As I’ve mentioned, I got an Instant Pot for Christmas. I grappled back and forth for a long time whether or not I wanted one. I already have a rice cooker and crockpot, so did I really need this “10-in-one” appliance? Ultimately the reason I decided to put one on my list was because of the promise of saving time. What takes 8 hours in a crockpot takes 30 minutes in an Instapot*. I don’t use my crockpot as much as I should because of the time it takes to cook things, although I love the crockpot effect. I wondered if it would completely replace my rice cooker – I am still undecided on that. But I kept seeing people make delicious looking recipes in 8 minutes, 10 minutes, 20 minutes, and since the inception of KERF, “quick and easy” recipes have been my favorite. So for the love of quickness, I decided to ask for one.
*I referred to the Instapot and someone thought I’d made a typo, but that is its nickname!
I didn’t put too much thought into which one I asked for on my Elfster list – maybe I should have? I read a review and got the one the person recommended. It’s the Duo – 8 quarts, so it’s on the big side. That was my first reaction: this thing is HUGE! I’ve gotten used to it though, and I do think that it’s better to have one that can fit more food for the most flexibility.
I was a little intimidated by it at first because I didn’t want to blow my hand off with steam, but I read the instruction manual from front to back and then had no qualms. It’s actually quite simple to use.
First: hard boiled eggs. I followed the Skinnytaste tutorial and had perfect luck. So quick and easy. (Although literally boiling eggs isn’t all that hard, I will admit. But I loved that you can set it and forget it instead of monitoring the pot to boil.)
But the real game changer was making an egg “loaf” !! I followed this recipe.
This was there is no peeling and no ice bath – just nice, firm, cooked eggs for egg salad (or perhaps just for slicing and eating?!) I have heard you can use this same technique in the microwave with a slight risk of exploding your eggs everywhere, which I have done when trying to micro-fry an egg years ago and is no fun to clean up at all. So again, the Instapot doesn’t totally invent this technique, but it makes it super easy.
I started with a Corningwear oven safe dish and buttered the edges. Then I cracked in 8 eggs and put the dish in the IP with 2 cups of water on the bottom and the steam rack.
I cooked them on Pressure Cook for 5 minutes + 5 minutes natural release. The yolks were perfectly cooked. Then I dumped it in a bowl and sliced it up with two knives for super quick egg salad! I dressed it simply with mayo, salt, pepper, and dill. Because the eggs were so fresh, the salad was very fluffy. Loved it!
Served with saltines for lunch : )
Lastly, I’ve tried potatoes twice. First russets for baked potatoes which did not turn out so well. I did Pressure Cook for 14 minutes (I was following an internet recipe) and had to do them on another 5 minute cycle to get them cooked through (and they still weren’t perfect). When I did sweet potatoes the next day, I did a full 20 minute cycle and they were PERFECT!
Again, you can bake sweet potatoes in the oven, but not in 25 minutes to be this tender. So the Instapot wins for time.
I love baked sweet potatoes but don’t make them often enough, so they are on my favorites list now.
+butter + brown sugar! (Reminds me of the ones from the old Eppies! Remember them Cville friends?)
Served with a salad for lunch.
It seems that Skinnytaste and Pinch of Yum have tons of good Instapot recipes – like this soup roundup.
The next few things we’d like to try: a whole chicken, one pot mac and cheese, oatmeal (!) and something frozen. As always, I’d love your go-to recommendations!