by Olena

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey

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Olena Osipov
4.9 from 13 votes

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Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey thawed in your electric pressure cooker in minutes. Then use in any recipes calling for ground beef or ground turkey. No more “forgot to thaw meat” at 4 PM!

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef

I can’t tell you how many times Instant Pot frozen ground beef or turkey has saved the dinner! I don’t have enough fingers to tell you how many times at 4PM my brilliant healthy dinner idea was ruined by “Cr@p, forgot to thaw the meat”.

Sounds familiar? Aha.

Cooking frozen ground beef in Instant Pot in 20 minutes is one of my favorite Instant Pot recipes or even hacks, to be correct. Thawing frozen meat in hot water or boiling doesn’t work when you need dinner fast. That’s why I love my Instant Pot so-so-so much!

Are you still on a fence about the whole Instant Pot movement?  Huge mistake. Now, if you are thinking of getting one see which one is for you – there are many.

Ingredients

  • Any frozen ground meat: Like ground beef, turkey, chicken, pork, venison, lamb etc.
  • 1 cup cold water

How to Cook Frozen Ground Meat in Instant Pot

  • Prep: To Instant Pot, add 1 cup water and place frozen meat on a trivet. You have to use trivet to avoid boiling the meat and possible “Burn”.frozen ground beef in Instant Pot on a trivet
  • Cook red meat (ground beef): 15 minutes for thawed – when you open the pot, meat will look cooked and brown outside. But once you remove it into the bowl and start breaking with a fork, you will see that it is red/pink inside. 25 minutes for fully cooked – is great if you just need to thaw the meat and proceed with any other recipe.Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef thawed
  • Cook poultry: 7 minutes for thawed and 15 minutes for fully cooked. instant pot frozen ground turkey cooked
  • Wait 5 minutes and release pressure: Turn valve to Venting after 5 minutes to avoid strong pressure pulling all moisture from the meat.
  • Separate and use for cooking: Then remove onto a plate and break into pieces. Season with any combination of spices like salt, pepper, taco seasoning, chili powder, garlic powder etc. Or check out this Instant Pot taco meat recipe from my friend, Denise, at Sweet peas and Saffron. Instant Pot Frozen Ground turkey crumbled
  • Recipes to use in: Use seasoned meat in tacos, healthy taco salad, lasagna and casseroles. So convenient!

FAQs and Tips

  • What amount can I cook at once? You can cook up to 2.5 lbs at a time. So, 2 packs of ground meat.
  • What does meat taste like? Meat doesn’t come out dry because of the whole pressure cooking process where steam doesn’t escape the pot. If meat is a bit dry, add a few tablespoons of liquid from the bottom of the pot. Cooked from frozen meat in one hunk is a bit hard to separate into crumbles. It feels rubbery. That’s my only complain but I can get over it. It doesn’t taste that rubbery or dry though. Especially once you incorporate it into next recipe – you won’t notice the difference.
  • Can I cook without the trivet? Unfortunately not. Trivet usually comes with your Instant Pot, with or without handles. Or you can buy my favorite one on Amazon.
  • What do I do with liquid at the bottom? If you are cooking frozen ground beef, a lot of fat drains into the water. When cooking lean poultry, cooking water stays quite bland because meat is sitting on the trivet. I discard both.
  • Can I brown frozen ground beef? Unfortunately not. Meat will stay frozen inside and become overcooked outside.
  • How to peel off the pad from frozen meat? When you buy fresh ground meat in a tray, it is usually lined with plastic or paper pad. To remove plastic pad, run frozen meat where pad is attached under warm water for a few seconds until you can peel it off easily. With paper one, I just cook meat with it and then it peels so easy from cooked meat.peeling paper from cooked ground turkey

More Instant Pot Recipes

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey

Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey thawed in your electric pressure cooker in minutes. Then use in any recipes calling for ground beef or ground turkey. No more "forgot to thaw meat" at 4 PM!
4.93 from 13 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: North American
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 16 minutes
Servings: 1
Calories: 1152kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

  • 1-2.5 lbs ground meat beef, turkey, chicken, lamb, venison*
  • 1 cup cold water

