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Instant Pot | January 13, 2019

Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili

Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili is healthy, hearty and will warm you up on cold winter days! Filled with sweet potatoes, black beans, corn and just the right spices and herbs  to make your taste buds happy…

Born and Raised…

I was raised on sweet potatoes. My mom is Okinawan and absolutely loves sweet potatoes.  Growing up, we ate sweet potatoes frequently-  as a side to almost any Japanese style meal,  dipped and fried in tempura batter,   and also as leftovers, sliced right out of the fridge. To this day, my mom eats sweet potatoes every day.  Sweet potatoes have so many health benefits! Loaded with fiber and vitamins including: Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Potassium. Besides all of the health benefits, sweet potatoes can be served as a sweet or savory dish. I love the way sweet potatoes add just the right amount of sweet to my Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili!

Instant Pot Fact and Fiction

You know how I feel about the Instant Pot!  The Instant Pot is often associated with cooking food quickly, because of the word “instant”.  If you think the IP means a quick meal, you might be a little disappointed. Time spent heating up the pot, and then pressurizing is more than a 5 minute process. I love the Instant Pot because meals that used to take hours to cook now are ready to serve in a fraction of the time. I look at the Instant Pot (electric pressure cooker)  as a faster and more nutritious method of cooking, as compared to a slow cooker or cooking for long periods of time on the stovetop or in the oven.  Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili is an easy fix for a weeknight dinner. I love that it’s healthy and  flavorful, and this Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili is also gluten and dairy free! The leftovers, (drained of juice) are perfect as a filling for tacos or quesadillas. The toppings to this chili are everything!  I love adding chopped avocado, fresh tomato, plain greek yogurt and a little cheese.

Hearty and Happy

If you are into meatless meals, this is the perfect dish for you. And those in your home who usually want meat in their chili won’t miss it in this hearty dish! The sweet potatoes are more than filling and will satisfy even the pickiest eaters. I purposely made this dish mild on the spice meter, so it would be appealing to families with young kids. If the kids are happy, everyone’s happy. If you like your chili with a little more of a kick, go ahead and add a jalapeño or two! Either way, this dish has plenty of favor with or without the extra spice. I hope you love this healthy and tasty way to serve sweet potatoes and black beans!

4.43 from 14 votes

Instant Pot Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Hearty and healthy, this Instant Pot Black Bean Chili will satisfy everyone at the dinner table!

Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword chili, clack bean, dinner, sweet potato
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 6


  • 2 large sweet potatoes or about 4-5 cups
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups or 1 large onion white or sweet onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 large Anaheim pepper seeded and chopped
  • 1 Jalapeño pepper chopped (seeded if desired, optional)
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper or more to taste
  • 1 clove garlic or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 cup frozen corn yellow or white
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 2 14-15 oz cans black beans drained and rinsed with cold water
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 16-32 oz chicken or vegetable broth
  • salt to taste
  • garnishes: chopped avocado or guacamole, sliced olives, grated cheese, sour cream or Greek yogurt, tortilla chips


  1. Turn the Instant Pot on to SAUTE setting. Check lid to make sure rubber ring is inserted correctly in lid and dial on out side of lid is set to SEALING position. Set aside side while IP is heating.
  2. Peel and cube sweet potatoes into one inch pieces carefully (they are extremely hard when not cooked and difficult to cut) and set aside in bowl.
  3. Pour olive oil carefully to the pot. Add chopped onion, coriander, cumin, chili powder, black pepper, garlic and salt. Saute for about 4-5 minutes until onions are softened. Add corn and saute an additional 2 minutes. Remove ingredients in IP to a bowl and set aside. Do not clean out the Instant Pot insert.
  4. Turn off Sauté setting. Add chopped sweet potatoes, about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 cup of cold water. Place lid on top of Instant Pot and set to locked position. Check to make sure lid is in the SEAL position.
  5. Set the timer on the IP to 4 minutes MANUAL or HIGH PRESSURE* see recipe notes

  6. While sweet potatoes are cooking, drain and rinse the black beans using a colander over the sink.
  7. When timer is finished, carefully release the pressure in the Instant Pot. When all pressure is manually released, remove lid and add cooked onion mixture and tomato paste, stir to dissolve. When mixed well, add black bean, 16 oz of chicken broth and chopped Anaheim and Jalapeño if using. Set the Instant Pot to the SAUTE setting again and let simmer until all ingredients are hot. Add additional broth to desired consistency.

  8. Add salt to taste, serve immediately, or leave in the IP on the KEEP WARM setting until ready to serve.

  9. Serve with toppings: Tortilla chips, avocado, chopped tomato, cheese, sliced olives, sour cream or Greek yogurt.

Recipe Notes

  • Sweet potatoes vary from place to place. In Utah, at my elevation (about 4800 ft above sea level) it works to cook as directed in the recipe post. A few readers have also said this works perfectly, but some have said their potatoes turn to mush at 4 minutes of high pressure. Adjusting down to 2 minutes may work better for you. Please leave a comment and give your feedback! 

