If you’re looking for quick and healthy meal ideas, the instant pot will be your new best friend. This beloved kitchen appliance can help you create flavorful and nutritious dishes in a fraction of the time it would take with traditional cooking methods. Whether you’re a busy parent trying to feed a family or just looking for easy meal prep options, these top 10 healthy instant pot recipes are bound to become staples in your kitchen. From soups and stews to grains and proteins, there’s something for everyone on this list.
The Instant Pot has become a staple in many households due to its versatile nature and convenience. It is a kitchen appliance that can perform the functions of a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, and stockpot warmer, all in one. The Instant Pot has made cooking healthy meals at home easier and quicker. Its benefits outweigh the initial cost of purchasing it. In this article, we will look at the top 10 healthy instant pot recipes that you can prepare in the comfort of your home.
Benefits of Cooking with Instant Pot
Instant Pot has become a popular kitchen appliance due to its convenience and time-saving capabilities. This multifunctional electric pressure cooker can cook various dishes, including top 10 healthy recipes, with ease. Here are some benefits of cooking with Instant Pot:
Faster Cooking Times
Instant Pot cooks food faster than traditional stovetop or oven cooking. The appliance is designed with a sealed lid that traps steam, creating a high-pressure environment that can cook food faster. For example, a pot roast that would typically take hours to cook on the stove can be ready in less than an hour with an Instant Pot. This means that busy individuals or families can enjoy healthy meals without sacrificing valuable time.
Preservation of Nutrients in Food
Cooking with an Instant Pot can help preserve the nutrients in the food. The high-pressure environment and shorter cooking time help retain the vitamins and minerals that can be lost through traditional cooking methods. For example, steaming vegetables in an Instant Pot can help them retain more nutrients compared to boiling or microwaving them.
The Instant Pot’s cooking process also keeps food from being overcooked, which can cause nutrient loss. With the device’s precise temperature control, food can be cooked just right, ensuring that its nutritional value is maintained.
Instant Pot can save energy compared to other cooking methods. The pressure cooking function uses less electricity than a typical oven, and the shorter cooking time can reduce cooking energy usage by up to 70%. Also, since the Instant Pot is a single appliance that can perform various cooking functions, you can save time and energy by not using multiple devices.
Top 10 Healthy Instant Pot Recipes
Looking for healthy meal ideas that can be cooked easily? The Instant Pot is the perfect appliance to create delicious and healthy meals in minutes. Here are the top 10 healthy Instant Pot recipes that you can try:
1. Chicken, Quinoa, and Sweet Potato Soup
This soup is a perfect combination of sweet and savory flavors. To make this soup, you will need sweet potatoes, quinoa, chicken broth, chicken breasts, and garlic cloves. Cook everything for 30 minutes, and you’re good to go.
2. Lentil and Vegetable Soup
Lentil and vegetable soup is a great and healthy vegetarian meal that you can enjoy any time of the day. You will need lentils, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and vegetable broth to make this soup. Cook everything for 15 minutes in the Instant Pot, and your soup is ready to serve.
3. Stuffed Bell Peppers
If you’re looking for a healthy and filling meal, then stuffed bell peppers are the perfect option. To make this dish, you will need ground turkey or beef, bell peppers, brown rice, onion, garlic, and tomato sauce. Cook everything for 25 minutes in the Instant Pot, and you’ll have a tasty and healthy meal ready in no time.
Stuffed bell peppers offer a lot of room for adding creativity to your meals. Experiment with different stuffing ingredients and spices to find a combination that suits your taste.
4. Greek Chicken with Brown Rice
This Mediterranean-inspired dish uses chicken breasts, brown rice, tomatoes, and olives. Add some Greek spices, like oregano, and cook everything for 25 minutes in the Instant Pot. This recipe is a perfect blend of healthy and delicious.
5. Vegan and Gluten-Free Chili
This vegan and gluten-free chili is perfect for nights when you need something warm and comforting. To make this recipe, you will need kidney beans, black beans, onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, and chili powder. Cook it all for 15 minutes, and you’re good to go.
6. Turkey Breast with Vegetables
This recipe is perfect for a healthy and filling dinner. To make this dish, you will need turkey breast, carrots, potatoes, and onion. You can add other vegetables of your choice, like celery or bell pepper. Cook everything together for 30 minutes, and you’ll have a complete meal ready to serve.
