When we think of Fall, we think boots and scarves and pumpkin everything! And when it comes to food, we think warm and comfort. But what else? October is also the beginning of the holiday season, and we’ve got a lot on our plates…literally. So we’re dedicating this month to the wonderfully helpful, ever-so easy, INSTANT POT. It’s been a gift to our families – really, how else do you make spaghetti in 8 minutes, using only 1 pot? So, we say – bring on the holidays, because with these easy IP recipes, we will have more time to make the Halloween costumes and getting the house ready for the guests to come!
We love these recipes and really hope you will too! Let us know what you think!
INSTANT POT ARTICHOKE
2 large artichokes
1 1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon olive oil
coarsely ground black pepper and salt
SPICY GARLIC MUSTARD DIP
5 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic minced
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
Use a serrated knife to saw off the top third of each artichoke. Cut off some of the stem, leaving about an inch of it. Rinse the artichokes.
Place a steam rack or trivet in the pressure cooker. Add enough water so it barely touches the trivet, about 1 1/2 cups. Place the artichokes cut-side down on the trivet.
Cover and lock the lid, sealing the vent. Select the steam mode and adjust the cooking time for 10 minutes at high pressure.
Let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes before using the valve to slowly release any remaining pressure. Pull off an artichoke leaf to test doneness; the leaf should come off with no resistance.
While waiting for the artichokes to cool, combine and mix all of the dip ingredients until smooth.
When the artichokes are cool enough to handle, slice each artichoke in half. Use a spoon to scoop out the choke (fuzzy white and purple centers) and discard.
Brush olive oil over each exposed half. Season with pepper and salt.
Serve artichokes with the dipping sauce. To eat, peel off a leaf at a time, dip into the sauce, and use your teeth to scrape off the “meat” of the leaf. You can eat the entire tender heart and stem.
INSTANT POT CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
4 cloves garlic minced
4 ounce can mild fire roasted diced green chiles
14.5 ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes
15 ounces red enchilada sauce
1-2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
15 ounce can black beans rinsed and drained
4 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
15 ounce can corn drained (or 1 cup frozen corn), optional salt and pepper to taste
For serving: lime wedges, crumbled tortilla chips, sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, shredded cheese, and/or avocado
Add olive oil to Instant Pot insert and turn on saute function. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until softened. Turn off Instant Pot. Stir in the minced garlic.
Add the diced green chiles, fire roasted diced tomatoes, enchilada sauce, chili powder, cumin, black beans and chicken broth. Stir well. Nestle the chicken into the mixture.
Place the lid on and set it to the closed position. Turn the steam valve to the sealing position.
Set the Instant Pot to manual/pressure cook, high pressure, for 9 minutes. When the cook time is done, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes (this means just leave the Instant Pot alone for 10 minutes). Then, carefully turn the steam valve to the venting position to release the remaining pressure. I usually do this with the handle of a long spoon.
When the float valve drops down, the pressure has been released and it is safe to open your instant pot. Carefully remove the lid. Remove the chicken and shred. (This can be done in a bowl with two forks or even in your stand mixer – see my how to shred chicken tips.)
Return the shredded chicken back to the pot and stir in the corn. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with toppings as desired.
INSTANT POT SALMON WITH CHILI LIME SAUCE
FOR STEAMING SALMON
2 salmon fillets 5 ounces each
1 cup water
sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
FOR CHILI LIME SAUCE
1 jalapeno seeds removed and diced
1 lime juiced
2 cloves garlic minced
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon hot water
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Combine and mix all sauce ingredients in a bowl with a pourable lip. Set aside.
Add water to the pressure cooker. Place salmon fillets on top of a steam rack inside the pot.
Season the top of the salmon fillets with salt and pepper to your liking.
Cover and lock the lid. Select the steam mode and adjust the cooking time to 5 minutes at high pressure.
When the pressure cooker is finished, use the quick release handle to release steam pressure and to stop the cooking.
Open the lid and transfer the salmon to a serving plate. Drizzle with chili-lime sauce and serve.
INSTANT POT BANG BANG SHRIMP PASTA
1 lb spaghetti noodles
3 ½ cups water
1 lb precooked shrimp if buying frozen, make sure to completely thaw
Handful of fresh parsley finely chopped
BANG BANG SAUCE
3/4 cup light mayonnaise
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp Thai sweet chili sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp sriracha sauce
1 ½ tbsp lime juice
Break spaghetti noodles in half and place into the inner pot that comes with your Instant Pot. Try to spread the noodles out as much as possible across the bottom of the pot, so that they are not stuck together and are not stacked too high. Pour water over noodles.
Seal your Instant Pot and set to manual mode, 4 minutes, high pressure. When Instant Pot is done, perform a quick release.
When it is safe to do so, remove the lid from your Instant Pot. Initially, there will still be some water in your pot. This is normal.
Keeping the pot in warm mode, stir your noodles to make sure noodles at the surface are mixed in and fully cooked (sometimes some of the noodles in the top layer are still slightly under-cooked, but they can continue to cook if you quickly mix them in with the other noodles). You should also stir to break up any noodles that may have gotten stuck together during cooking. As you stir, you should notice that the water is evaporating. Continue to stir until all the water is gone from the bottom of the pot and your noodles are mostly dry. (This took me about 2-3 minutes).