31 thoughts on “Instant Pot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili

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Recipe Rating

  1. 4 stars
    The peppers aren’t included in the instructions so I just made this and now have 2 peppers sitting on my counter where my ingredients were! Oops…

    1. Courtney,

      I am so sorry! I tried three different ways before posting this recipe of adding the peppers. I decided the best way was to add at the end, uncooked. I edited the recipe to show this addition. So sorry for the mistake on my part!
      Thanks for reading ABK,

  2. Hi, I’ve been following you for years and I use all your recipes everyday! I’ve never had anyone complain! I wanted to ask about this recipe, when do I add the Anaheim pepper? Thank you!

    1. Hi Eileen,
      thanks for being a long time follower of ABK! I add the pepper at the end of cooking, in step 7. I’m sorry it was finally corrected!
      Thanks for reading ABK,

    1. Hi Becca,
      So sorry for the mistake. I left out the pepper addition. It was added in step 7. You may also sauté the pepper with the onions, but I found I liked it best when added just before serving. Thanks and hope you love this recipe!

  3. 5 stars
    I made this in my crockpot since I don’t have a Instapot. Even baked the sweet potatoes in there during early morn….Makes them easy to peel and cut into chunks. Sauté onion and spices in iron skillet, then added to other ingredients. Wonderful and flavorful and healthy! Thank you Si for sharing all your recipes! They never disappoint!

    1. Thanks Julie, I have many readers ask for crockpot instructions, This is very helpful!
      And thanks for reading ABK:)

      1. I also made this in the crock pot last winter. . . and now, during this first chilly weekend of the fall, am returning to it! A very delicious take on chili!

  4. I had left over baked sweet potatoes and black beans! I sautéd the onions, peppers, and jalapeño in the instant pot, then addded all the remaining ingredients! I pressured it for 3 minutes to heat everything up and it’s delicious! Thanks Si!

  5. 5 stars
    This was such a huge hit for dinner, my in laws showed up and loved it too! So flavorful and healthy! I had most of the ingredients on hand except an Anaheim pepper so I subbed a red pepper and it turned out great! My sweet potatoes were a little overcooked, I didn’t release the pressure right away. Next time I might try them for 3 minutes so they still hold their shape in the chili. Definitely will be making this over and over again! Thanks for another awesome recipe Si!

    1. I love all the fresh flavor in this recipe too, Valerie! Sweet potatoes can be tricky in the IP sometimes, but it’s hard to go wrong either way. Thanks for sharing and for reading ABK.

  6. 5 stars
    I made this for dinner the other night and it was soooo good! And even better for lunch the next day!! We only eat meat a few times a week and I’m always looking for recipes and this one is a winner!! Loved using the instapot also that was so easy!!

    1. I agree, Angie, it’s always better the next day. I’m so glad you enjoyed it and thanks for sharing,

  7. 5 stars
    Hello – I love your Instant Pot recipes so much! They are delicious and make weeknight dinners more manageable. Do you have a post that discusses how to size up or down? Sometimes it is just my husband and I. If I cut a 6 serving recipe in half, are the cooking times the same? Or would it be better to get a smaller Instant Pot? If my older children and spouses are over, can I double a recipe in my Instant Pot or would it be better to get a second one. I have the 6 quart model. I have no idea who to ask about this. Thank you!

    1. Hi Beverly, you shouldn’t have to change the cooking time, even if you halve the recipe. I think the 6 quart model is great for most people. Just make sure you add enough liquid to coat the bottom of the IP. Hope this helps and thanks for asking!

  8. 5 stars
    This is sooooo good! Stop reading reviews and go make it! Flavors are on point … it just so flavorful and savory

  9. 5 stars
    This recipe is so tasty! My family loved it, and it is going to be one of our faves because it is healthy! Thanks for always sharing, Si

  10. 5 stars
    My 15 year old says this is the best soup he’s ever had. I could make it every week. Add corn chips and avocados before serving. My potatoes were too mushy at 4 minutes. I had to go all the way down to “zero” minutes and just quick release as it came to full pressure. The onion-y part is so perfect and the seasoning is on point. I also add more potatoes than called for. The ingredients are so staple, you just need to grab the two peppers, sweet potatoes and you are set. Si strikes again on this one!

  11. 5 stars
    Thank you for your recipe! I will make this again. I’m not opposed to eating meat but I certainly do enjoy having more meatless dinners. I’m excited to eat the leftovers for lunch! Great instructions and great flavor.

    1. I agree, Becca, I think it’s great to have a few meatless dinners in your recipe book. Thank you for sharing and for reading ABK!

  12. 5 stars
    This looked somewhat questionable when I made it. My sweet potatoes came out of the freezer and after I cooked them in the instapot they turned to mush in the soup. When it was all done, I snuck a spoonfull and it was amazing!! Not too difficult to put together and so worth it! Thank you for this great recipe.

  13. 2 stars
    I made it exactly as written and the sweet potatoes are 100% mush, giving the whole thing the texture of a curry. The flavor is good if we can get past the unappetizing color and texture. I will try it again on the stovetop. It does not seem to need the hassle of dragging out the instant pot.

    1. Hey Erika, thanks for your feedback. I recommend adjusting down to 2 minutes, Let me know how it goes next time. Thanks for reading ABK!

  14. 4 stars
    Really great flavor potential-but the sweet potatoes turned to mush and with both the jalapeño and the Anaheim pepper, this chili was blisteringly hot. (And we do like spicy food). Not sure how much time the instapot saves-especially since it’s so hard to control the texture of the sweet potatoes. Might try a stovetop version with just one spicy pepper and a red pepper.