Instant Pot Poor Man’s Beef Manhattan–ground beef and gravy served over creamy mashed potatoes and white toast.
Instant Pot Poor Man’s Beef Manhattan
Beef Manhattan is a diner type of supper of white toast, mashed potatoes, roast and gravy all piled on top of each other. It’s pure comfort food. This version uses ground beef instead of roast and it comes together very quickly with the help of your pressure cooker.
Why you should make this version of beef manhattan:
- It only calls for a few ingredients…most of them you’re likely to already have at your house right now!
- It’s uses an easy to find and cheaper ground beef instead of roast.
- You can cook the mashed potatoes at the same time and in the same pot that you cook the beef and gravy!
What is beef manhattan?
Despite the name it is not something you’d order in a New York restaurant. Rather it is something you could find in a diner in the Midwest United States, specifically Indiana. According to Wikipedia, “The dish was first served in a restaurant under the name ‘Beef Manhattan’ in a now-defunct Indianapolis deli in the late 1940s where it gained traction as a Hoosier staple. The dish was named by Naval Ordnance Plant Indianapolis (NOPI) workers who were trained on a fabrication of the Norden Bombsight in Manhattan during World War II. They enjoyed the open-faced sandwich they had in Manhattan and brought it back to their cafeteria as the ‘Beef Manhattan’. In Indiana, it is served on bread. The roast beef is sliced and put on the bread like a sandwich, then cut corner to corner and plated in a V shape. Mashed potatoes are served between the two halves, and the whole is covered in gravy.”
Ingredients you’ll need…
- Lean ground beef–you can also try using ground turkey
- Diced onions–for sake of ease try using frozen diced onions that can be found in the frozen food aisle at your grocery store
- Brown gravy mix–I used McCormicks
- Russet potatoes–you can also use Yukon gold or red potatoes
- Salt and pepper
- White bread–I like using the thick Texas toast type of bread
- Brown the beef: Turn Instant Pot to saute setting. When display says HOT add in the beef and break it up. Add in the onions. Brown for about 5 minutes. Drain off excess grease.
- Deglaze the pot: Pour in the water and scrape bottom of pot so that nothing is sticking. Turn off saute setting. Sprinkle the gravy mix on top, don’t stir. (This will prevent the burn error message).
- Prepare potatoes: Place potatoes in a steamer basket. Place the steamer basket into the pot on top of the meat.
- Pressure cook: Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the manual/pressure cook button to 5 minutes. When time it up let pot sit for 5-10 minutes and then move valve to venting. Remove the lid.
- Stir: Remove the steamer basket and set it aside. Stir the meat well so that the gravy mixture is all dissolved.
- Mash: Pour the potatoes into a medium bowl. Use a potato mashed to mash well. Stir in the butter, milk and salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve: To assemble place a piece of toast on a plate, top with a couple scoops of potatoes and a ladle full of meat and gravy. Eat and enjoy!
- I used my 6 quart Instant Pot*. You can also make this in an 8 quart pot with no changes.
- A steamer basket* comes in handy for many recipes. It prevents the potatoes from getting grainy.
- Use an ice cream scoop* to scoop out perfectly portioned potatoes (just like the school lunch lady).
- If you’d like you can make your own gravy mix from scratch. Make sure to just sprinkle the gravy mix on top of the beef and don’t stir it in or else you may get the burn error message (gravy mix contains thickeners which will burn to the bottom of the pot).
- To make this recipe gluten free use a gluten-free gravy mix and forego the white bread toast (or use a gluten free bread for the toast).
More Instant Pot Beef Recipes…
Instant Pot Hot Beef Sandwich and Mashed Potatoes
Instant Pot Meatloaf and Baked Potatoes
Instant Pot 4-Ingredient Pot Roast and Brown Gravy
Did you know you can filter the recipes on my website to search by meat type, IP or Crockpot, low carb, gluten free, etc.? Use the filter to find exactly what you are looking for.
