The innate immune system senses danger signals via evolutionary conserved receptors. The nucleotide-binding domain leucine-rich repeat containing receptor (NLR) family is a group of intracellular receptors that drive a wide variety of inflammatory responses. A number of the NLR family members can form inflammasomes, which are multiprotein complexes that can activate caspase-1 and ultimately lead to the processing and secretion of interleukin (IL)-1beta, IL-18 and IL-33. One of the best-studied members of the NLR family is NLRP3 for which a number of divergent activators have recently been described. These and other studies examining the NLRP3 inflammasome will be discussed in this review.