- 25+ Healthy Instant Pot Recipes – A Couple Cooks
- What’s an Instant Pot?
- Why cook with a pressure cooker?
- What Instant Pot do you use?
- “Hidden” cook time with a pressure cooker
- Understanding the Instant Pot sealing ring
- Looking for Instapot recipes?
- These are the most popular Instant Pot recipes on Pinterest right now
- Ingenious Instant Pot hacks for bread, ricotta cheese and popcorn
- 10 Most-Pinned Instant Pot Recipes on Pinterest
25+ Healthy Instant Pot Recipes – A Couple Cooks
A pressure cooker is perfect for whipping up fresh, nutritious recipes. Here are all the best healthy Instant Pot recipes that will quickly become favorites!
Got an Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker? Turns out, the Instant Pot can make eating healthy simple! While Alex and I were skeptical of the Instant Pot at first, once we finally got one we fell in love with its versatility.
Here, we’ve put together a list of all our favorite healthy Instant Pot recipes! There are a few main categories: dinner recipes soups and pasta, side dishes, and basics dried beans, and whole grains. We love using it for all three! (You can also use it for drinks, but that’s another other topic.) Keep reading for more about cooking in a pressure cooker, and all of the best healthy Instant Pot recipes.
What’s an Instant Pot?
An Instant Pot is a digital pressure cooker (Instant Pot is the brand name; Instapot is a slang variation). Here’s the Instant Pot we have. But there are lots of brands of electric pressure cookers! The concept is to cook foods at high pressure, which cuts down on cooking time. It’s the exact opposite of a crock pot or slow cooker, which has very long cook times.
Why cook with a pressure cooker?
Alex and I will be the first to admit: cooking with an Instant Pot is not something we ever expected to do. We’re pretty wary of adding new gadgets to our kitchen. If we add something new to our kitchen, we want to be confident it will be useful in the long term before committing precious cabinet space.
We were on the fence for years until we gave it a try. Now, we make so many different recipes in the Instant Pot (as you can see above). While it’s not a perfect solution to making fast meals, here are the major advantages we see:
- It’s usually pretty hands off. The nice thing about pressure cooking is you can “set it and forget it” in many cases. Recipes don’t require baby-sitting they do on the stove or in the oven.
- It can be faster. The Instant Pot is not always faster! It depends on what you’re making. But some things it can shave the standard cook time in half: cooking dried beans, spaghetti squash, or beets.
- It can extend your kitchen. It might sound silly, but one of the reasons we love the Instant Pot is that it gets extra pans off our stovetop or oven so that we can concentrate on cooking the rest of the meal.
What Instant Pot do you use?
Alex and I use an Instant Pot brand (Instant Pot is the brand name; Instapot is a slang variation). The pressure cooker we used to test all of these healthy recipe is the Instant Pot 6 Qt Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker.
We can’t speak to other brands and types of Instant Pots. For example, we’ve heard that the Instant Pot Mini is pretty different and does not work as well as the standard size. So, only use the Instant Pot Mini for these recipes at your own risk!
The other pressure cooker we have experimented with is the Ambiano Digital Pressure Cooker that we used to make the steel cut oatmeal. We found that this pressure cooker performed similarly to our Instant Pot and the timing was interchangeable.
“Hidden” cook time with a pressure cooker
As Alex and I have come to understand our Instant Pot, we’ve learned a few things. The cook time for pressure cooker recipes can look deceptively short. Sweet potatoes cook for 16 minutes, and apple crisp cooks in 2 minutes, and broccoli in 0 minutes!
However, keep in mind taht there are two additional times to add to the cook time.
- “Preheat” time: After you add the ingredients to the pot, the Instant Pot requires about time for “preheating” or coming up to pressure. This time can vary depending on the recipe and how much food is in the pressure cooker. It’s usually about 5 minutes, but can be up to 20 minutes (in our mashed potatoes for a crowd).
- Natural release time (depends on recipe): Some recipes call for a “cool down” process to release the pressure in the pot. A Quick Release means that the steam in the pot is released immediately and you can remove the lid. But some recipes call for a Natural Release, where you wait with the cover on for the pressure to naturally release from the pot.
Once you take into account these additional times, you can accurately estimate the time needed to cook using a pressure cooker! All our Instant Pot recipes have the preheat time (and Natural Release, if applicable) clearly marked. We want to help you understand how long the pressure cooker recipe will actually take to make.
Understanding the Instant Pot sealing ring
Your Instant Pot or pressure cooker comes with a plastic sealing ring on the inside of the lid. The sealing ring can sometimes pick up odors from the cooking. Here are a few tips on caring for the sealing ring:
- Make sure to remove the sealing ring and fully clean it after cooking.
