Here’s my Instant Pot Umami Bomb Chili, which has won 1 office chili cookoff and a 2-year finalist at another office!

Allergens: Beef, Pork, Poultry, Anchovy, Cocoa, Soy, Gluten

Adapted from PressureCookRecipes’ “Instant Pot Easy Chili”:


  • 1 cup chicken broth or stock
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (15 oz) dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15 oz) light red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 big pinches of MSG
  • 2 chipotles in adobo (I just grabbed two of them from the little can, including sauce)
  • 2 Anaheim chili peppers, diced
  • 2 Poblano chili peppers, diced
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 2 lbs. ground pork
  • 1-2 onions (I cheat and buy the little tub of pre-cut onions from the refrigerated produce case)
  • 2 tbsp (5-6 cloves) minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 tbsp chili powder (can add more if you want!)
  • 3-4 squirts Cholula hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp lime juice (plus more for serving)
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3-4 good shakes of Lawry’s seasoned salt
  • A bunch of kosher salt
  • A bunch of black pepper
  • 1 package bacon, cooked to medium crispiness and chopped (I love Hormel Black Label Maple Bacon)
  • Vegetable oil or other neutral cooking oil


  1. Prepare the Instant Pot : Press Sauté button on Instant Pot. Wait until indicator says HOT.
  2. Cook the Meat Mix: Season ground beef and ground pork generously with kosher salt, MSG and black pepper. Add enough vegetable oil to coat the bottom of the Instant Pot. Cook until no more pink remains (about 10-15 minutes.) Optional step: about 5 minutes in, drain the meat grease into a small heatproof cup and reserve until step 8.
  3. Mix the chicken stock mixture: While the meat mix is browning, mix 1 cup chicken stock, 2 tbsp fish sauce, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 3 tbsp tomato paste, and 2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder in a 2-cup measuring cup. TIP: use a small whisk to break up the tomato paste and incorporate the cocoa powder into a smooth, slightly thicker stock consistency.
  4. Add peppers: add diced Poblano and Anaheim peppers to Instant Pot. Sauté for about 3 minutes.
  5. Sauté onion, garlic and spices: add diced onions, minced garlic, chili powder, and oregano to meat and pepper mixture. Sauté for about 5 minutes to bloom the spices. Stir frequently.
  6. Deglaze: Pour in the stock mixture and fully deglaze the bottom of the pot by making sure no brown bits are stuck to the bottom.
  7. Pressure Cook the Chili: Add 2 cans of drained kidney beans and the chopped bacon. Pour in the reserved meat grease. Mix well. Pour in 1 can of crushed tomatoes with all the juice on top. Do not mix. Season one more time with salt, pepper, and MSG. Add 2 chipotle peppers on top of the tomatoes. Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure using “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button for 20 minutes + 20-25-minute natural release. Open the lid carefully.
  8. Reduce and Season: If the chili is too runny, give it a quick stir and cook for another few minutes with Saute button on. Taste and season with 2 tbsp brown sugar, a couple shakes of Lawry’s seasoned salt, a couple squirts of Cholula, and 1-2 tbsp of lime juice. Stir and adjust seasoning as needed. TIP: in addition to the lime juice in the recipe, encourage your chili eaters to splash some lime juice on their chili right before they eat it. Do this before cheese/sour cream/green onions/crackers.