7. Broccoli and Cheese Soup
This soup is a healthy twist on the classic broccoli and cheese soup recipe. You will need broccoli, vegetable broth, diced onion, cheddar cheese, and cream. Cook everything together for 15 minutes, and your delicious and healthy soup is ready to serve.
8. Beef Stew
A hearty beef stew is perfect for chilly nights. To make this recipe, you will need beef stew meat, carrots, potatoes, onion, and beef broth. Add some spices like thyme or rosemary for extra flavor. Cook everything for 35 minutes, and you’ll have a comforting and healthy meal ready to serve.
9. Chicken and Brown Rice
This dish is simple yet delicious. You will need chicken breasts, brown rice, onion, garlic, and chicken broth. Cook everything for 25 minutes, and your healthy and filling meal is ready to serve.
10. Sweet Potato and Turkey Chili
This recipe is perfect for those who love sweet and spicy combinations. You will need sweet potatoes, ground turkey, diced onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, and chili powder. Cook everything for 20 minutes, and you’ll have a healthy and flavorful chili ready to serve.
With these top 10 healthy Instant Pot recipes, you can enjoy nutritious and delicious meals in no time. Try them out and customize the recipes according to your taste and dietary requirements.
Vegetarian Instant Pot Recipes
The Instant Pot has revolutionized meal prep for many people. It saves time and effort, by allowing you to cook healthy and delicious meals with minimal effort. Whether you are a vegetarian, vegan or just looking to incorporate more plant-based meals into your diet, Instant Pots are an absolute game-changer. Here are some of the top vegetarian Instant Pot recipes that you can try out.
1. Instant Pot Lentil Soup
This is a great recipe to warm up on a cold day. It’s made with green lentils, carrots, celery, onion, spices, and vegetable broth. Simply put all the ingredients in the Instant Pot and let it do the work. You’ll have a hearty and filling soup in no time!
2. Instant Pot Cauliflower and Broccoli Curry
This curry recipe is flavorful and easy to make. It’s loaded with veggies and spices, making it a nutritious meal option. You can serve it with rice or naan bread for a complete meal.
3. Instant Pot Butternut Squash Risotto
If you’re looking for a comfort food recipe that’s both healthy and delicious, then this risotto recipe is perfect for you. The butternut squash gives it a creamy texture, while the Arborio rice makes it filling. You can add some parmesan cheese to the top for a little extra flavor.
4. Instant Pot Tofu Tikka Masala
This vegetarian spin on a classic Indian dish is one of the easiest meals to make in the Instant Pot. The tofu is marinated with spices, then added to a tomato-based sauce. The result is a creamy and savory dish that’s perfect for a weeknight dinner. You can serve it with rice and naan bread for a complete meal.
- To make this recipe extra special, serve it with a side of vegan raita. Simply mix some dairy-free yogurt, diced cucumber, fresh mint, and a pinch of salt.
- You can use store-bought tikka masala sauce if you don’t want to make it from scratch.
Instant Pot Recipes for Meat Lovers
For meat lovers who want to eat healthily, instant pot recipes are a great option. These recipes are quick, easy to make, and can satisfy one’s taste buds. Here are some tasty and healthy instant pot recipes for meat lovers to try at home.
Pulled pork is a classic dish which can be easily prepared in an instant pot. This recipe is a perfect mix of sweet and savory flavors. To make this dish, all you need is some boneless pork shoulder, brown sugar, garlic, apple cider vinegar, and spices like chili powder, cumin, and paprika.
- First, add all the ingredients in the instant pot and mix them well.
- Next, add some water and cook for 90 minutes on high pressure.
- Once the cooking time is up, release the pressure naturally and let the pork rest for a few minutes.
- Finally, shred the pork with a fork and serve with your favorite sides.
Beef chili is a healthy and flavorful dish that can keep you warm on a cold day. Here’s how to make it in your instant pot:
- Start by browning some ground beef in the instant pot.
- Next, add onions, garlic, bell peppers, spices like chili powder, cumin, and cinnamon, and canned tomatoes.
- Finally, add some kidney beans and cook everything on high pressure for about 20 minutes.
- Release the pressure naturally and serve the chili with toppings like sour cream, cheese, and cilantro.