Add the cooked shrimp into your noodles and stir a few times until shrimp are warmed and evenly mixed in.
Pour in sauce and stir until noodles are evenly coated in sauce. Dish out noodles. Garnish with parsley before serving.
INSTANT POT PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE
GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST
8 Graham Crackers
2 1/2 Tpsp Butter melted
2 tsp Sugar*
1/4 tsp Ginger Powder
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
2 8oz Pkgs of Cream Cheese room temperature
1/2 cup Sugar
2 tsp Vanilla
1 cup Pumpkin Puree (pure pumpkin, not pie filling)
1/2 cup Heavy Cream room temperature
3/4 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
3/4 tsp Allspice
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ginger Powder
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
2 tsp All Purpose Flour
3 Eggs room temperature
Optional (if you like your cheesecake a little sweeter)
1/4 cup Brown Sugar (in addition to the white sugar)
Chocolate or Butterscotch Ganache Drizzle (instructions below)
Whipped Cream (try adding a little cinnamon to your whipped cream!)
Use a 7 or 8 inch cheesecake pan (I use a 7” push pan, but you can use a springform pan as well. Whatever will fit comfortably in your pressure cooker)**
Spray the pan with baking spray. If you have parchment paper, cut a piece to fit the bottom of your pan and spray that too.
Prepare the Pressure Cooker
Put 1 1/2 cups of water in the inner liner of the pressure cooker.
Put the trivet in the pot as well.
Usually made with aluminum foil, used to get the cheesecake in and out of the pot easily.
Fold a 28” length of foil along the long end 3 times. You will end up with a sling that is 28” x 3”
Break up and place the graham crackers in a food processor.
Add 2 tsp sugar and the ginger powder and cinnamon.
Pulse several times until the graham crackers turn into fine crumbs.
Add the melted butter and pulse several times to combine and soften the crumbs. You may need to scrape the bowl of the food processor and pulse a few more times.
Pour crust mixture into your prepared pan and use your fingers or the bottom of a small glass to press the mixture into place. Cover the entire bottom of the pan and come up the sides just a little. You do not have to come all the way up the sides. You want the crust to be about 1/4” thick or so.
Put the pan in the freezer to chill while you prepare the cheesecake filling.
Clean the crust residue out of the food processor.
Add the cream cheese and sugar (and optional brown sugar, if using) and process until smooth and creamy.
Add the vanilla, pumpkin puree, heavy cream, spices, and flour. process until well blended and smooth and creamy.
Add the eggs last and pulse just a few times. Then take the bowl off of the food processor and gently mix by hand to incorporate the eggs. It is important that you do not whip or over mix the eggs as that will ruin the texture and density of your cheesecake!
Take the crust from the freezer and pour the filling into the pan.
Cover the pan with a paper towel, then with a piece of foil. Crimp the edges around the pan so it stays taut and secure.
Lay the sling out and set the pan on it, centered. Gather up the two ends and very carefully lift the pan and set it in the pressure cooker, leaving the sling with it. Just fold over the two ends of the sling on top of the pan.
COOKING THE CHEESECAKE
Close the lid of the pressure cooker and set the steam vent to the Sealing position.
Press the Manual (or Pressure Cook) button and then the + or – button to choose 48 minutes.*** Make sure it is set to High Pressure.
When cook cycle ends, let the cooker naturally release pressure for 20 minutes. Then manually release any remaining pressure.
When the pin drops and it is safe to open the lid, do so carefully, facing away from you.
Gather up the two ends of the sling and VERY carefully lift the cheesecake pan out of the cooker and onto a cooling rack.
Leave covered for about 10 minutes, it will continue to cook, then carefully peel off the foil/paper towel.
The cheesecake is done if the center couple of inches jiggles just a little bit when shook. You don’t want it too jiggly, but you do want some. It will firm up as it cools. If it is too jiggly, cover it back up and put back in to cook for 10 more minutes, with a 15 minute natural release (times will vary with many factors such as altitude and the size of pan, and the model of pressure cooker).
Let cool for about an hour, then put the pan in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours before serving. I prefer to make my cheesecake in the evening and let it cool overnight.
Remove from pan and serve as is, or with whipped cream. You can also garnish with a chocolate ganache drizzle or a butterscotch ganache drizzle
CHOCOLATE OR BUTTERSCOTCH GANACHES
This is not a specific recipe as you don’t need much for a drizzle.
In a microwave safe bowl, add a handful of chocolate or butterscotch chips.
Add a couple teaspoons of heavy cream and microwave for 25 seconds.
Stir slowly at first so the cream doesn’t fly out of the bowl. Then keep stirring and the ganache will come together. If it is too thick, add a little more cream, and warm for 10 seconds in the microwave again. Then stir more. It will come together! This is a very forgiving sauce!
*Note: The chocolate melts faster and easier than the butterscotch.