Ever since I got my Instant Pot, I can’t stop talking about it. Its ability to quickly and easily put dinner on the table really blows me away! More than that, my family is actually enjoying homemade, healthy meals more than takeout night. But, I will admit, it did take me a while to get used to this thing. There are so many buttons and it seemed so confusing to use at first! Luckily, I figured out a few Instant Pot hacks that have helped me along the way.
Whether you’re new to the Instant Pot or you’ve been using one since it came out, take a peek at our favorite tips and tricks. These types of Instant Pot hacks will make you a better cook, and they’ll certainly make your life a little bit easier, too!
1. Don’t Use the Rice Cooker Function
There’s a rice cooker function on the Instant Pot, but I’ve had much better results just using a Manual Pressure method. The rice comes out fluffy and perfect every time! It’s so much easier than using the stovetop (which, always burns my rice, no matter what I do).
Add equal parts rice and water to your Instant Pot. Instead of choosing the rice cooker button, set the Manual button (on High pressure) to 10 minutes. Once it’s done cooking, let it sit for 5 minutes and release the pressure manually (be careful to avoid the steam!).
If you’re using brown rice, still use equal parts rice and water but set the Instant Pot for 15 minutes instead.
2. Make The Best Hard Boiled Eggs
Forget boiling eggs on the stovetop – use the Instant Pot instead to make the best deviled eggs and stuffed eggs! You’ll never have to worry about hard-to-peel shells and overcooked yolks ever again. For this hack, you’ll need to use the steamer rack that came with your Instant Pot.
Place the eggs on the rack inside the Instant Pot and add 1 cup of water to the pot. Close the lid, set the Manual button (on High pressure) to 5 minutes. That’s it – in 15 minutes (including the time to come up to pressure and release the pressure), you’ll have perfectly hard-boiled eggs.
3. Cook Pasta For Soups
We all know that you can make stock in the Instant Pot, but did you know you could add pasta to that stock afterward and have almost-instant chicken noodle soup? It’s true! The Saute function isn’t just for searing and browning meats, but it works to simmer liquids as well.
After you’ve made your favorite stock recipe, release the pressure and remove the lid. Click the Saute function and select the lowest heat setting. Once the liquid is simmering, add your pasta and any other soup ingredients you want to warm through. Voila – (almost) instant soup!
4. Freeze your Meals in Round Containers
If you freeze your food flat in plastic bags, they probably won’t fit into the Instant Pot’s round bowl. One of the best features of this one-pot wonder is its ability to (safely) cook frozen food. So you definitely want to be able to take advantage of that!
If you freeze your food in round containers, they will easily slip into the Instant Pot. No need to defrost your food in the refrigerator or under running water. Just let the Instant Pot take care of the defrost and the cooking portions. Who needs a microwave anymore?
5. Healthy Popcorn
Speaking of a microwave replacement, did you know you can pop popcorn in the Instant Pot? This thing really is a magical contraption! We love making popcorn as a quick and easy, healthy snack, and it just got that much easier to make it
Simply place about 3 tablespoons of coconut oil into the bowl of the Instant Pot. If you want, you can also add a few tablespoons butter for flavor. Turn the pot on Saute function (on High) and melt the oil. Add 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels, close the lid, and let it pop away. When it’s done, flavor it with salt or nutritional yeast.
6. Make Perfectly Steamed Vegetables
When you choose your time using the Manual button, you can actually select zero minutes. This is the best way to make perfectly steamed vegetables that cook in the time it takes to pressure-up and pressure-down. For heartier vegetables like butternut squash, select 5 minutes.
For perfectly steamed vegetables, place the vegetable on the included steamer basket and pour 1 cup of water into the Instant Pot. Then, close the lid, set the Manual button (on High pressure) for 0-5 minutes, and let it do its thing!
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