Chicken Tikka Masala
If you’re craving Indian food, chicken tikka masala is a healthy and delicious option. Here’s how to make it in your instant pot:
- Cut some boneless chicken into cubes and marinate it in yogurt, lemon juice, and spices like garam masala, cumin, and coriander for at least 1 hour.
- Saute some onions, garlic, and ginger in the instant pot, then add the chicken and any remaining marinade.
- Add canned tomatoes, some cream, and cook everything on high pressure for 10 minutes.
- Let the pressure release naturally and serve with rice or naan bread.
A perfectly cooked roast beef can be challenging to achieve, but an instant pot can make the process easier. Here’s how:
- Start by browning the beef on all sides in the instant pot.
- Add some beef broth, garlic, rosemary, and thyme to the pot.
- Cook everything on high pressure for 60 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally.
- Serve the roast beef with some roasted vegetables for a healthy and satisfying meal.
Honey Garlic Chicken
This instant pot honey garlic chicken recipe is sweet, savory, and packed with flavor. Here’s how to make it:
- Add some boneless chicken, garlic, honey, soy sauce, and spices like ginger and red pepper flakes in the instant pot.
- Cook everything on high pressure for 10 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally.
- Remove the chicken and thicken the sauce with some cornstarch.
- Serve the chicken with some steamed broccoli or rice.
Instant Pot Recipes for Weight Loss
When it comes to weight loss, one of the most important factors is eating a healthy and balanced diet. And with the help of your Instant Pot, preparing healthy meals has never been easier. Here are some delicious and nutritious Instant Pot recipes that can help you shed those unwanted pounds.
Quinoa bowls are a great option for those looking for a filling and healthy meal. To make a quinoa bowl in your Instant Pot, start by rinsing 1 cup of quinoa and adding it to the pot with 1 1/4 cups of water or broth. Cook on high pressure for 1 minute, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before opening the lid. Top with your favorite veggies, such as roasted sweet potato, shredded carrots, and avocado, and a protein of your choice, such as grilled chicken or tofu. Drizzle with a healthy dressing, such as a tahini or lemon vinaigrette, for an added boost of flavor.
Chili is a filling and hearty meal that can be made healthy by using lean protein and lots of veggies. To make turkey chili in your Instant Pot, start by sautéing 1 chopped onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add 1 pound of ground turkey and cook until browned. Add in 1 can of diced tomatoes, 1 can of kidney beans, 1 diced bell pepper, 1 diced carrot, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, and 1/2 teaspoon each of cumin and paprika. Cook on high pressure for 10 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before opening the lid. Serve with a dollop of Greek yogurt and some chopped cilantro.
Salmon with Vegetables
Salmon is a great source of protein and healthy fats, and adding some veggies to the mix makes for a perfectly balanced meal. To make salmon with vegetables in your Instant Pot, start by adding 1 cup of water or broth to the pot. Place a steamer basket inside and add 2 salmon fillets and your choice of chopped veggies, such as broccoli, carrots, and bell peppers. Cook on high pressure for 3 minutes, then do a quick release. Serve with a side of brown rice or quinoa for added fiber and nutrients.
Chicken and Vegetable Soup
Soup is a comforting and filling meal that can be made healthy by using lots of veggies and lean protein. To make chicken and vegetable soup in your Instant Pot, start by sautéing 1 diced onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add 1 pound of diced chicken and cook until browned. Add in 3 cups of chopped veggies, such as carrots, celery, and kale, and 6 cups of chicken broth. Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before opening the lid. Serve with some crusty whole-grain bread for a complete and balanced meal.
Black Bean Stew
Black beans are a great source of protein and fiber, and adding some veggies and spices makes for a flavorful and satisfying meal. To make black bean stew in your Instant Pot, start by sautéing 1 diced onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add 1 can of diced tomatoes, 2 cans of black beans, 1 diced bell pepper, 1 diced sweet potato, 1 teaspoon of cumin, and 1/2 teaspoon each of chili powder and paprika. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before opening the lid. Serve with some shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream, if desired.
Curry is a flavorful and fragrant dish that can be made healthy by using lots of veggies and a homemade spice blend. To make vegetable curry in your Instant Pot, start by sautéing 1 diced onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic in 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Add 1 diced sweet potato, 1 diced bell pepper, 1 cup of chopped cauliflower, 1 can of chickpeas, and 1 can of diced tomatoes. In a separate bowl, mix together 1 tablespoon each of curry powder, cumin, and coriander, and add to the pot. Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes before opening the lid. Serve with some brown rice or quinoa for a filling and delicious meal.
