I was so excited to get my Instant Pot. Then after a few weeks of having it, I still hadn’t opened it. I’ll admit that I was a little afraid to use it. Then I started small and got some quick wins with using it and kept learning the best ways to cook with it.
In this article I’ll share with you some great hacks you can use to become an Instant Pot pro.
Cook Frozen Meats
We buy a lot of frozen chicken breasts and use them for several meals a month. With the instant pot, you can cook them frozen with no problems. Just remember to add more minutes to the cooking time to account for the frozen meat.
Make hard boiled eggs
Honestly, this was the first thing I did with my instant pot. I figured it was simple and would help me break into using the instant pot. And I love it!
You can add several eggs in the IP and boil them perfectly. An added bonus is they are so easy to peel. I use this as my favorite video as a reminder any time I forget how to do it.
The instant pot makes perfect hard boiled eggs! So easy to peel that I peel one of them one handed in this video!I got my Instant Pot on Amazon here: http://…
This was another great addition. I love making mashed potatoes with the instant pot. You can put as many as you need for a meal and they cook evenly and taste yummy when finished.
Verify Recipe times
One of the bad experiences I had with the ip is I followed a recipe online on how to make the perfect turkey breast and was very excited about the whole process, but they recipe was vague on the cook time for the breast and I ended up under cooking the breast. Fortunately I was able to turn it back on and add more minutes to get it right.
One thing I’ve noticed is a lot of blogs try to translate a slow cooker recipe to an instant pot recipe, but the times are way off.
I’m not always a fan of using the microwave to reheat leftovers, but using the stove or oven isn’t always feasible either. That’s where the instant pot comes in handy. Just add your leftovers to the pot and use the steam function with a cup of water at the bottom. Make sure you use something like a Pyrex dish to keep the leftovers in.
Ok, I got really into the Great British Bakoff and was amazed at how easily the bakers would make jam. And using the instant pot makes it even easier.
Just add your fruit and some honey and cook it in your IP.
Here are more recipes using your instant pot
Make Perfect Potato Salad
I love potato salad. I’m more of a mustard, pickle based fan.
With the instant pot, you can cook your potatoes AND boil you eggs at the same time. Just follow this recipe to get your favorite potato salad cooked in no time.
This is my favorite thing to make right now. Just get a bag of apples, core and peel them. Cut them in 1-2″ pieces and add just a little brown sugar and cook it up.
This makes the best apple sauce in no time.
Clean the Ring
One of the not so great things about the instant pot is the ring can start to smell. The ring helps keep a pressurized lid and after several cooks, it takes on different smells. To clean the instant pot ring, just add some water, vinegar and some lemons and set the IP on steam for 5 minutes.
If that still doesn’t work, then make sure to get a separate ring for savory and for sweets.
Cooking times are actually longer
All the recipes you’ll read don’t seem to include the heating time it takes for the IP to pressurize. This can throw off your cooking because just pressurizing your IP can take 10 to 15 minutes. Adjust your prep and family accordingly. And, as we’ve talked about before, the recipe times can be off as well when people translate a traditional recipe to an instant pot recipe.
Get a Few Accessories
The IP is great, but there are a few things that can make it better.
- See through lid is perfect for the times you’re using the instant pot as a slow cooker and not as a pressure cooker. Having a see through lid allows you to take off the cover to stir and check on your food.
- Trivet that is tall so you can put the water in the bottom and stack your food on top.
- Steamers that go inside. Being able to cook multiple foods together in your instant pot is one of the magical moments of having it, but sometimes you want to keep them separate in the IP. Get a steamer that fits inside and you’re good to go. I got this one from IKEA and it works perfectly. It’s the STABIL
You just need to get a spring form pan, find your favorite cheesecake recipe and go to town. There are several recipes to find out there that will help you with making an IP cheesecake.
This one is on my list the next time we sit down to watch a movie. One of the best features about the IP is it’s saute function. Just add your favorite oil like coconut oil, add the popcorn kernels and watch them pop.
Make Red Wine
This guy shared how he made red wine in his instant pot and even shares the recipe so you can make it too. Go through the process and see if it’s worth it.
Download this printable
The blogger at One Good Thing created an awesome printable that gives a great reference for how long to cook some of the most popular foods in the instant pot. Just print it out and add it somewhere in your kitchen for quick reference.
Freeze leftovers in round containers
Making sure any leftovers will fit in your instant pot, then make sure you get containers big enough for the leftovers, but small enough to fit inside the instant pot.
Then, when you want to reheat the leftovers you can easily put them in the instant pot to reheat and serve. Don’t forget to add the water in the bottom to pressurize.
Use the lid holder
There is a nifty hole in the handles where your instant pot lid rests nicely. This is great to keep your counter top clutter free while cooking with the instant pot. It took watching the woman with the boiled eggs to see how awesome it is to use the lid holder.
Get a permanent place for your Instant Pot
Right now I have to pull my instant pot out and put it on a small area on my counter top to cook. Then I have to drag everything that goes with it out along. My kitchen is a little small right now, but we are working to renovate the kitchen and I have a special cabinet counter top area that will be specifically for cooking with my instant pot. I’ll be able to keep all my ip related things together and will have enough counter space to move around while cooking with my instant pot.