Since we had one last cold snap last week, of course I was in the kitchen making more soup. This was my first attempt at pressure cooker white bean soup. And I passed the bean approval test – my 2-year-old daughter. She loves beans, but only if they’re delicious. And apparently, these are!
The Mistake Everybody Makes…
I love sausage in soups. But here’s the problem. Almost every soup recipe I come across will use the sausage to add flavor to the soup. That’s a great intention, but (in my opinion) it’s actually a total fail. If you boil it for any extended period of time, all the flavor will go into the soup. And then you’re left with flavorless sausage.
Check out the recipe below to see how to retain the crispiness of the sausage without compromising the flavor of the soup.
If you had told me just one year ago that I would be sharing a pressure cooker macaroni and cheese recipe, I would have bet everything against it. And lost! Because here I am.
Super Simple, Yet Very Fancy!
There’s something about the taste of truffle that immediately says elegance. If you’ve never splurged on Truffle Oil, I highly recommend it to help elevate your mac-and-cheese or mashed potatoes. I also love the creaminess of Gruyere Cheese! And when you combine it with the richness of a great, sharp white cheddar, the result is deliciously amazing.
I also decided to switch up the pasta for this recipe. Have you ever heard of Fusilli Bucati Corti? It’s simply a spiral pasta that I think helps with the presentation of this mac-and-cheese. Now, I wouldn’t always choose this type of noodle. But when wanting to make a lasting impression on your dinner party guests, it can really help take this simple dish to the next level. That’s right…. this dish is dinner party worthy!
The Secret to Instant Pot Mac-and-Cheese
If you’ve ever made a cheese sauce for macaroni and cheese, then you know the base is a bechamel sauce – butter, flour, and milk. Now, when making this dish in the Instant Pot, that presents a problem. But for every problem, there is a solution. And this is no different.
And the secret is… Evaporated Milk! I guess it’s not really a secret, since my mom has been using this for her macaroni-and-cheese casserole since forever. I’m just using it in a different way for this method – to replace the bechamel. And trust me, you cannot tell the difference.
I have spent my entire cooking life using the crock pot for pulled pork. Well, that is now a thing of the past. Pressure cooker pulled pork is the way to go! Hear me now, believe me later. This recipe will give you a result that is as tender and moist as any pulled pork you’ve ever had.
What’s So Special About This Recipe?
I feel like at least 90% of pulled pork recipes are the just variations of each other. Barbecue sauce, chili powder, cumin, chipotle powder, brown sugar – the usual suspects. I must say, I’ve been doing it that way for years. But I wanted something different. So I went into my spice drawer and just started pulling things out. That’s what being a chef is all about!
You Can Probably Guess What I’m Going To Say Next…
That’s right. The broken record continues. You need an instant pot in your life. I simply can’t get enough of the versatility of this kitchen tool. When it stops being awesome, I’ll stop talking about it.
Oh, I used this too. But it’s optional.
As I’ve stated before, nothing on Earth will give you a sear like that of a cast iron skillet. So for this method, before we fire up the Instant Pot, we sear the meat. This will do two things – give it an amazing color (so your meat doesn’t look sad and gray) and lock in the juices.
Pressure Cooker Lentil Soup with Curry and Potatoes
I love soup. No really, I LOVE SOUP! When eating out, I always order a bowl. At home, I’m a big fan of bean soups. I like them simple and delicious. This pressure cooker lentil soup recipe was an instant favorite in our house. It’s incredibly easy to make, yet lacking nothing in flavor. I believe I ate 3 bowls within 24 hours of making it. I only stopped because it ran out.
Who Doesn’t Love A One-Pot Meal?
There are few things as satisfying to me as creating an amazing meal without having to destroy the kitchen. I guess that’s part of my current obsession with the Instant Pot. Not every dish I make with it only uses one pot, but this one does! That alone is worth giving this recipe a try. Plus, it’s pretty cheap and healthy all at the same time!
Everyone loves pot roast. But in order to make a pot roast the right way (falling apart tender), you need time… Lots of time. That is, until now. With just 2 hours of cook time, this pressure cooker pot roast recipe is a game-changer!
What You Need to Make This Happen…
And (Optional) One of These…
So Why the New Method?
My family is constantly asking me to cook pot roast. And traditionally, I’ve had two ways I do that: 1- in the slow cooker (6 hours); 2- in the oven (4-5 hours). One day in the future, I’ll tell you which is my favorite. The big problem with these two ways is this… Unless everyone is coming to our house for dinner, it’s always difficult to get the serving time right because they both take so long.
For example… We are meeting at my mom’s house for dinner this coming Sunday evening. I live almost an hour from her. And I’m not a big fan transporting cooked food and reheating it. There’s just too much quality lost. Plus, we’ll be at church in the morning. So my best option is to cook at her house. All that to say… It is MUCH more convenient to use my new Instant Pot recipe!
One great feature of the Instant Pot is how easy it is to transport. I can bring it to my mom’s house, set it up, and have a perfectly cooked, fall-apart tender pot roast in two hours flat. 2 hours, people!
