Under Pressure: Instant Pot Favorites

under pressure

 

I'm not an early adopter. In fact, if I finally embrace a new technology, style or fad, it's a sure sign that it's on the way out. So I was certainly not the first mom to jump on the Instant Pot bandwagon. While everyone else claimed the Instant Pot was changing their lives, I was holding firm to my crock pot. We'd had a long and happy relationship and I didn't have room (literally, no cabinet space) for a new appliance in my life...

But when my rice cooker gave out and I learned that I could cook rice in the Instant Pot, I suddenly had the justification I needed: swapping one appliance for another was cabinet-space neutral. A few days later a giant box was at my doorstep. Several days after that, it was still in the box staring me down from the dining room table. I would not be defeated by an appliance but, I must admit, I was a little intimidated-okay, terrified-to get started. It's been a few months now and I am by no means an expert, but I am a convert. I'm still a complete Instant Pot neophyte but, after some experimentation, our family definitely has some Instant Pot favorites.

 

 

Red Beans and Rice

This simple recipe is a huge hit in our house. Technically it's a side dish, but we throw it on a plate with some salad or veggies and call it dinner. Warning: there are never any leftovers.

Ingredients

3 bacon slices, chopped into ¼ inch pieces

1 onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 large pinches of cayenne

1 cup long-grain white rice

2 (15 ounce) cans red kidney beans, rinsed
and drained

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

 

Directions

Select Sauté to preheat Instant Pot. Once hot, add bacon and cook until lightly crisp. Remove and set aside. Add onion and sauté for 2 minutes. Add bell pepper and cook for 2 more minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute more until onion is translucent. Add cayenne and bacon and stir. Add the rice, beans and broth and stir. Season with salt and pepper and secure lid. Select Manual and cook at high temperature for 5 minutes. Once cooking is complete, use natural release for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.

Source: The Instant Pot® Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook, Laurel Randolph

 

 

Lentil Rice Soup

This is another family favorite that's perfect for chilly winter evenings or thrown into a Thermos en route to a ball game.

 

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 carrots, finely chopped

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon herbes de Provence

⅛ teaspoon black pepper

6 cups vegetable broth

1 cup dried lentils, rinsed and sorted

¼ cup uncooked rice, rinsed well

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Sour cream (optional)

 

Directions

Press Sauté; heat oil in Instant Pot®. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic; cook and stir 5 minutes or until vegetables are softened. Add salt, herbes de Provence and pepper; cook and stir 30 seconds. Stir in broth, lentils and rice; mix well.

Secure lid and move pressure release valve to Seal position. Press Manual; cook at high pressure for 10 minutes.

When cooking is complete, use natural release for 10 minutes, then release the remaining pressure. Stir in parsley. Top with sour cream, if desired.

Source: Instant Pot® Favorite Recipes

 

 

Minestrone Soup

This soup makes an almost weekly appearance at our house. It's easily adapted depending on what's in your pantry. No potatoes? No problem. Substitute frozen
spinach for kale, if needed, or
swap out cannellini beans with
red kidney beans.

 

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 medium carrots, chopped

3 stalks celery, chopped

2 cloves, garlic, minced

1 ½ teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

¼ teaspoon black pepper

⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 russet potatoes peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces

4 cups vegetable broth

2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

1 can diced tomatoes

1 bunch kale, stemmed and chopped

Shredded Parmesan cheese, optional

Directions

Press Sauté; heat oil in Instant Pot. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic; cook and stir for 5 minutes or until vegetables are softened. Add salt, Italian seasoning, black pepper and red pepper flakes; cook and stir 1 minute. Stir in potatoes, broth, beans and tomatoes; mix well.

Secure lid and move pressure valve to Sealing position. Press Manual; cook at high pressure for 3 minutes.

When cooking is complete, press Cancel and use quick release. Stir in kale. Secure lid and move pressure release valve to Sealing position. Press Manual; cook at High pressure for 2 minutes.

When cooking is complete, use natural release for 5 minutes, then release the remaining pressure. Serve with cheese, if desired.

Source: Instant Pot® Favorite Recipes

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