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Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef

Instant Pot frozen ground beef is so easy and convenient, and completely saves dinner on those nights you forget to defrost!

I think the ability to cook frozen meat in the Instant Pot is my absolute favourite part about it.

Cooked ground beef in the Instant Pot, cooked from frozen.

I never remember to take meat out to thaw. I’m terrible at it. Even when I menu plan.

Just can’t seem to always remember to take it out the day before.

And then I’m annoyed when I go to cook dinner and realize that my meat is still frozen solid and I end up having to microwave it. Which never works well.

Cooked ground beef in a bowl after cooking from frozen in the Instant Pot.

So the Instant Pot is a lifesaver. Or a dinner time saver at any rate.

Being able to pull a block of frozen ground beef out and have it cooked in less than a half hour is fantastic.

If you haven’t tried cooking frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot yet, you definitely need to!

It’s so easy, and so convenient!

Frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot to cook from frozen.

How long does it take to cook frozen meat in the Instant Pot?

How long it takes to cook frozen meat in the Instant Pot depends on the meat.

I have found that if you are cooking meat that is included in the cooking time chart at the back of the Instant Pot recipe booklet (comes with the Instant Pot), it’s quite easy to adjust the time for frozen meat.

Usually frozen meat will take about 1.5 times as long as fresh meat to cook. So for instance, if you’re cooking chicken breast they take 8 minutes to cook at high pressure if they’re fresh, and 12 minutes if they’re frozen.

Cooked ground beef in a bowl after cooking from frozen in the Instant Pot.

Can you cook frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot?

You can cook frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot, which is fantastic since it doesn’t thaw very evenly in the microwave, and who actually remembers to take meat out the day before to thaw?

Not me, that’s for sure.

Cooking frozen ground beef in the Instant Pot takes about 20 minutes. If your blocks of ground beef are really thick it will likely take a bit longer than that.

Korean ground beef in a skillet.

I freeze my ground beef in flat, 1-1.5 inch thick blocks and it takes 20 minutes to cook almost all the way through in the Instant Pot.

You can add a few more minutes to get it completely cooked through, but I find it’s easier to crumble and break up if it’s still a bit pink in the middle.

It only takes a couple minutes with the saute function to break it up and finish cooking it after the pressure cooking cycle is complete.

Taco meat in a spoon held above the Instant Pot that it was cooked in from frozen ground beef.

How to make Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef:

  • The size/shape of your frozen ground beef blocks will change the time needed to cook it in the Instant Pot. Blocks that are 1-1.5 inches thick will take about 20 minutes. If they’re 2-3 inches thick, add 3-5 minutes to the cook time.
  • This recipe will have your ground beef almost, but not quite, cooked through. Finish cooking it with the saute function while you break up the block of beef, before continuing with your recipe.
  • Make sure not to discard the Instant Pot liquid down the drain as the beef fat will be part of it after pressure cooking. If you refrigerate it for a few hours, the fat will solidify and can be easily scooped off and discarded.

Here are some great recipes to use your cooked ground beef in:

Cooked ground beef in the Instant Pot, cooked from frozen.
Yield: 1 pound cooked ground beef

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef

Cooked ground beef in a bowl after cooking from frozen in the Instant Pot.

Instant Pot frozen ground beef is so easy and convenient, and completely saves dinner on those nights you forget to defrost!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound frozen ground beef
  • 1-1 1/2 cups water

Instructions

  1. Remove the lid from the Instant Pot and pour the water into the inner pot, 1 cup for a 6 quart Instant Pot and 1 1/2 cups for an 8 quart Instant Pot.
  2. Place the trivet on top of the water - it should be just above the level of the water.
  3. Lay a one pound piece of frozen ground beef on top of the trivet.
  4. Put the lid on the Instant Pot and turn it to the locked position. Adjust the valve so that it is in the sealing position.
  5. Press the pressure cook button and adjust the time to read 20 minutes (or manual high pressure for 20 minutes). The Instant Pot will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure and then will start counting down the time.
  6. When the pressure cooking time is complete, quick release the pressure by moving the valve to the venting position. When all the pressure is released, remove the lid.
  7. Discard the liquid in the Instant Pot and remove the trivet, leaving the ground beef in the bottom of the Instant Pot.
  8. The beef will be almost completely cooked, with just a bit of pink remaining in the middle. Press the saute button on the Instant Pot and cook, stirring the beef and breaking it up until it is completely browned and crumbled. This will only take about a minute.
  9. Continue with any recipe that calls for browned ground beef.

Notes

I freeze my ground beef in 1 pound portions, pressed flat so it’s an even thickness of 1-1.5 inches. With 20 minutes of pressure cooking time, the beef frozen in this way is almost completely cooked, with a bit of pink remaining in the middle which is easily finished with the saute button on the Instant Pot. I don’t like to cook it further than this point as it then becomes difficult to break up and crumble nicely.

If your frozen ground beef is a thicker slab of 2-2.5 inches instead, I would recommend adding 3-4 minutes to the pressure cooking time, or it will still be quite raw in the middle and you will be sautéing for a few more minutes to finish up the browning.

You can cook two pounds of ground beef the same way if you like, just lay them side by side (or stacked slightly if they don’t fit side by side) on the trivet. The pressure cooking time will not change.

Recommended Products

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1/6 recipe

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 206Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 67mgSodium: 71mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 20g

Nutrition Information is estimated based on ingredients used and may not be exact.

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