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Easy Instant Pot Taco Meat Recipe

This easy Instant Pot Taco Meat recipe is perfect for busy nights and doesn’t use a taco seasoning packet. Make quick, flavorful tacos with ground beef, garlic, cumin, cayenne pepper and onion.

Do you love tacos as much as I do?

Our weekly meal plan usually includes tacos. It’s a pretty stress-free dinner for me to make plus they are delicious.

I love that we can fix them up in different ways to keep it interesting too like adding seasoned meat to these black bean avocado taco cups.

Cooked taco meat in pink bowl by taco shells and Instant Pot

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Does pressure cooking make food taste better?

Everyone has their preferences, but I think some foods taste better when I pressure cook them in an Instant Pot. Cooking times are often faster and less moisture escapes, which can keep meat from drying out.

Does the instant pot brown meat?

Using the saute function, you can brown ground beef like you would on the stove. Otherwise you can pressure cook fresh or frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot.

Wooden spoon breaking up fresh ground beef in Instant Pot inner pot

Can you put frozen meat in an instant pot?

You can put frozen ground beef in an Instant Pot. Cooking from frozen will take longer than using fresh ground beef, but it comes in handy when you realize you forgot to thaw out frozen hamburger.

How to make this taco recipe using frozen ground beef

  1. Pour 1 cup of water into your pressure cooker and place the trivet inside.
  2. Poke the middle of the frozen block of ground beef if possible with a fork or knife.
  3. Place frozen ground beef on trivet.
  4. Close and seal vent and cook on high pressure for 25 minutes.
  5. After releasing the pressure, carefully remove the trivet and meat.
  6. Drain and rinse the Instant Pot liner and put it back in.
  7. Add your ground beef, breaking it up and turn on saute to finish browning your meat if needed and follow the rest of the recipe.

Cooking Ground Beef Tacos in a Pressure Cooker

IP Taco Meat Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch

If you don’t have any fresh garlic on hand you can use 1 teaspoon of garlic powder instead of 2 cloves of garlic. That would be a total of 4 teaspoons of garlic for this recipe.

Partially chopped onion on cutting board and seasonings in small yellow ramekins

How to Cook Taco Meat in the Instant Pot:

Add water into inner pot of the Instant Pot, followed by fresh ground beef. I recently started ordering meat through ButcherBox and am loving it. It tastes great and best of all – it ships straight to my door! (Current ButcherBox deal is $30 off your first box plus free ground beef.)

Set your Instant Pot to manual high pressure for 10 minutes. It will take a few minutes to come to pressure before it begins the 10 minute cooking time.

Once the time is up, do a quick pressure release. Remove the lid and set Instant Pot to its saute function.

Now add the onion, garlic, garlic powder, cayenne and cumin. Stir all ingredients together.

Cooked ground beef, onions, and cumin in pressure cooker pot

Next add cornstarch and incorporate it into meat mixture. Let it simmer for about 5-6 minutes before serving in taco shells with your favorite toppings.

Taco Topping Ideas:

  • Lettuce
  • Tomato
  • Salsa
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sliced avocados
  • Sour cream
  • Guacamole
Cooked taco meat in pink bowl on counter by taco shells, tomatoes, and Instant Pot

How do you reheat taco meat in an instant pot?

I love making a large batch of taco meat to have for leftovers. It’s easy to heat up for lunches or use in another ground beef recipe.

To warm up leftover taco meat you can use saute mode or add a cup of water to the Instant Pot liner, put the taco meat in a small Pyrex bowl on top of a trivet and steam for about 5 mins.

Learn more tips for reheating leftovers in the Instant Pot from The Traditional Cooking School.

More Recipes You May Enjoy:

Printable Instant Pot Taco Meat Recipe

Cooked taco meat in pink bowl on counter by taco shells, tomatoes, and Instant Pot

Instant Pot Taco Meat

Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

This easy Instant Pot Taco Meat recipe is perfect for busy nights and doesn't use a taco seasoning packet. Make quick, flavorful tacos with ground beef, garlic, cumin, cayenne pepper and onion.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch

Instructions

    1. Add water into the Instant Pot inner pot and the ground beef.
    2. Set Instant Pot to manual high pressure for 10 minutes.
    3. Do a quick pressure release.
    4. Remove the lid and set Instant Pot to its saute function.
    5. Add onion, garlic, garlic powder, cayenne and cumin.
    6. Stir all ingredients together.
    7. Add cornstarch and mix it in.
    8. Allow to simmer for 5-6 minutes.
    9. Serve in taco shells with your favorite taco toppings.

Notes

Don’t have any fresh garlic on hand? You can use 1 teaspoon of garlic powder instead of 2 cloves of garlic. That would be a total of 4 teaspoons of garlic for this recipe.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 442Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 135mgSodium: 192mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 42g

Nutrition information is an estimate and isn't always accurate. May vary based on ingredients and measurements used.

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