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7 Essential Recipes for Mastering Your Instant Pot

The hottest kitchen helper to land on your counter does so much. The Instant Pot and its competitors promise to do everything except clean up. It's an electric pressure cooker -- no more worrying about pots exploding on the stovetop -- plus, a steamer, a braiser, a genius slow-cooking soup maker, an incubator for dreamy yogurt and a mini oven all rolled into one. Here are 7 brilliant recipes that put this multitasker through its paces and make you the big winner.


Photo by Meredith Publishing

1) Carnitas

This shows off the clever combo of saute and pressure cooking in the same vessel! Pro tip: Cook it 20 minutes longer for extra tender pork and pile that pig on a warm corn tortilla for the best taco you've ever eaten.

Midwest Living-Out and About-Ethnic Food/Neighborhoods-CMR#

Photo via Meredith Publishing

2) Lobster Tails Steamed in Beer

Add two ingredients, hit the button and minutes later, you're ready to celebrate a Tuesday night, right? Only challenge is deciding just how much melted butter everybody needs.


Photo by Denise

3) Yogurt Cheese

Once you've mastered making yogurt in the Instant Pot -- again, a set it and forget it project -- take that creamy delight to the Next Level by turning it into cheese. Friends and family are going to be so impressed when you serve this easy-to-make appetizer that can be dressed up or enjoyed straight up.


Photo by Josephine Roeper

4) Slow Cooker Pumpkin Turkey Chili

This chili has so much character, with a smidge of pumpkin pie spice pulling the sweet quality from everyone's fave fall squash. Double the batch to feed a crowd.

Tequila Chili in light blue bowl

Photo by Meredith

5) Matar Pulao (Rice with Peas)

The Instant Pot makes the rice cooker redundant, steaming those grains, no sweat. But take that basic long grain experience to an exotic place with this Middle Eastern dish that includes aromatic spices like clove. Butter Lamb Gravy on the side makes for a plate bursting with color, each bite delivering an explosion of flavor.

6) Slow Cooker Oats

Put this one together the night before and wake up to a kitchen perfumed in warm spices. Here's the wicked twist, though. You could also do this recipe, quickie-style if you go instead with the pressure cooker function, which takes steel-cut oats from dry to velvety smooth in a fraction of the time it takes on the stove top.

7) Cajun Chicken Pasta

Let's work on those sauté skills by diving into this crazy popular recipe. The cayenne-fueled seasoning gives it Cajun cred, while the cream adds a touch of Creole cuisine. It all adds up to a spectacular 4.5 star rating from nearly 1,400 reviewers.


Photo by Tricia Winterle Jaeger

More recipes to try:
Instant Pot® Short Ribs
Instant Pot® Mushroom Risotto


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About Leslie Kelly

Always hungry to learn, never had my fill of oysters, Memphis dry rub ribs, wild salmon, chocolate chip cookies or a well-rolled lumpia. Washington state wine lover, bourbon fan. Totally obsessed with brunch!