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Pressure Cooker Duck and White Bean Chili

My freezer is overflowing. I can’t help myself; when I see a deal on meat at the grocery store, I buy it. Enough is enough. No more meat purchases until I clear everything out of the freezer.

I have a pound of ground duck left from my trip to Maple Leaf Farms, and a bag of white beans in the pantry. Cassoulet pops into my head – the classic French bean stew with duck confit and sausages.

I may have started started out with cassoulet, but by the time I was done, the pot was more Southwestern than French. It seems like all one pot meals turn to chili in my kitchen.

Was I disappointed? No! Rich duck meat, creamy white beans, and a hint of spicy heat? It’s almost like I meant to make that in the first place.
Shhh. Like Julia Child said, no matter what happens in the kitchen, never apologize.

Recipe: Pressure Cooker Duck and White Bean Chili

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes




  • 1 pound great northern beans, sorted and rinsed
  • 1 head garlic, top 1/3 trimmed off
  • 1 onion, trimmed, peeled and cut in half
  • 2 cloves, stuck into an onion half
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 cups water


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and minced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 pound ground duck
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 (4 ounce) can green chiles, with juices
  • 1 (15 ounce) can fire roasted diced tomatoes, with juices
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Minced cilantro (for garnish)


1. Pressure cook the beans for 30 minutes, quick pressure release

Put the beans, garlic, onion with cloves, and bay leaf in the pressure cooker pot, then sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt and pour the water over everything. Lock the lid on the pressure cooker, increase the heat to high, and bring the cooker up to high pressure. (Read the fine pressure cooker manual for how this works with your particular cooker). Reduce the heat to maintain the pressure and cook at high pressure for 25 minutes (30 minutes in an electric PC). Turn off the heat and quick release the pressure in the pot. Unlock the lid and opening the lid away from you – even when it’s not under pressure, the steam in the cooker is very hot. Discard the onion, garlic, and bay leaves.

2. Sauté the aromatics and duck

While the beans are pressure cooking: Heat the vegetable oil in a large fry pan over medium high heat until the oil is shimmering. Add the onion and carrots to the pan, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Sauté the onions and carrots until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the duck and cook, breaking up any clumps of meat, until the duck is no longer pink, about 5 more minutes. Stir in the green chiles and tomatoes, and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and let the duck and aromatics sit until the beans are done.

3. Add the aromatics and duck to the beans, PC for 5 minutes

Pour everything from the fry pan into the pressure cooker pot. Lock the lid on the pressure cooker and bring the cooker up to high pressure. Pressure cook at high pressure for five minutes, then turn off the heat and quick release the pressure. (Or, pressure cook on high for 3 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the pressure come down naturally, about 15 minutes.) Unlock the lid and opening the lid away from you.

4. Taste and serve

Stir the brown sugar into the chili, then add salt and pepper to taste. (The chili will need salt – there are a lot of ingredients in here. I added two more teaspoons of kosher salt to the pot. Keep adding salt, a half a teaspoon at a time, until the flavors perk up and the chili tastes a little bit sweet.) Serve, sprinkling minced cilantro on chili as a garnish.


  • No pressure cooker? No worries. Cook everything in a large dutch oven. In step 1, increase the water to 8 cups and simmer on the stovetop for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until the beans are tender. In step 3, add the aromatics and duck to the dutch oven with the beans, then simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Can’t find ground duck? Substitute meatloaf mix (a combination of ground beef and ground pork). Duck is red meat, so I think beef is the best substitute, but this recipe will work with other poultry, like ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • Make ahead beans. Finish step 1, then refrigerate the beans for a couple of days, or freeze the beans for up to three months. When you are ready to cook, reheat the beans in the microwave, then continue with step 3. (Or, if you want to cheat, replace the pound of cooked dried beans with four cans great norther beans, rinsed, and 2 cups of chicken broth.)

What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

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Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.

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