So you’ve finally splurged and got yourself an Instant Pot. Or maybe you’ve had one for a while but couldn’t find ways to put it to use. What exactly can you make with it? There are countless ways to cook with an Instant Pot. More importantly, it’s one of the fastest and easiest ways to put dinner on the table. If you’re looking for Instant Pot dinner ideas, read on to discover 24 delicious recipes. We’ll cover different types of meat, vegetarian and vegan options, soups, stews, casseroles, and everything in between. 

Instant Pot Chicken

Chicken can be tricky to cook—undercooking it is a health risk, and overcooking can leave it dry and rubbery. Luckily, preparing chicken in an Instant Pot is virtually foolproof. It cooks quickly and comes out with the perfect texture every time. 

1. Instant Pot Butter Chicken

butter chicken
Source: instagram
Instant Pot dinner ideas: butter chicken via @jocooks

This popular Indian curry dish can be made in the comfort of your own home and in just 30 minutes! It features onions and garlic sautéd in butter, diced chicken thighs, crushed tomatoes, whipping cream, and an incredible mix of warm spices. It’s the perfect combination of creamy and spicy and can be served over rice, with naan bread, or even as a pizza sauce!

2. Instant Pot Orange Chicken

This easy Chinese-inspired chicken dinner is better than takeout. Start by sauteéing diced chicken breasts or thighs in the Instant Pot. Ingredients like orange juice, orange zest, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and spices will make up the rich and flavorful sauce. It takes just five minutes to cook and 10 minutes to release pressure, after which you can thicken the sauce with cornstarch and enjoy. 

3. Instant Pot Chicken And Rice

The two recipes above require you to cook rice separately, but if you’re looking for a true one-pot dinner, this one’s for you. It calls for simple ingredients like onions, carrots, chicken broth, and diced chicken breasts. After sauteéing the meat and vegetables, add the rice and broth, close the lid, and let the pressure cooker do the rest! 

Instant Pot Beef

Not all cuts of beef are naturally tender—some require hours of marinating, roasting, or stewing to achieve the coveted melt-in-your-mouth texture. Luckily, the pressure inside an Instant Pot can tenderize any tough meat in just 30 minutes! 

4. Instant Pot Irish Stew

irish stew
Source: instagram
Instant Pot dinner ideas: Irish stew via @familyfreshmeals

This popular stew features browned beef, potatoes, carrots, celery, beef stock, and a bottle of Guinness. The beer is what gives the stew its characteristic flavor profile, but you can always leave it out and enjoy a regular beef stew. If you do use it, be sure to let the beer simmer long enough—the alcohol won’t have a chance to evaporate once the Instant Pot lid is on. 

5. Instant Pot Short Rib Ragu

Is there anything better than the delectably soft, fall-off-the-bone goodness of short rib ragu? Short rib ragu that doesn’t take two hours to make, of course! Making this incredible dish in an Instant Pot is the ultimate life hack. Made with marinara sauce and a bit of red wine and served over pasta, it’s the perfect dinner for any occasion or even a regular weeknight.

6. Instant Pot Beef Bourguignon

If you thought two hours to make short rib ragu was long, remember that Julia Child’s Beef Bourguignon takes three to four… but this recipe cooks in just 45 minutes without sacrificing a single ounce of flavor. Use a high-quality cut of beef for best results and serve it over mashed potatoes. You’ll be just as impressed with yourself as your family or guests! 

Instant Pot Pork

Pork is another one of those meats that takes hours of roasting before it becomes tender enough to enjoy. Skip the oven and use an Instant Pot instead to prepare delicious pork that falls apart and melts in your mouth. 

7. Instant Pot Pulled Pork

pulled pork
Source: instagram
Instant Pot dinner ideas: pulled pork via @kristines_kitchen

Make delicious BBQ pulled pork sandwiches using an Instant Pot. You can cook the pork and the sauce together, letting the sauce infuse the meat with all the right flavors. It takes just 45 minutes to an hour before the pork is ready to be shredded, and you’ll love how easily it falls apart! 

