Cooking With An Instant Pot

Must Try

Instant Pot Mac & Cheese


This mac and cheese is just as easy as making that macaroni in the blue box but is SO much better for you from The Chunky Chef. No preservatives and other hard-to-pronounce ingredients. Just pure cheesy goodness! The lusciously creamy cheese sauce, enveloping every noodle so full of flavor, yet so simply made.

Can I Use Frozen Meat For These Instant Pot Recipes

Yes, you can! Cooking frozen meat in your Instant Pot is just as simple as cooking fresh meat. In many of my Instant Pot beef recipes I’m using a frozen meat.

To do so, you just need to add a few more minutes of cooking time to the original recipe. For example, it takes 25 minutes to cook a cornish hen. To cook a frozen Cornish hen, add on an extra 5 minutes for a total cook time of 30 minutes. In fact, one of the most popular Instant Pot chicken recipes on Corrie Cooks, is the Instant Pot Frozen Chicken.

Is This Thing Safe

Instant Pots are safer than stovetop pressure cooking. Everyone has heard stories about old-time pressure cookers exploding. Your Instant Pot wont do that because the temperature and pressure inside the pot is carefully monitored and regulated through its programming.

Remember: Its your trusty cooking robot.

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Steaming Delicate Foods Such As Vegetables & Seafood

Even with a steamer basket, cooking delicate vegetables and seafood directly in the inner pot runs the risk of overcooking them.

Cooking them in separate containers with PIP technique slows the cooking process. Simply fill the inner pot with water and place the food in a container / stackable pots on the rack. Covering the container with a double layer of foil or a lid also slows down cooking time.

Take a look at some of my instant pot steamed vegetable recipes that you can cook using this method.

What Is A Natural Pressure Release Vs Quick Release

What is Instant Hot Pot Cooking?

Two methods can be used to release pressure: natural release and quick release.

Natural pressure release is just that you leave the lids valve in the sealing position and allow the pressure to dissipate naturally over time. It can take anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour, depending on what youre cooking. High-liquid meals, like soup and chili, require more time than low-liquid dishes .

Theres also a quick release option . Youll carefully move the valve into the venting position here, releasing the pressure manually. Steam will shoot out of the vent until all the pressure is released. The quick release method is much faster, but it will still take time to release the steam through the vent, especially for very high-liquid meals, like soup.

Which method you use depends on the food youre making. There are cases for both. With a natural pressure release, the Instant Pot is still full of pressure, so the food will continue cooking as the pressure naturally dissipates. This is good for soups and stews, braised meats, and whenever you have time. Manual pressure release is useful when cooking needs to be stopped as fast as possible, like with steaming vegetables, cooking potatoes and eggs, pasta and rice.

A good recipe should say which method to use. If in doubt, you can do a hybrid release where you do a 10 minute natural release, then manually release the remaining pressure.

» Wondering if the Instant Pot is Dishwasher Safe?

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How Do I Use My Instant Pot

If you are a beginner, you probably got confused with all the buttons on the Instant Pot. It looks so intimidating and you think that if you press the wrong button, you will ruing your special dinner. Well, I have a great tip for you:

Forget about all the buttons and focus only on the most used ones: Pressure Cook, Cancel, Saute and + – . That’s all :]

Some models have a “manual” button instead of “pressure cook”. They are exactly the same.

After a while, you may want to use the slow cooker setting or change the pressure level.

But for now, focus only on the buttons above. It’s enough to make 99% of the best Instant Pot recipes on Corrie Cooks.

Instant Pot Chicken With Quinoa Pistachios And Apricots

This is going to be your new go-to healthy weeknight dinner. Full of protein and fiber, this dish is light, yet satisfying. The heat of the chile and ginger balance out the sweetness of the apricot, and the pistachios provide a pleasant crunch.

Get the Recipe: Instant Pot Chicken with Quinoa, Pistachios and Apricots

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Smart Program Pressure Cooking

If you choose to use one of the pre-set smart program options, the steps are even simpler. Please refer to our post on Smart Program Instant Pot Buttons Explained for how to adjust each setting.

Step 1. Start the Instant Pot. Insert the inner pot into the cooker base.

Step 2. Add ingredients and liquids to the inner pot. Stir if needed or leave layered.

Step 3. Secure and lock the lid. Make sure everything feels well sealed.

Step 4. Select one of the Smart Program buttons. Pre-set cooking time and pressure level will display. You can leave it as is or adjust things like the pressure level from HIGH to LOW. You can press the Smart Program button again to cycle through the Less, Normal and More time options or use the and + buttons to adjust the cooking time further. If you make any adjustments to the selected Smart Program, they will be remembered next time you use it.

Step 5. Preheating & pressurizing stage begins followed by cooking under pressure as per program settings. Once the Instant Pot beeps again and the timer has reached zero, the cooking process is done.

Step 6. You can do a quick release or allow the built-up pressure to release naturally , or do both depending on the food/recipe.

Step 10. Once pressure is released, open the lid and stir or remove the contents.

