate link) you see in the first photo.
  2. While ground beef browns, drain pinto beans into a colander placed in the sink. You can rinse if you prefer but it’s not necessary for a stew like this.
  3. Turn Instant Pot to SAUTE, MEDIUM HEAT and heat the oil, then add onions and cook about 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute, then add the Mexican Oregano, ground cumin, and dried cilantro (if using) and cook about 2 minutes more.
  4. Add ground beef, beans, tomato paste, canned tomatoes with liquid, and chicken broth to the Instant Pot.
  5. Lock the the lid and set the Instant Pot to MANUAL, HIGH TEMPERATURE, 2 minutes
  6. When time is up let the pressure release naturally for about 15 minutes; then release any remaining pressure.
  7. When pressure is released open lid and add sliced green onion, chopped fresh cilantro (if using) and lime juice and let it sit for about 5 minutes.
  8. Season to taste with salt and fresh-ground black pepper.
  9. Serve hot, with diced avocado to add at the table if desired.

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef in two bowls with colorful napkin and avocado

More Soup with Dried Beans and Legumes in the:

Instant Pot Split Pea Soup

Mexican Chicken Soup

Chicken Chickpea Soup

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a category called Weekend Food Prep to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef shown in two bowls with avocado
Yield: 8 servings

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Additional Time 35 minutes
Total Time 52 minutes

This Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef recipe has been updated into a version that's lower in carbs, and this is a delicious bean stew.

Ingredients

  • two 15 oz. cans pinto beans
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 2 tsp. Spike seasoning
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 T minced garlic
  • 1 T dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 T ground cumin
  • 1 T dried cilantro (optional)
  • 4 cups chicken broth (see notes)
  • 2 T tomato paste
  • one 14.5 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro (or one whole bunch)
  • 2 T fresh squeezed lime juice
  • salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
  • diced avocado for adding at the table, optional

Instructions

  1. Since we were using two pounds of ground beef, we heated one tablespoon of oil and cooked the ground beef in a pan for best browning. Season the beef with Spike Seasoning or another all-purpose seasoning blend.
  2. While ground beef browns, drain pinto beans into a colander placed in the sink. You can rinse if you prefer but it's not necessary for a stew like this.
  3. Turn Instant Pot to SAUTE, MEDIUM HEAT and heat the oil, then add onions and cook about 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute, then add the Mexican Oregano, ground cumin, and dried cilantro (if using) and cook about 2 minutes more.
  4. Add ground beef, beans, tomato paste, canned tomatoes with liquid, and chicken broth to the Instant Pot.
  5. Lock the the lid and set the Instant Pot to MANUAL, HIGH TEMPERATURE, 2 minutes
  6. When time is up let the pressure release naturally for about 15 minutes; then release any remaining pressure.
  7. When pressure is released open lid and add sliced green onion, chopped fresh cilantro (if using) and lime juice and let it sit for about 5 minutes.
  8. Season to taste with salt and fresh-ground black pepper.
  9. Serve hot, with diced avocado to add at the table if desired.

How to Cook in a regular soup pot on the stove:

  1. For canned beans, rinse and drain as described above.
  2. To use dried beans, you will need to soak beans overnight, drain, add fresh water to cover by a few inches and simmer until beans are soft, about 45 minutes.
  3. Follow directions as above for browning meat, browning onions with garlic and herbs, and deglazing frying pan with chicken stock.
  4. Combine browned meat, onion mixture, chicken stock, water, cooked beans, tomato paste, and canned tomatoes in heavy soup pot, adding 1 cup more chicken stock for cooking in open pan.
  5. Simmer over low heat about 45 minutes, adding a bit more water if needed.
  6. When stew seems done, add green onion, chopped cilantro, and lime juice as above and cook a few more minutes.

Notes

I would use my homemade chicken stock if I had some.

Recipe created by Kalyn when she had a new pressure cooker!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 511Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 7.9gUnsaturated Fat: 11.1gCholesterol: 103mgSodium: 1088mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 12gSugar: 3.6gProtein: 42g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

Did you make this recipe?

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating (under the PRINT button in the recipe) or share a photo of your results on Instagram! THANKS!


Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef square thumbnail image of bean stew in two bowls, with avocado

Low-Carb Diet . Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
If you’d like an even lower-carb version of this dish, use one can of beans with about another cup of chicken broth and the increased amount of ground beef, but recipes with dried beans still probably won’t work for a strict low-carb diet plan. As long as you use lean ground beef, everything in this Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef is approved for all phases of the original South Beach Diet.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Stew Recipes or Instant Pot Recipes for more recipes like this one! Use the Diet Type Index to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest, on Facebook, or on Instagram to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This recipe was first posted in 2009 when I had a new stovetop pressure cooker. Now it’s perfect to make in the Instant Pot. The recipe was updated with new photos and more information in 2022.

Instant Pot Pinto Beans with Ground Beef Pinterest image

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