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Instant Pot Poor Man’s Beef Manhattan
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes (plus 5 minute NPR)
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
Ground beef and gravy served over creamy mashed potatoes and white toast.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 cup diced onions
- 2 cups water
- 2 oz (2 packets or 6 Tbsp) brown gravy mix
- 1 1/2 pounds Russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup milk
- Salt and pepper
- 6 slices white bread, toasted
- Turn Instant Pot to saute setting. When display says HOT add in the beef and break it up. Add in the onions. Brown for about 5 minutes. Drain off excess grease.
- Pour in the water and scrape bottom of pot so that nothing is sticking. Turn off saute setting. Sprinkle the gravy mix on top, don’t stir.
- Place potatoes in a steamer basket. Place the steamer basket into the pot on top of the meat.
- Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the manual/pressure cook button to 5 minutes. When time it up let pot sit for 5-10 minutes and then move valve to venting. Remove the lid.
- Remove the steamer basket and set it aside. Stir the meat well so that the gravy mixture is all dissolved.
- Pour the potatoes into a medium bowl. Use a potato mashed to mash well. Stir in the butter, milk and salt and pepper to taste.
- To assemble place a piece of toast on a plate, top with a couple scoops of potatoes and a ladle full of meat and gravy. Eat and enjoy!
- Category: Beef
- Method: Instant Pot
*Karen Petersen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
For those of us that the gravy packets contain problems, how much “Better than bouillon” would use to replace a gravy packet?
PamG I usually use one teaspoon of “Better than Bouillon” for one packet of gravy then jut thicken it later with an appropriate substitute.
C Snyder says
I have a Ninja Foodi and am always looking for great recipes. I care for my 92 year old dad with parkinsons and have been doing so going on 12 years. I need to make things that are appealing and easy for him to eat. This was a WINNER! We both loved it. I did not do any substitutes but had to adjust as I don’t have an instapot. I used the Ninja air fryer basket and it worked perfectly. I used red potatoes as that is what I had on hand and left some skin on. Absolutely great! I will make again. Thank you!
That’s so nice to hear. God bless you and your father.
I made this tonight and it was a hit! As an Indiana Hoosier I enjoyed reading the history of this dish and read it aloud before we ate! 🙂
Thanks for yet another great recipe!
Ahhh that’s so fun! Go hoosiers!
This is a food blog. There is no room for nasty or political comments. Enjoying good food is supposed to bring us together, not criticize each other. Let’s lighten up, everybody!
Well said Jeanie. I just wish it were that easy.
I love this site and the questions or suggestions in the reviews!
Thank you Karen.
Always called this “Hamburger Gravy.”
Dirk Diggler says
Made this with ground turkey and turkey gravy. Doubled the recipe, the cook times and still doubled the gravy packets. Excellent! Thank you!
Several ladies were discussing your recipes on New Year’s. We make and love many of them, and have bought cookbooks, IPs and accessories as a result.
The talk turned to how the recipes are named which is often the first thing we see. Since one came up today just wanted to mention that it would be thoughtful if you could use more friendly language. Especially in these days when so many people are struggling in various ways. Today we have poor man’s and even Amish poor man…several have been lazy wife…., or lazy mom lasagna. Seems there could be a more fun and kinder way to convey the idea of being budget-friendly or easy/simple. Thanks
Janis Olson says
I don’t think there’s anything unkind about calling the recipes these names. They are what they are and have nothing to do with kindness or unkindness. They are just recipes with these names. Not everything has to be changed just because one person doesn’t like it.
Rusty Shackleford says
Congratulations Trish! It must be great to be so bereft of actual problems in your life that you have time to look for some that don’t exist on a recipe blog. If recipe names trigger you “especially in these days” (which have never been so good in the history of the world-read a few books)…you need to toughen up. 10 ply soft Trish.
Bob Prehall says
Was going to make something with chicken tonite, but have an ample supply of 93% hamburger. Any reason NOT to use beef broth or “better than bullion” (brown, not gold, gold is chicken…) and simply add the necessary thickener when done? Plus perhaps one of my growing up, mom’s staples from 60 years ago “Kitchen Bouquet” (still being sold, has stood the test of time)
Sure you can totally do that!