How To Make Mac And Cheese In The Instant Pot


You can jump to the recipe card for full ingredients & instructions!

  • Add noodles, water, and seasonings to the Instant Pot, and cook briefly to cook the noodles.
  • Stir in the butter and cheese, and then the heavy cream.
  • Serve it up and enjoy!
  • Instant Pot mac and cheese will have your favorite dish ready in just 15 minutes and it comes out so creamy and delicious.

    But if you dont have a pressure cooker, try my recipes for crockpot mac or cheese or baked mac and cheese instead. For something a little different, try this skillet white cheddar mac and cheese!

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    Instant Pot Recipes To Make Next

    Heres the scope of whats possible in your Instant Pot. Eventually youll hone in on what makes sense for you. Youre the boss of this thing, so have fun!

    • Hard-boiled eggs in the Instant Pot are actually steamed. The plus with them? So easy to peel!
    • Do you love cooking dry beans from scratch? In the Instant Pot, they are fast and plump in the pressure cooker. A game-changer.
    • Regular steamed rice in an Instant Pot frees you to focus on cooking the rest of the meal. An IP is essentially a rice cooker on steroids.

    Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers

    You can make hearty stuffed peppers without the long bake time, thanks to your Instant Pot! Just build the ground beef and rice filling in the Instant Pot itself, then stuff into large bell peppers and pressure-cook until perfectly tender. Finish off with some extra-sharp Cheddar and chopped parsley for a great weeknight meal.

    Get the Recipe: Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers

    Also Check: Instant Pot Models Comparison

    Best Instant Pot Recipes With Chicken

    Whether you want a tasty dinner with chicken breasts, whole chook, wings or frozen poultry, these are some of the most popular Instant Pot chicken recipes. We have separate roundups for individual types of poultry meat if youre interested in one of these in particular: chicken breast recipes, chicken thighs, frozen chicken recipes, whole chicken, wings, turkey.

    Instant Pot Parts And Accessories

    Instant Pot Vegetables 101: How To Cook Guide
  • Base Unit this contains the heating element.
  • Stainless Steel Inner Pot fits into the base unit.
  • Lid the look of the lid varies between Instant Pot models.
  • Steam Release Valve this fits on the top of the lid and may already be attached.
  • Condensation Collector attach this to the back of your Instant Pot.
  • Trivet be sure to keep this, as you will use it often.
  • Power Cord removable in some Instant Pot models.
  • Measuring Cup & Utensils These come with the Instant Pot. I use my own measuring cups and utensils instead of these.
  • The first thing youll want to do is wash the parts of your Instant Pot. The Instant Pot lid, steam release valve and stainless steel inner pot are dishwasher safe however, I wash mine by hand. The base unit is not dishwasher safe never immerse the base unit in water.

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    How To Prepare Classic Holiday Dishes With Just An Instant Pot

    Posted: Dec 23, 2022 / 02:43 AM MST

    Posted: Dec 23, 2022 / 02:43 AM MST

    With the holiday right around the corner, you might be wondering how youll find time to prepare a holiday meal this year. Holiday prep can feel like a daunting task between the main course, side dishes and dessert. Luckily, you can cook many holiday meals in an Instant Pot with little effort, and no one will know the difference.

    Smart Program Cooking Option

    You can also choose to select the RICE smart program button. This program cooks on low pressure and is best used for white rice. For rice with a firmer texture or thinner rice like Jasmine or Basmati, use the Less mode for rice with a normal texture or regular long-grain or medium-grain white rice, use the Normal mode for rice with a softer texture, use the More mode. You can change the modes by pressing the RICE button again. Use quick release at the end.

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    Can You Pressure Can Russet Potatoes

    Is it a good idea to use pressure can russet potatoes Well answer all of these questions in this guide. Pressure can russet potatoes are a type of potato that is grown in the UK.

    They have a soft, buttery texture and are often used in baking and as a cooking utensil. They are also drought-resistant and have a long shelf life. Read more: Can you pressure can russet potatoes

    When it comes to using pressure can russet potatoes, theres no one right answer. Some people find them to be helpful while others dont. Ultimately, the decision comes down to personal preference.

    Soft & Hard Boiled Eggs

    Instant Pot Whole Chicken Easy Chicken Gravy Recipe

    Eggs are a great source of protein, fats, and nutrients plus, they are affordable and highly versatile. The best thing about cooking boiled eggs in the Instant Pot is that you can add them in, press the button, and walk away. There is no need to wait for the water to boil first or to stand over the pot with a timer. Its also super convenient for those times when you cant use the stove for whatever reason.

    From Healthy Little Vittles, this 8-ingredient, refined sugar-free naturally sweetened apple butter is made in just 20-minutes and no peeling is necessary!