- Store the Instant Pot with the lid upside down so the sealing ring is exposed to air, instead of with the lid closed onto the pot. This allows the sealing ring to air out between uses.
- To remove the odor from an Instant Pot sealing ring, soak it in vinegar for a few hours.
- Tip: If you use your Instant Pot often, consider purchasing two sealing rings. We have 2 Instant Pot sealing rings and use one for savory recipes and one for sweet recipes.
Looking for Instapot recipes?
Instapot, Instant Pot, and Electric Pressure Cooker are all different names for the same thing: a countertop appliance that cooks food using high pressure. Outside of the recipes above, here are our best pressure cooker and Instapot recipes:
- 25 Vegetarian Instant Pot Recipes
- 15 Best Vegan Instant Pot Recipes
PrintPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
Looking for a fast and easy dinner recipe? This Instant Pot spaghetti recipe is a total crowd pleaser and could not be easier to whip up.
- 2 cups water
- 28 ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes (or best quality crushed tomatoes)*
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups baby spinach leaves, tightly packed (or chopped spinach)
- 8 fresh basil leaves
- 8 ounces spaghetti (regular, not whole wheat)
- Soft goat cheese or Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)
- In a medium bowl, stir together the water, tomatoes and their juices, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, oregano, kosher salt, spinach, and whole basil leaves.
- Ladle just enough of the tomato mixture into the Instant Pot to cover the bottom.
- Break the spaghetti noodles in half. Working in batches, add the noodles to the Instant Pot in a fan shape so that they stack on each other, making as much space between the noodles as possible (if the noodles are directly next to each other they clump up — it doesn’t have to be perfect, just try to fan them out to make space).
- Pour remaining sauce over the spaghetti.
- Cook on high pressure for 6 minutes: Press the Pressure Cook button, making sure the “High Pressure” setting is selected, and set the time. Note that it takes about 10 minutes for the pot to “preheat” and come up to pressure before it starts cooking. (During cooking, avoid touching the metal part of the lid.)
- Quick release: Vent the remaining steam from the Instant Pot by moving the pressure release handle to “Venting”, covering your hand with a towel or hot pad. Never put your hands or face near the vent when releasing steam. Open the pressure cooker lid.
- Open the lid and stir, removing any clumps. Then remove the pot from the Instant Pot and allow to cool for 3 to 5 minutes for the sauce to thicken slightly. The sauce will thicken even more as it cools. If using, stir in goat cheese for a creamy sauce. Ladle into bowls and serve.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Instant Pot
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Instant Pot Recipes, Healthy Instant Pot Recipes, Instant Pot Spaghetti, Instant Pot Pasta
These are the most popular Instant Pot recipes on Pinterest right now
What was everyone buying on Amazon Prime Day last week? Well, lots of things. But home cooks were clamoring for Instant Pots.
According to CNBC, sales of the cult-favorite, pressure-cooking Instant Pot (one of which was priced at less than $60 and sold out) hit an all-time record. At the same time, searches for Instant Pot recipes on Pinterest increased by more than 150 percent, according to a spokesperson from the company.
(If you're looking to snag one, Amazon has the 6-in-1 version on sale for $49 right now.)
Ingenious Instant Pot hacks for bread, ricotta cheese and popcorn
March 7, 201803:24
TODAY Food got the inside scoop on which Instant Pot recipes have been pinned the most this year the more than 9 million Instant Pot and pressure-cooker recipes found on the social network. Turns out, everyone's really hungry for beef, as four of the top five recipes involve some sort of red meat.
Coming in at more than 80,000 saves, this recipe for tender chicken is taking top honors among Pinterest users. Billed as taking no more than 30 minutes to cook a full chicken until it's super tender and juicy, the recipe from Healing Gourmet is incredibly simple and uses just a few herbs to season the bird. Plus, there's a fragrant broth made with lemon juice and garlic.
The writer, Kelley Herring, said the pressure cooker is one of the best kitchen investments she's ever made, writing “it is no exaggeration to say that a pressure cooker can change your life in the kitchen.”
This blogger took a slow-cooker French dip recipe that used to take her eight hours and turned it into a recipe for an Instant Pot after she bought her device in 2016. It now takes her just over two hours.
She uses a chuck roast with wine, beef broth and onions served on rolls brushed with butter and garlic — all topped with provolone cheese melted under a broiler. So far, the recipe has been saved more than 60,000 times.
Jenny Garza, the creator of the I Save A to Z blog, said she developed this Beef and Broccoli recipe, which has more than 55,000 saves, after she enjoyed it at restaurants but felt the dish was too salty.