Instant Pot Breakfast Recipes
Instant Pot is not just for cooking stews and soups. You can also use it to make delicious and healthy breakfasts. Here are some breakfast recipes that you can cook using an Instant Pot:
Oatmeal is a great way to start your day. It is rich in fiber and a good source of energy. Cooking oatmeal in an Instant Pot is easy and convenient. Simply add the oats, water, and salt to the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set the pressure to high. Cook for four minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Serve with your favorite toppings, such as fruit, nuts, and honey. You can also add cinnamon or vanilla extract for extra flavor.
Making yogurt at home is a healthier and cheaper alternative to buying it from the store. With an Instant Pot, making yogurt is even easier. All you need is milk and yogurt culture. Heat the milk in the Instant Pot until it reaches 180°F. Let the milk cool to 110°F and then add the yogurt culture. Close the lid and set the timer for eight hours. After eight hours, your yogurt will be ready. Store it in the fridge and enjoy it with fresh fruit, granola, or honey.
Frittata is an Italian dish that is similar to an omelet. It is a great way to use up leftover vegetables and meat. Making frittata in an Instant Pot is quick and easy. Simply sauté the vegetables and meat in the Instant Pot using the sauté function. Whisk the eggs and pour them over the sautéed vegetables and meat. Close the lid and set the pressure to low. Cook for five minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for five minutes. Your frittata will be ready to serve.
Banana Bread Oatmeal
- 1 cup steel-cut oats
- 2 cups water
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
This oatmeal is a delicious and healthy twist on classic banana bread. Simply combine all the ingredients in the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set the pressure to high. Cook for four minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Serve with additional walnuts and a drizzle of maple syrup.
- 8 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup diced ham
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 1/2 cup diced bell pepper
- 1 tsp salt
This egg casserole is a delicious and filling breakfast option. Simply mix all the ingredients in the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set the pressure to low. Cook for 10 minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for five minutes. Your egg casserole will be ready to serve.
Blueberry Breakfast Cake
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
This blueberry breakfast cake is a delicious and healthy way to satisfy your sweet tooth. Simply mix all the ingredients in the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set the pressure to high. Cook for 20 minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for five minutes. Your blueberry breakfast cake will be ready to serve.
|1 cup chopped cooked ham
|1. Preheat the Instant Pot on the sauté setting. Add the ham, onions, bell peppers, and garlic. Cook until the vegetables are soft, about five minutes.
|1/2 cup chopped onions
|2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper. Add the cheese and mix well.
|1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
|3. Grease a 7-inch springform pan and pour in the egg mixture. Top with the ham and vegetable mixture.
|1 tsp minced garlic
|4. Add one cup of water to the Instant Pot. Place the trivet inside and lower the pan onto the trivet using a sling made of aluminum foil.
|5. Close the lid and set the pressure to high. Cook for 45 minutes and then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Remove the quiche from the Instant Pot and let it cool for five minutes before serving.
|1/2 cup milk
|1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
|1/2 tsp salt
|1/4 tsp pepper
This quiche is a great way to feed a crowd. It is also a great make-ahead breakfast option. Simply store the quiche in the fridge and reheat it in the microwave or oven.
Instant Pot Safety Tips
Instant pots have become a popular kitchen appliance for cooking quick and healthy meals. However, it is important to follow safety precautions to prevent accidents and ensure that you get the most out of your Instant Pot. Here are some essential safety tips for using your Instant Pot:
Clean the Instant Pot Properly
Before using the Instant Pot, ensure that it is thoroughly clean to eliminate any bacteria or dirt that may affect your cooking. Use warm soapy water to wash the pot, the lid, and any accessories. Rinse all the parts and dry them entirely before reassembling the pot.
Understand the Pressure Release Valve
The pressure release valve is a crucial component of the Instant Pot that releases excess pressure during cooking. Always check that the valve is in the correct position before starting to cook. When releasing pressure, use a long utensil to avoid venting steam directly on your hands or face. If you don’t release the valve correctly, it could cause an explosion due to overpressure in the pot, leading to injuries or damage to the appliance.
