Instant Pot Recipes from a Chef's Wife and IP Enthusiast

Healthy Instant Pot Taco Bell Bowl

Start to Finish Cook Time: 34 mins (3 prep + 10 pressurize + 9 high pressure + 10 pressure + 2 cook)
Effort Level: Low 
Servings: 6

Fast food and the word "healthy" so rarely go together in the same sentence, but this one is a match made in heaven! I grew up on Taco Bell and nearly cried when they bulldozed the one in Wrigley (love never dies). You know their amazing sauces? Let me tell you a secret, you can buy these sauces at the grocery store! The best part about this is you can give your healthy dishes a bit of this indulgent flavor, while swapping out those naughty carbs and fried beans.

I received a lot of eye rolls from the hubs at the mention of cauliflower rice, but we were pleasantly surprised. The cauli rice isn't going to have the exact same texture as rice, but it's a healthier base and makes a good substitute when cutting carbs. Chef advised that dicing the cauliflower rice after steaming makes it mushy, so that is why my recipe calls to dice this prior to steaming.

Do note, you will need a steamer basket and food processor for this recipe. If you want to jump straight to the recipe, no need to keep scrolling it's right below. If you want step-by-step pictures though, I've included those below the recipe. And as my Chef husband says, "Food is love". Enjoy!

Source: Inspired from

Bowl Ingredients
  • 3 lb chicken thighs 
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp dried onion
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp Tony Chachere's® Original Creole Seasoning 
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 chicken bouillon or 1 tsp chicken Better Than Bouillon 
  • 2 cup black beans 

Garnish Ingredients 
  • Thin sliced romaine 
  • 1/2 -1 block colby cheese, shredded
  • Taco Bell Hot Sauce
  • Taco Bell Baja Sauce 

  1. Add cumin, dried onion, garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, salt, 1/2 cup water, bouillon, and chicken thighs. 
  2. Seal your Instant Pot and set to high pressure for 9 minutes. Make sure the steam vent is in the sealed position.
  3. While chicken is cooking, break cauliflower head into florets and put in a food processor. Keep hitting pulse until most are rice sized bites. Be sure to use the pulse feature, instead of blasting on a setting, to avoid over-dicing. Put cauli chunks in a steamer basket. 
  4. Shred cheese and thin slice romaine. Set aside.
  5. Once chicken is done, quick release. Add 2 cups black beans to chicken and place steamer basket of cauliflower into instant pot. Seal lid again and set to high pressure for 2 minutes. Make sure the steam vent is in the sealed position. Allow 10 minutes of pressurization. Quick release once cooked. 
  6. Remove cauliflower steamer and set aside. Take 2 tbsps of liquid from pot and put in a small bowl, set aside.  Pour remaining pot contents into a strainer, straining out black beans and chicken thighs.  
  7. Remove chicken thighs and set aside on a plate, using a fork shred into strips. 
  8. Pour into IP the cauliflower, tomato paste, creole, and the 2 saved tbsp liquid. Mix.
  9. Prepare your bowl with cauli rice, black beans, and then shredded chicken. Top with shredded cheese, thin sliced romaine, TB hot sauce, and drizzle TB baja sauce. 

Add chick thighs, cumin, dried onion, chili powder,
paprika, salt, garlic powder, 1/2 cup water,  and bouillon.
Seal and set to 9 minutes high pressure, allow for 10 mins
to pressurize. 
While chicken is cooking- shred cheese, thin slice romaine, get
black beans ready, and food process cauliflower.
After chicken sounds, quick release steam.
Add black beans to pot and then basket of processed
cauliflower into pot on top. Seal and set to 2 mins high
pressure, allow for 10 mins pressurization. Once
done, instant release. 
Take 2 tbsp of liquid and set aside, strain remaining
contents of pot into strainer in the sink. Set chicken
aside and shred.
Add 2 tbsp tomato paste, your saved 2 tbsp liquid, and
1/2 tsp creole to your cauliflower and mix.
Plate cauliflower rice, black beans, shredded chicken,
thin sliced lettuce, shredded cheese, hot sauce and baja sauce.