Instructions

  • In Instant Pot, add water and place trivet inside.
  • Place frozen ground beef on top. If your frozen meat has plastic pad attached, run it where pad is under warm water for a few seconds until you can peel it off easily. With paper one, I just cook meat with it and then it peels so easy from cooked meat.
  • Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cook on High or Manual.
  • Cook red meat (ground beef): 15 minutes for thawed - when you open the pot, meat will look cooked and brown outside. But once you remove it into the bowl and start breaking with a fork, you will see that it is red/pink inside. 25 minutes for fully cooked - is great if you just need to thaw the meat and proceed with any other recipe.
  • Cook poultry: 7 minutes for thawed and 15 minutes for fully cooked.
  • Display will say ON, Instant Pot will take about 5 minutes to come to pressure, you will see a bit of steam coming out from a valve, then float valve will rise and countdown will begin.
  • After 15 or 25 minutes your meat is ready. Instant Pot will beep and display will say OFF.
  • Wait 5 minutes, then do Quick Release by turning sealing valve to Venting position.
  • Open the lid and remove trivet with meat into a bowl. Using forks, meat claws or flat spatula, separate into crumbles.
  • Proceed using thawed ground meat in any recipe or use cooked crumbled meat in tacos, healthy taco salad, lasagna and casseroles.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days and then use when ready.

    Notes

    • What amount can I cook at once? You can cook up to 2.5 lbs at a time. So, 2 packs of ground meat.
    • Can I cook without the trivet? Unfortunately not. Trivet usually comes with your Instant Pot, with or without handles. Or you can buy my favorite one on Amazon.
    • What do I do with liquid at the bottom? I discard both liquid from beef and turkey.
    • Can I brown frozen ground beef? Unfortunately not. Meat will stay frozen inside and become overcooked outside.
    • How to peel off the pad from frozen meat? To remove plastic pad, run frozen meat where pad is attached under warm water for a few seconds until you can peel it off easily. With paper one, I just cook meat with it and then it peels so easy from cooked meat.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 1152kcal | Protein: 78g | Fat: 91g | Saturated Fat: 35g | Cholesterol: 322mg | Sodium: 316mg

    Recipes and images are a copyright of ifoodreal.com. It is against the law to republish recipes without permission. Nutritional info is approximate.

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    36 comments on “Instant Pot Frozen Ground Beef or Turkey

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    1. in step 3.. Is the last part (is great if you just need to thaw the meat and proceed with any other recipe) talking about the 15 mins for thawed ground beef or 7 mins for thawed ground Turkey? (That is how I read it) but it
      comes after the “25 minutes for fully cooked” in the recipe card so a little confusing when reading but I am going to try this tonight!

      1. Hi! It will be 15 minutes for thawed for beef and 7 minutes for thawed ground turkey. 25 minutes for beef is referring to if you want it fully cooked.

    2. Hi! I am very new to this whole IP thing!! I love it, but I have heard that there’s a difference in the cooking that’s in recipes. I use an 8qt IP. I am wondering what size you use. Thank you!

      1. Hi! I often use both 🙂 Each recipe card will indicate what difference needs to be made (if any) between 6 and 8 quart. Thanks for being here!

    3. 5 stars
      My block of turkey was filled with a white pus like substance when I cut into it. Is this normal? I put it back in the pressure cooker for another hour and it seemed to fix it.

      1. Hi Nathan, this recipe just ‘thaws’ your frozen ground turkey not cooked all the way through- so you can use it in recipes where you are cooking it.

    4. 5 stars
      I made this since I was tired of seeing the packages in my freezer just waiting for me to thaw them. Which I never have time for. I was impressed to see how much fat cooks out into the water, even if it was lean beef.

    5. 5 stars
      Thanks for the tips…many a time we are running late or have a change of plans and we do not think about or plan to take the frozen beef/turkey out for dinner–then we have to go to the fast-food syndrome…works well and easily for spaghetti or recipes that call for raw hamburger meat…thanks, again.

    6. 5 stars
      Cool! Thank you! I never would have thought of this &, as usual, you filled these instructions with all the necessary itty-bitty details.

    7. 5 stars
      I am so amazed with this method.

      I’ve been cooking for 60 years and I am ALWAYS forgetting to thaw out my ground beef. I have always put it into a skillet, frozen, with just a small amount of water. Then I cook it on very low temperature and scrape the block of frozen meat with a fork periodically until the meat thaws then continue cooking it for whatever dish I want to create. It takes about a 20 minutes to thaw this way.

      I’m going to try this method with my IP. Thanks so very much.

    8. Thanks! can you suggest cooking time and pressure level if I am cooking ground turkey (not frozen) and don’t want to use oil?

      1. You mean just plain ground turkey? Whole blob, you don’t want pieces? I would say 10 minutes on high and let it naturally release for 5 minutes.

    9. 4 stars
      I love this bc I was always setting my IP to 25 min and finding I didn’t like the texture in my recipes. Then I learned about setting the IP lower and sautéing the meat to cook it the rest of the way later. I found one recipe that called for a 9 or 10 min NPR. That finally made all the difference in texture for me! The meat wasn’t rubbery, it was moist and not too cooked so I could saute it and it acted just like fresh, maybe even more so. I definitely recommend adding in a 10 min or full NPR!

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