Bring chuck roast to room temperature, then season well with salt and pepper.
Heat the Instant Pot using the sauté setting. Once hot, add oil, then sear roast on both sides. Set aside. (You can do steps 2-4 in a cast iron skillet. I love the crust you can only get from cast iron. Then just add to Instant Pot.)
Add 1 onion to pot and cook for 2 minutes, until translucent. Then add garlic and thyme for 1 minute.
Add red wine to deglaze the pot, making sure to scrape up all bits. Let wine simmer and reduce for at least 5 minutes.
Add roast, then add enough broth so that the roast is just barely covered.
Close Instant Pot and switch to manual setting for 75 minutes.
Once time is complete, let pressure naturally release (about 30 minutes).
Carefully remove roast and set aside to rest.
Using a fine mesh strainer, pour liquid into separate container, then return to pot.
In a small dish, combine cornstarch and water. Then add to pot.
Add sliced onion, carrots, and mushrooms to pot and close lid.
Using manual setting, cook for 7 minutes, then quick-release pressure.
Serve together and enjoy!
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There’s nothing like a bowl of hot chicken chili on a cold night. And you’d never think this recipe is as easy to execute as it is. But there are only two steps in this process, with an amazing result.
Step 1 – Prepare Your Chicken
I prefer oven-baked chicken for this chili. But you could absolutely use any leftover or store-bought rotisserie chicken. The simplest way to make the chicken is to season it well and bake at 425 for 30 minutes. Easy peasy.
Step 2 – Throw Everything Else in the Pot
That’s right. Just put all the remaining ingredients in your Instant Pot and you’re done! And the same goes for stovetop. You’ll just need to adjust the cook time.
Before all is said and done, you just might get tired of hearing me tell you how great the Instant Pot is. But trust me, it’s amazing. And using it to cook your Easter ham is no exception! I mean, if it tastes just as good and takes 1/3 the time, it seems like a no-brainer to me.
This recipe is a variation of a turkey brine that I’ve been using for a while now. The turkey is always perfect, so I figured let’s try it with a ham. And I’m so glad I did – you will be too.
I Don’t Know About You…
When it comes to cooking for holidays, there is an all-out production at my house. Now that we are hosting the entire family at our home, I am actively seeking out ways to save time and effort – but without sacrificing quality. My family would never stand for that!
So you have my word. I will never share a recipe with you that is not tested and approved. And trust me – my family is pickier than yours. Lol..
The Secret to This Recipe is…
It’s sweet and succulent – and the flavor that would normally be on the outside glaze goes throughout the meat!
I was born and raised in the south. So collard greens are part of who I am as a person. Not a family gathering goes by without greens being on the table. Well, except for that one Thanksgiving, but we won’t talk too much about that. These days I am evolving as a chef and am learning new things and techniques. And pressure cooker collard greens is high on the list of things to do differently!
Changes to the Method
I can remember growing up thinking greens took all day to cook. And that may not be too far off in some cases. For instance, you might boil the meat for 2 hours, then cook the greens for several more. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have time for that. Well, unless I’m already in the kitchen all day for Christmas dinner.
I must say, I was shocked at how well greens did in the Instant Pot. The flavor and tenderness were spot on! I was expecting to be disappointed, but was pleasantly surprised. I’m sure you will be too.
The Most Amazing Pot Liquor
One thing I’m sure to do (as much a possible) is add flavor in every step of the cooking process. I’m at the point now where I pretty much add (usually chicken) stock to every recipe instead of water – from grits to stovetop veggies, sometimes even rice. And collard greens are no different. Since cooking in the pressure cooker reduces time to develop flavor, it is important that you get the flavor in the there right away.
I’m also not the biggest fan of heavy or greasy greens. So somewhere along the line, I began using smoked turkey instead of pork. I mean, there will more than likely be plenty of other pork options to choose from on the table. And I’m convinced that the saltiness from the smoked flavor is right on point.
St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner. I make it a point to have corned beef and cabbage every year. But this is the first year I’ve made pressure cooker corned beef and cabbage. My life will never be the same. And I will never go back to the darkness.
Here’s a look at my old way of cooking this dish.
One of my favorite tools in the kitchen is my Dutch Oven. It’s basically a cast iron pot with a ceramic lining. But as you can see, the meat has already started to take on a grayish color. And while it still tastes great, it is not nearly as appealing to look at; or tender for that matter.
This past Christmas, my wife and I received the best gift ever: An Instant Pot!
There are several things that I now cook with this tool. And I will never go back to the old way. Corned beef and cabbage is one of them! The color is stunning. And the meat itself is ridiculously tender. Plus, the sauce is so flavorful that your cabbage will possibly be the best you’ve ever had.
The only real modification I made for the pressure cooking method is the amount and type of liquid I used. I always used water for the stovetop version, but I switched to chicken broth for this version. Since there is not a lot of time to develop flavor, I highly recommend this.