Use the Correct Cooking Time
Each type of food requires different cooking times, depending on the recipe. Use the correct cooking times for your recipe to ensure that the food is cooked properly without overcooking or undercooking. Avoid opening the lid too often during cooking to allow consistent pressure levels, which will affect the cooking time.
Do Not Overfill the Instant Pot
It is essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the maximum fill line to use in your Instant Pot. Overfilling the pot can cause the food to block the venting valves, leading to overpressure, which may cause severe accidents.
Avoid Using Frozen Foods
While it may seem convenient to cook frozen foods in the Instant Pot, it’s not safe since frozen foods take longer to cook and may cause over-pressurization when cooking. Plan to thaw the food before cooking, or add extra cooking time if you have to cook frozen food in the Instant Pot.
Ensure that the Sealing Rings are in Good Condition
The sealing rings serve an essential role in the Instant Pot, creating a tight seal to keep the pressure and steam inside the pot. Inspect them before each use and replace them if worn out, damaged, or brittle.
Unplug the Instant Pot when not in Use
After cooking, ensure that you unplug the Instant Pot to prevent accidents from power surges, water spills, or overheating. It is crucial to keep the pot away from water, damp places, and flammable materials.
Follow the User Manual Instructions
Before using the Instant Pot for the first time, read the user manual to understand how the appliance works, what you can and can’t do with it, and how to troubleshoot common issues. The manual also contains essential safety instructions that you should follow, allowing you to use the Instant Pot safely.
FAQs about Instant Pot Cooking
Instant Pot has become a household name in healthy food preparation, thanks to its ability to cook a variety of meals with little effort. However, many people still have questions about how to convert their favorite recipes to the Instant Pot, how to troubleshoot common issues, and how to clean the appliance. In this article, we will answer these frequently asked questions and more to help you make healthy meals with ease.
How do I convert recipes to the Instant Pot?
Converting recipes to the Instant Pot is relatively easy and straightforward. A good rule of thumb is to decrease the cooking time of the recipe by approximately two-thirds and use the manual setting on the Instant Pot. Here are some tips:
- Use 1 cup of liquid (water, broth, or sauce) for every cup of grains, pasta, or vegetables.
- Cut meat into evenly sized pieces, so they cook evenly.
- Always add enough liquid to reach the minimum fill line on the Instant Pot.
- Don’t overfill the Instant Pot. Only fill it up to two-thirds of the way to prevent food from spilling over during cooking.
What are some common issues when cooking with the Instant Pot?
Like any kitchen appliance, the Instant Pot can have some issues when cooking, but most can be easily resolved. Here are a few common problems and how to fix them:
- Burn message – This occurs when there isn’t enough liquid in the pot (less than 1 cup). Cancel the cooking cycle, release the pressure, and add more liquid.
- Foaming – This happens when cooking beans or grains. First, release the pressure manually, then add a little oil to the pot before restarting the cooking cycle.
- Overcooked food – If you find that your food is overcooked, try reducing the cooking time or decreasing the pressure release time.
How do I clean the Instant Pot?
Cleaning the Instant Pot is simple and straightforward. Here are some tips:
- After each use, clean the Instant Pot with warm soapy water and a non-abrasive sponge or cloth.
- When cleaning the lid, remove the sealing ring and wash it separately to prevent odor buildup.
- For stubborn stains or odors, soak the inner pot in warm water and a tablespoon of white vinegar for 30 minutes before rinsing.
What are some healthy Instant Pot recipe options?
The Instant Pot is perfect for preparing healthy meals effortlessly. Here are the top 10 Instant Pot recipes to try:
- Quinoa and vegetable bowls
- Black bean soup
- Steel-cut oats with fruit and nuts
- Spicy chicken and sweet potato stew
- Vegetable curry
- Beef and vegetable soup
- Mexican shredded chicken
- Salmon with quinoa and vegetables
- Chicken and vegetable stir-fry
We hope these FAQs have answered some of your questions and helped you prepare healthy meals with ease using the Instant Pot. Happy cooking!
Closing: Thanks for joining me for these top 10 healthy instant pot recipes!
I hope you’ve found some delicious and nutritious ideas to bring to your meal planning. Using an Instant Pot makes cooking healthy meals easier and quicker than ever. Remember to check back often for more healthy food inspiration and feel free to share these recipes with your friends and family. Thanks again for reading and happy cooking!