Saturday, February 25, 2017

Pressure Cooker / Instant Pot: Mashed Potatoes

No need for a steamer basket. I don't consider this to be a "recipe" since it is just a little side dish so this will not be recipe #3. I had a cup of chicken broth left from the previous recipe (Pot Roast) and many potatoes. (But I have seen people mess it up in the Instant Pot Community page. Don't know how you do that.)

Mashed Potatoes
Prep Time 5 min     Cook Time: 8 min

Organic Russet Potatoes (2-3 lb)
4 Tbsp butter
1 cup chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste (optional)
parsley flakes (optional)

Wash/scrub potatoes. Quarter them. Mine were skin on but you can peel them if you like also.
Place the quartered potatoes in the Instant Pot. Pour chicken broth and throw in the butter.

Close the lid. Manual Setting for 8 minutes.

Open lid (after quick or natural pressure release). Mash the potatoes. Add salt (and pepper) to taste. Remember that there is salt in chicken broth already. Add any herbs you would like (example parsley).


2nd Time:
I used water instead of chicken broth. When it was done, I added salt (1 tsp) and milk (1/2 cup), butter (4 Tbsp) while mashing. I actually mash with a fork since it is so soft.

Pressure Cooker / Instant Pot Recipe #2: Pot Roast w/Carrots and Potatoes

When I bought Instant Pot, I thought that I could cook anything in very little time. Well, Pot Roast took much longer. You will need 1.5 hours.

Pot Roast
Prep: 40 min      Cook Time: 45 (beef) + 4 (veggies) min   Other: 5 min (cut beef, make gravy)
** EDIT: Second time: Cut prep time by 10 min. IP reached high pressure after 5 min. **

Natural pressure release. Luckily, we had an appointment at that time. When we returned home, the Instant Pot had released all the pressure. Made the gravy by adding flour.

2-3 lbs boneless chuck roast (it should be about 2 inches thick
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic
1 large onion (sliced)
1 cup chicken broth
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 lb carrots (you can put more)
2 lb potatoes (you can put more)
1.5 Tbsp flour (for gravy at the end)

My prep time was 40 min since I included searing the beef also.

First, you sear the beef. Pour olive oil. Hit the 'Saute' button on your Instant Pot. Sear all sides (8-10 min each side). Remove beef from heat to set aside. Press cancel.


After searing:
Hit the 'Saute' button again but set it on medium heat for onions/garlic. Cook onions for a minute or two, then garlic. For deglazing, splash some red wine in. I love to use frozen garlic cloves so that I can have it on hand.

Add chicken broth, soy sauce, rosemary, thyme in. Place your beef back in. Close the lid.
Pressure cook on high for 45 minutes. Natural release pressure for half an hour.

Beef after pressure cooking:

Remove beef to a set aside. Add potatoes, then carrots. Pressure cook for 4 minutes. Quick release pressure.

Now to make the gravy.. Add flour and stir. Salt and pepper to taste.

Cut your beef. Spoon some gravy on top. I placed veggies on the side.


Friday, February 17, 2017


For Black Friday 2016, I only had one thing I was eyeing to buy since I had been wanting for for Instant Pot. It arrived a week later. Then the box sat in the closet through the holidays while we were away. My goal was to use it by the end of January. Well, mid-February rolled around, it was still in the box until today...

I had been afraid to use it. Woke up this morning and told myself that today was the day I was going to tackle my new appliance. The manual felt thick until I read it realizing that it was that way since it was translated into several different languages (otherwise it would have been thin).

Still unsure of what to make but knowing that it was going to be chicken for the first recipe. I defrosted chicken in the sink during the day (But you can cook frozen chicken in Instant Pot too). Kept reading that it would be done in 5 minutes. Ended up taking much longer than anticipated. Dinner was fairly late for us as a result. Chicken was flavorful and tender but not something I couldn't make in comparable time. Felt that I was extra cautious since it was my FIRST TIME with my Instant Pot.

Yes, it takes 5 minutes on high pressure to make chicken but I set it on 8 minutes since I had 8 chicken thighs that were thick. Used two functions for my dish: 1) Saute  2) Poultry.

Honey Garlic Chicken (Using Instant Pot)
2-3 lbs Chicken Thighs
salt and pepper to season OR dry rub
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
5 cloves garlic, chopped/minced
1 tsp basil
olive oil (for saute)
1 lb carrots

Sprinkle dry rub on both sides of the chicken thighs (or just use salt and pepper).

In a separate bowl, mix water, honey, soy sauce, ketchup, garlic, basil.

Plug in your Instant Pot. With the lid off, put some olive oil to brown the chicken. Push the 'Saute' button. Cook chicken for a minute each side. Place it on a plate when done (found that I could brown 2-3 chicken thighs at a time due to space).

Put browned chicken thighs back into Instant Pot. The carrots will go on top of the chicken. Pour liquids from the separate bowl. Place and lock Instant Pot lid. Make sure the top of your pot is set to 'Sealed' (not 'Vent').

Push the 'Poultry' button. I set it on 8 minutes (recipe called for 5 minutes) since my chicken pieces were thicker.


I stood there staring at it for 5 minutes afraid to change the 'Sealed' to 'Vent' for quick pressure release. Moved it a little at a time for slow pressure release (my first time!!). Ended up switching to 'Vent' by using a spoon instead since I didn't want to get too close.

The result was tender chicken. Started with a simple chicken dish to test the waters.

How was your FIRST TIME using your Instant Pot?? What recipe did you use?

1) It didn't take just 8 minutes since it takes time to reach high pressure.
2) When you saute, you cook like you normally do in a pan.
3) Easy to use but I was still nervous since I had heard stories of people putting holes in their ceilings with pressure cookers.