Instant Pot Pulled Pork Chili

It's the best of both worlds: chili and BBQ.

pulled pork chili
Photo: Photographer: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Melissa Gray Prop Stylist: Kay Clarke
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 40 mins

It couldn't be any easier to get tender, fall-apart pork than with an Instant Pot. You can pile up a plate of pulled pork so juicy that no one will believe it hasn't been cooking all day. That's especially true when you combine it with just the right seasonings, like we have in our Pulled Pork Chili. It's a bowl of saucy, spicy pork with baked beans and slaw that no one will suspect only cooked for two hours. The pork might not be smoked, but the smokiness comes through from the recipe's chipotle chili powder and smoked paprika. The addition of slaw in this chili is a must, too. It adds some acid to brighten up the richness of the pork and sweet sauce. If you can't find a boneless pork shoulder, you can either have your butcher debone a bone-in one for you, or you can cut up pork shoulder steaks into 1-inch chunks. Although the Instant Pot makes this recipe simple and quick, it can be replicated in your slow cooker. Just place it on low for 6 to 8 hours instead. If you have anything left over, it works well as a nacho topper or taco filling, too. Just be sure to slightly drain to avoid soggy tortillas or chips.


  • 2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 1-inch chunks

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil

  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (from 1 medium onion)

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 1 ½ tablespoons chipotle chili powder

  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 garlic cloves)

  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin

  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika

  • 1 ½ cups chicken broth

  • ½ cup smokey barbecue sauce (such as Kraft Kansas City Barbecue Sauce)

  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) white beans (such as great Northern or navy beans), rinsed and drained

  • 3 tablespoons sour cream

  • 1 ½ teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 3 cups angel hair slaw mix

  • ½ cup thinly sliced scallions, divided

  • Cornbread and shredded cheese, for serving


  1. Toss pork with 1 teaspoon of the salt. Select SAUTÉ setting on a programmable pressure multicooker (such as Instant Pot). (Times, instructions, and settings may vary according to cooker brand or model.) Select HIGH temperature setting, and allow to preheat 2 to 3 minutes. Add oil and one-third of pork to cooker. Cook until browned on one side, about 2 minutes; transfer to a plate. Repeat, in 2 more batches, with remaining pork.

  2. Add onion to cooker and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, chili powder, garlic, cumin, and smoked paprika; cook, stirring constantly, until toasted and fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chicken broth and barbecue sauce, stirring to thoroughly combine. Stir in pork and beans.

  3. Cover cooker with lid, and lock in place. Turn steam release handle to SEALING position. Select MANUAL/PRESSURE COOK setting. Select HIGH pressure for 50 minutes. (It will take 10 to 15 minutes for cooker to come up to pressure before cooking begins.)

  4. While chili cooks, whisk together sour cream, vinegar, and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Add slaw mix and ¼ cup of the scallions; toss to coat.

  5. When cooking has finished, carefully turn steam release handle to VENTING position, and let steam fully escape (float valve will drop). This will take 2 to 3 minutes. Remove lid from cooker. Press each pork chunk against side of cooker to shred; stir to combine. Top each serving with slaw, cheese, and remaining scallions. Serve with cornbread on the side.

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