I have gotten so many comments and questions lately on the Instant Pot. Yesterday this hilarious comment showed up on social media from my friend Dana, “So…I finally got an Instant Pot, and wouldn’t you know, the instructions said to have Lane come over and make something for you.” Although I laughed, and said that I would be SO happy to go over and make food for her (you can hold me to this, Dana!) this actually made this Friday’s Good Food Reads: Instant Pot really easy to write. Let’s talk about the Instant Pot!
Good Food Reads: Instant Pot Confessions. I was given my Instant Pot as a gift (that I asked for), and when it came, I was so intimidated, I put it on a shelf downstairs and ignored it. For almost a year. But then as this gadget became more popular, I became more curious. Was this really a time saver? Would this really change my life? What all can this Instant Pot do?
Let’s start with the last question first. Instant Pot is a brand of pressure cooker. It is electric so all it requires is a spot on your counter near an electrical outlet (preferably not under a cabinet). There are several options when looking at Instant Pot, the differences mostly having to do with size (6 quart versus 8 quart, and now even a mini!) and a few functions. I have this one which is the 6 quart, 7-in-1 variety, which works perfectly for me. My Instant Pot serves as a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, sauté, yogurt maker, and warmer. This is a lot of power in one gadget! If you don’t feel you’ll use the yogurt function, you can get the 6-in-1 Instant Pot and it will be a little less expensive. Also if you take a look at the 6-in-1 and scroll down, there is a great comparison chart on the different features offered.
Still not convinced? Not sure how you would use the Instant Pot? Need to read more about how to use the Instant Pot? Melissa Clark at the New York Times published this great article that is super helpful for getting started! The Kitchn staff also has a piece about their thoughts after using the Instant Pot for 8 months. (spoiler alert, they fell in love, but if you still need to be convinced, read this!)
Sold? Great. Let’s get started! I recommend getting your Instant Pot out IMMEDIATELY and performing the water test. (The longer you wait, the more tempted you will be to put it downstairs on a shelf. Like I did. And I’m begging you, don’t do this.) This will get you familiar with the parts of the Pot. Unfortunately reading the instruction manual is part of the gig, it is a pressure cooker after all, so safety is important. Once you’ve got your pot out and tested, the sky is the limit! The Instant Pot is particularly good for shredded meats, cooking with dried beans, lentils, soups, and the list goes on and on. I haven’t made near enough things with my Instant Pot (yet) but below is a list of our Instant Pot recipes, a list of Instant Pot recipes I’ve tried and liked, and a glimpse of what is next up on my Instant Pot “to make” list!
The Instant Pot recipes that we’ve created are Instant Pot Korean Inspired Pulled Pork, Instant Pot Chipotle Black Bean Soup, and Instant Pot Thai Butternut Squash Soup. We’ve gotten great feedback on these recipes and I make them for my family frequently! (In fact, we had the pulled pork just last night) If you’ve tried and liked any of these, by all means, go to the corresponding link above and leave a comment and a rating! As always, we love to see what you’re making so if you make any of our recipes, snap a picture, post it on any of the social media channels and tag us or use the hashtag #WithTwoSpoons!
Other great recipes I’ve tried with my Instant Pot are these fabulous Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes by Pinch of Yum that we had for Thanksgiving. They were easy and flavorful, plus I was able to free up my oven for the turkey and stuffing. Win! Pressure Cooker Corn on the Cob by This Old Gal is some of the best corn on the cob I’ve ever had and it was so simple. Made in the high heat of Arizona, it didn’t heat up the kitchen a bit! Instant Pot Butter Chicken by Jo Cooks was a hit, even with my kids. I’ve also made wine poached pears, apple cinnamon steel cut oatmeal, beets, and sweet potatoes.
Recipes that I can’t wait to try (and this is not in any way a comprehensive list-there are SO many great recipes out there):
Simple Instant Pot White Bean Soup by HeartBeet Kitchen
Chili Garlic Instant Pot Noodles by Pinch of Yum
Instant Pot Bacon Ranch Potatoes by Chasing Saturdays (now that I know how easy potatoes are, I can’t wait to try some variations!)
Crispy Chicken Carnitas by Little Spice Jar
Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Meatballs by What Great Grandma Ate
Instant Pot Roast Beef by Teaspoon of Goodness
Pressure Cooker Asian Meatballs by Asian Caucasian
Instant Pot Orange Chicken by Sweet and Savory Meals (they also have a Mongolian Chicken recipe if that is more your speed)
Easy Vegan Cauliflower Chickpea Curry by FoodFaithFitness
Best Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup by Sidewalk Shoes
and last but not least, my kids can’t wait until I start hitting up this list… 23 Instant Pot Dessert Recipes by LollyJane
So to answer all of our Good Food Reads: Instant Pot questions. YES-this is time saver (it does take some time for the pot to come up to pressure, but this is all hands off time). YES-it changed my life (for the better). YES-the Instant Pot can make quick work of frozen foods, dried beans, and tough cuts of meats, plus acting as a slow cooker, steamer, rice maker and more!
For more Instant Pot inspiration, follow our Pinterest Board: Instant Pot
Do you have anything to add to my “Instant Pot Must Try” list? Tell us below!