Home | 03.18.2022

90 Instant Pot Dinners You Need to Cook

Some of the Best Instant Pot Dinners aren't even challenging to make.

By Kathleen Flinn

Don’t want to repeat meals for three months? No problem. 

If you don’t have an Instapot, you may not know what all the fuss is about. Let us share the magic of the best Instant Pot dinners we’ve found.

What is an Instant Pot? 

To start, an Instant Pot is actually a multi-cooker. 

It sears, browns, and sautes food like a stove-top skillet. It can steam more delicate ingredients such as eggs, vegetables, and even fish. It doubles as standalone electric rice cookers, too.

You can use an Instant Pot to make hard-boiled eggs, bread, cakes, and other sweets like custards, flan, and cheesecakes. Some models come with a yogurt setting. And yes, it can function as a traditional slow cooker.

But the best part is that as an electric pressure cooker, it cooks things fast without a lot of fuss or cleanup. Combined, these abilities have elevated it to cult-like status

When do you use an Instant Pot? 

The Instpot is great for weeknight dinners as you can put ingredients in, sometimes giving it a quick saute, and then let it do the rest of the cooking hands-free for a one-pot meal. It’s also good when you’ve got a stovetop main dish and you want a side dish that basically cooks itself. It can also cook dishes that typically require long-simmering or braising in a fraction of the time.

Pressure cooking retains moistness for juicy meat, creates flavorful veggies, and cuts the guesswork out of trickier ingredients like rice.

There are thousands of Instant Pot recipes on the internet. We’ve done the hard work for you and pulled together this hand-selected collection of some of the best instant pot recipes out there. Most recipes focus on a six-quart Instant Pot, so if you’re using a three-quart version, adjust the recipe accordingly. 

Best Instant Pot Dinners

One of the best Instant Pot dinners is classic Tikka Masala!

Chicken 

Chicken is the go-to protein for many households and with good reason. Low in fat, high in protein, and widely versatile, chicken is one of those foods generally loved by the whole family. After a day at work, assembled ingredients into the Instant Pot and let it do the work. Here are some easy Instant Pot chicken recipes definitely worth a try. 

Pot Roasts, Stews, and even Roast Beef

Arguably one of the best uses of a pressure cooker is cutting down the long cooking time needed to create classic slow-braised or roasted meat dishes. It also has the advantage of using less energy than your oven and makes for easier cleanup, too, since you don’t end up with messy roasting pans to deal with. Here are a few great options:

BBQ

Purists might argue you can’t BBQ without a fire, but you can certainly create some smoky, hearty, and tasty vittles nonetheless. You can probably make the following recipes from what you already have in your pantry

Taco Tuesday (and Beyond)

Given that tacos generally have only a few ingredients, what’s in them has to be high quality. If you’re longing for a Mexican food dish, try one of these easy recipes and you can’t go wrong.

Risotto

If you’ve avoided risotto due to its high-maintenance nature, you’ll be surprised by these easy recipes. Real Simple has a great primer for making risotto in an Instant Pot.

Soup & Chili

Another miracle of the Instant Pot is the drastic reduction in cooking time when using a pressure cooker to make soup. Good soup requires plenty of salt and time. In the past, you could not boil a pot of soup for a half hour and trick the culinary gods into believing that it had actually simmered it for two or three hours. However, half an hour under pressure cooking is a whole different story. Here are a handful of the great soup recipes out there.

Pasta Classics

The whole family can get behind these easy recipes. 

Pork Chops

Pan-fried pork chops can sometimes get tough and dry, but a short time in an Instant Pot will render them tender and juicy. 

A take-out classic like General Tso's is easy to make at home with an Instant Pot.

Asian-Inspired

Looking to spice up your weeknight dinner routine? Maybe something you might otherwise opt for when ordering takeout?

Beans

Canned beans are convenient, but nothing beats the complex, earthy flavor of cooked dried beans. Of course, they can take approximately forever to cook — except in an Instant Pot. Grab those beans of beans you snatched up during pandemic panic shopping and get them off the shelf and into your Instant Pot.

 Veggies and Sides

Sometimes, you just want someone else to cook the side. Here are a few great and mostly healthy Instant Pot recipes for side dishes.

An electric pressure cooker is a great tool. We hope these recipes will inspire you to break yours out for dinner tonight.

If you didn’t find something to tempt your tastebuds here, we have other Recipes to check out.

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