Making ground beef in the Instant Pot is a great way to cut down on effort and perfect for meal planning. Cook up a batch of hamburger and divide it up for weekly meals with this nifty time-saving trick!
Instant Pot Hamburger
I love using hamburger in my recipes like Tater Tot Casserole or Doritos Taco Salad. Even just adding taco seasoning for tacos is an easy dinner night option too.
Cooking hamburger is about as messy as cooking bacon sometimes. With fat and grease splattering everywhere it's definitely NOT one of my top favorite things to do in the kitchen. Well, until now that is.
With my Instant Pot doing all of the hard work for me, I can keep the kitchen clean and cook several pounds of hamburger in minutes. It's like a little dream come true.
- Ground beef (fresh or frozen)
- Beef broth or water
What you’ll need to make this recipe
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How to dispose of grease
The unfortunate thing about hamburger is that there's a bit of grease at the end that needs to be safely disposed of. While some people might choose to keep bacon grease for future recipes, hamburger grease is a different story.
I can't think of any good reasons to keep it, and leaving it in the pan to cool can be a messy clean up later. So, I'm going to share my FAVORITE trick for disposing of grease.
I use this method for hamburger grease and bacon grease (if I'm not planning on keeping it).
Simply line a bowl (one that can handle the heat) like ceramic with aluminum foil. Pour the hot grease inside and allow it to cool for several hours out of reach on the counter.
I usually leave it on the counter overnight and toss it in the trash in the morning when I'm tossing out coffee grounds anyway.
When the fat has solidified, just pull up the foil and toss it in the trash. It may not be a fast solution, but it's cheap and easy.
Can you pour grease down the drain?
Not unless you really want a visit from your local plumber in the future. Or you're feeling generous enough to pay for their next vacation.
Pouring hot liquid grease down the drain might sound like an easy solution, and nevermind the boiling hot liquid pouring down the metal and plastic pipes, but once it solidifies, it's another matter altogether.
The fat will solidify (like in the picture above) and it will do so inside the pipes. Leaving a blockage, and even if removed, leaving a greasy mess in the pipes. Definitely, an expensive housecall from a plumber to fix or replace if this habit continues for too long.
How to Make Instant Pot Ground Beef
Take your fresh ground beef and squish it out into a round and flat patty, about 1 inch thick (at most). (Recipe card includes instructions for frozen).
Pour the liquid of choice into the Instant Pot.
Place it on your trivet and lower into Instant Pot. It's okay if it hangs off the edges a bit.
Close the lid and seal it shut. Set to HIGH pressure for 6 minutes.
Do a 5-minute Natural Pressure Release before manually releasing the remaining pressure.
Open the pot and use an instant-read thermometer to see if the meat has reached a minimum of 160 degrees F. (If not, see recipe card notes for more information).
Carefully lift the trivet out of Instant Pot, drain grease, and break up chunks of ground beef.
Save meat or use as needed.
Instant Pot Ground Beef
- 1-2 lbs ground beef
- 1 cup beef broth (or water) (or 1.5 cups if 8qt)
For Fresh Ground Beef
- Squish your ground beef down into a round pattie. You want it to be about 1 inch thick (at most) if using a trivet it may hang over the sides, and that's okay.
- Pour your liquid into the Instant Pot and place your meat on the trivet. Place the trivet inside the IP as well.
- Close lid and seal. Set to High Pressure for 6 minutes. Do a 5 minute Natural Pressure Release and manually release the remaining pressure.
- After the pressure has been released, remove lid and check meat with an instant read thermometer. It should be 160-165 degrees F.
- Carefully remove trivet of meat from the Instant Pot and discard grease. Break up the meat to remove larger chunks and use as needed.
For Frozen Ground Beef
- Unless your log or brick of ground beef is too big to fit inside the Instant Pot, do not break it up. If it is too big, break it down and place it side by side as best as you can.
- Set it to High Pressure for 25 minutes. Do a 5 minute Natural pressure release and check internal temperature. It should be a minimum of 160F degrees.
Didn't Reach 160F? Tips:
- For FRESH---If not reached temp, seal it closed and set to high pressure for another 2-3 minutes and do a 5 minute NPR again. ---If using FROZEN ground beef, do a 5 minute High pressure with a 10 minute NPR.
- Alternatively, you can remove trivet of partially cooked meat, discard grease and set Instant Pot to Saute (with a 10 minute timer) and cook the meat with a wooden spoon, breaking it up as you go. This is also the faster method.
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