8. Instant Pot Pork Roast

To make an Instant Pot pork roast, start by rubbing the pork in a mix of sweet and savory seasonings. Sauté your vegetables for a few minutes and then sear the pork roast for 2-3 minutes on each side. Once everything is nice and crispy, it’s time to bring it all together, along with broth and a bit of wine, and cook on high for about 70 minutes. When the pork roast is done, thicken up the sauce and serve it as gravy!

9. Instant Pot Pork Chops

Pork chops only need about 10-20 minutes in the Instant Pot, so they make the perfect dinner on a busy weeknight. Simply sear them for a few minutes on each side, add in broth, chopped onions, mushrooms, and a can of mushroom soup, and let the Instant Pot do the rest. Thicken the sauce to use as gravy and serve over creamy mashed potatoes.

Instant Pot Soups

Rich, flavorful soups need lots of time on the stove so that their ingredients can mix together and melt into each other a little. With an Instant Pot, you can achieve the same warm and hearty deliciousness in half the time. 

10. Instant Pot Lentil Soup

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Instant Pot dinner ideas: lentil soup via @wellplated

This lentil soup is incredibly healthy and filling. It brings together vegetables like onions, garlic, carrots, celery, and tomatoes for a vitamin rich meal. There’s no meat in this recipe, so if you’d like to keep it completely vegetarian or vegan, you can use vegetable broth. 

11. Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup

This vibrant butternut squash soup is a must-have in the fall months. With notes of celery and apple and heavy cream to tie it together, it’s warmth and comfort in a bowl. And it couldn’t be easier to make—simply chop up ingredients, pressure cook them for just 15 minutes, and purée with an immersion blender. 

12. Creamy Instant Pot Zucchini Soup

Looking for a low calorie soup? This zucchini soup may be for you! It’s lightly flavored with garlic and lemon zest, so the zucchini can truly shine. Simply cook everything with broth in the Instant Pot and blend with an immersion blender. This recipe calls for cream, but you can easily omit it if you want a soup even lower in calories.

Instant Pot Stews

Just like soups, stews made in an Instant Pot bring a very special set of flavors and textures. They’re also chock-full of good-for-you ingredients, vitamins, and minerals—perfect for keeping your immune system strong during those cold fall and winter months.

13. Vegan Instant Pot White Bean Stew

bean stew
Source: instagram
Vegan Instant Pot dinner ideas: white bean stew via @rainbowplantlife

This vegan stew is a dump-and-go recipe, meaning you place everything in the Instant Pot and enjoy some time away from the kitchen. There’s no need to sauté anything, as the ingredients naturally bring a ton of flavor and fragrance. This is partially thanks to the gremolata—an Italian condiment made with parsley, garlic, and lemon zest. Use it as a topping when the stew is ready and enjoy your 15-minute, no-fuss dinner.

14. Instant Pot Spicy Beef Curry Stew

Add a bit of heat to regular beef stew with this spicy recipe. Jalapeno peppers, garlic, fresh ginger, and curry powder bring a ton of flavor to the regular old beef and potato combination and will keep you warm on the coldest of days.

15. Instant Pot Tuscan Chicken Stew

When the weather outside is freezing and all you can dream about is lounging under the Tuscan sun, make a pot of this stew and let your tastebuds transport you. It’s full of hearty vegetables and aromatic spices like fennel seeds and rosemary. The chicken doesn’t need to be sautéd, either, so you can throw everything into the Instant Pot and relax while you wait.

Instant Pot Steak

Pan-seared and grilled aren’t the only ways to enjoy a good steak. Sure, using an Instant Pot won’t deliver a medium rare center, but steaks prepared this way certainly don’t lack in flavor or texture. Plus, you can use a cheaper cut of meat because the Instant Pot will help tenderize it. 