Her recipe calls for chuck roast, rump roast or flank steak, combined with a marinade of beef broth, garlic, ginger, brown sugar and soy sauce and some onions. She also uses corn starch, but not until the end, otherwise the marinade will not have enough liquid to get the cooker to pressure, said Garza on her blog.
The whole thing only needs to cook in the Instant Pot for 10 minutes.
This pot roast recipe from the Noshtastic blog gluten free, paleo, Whole30-friendly and low carb. Plus, cooks can make it in less than an hour.
The recipe uses a boneless chuck roast along with carrots, onions, celery, thyme and garlic and suggests cooking the meat for 47 minutes for a 1 1/2- to 2-inch thick cut of chuck. Pinners have saved it more than 37,000 times.
Pinners are also digging this Cajun-style recipe for red beans and rice, which they've saved more than 27,000 times.
A Pinch of Healthy Blog author Marjorie said it's one of her readers' favorites and also a favorite of her family. Using the Instant Pot, the recipe, which uses onion, bell pepper, celery, red kidney beans, chicken andouille sausage, rice and a few other ingredients, only takes her an hour and a half to make.
She recommends adding the sausage when there is only 15 minutes left to cook so it doesn't get too tough.
Want to try out some these recipes at home? Take a look at this top-rated Instant Pot! And for more Instant Pot fun, try these accessories – a vegetable steamer and non-stick baking pots.
TODAY has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not by TODAY. All prices are subject to change and items could sell out the merchant’s inventory.
Instant Pot 6 Qt. 6-in-1 Multicooker Pressure Cooker, $79, Amazon
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10 Most-Pinned Instant Pot Recipes on Pinterest
In case you haven't already heard, Instant Pots (and Instant Pot recipes) are all the rage right now.
People love the gadget because it can pressure-cook food, which means things that normally take forever cook in a fraction of the time—we're talking beef stew in 30 minutes instead of five hours, people! But that's not the only thing the Instant Pot has going for it: It's also great for meal prep, because you can make big batches of meat ( whole-cooked chicken and shredded beef), dozens of hard-boiled eggs at a time, and things rice and yogurt, too. In no time, your Instant Pot can whip up staples that'll last you all week.
If you haven't invested in an Instant Pot yet, know that they're truly worth the hype.
Courtesy of Walmart
In addition to the magical pressure-cook setting, the Instant Pot can act as a slow-cooker, a rice cooker, and more.
Buy it here: $100, jet.com
Wondering what exactly everyone else is using their Instant Pot to cook? Pinterest is a good place to find out. These 10 recipes have been pinned more than any other Instant Pot recipes, which makes them some of the most popular recipes on the platform.
There are classics speedy pot roast and shredded beef, as well as unexpected favorites kung pao chicken and broccoli-cheddar soup. If you already have the gadget, you'll want to cook all of them ASAP.
And if not, they may be just the inspiration you need to finally take the plunge.
1. Faux-tisserie Chicken
It may be faux-tisserie chicken, but it tastes as legit as any real-deal rotisserie chicken we've ever had. Get the recipe here.
2. Whole30 Mexican-Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
For this Whole30-approved recipe, you cook the sweet potatoes and the filling all in your Instant Pot. There's barely any cleanup involved! Get the recipe here.
3. Chicken, Broccoli, and Rice
If chicken-broccoli casserole is your jam, then you're going to love this speedy dinner. Get the recipe here.
4. Mexican Shredded Beef
Serve this shredded beef over a bed of rice, in taco shells, or even in lettuce leaves, and definitely top with plenty of guac. Get the recipe here.
5. Smoked Sausage, Vegetable, and White Bean Soup
Beans, sausage, and plenty of veggies make for a soup that's packed with protein and fiber. Get the recipe here.
6. Hard-Boiled Eggs
Normally, hard-boiled eggs take anywhere from 8 to 10 minutes to make, and that doesn't include the time it takes to get your water to a boil. In an Instant Pot, you'll be done with the whole process in a measly 5 minutes. Get the recipe here.
7. Broccoli-Cheddar Soup
When you're craving Panera in a pinch, this copycat recipe will save the day. Get the recipe here.
8. Kung Pao Chicken
You can make this recipe in either an Instant Pot or a slow-cooker, so it's perfect whether or not you're in a rush. Get the recipe here.
9. Pot Roast
A full pot roast dinner in just an hour? You better believe it. Get the recipe here.
10. Chicken Noodle Soup
This soup packs in extra flavor because it's cooked with a whole chicken, which means the broth is infused with all the flavor from its bones (think bone broth). Get the recipe here.