    Also Check: Can You Cook Frozen Meat In An Instant Pot

    How To Cook With The Instant Pot

    How you use your Instant Pot depends on what you’re cooking. But, many recipes — especially those involving meat — tend to follow this formula:

  • Set the Insant Pot to Saute mode. Add oil and brown your protein, like beef or chicken. Aromatics, like garlic and onion, are browned in this step, too.
  • Hit the Cancel button. Now tap Manual, followed by Pressure. Tap it again to go into High Pressure mode Use the plus and minus buttons to set the cook time.
  • Place the lid on the Instant Pot and lock it into place. You should hear a lovely little sound letting you know it’s locked.
  • Make sure the valve built into the lid is in the Sealing position.
  • When the Instant Pot builds enough pressure, the red button will pop up. Now the cook time will officially begin.
  • The above steps can vary quite a bit, depending on the recipe, but most of what I cook in my Instant Pot follows that sequence.

    Here, the Instant Pot’s valve is in Sealing position.

    Meal Prep Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

    Cook a couple of pounds of chicken at the start of the week, shred it up, and you have the base for an infinite number of quick and easy meals. This version of the meal prep staple is so flavorful, you don’t need to do much– or really anything– to dress it up. But if you want to, we have plenty of ideas.

    Get the Recipe: Instant Pot Chili

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    Instant Pot Beef Curry

    This rich, savory Japanese-style beef curry is typically made with little blocks of store-bought Japanese curry roux. Since the dish comes together so fast in an Instant Pot®, we use the time gained to make a homemade roux with basic pantry ingredients. Combined with Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, grated apple and beef broth, the result is a mildly sweet, spicy curry packed with extra umami. You can serve it over white rice or udon noodles. You can also make it without the beef and pour the sauce over Japanese-style breaded and fried pork or chicken cutlets .

    Get the Recipe: Instant Pot Beef Curry

    The Instant Pot’s Lightning

    10 Instant Pot Dinners That Everyone Loves

    The Instant Pot boasts some impressively quick cook times, especially for smaller vegetables and cuts of meat. According to Paint The Kitchen Red, the machine can cook asparagus in zero minutes at high pressure. Broccoli also apparently cooks in zero time, and shrimp only takes one minute. These miraculously speedy times come with a big caveat: they’re the time it cakes to cook something once the Instant Pot has come up to pressure. It generally takes at least 10 minutes for the appliance to pressurize, longer if you’re cooking a high volume of food or if your ingredients are frozen. Then you have to release the pressure to access your food, which can take up to half an hour if you’re using the natural release. Suddenly, that zero-minute broccoli has turned into 45-minute broccoli.

    For this reason, it’s generally a good idea to save your Instant Pot for recipes that would normally take a long time. The Instant Pot makes foods like homemade stock, dried beans, and large chunks of braised meat all take minutes rather than hours to cook. For little things like steamed vegetables and chicken breasts, you won’t save much time or energy by using the Instant Pot instead of conventional methods.

    Read Also: How To Cook Duck In An Instant Pot

    You Shouldn’t Use The Quick Pressure Release For Everything

    There are two ways to release the pressure from your Instant Pot after your food is done. The fastest way to do this is by hitting the quick release switch. This will cause a jet of steam to shoot out of the pressure valve of your Instant Pot. This method is great because it allows you to open the lid safely within a couple of minutes, but it’s not a good choice for some cooking applications. Liquid-heavy preparations like stock that require filling the pot to the max fluid line can cause hot broth to shoot out of the release vent, which can make a big mess and force you to deep clean your pot’s lid.

    The quick-release is also dangerous for starchy foods like oatmeal that make a lot of foam during the cooking process . This foam can ooze out of the steam vent during quick release. The fast temperature loss that occurs during depressurization may also make braised meats tougher. For all of these applications, natural release, where you simply wait for the food to cool down on its own, will give you better results and won’t spray liquid all over your kitchen. If you don’t want to wait that long, opt for a hybrid technique and let your food sit for around 10 minutes before hitting the release switch.

    Instant Pot Dimensions: How Big Are They

    Depending on how big your kitchen is, or how much weight youre comfortable lifting, knowing the size and weight of each Instant Pot model can be important to your decision-making process. Heres a quick look at the Instant Pot dimensions side by side.

    To start, for the different Instant Pot sizes , there are variations in length by width by height along with the weight. Overall, the dimensions are all pretty close for each quart-size within an inch or less. And the same goes for weight.

    And one more note: this post contains affiliate links. This means I may receive a small commission if you buy through my link. You wont pay any more if you use this link.

    Overall, heres a quick summary of the Instant Pot dimensions, as provided by the company, in general before we drive into the specifics

    16.34 15.8 lbs

    There is only one 10 quart Instant Pot option currently available, as part of the Duo Nova series.

    * The Instant Pot Duo Crisp + Air Fryer comes with two lids, depending on the cooking method youre planning to use. Overall the height of this Instant Pot increases by about an inch when using it as an Air Fryer. This also makes it the heaviest Instant Pot 8 Quart Models. The rest of the 8 quart models are approximately 15 1/2 lbs.

    And one suggestion comes to mind if the overall Instant Pot weight has you nervous. Try lifting it in pieces . Each part contributes to the overall Instant Pot weight.

    Lets take a look at each Instant Pot size, series by series.

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