16. Instant Pot Sirloin Steak Strips 

Source: instagram
Instant Pot dinner ideas: sirloin steak strips via @primaverakitchen

This steak dinner requires only a handful of ingredients. Simply cut sirloin steak into strips, sauté them in a bit of oil until browned, add mushrooms, and a sauce made with garlic, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, and mustard. When the Instant Pot is finished cooking, you can thicken the sauce so it coats the steak strips, and serve over mashed potatoes.

17. Instant Pot Garlic Butter Steak Bites

Garlic makes everything better, and steak is no exception. For this recipe, start by browning 1-inch cubes of steak in a bit of butter. Add garlic, pepper, more butter, and beef broth, and let it cook for 10 minutes. The garlic and butter will infuse the steak bites with mouthwatering flavor, and the pressure inside the Instant Pot will help keep them tender and juicy.

18. Easy Instant Pot Steak and Potatoes

Even a steak dinner can be a one-pot meal. To make this recipe, combine onions, inexpensive steaks, steak sauce, seasoning, and beef stock in an Instant Pot. Then, season a few diced potatoes and wrap them in a piece of foil, before adding them to the pot. Just like that, your steaks and side dish will be ready in 20 minutes!

Instant Pot Vegetables

An Instant Pot isn’t just great for cooking tender and juicy meats—it’s also perfect for vegetarian and vegan dinners. Make tasty and nourishing meals like soups, stews, and rice or quinoa bowls.

19. Vegan Instant Pot Corn Chowder

Source: instagram
Vegan Instant Pot dinner ideas: corn chowder via @zardyplants

This vibrant corn chowder will add a bit of sunshine to a gloomy day. Use fresh or frozen corn, add potatoes for an extra hearty texture, a few simple seasonings, and a vegetable broth. Once the Instant Pot is finished cooking, stir in a can of coconut milk for added creaminess and blend away with an immersion blender. You can make it completely smooth or leave it a bit chunky if you’d like.

20. Instant Pot Quinoa Burrito Bowls

These quinoa burrito bowls are another one-pot meal. Start by sauteéing onions and bell peppers in a bit of oil, then add quinoa, water, salsa, and cooked or canned black beans. Cook for just 12 minutes on low pressure and serve with shredded lettuce, avocados, or any other toppings you’d normally have in a burrito.

21. Instant Pot Vegetarian White Chili

White chili is made without ground beef or tomatoes, but it certainly makes up for it with other ingredients. It’s full of vegetables like sweet parsnips, onions, and poblano peppers. White beans give it a soft texture while chili powder, oregano, and cilantro fill it with authentic Mexican flavor and aroma.

Instant Pot Casseroles

Casseroles involve many different layers, but they often need to be cooked separately before they can be assembled. Though making a casserole in an Instant Pot won’t give you the same golden top layer of melted cheese, it does mean you can cook everything together in one pot and save time.

22. Instant Pot Mexican Casserole

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Instant Pot dinner ideas: Mexican casserole via @wellplated

This Mexican casserole brings together ingredients from every food group—ground chicken and black beans, peppers and tomatoes, brown rice, and shredded cheese. After sauteéing the onions and chicken, you can add everything else and let the Instant Pot do its thing. When it’s done, stir in the shredded cheese and let it rest for 10 minutes so the cheese can melt.

23. Instant Pot Chicken Pot Pie Casserole

Chicken pot pie is delicious, but it can be a bit of a hassle to make. Why not combine all the flavors of chicken pot pie (but replace the pie crust with egg noodles) and make it as an Instant Pot casserole instead? You can cook the noodles right along with everything else, as long as you add enough broth. To make your casserole extra thick and creamy, stir in heavy cream after the Instant Pot has finished cooking and let it rest for a bit before serving.

24. Instant Pot Baked Ziti

Baked ziti is a popular casserole dish made with ziti pasta. The name of this recipe is a little misleading, though, because this version is not baked at all. Instead, whole wheat pasta is combined with water, spinach, and marinara sauce and cooked in an Instant Pot. The best part? This recipe calls for three different types of cheeses that you can stir in at the end. 

Create an Instant Pot Version of Your Favorite Recipe! 

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Written by:

Sayana Lam