The start of a new school year, new routines and multiple schedules can make it challenging to find enough time to make dinner every night. But the Instant Pot helps you put dinner on the table in half the time.
The Instant Pot is an electric pressure cooker that speeds up your cooking time. It’s a programmable multi-cooker which works as a slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, sauté pan, yogurt maker, porridge maker and food warmer. The Instant Pot cooks meals faster with less energy while preserving more nutrients. The extra speed and heat of pressure cooking flash cooks vegetables allowing them to retain more vitamins. Studies even show that pressure cooking preserves 90 to 95 percent of the vitamins.
How to use the Instant Pot
Depending on the meal you are making, it can be as easy as:
- Adding ingredients and liquid to Instant Pot
- Selecting a cooking program
- Continuing your daily life until it beeps
- Releasing pressure and serve!
The Instant Pot saves you time with cooking dried beans, lentils, whole grains (rice, quinoa, pastas), veggies, hot cereals, soups and stews. You can sauté veggies and brown or sear meats, then add the rest of the ingredients to cook, all in one pot without having to dirty other pans. It’s also safe, easy to clean, and you can set the timer for when you want dinner to be ready.
Try making some of these favorite delicious and healthy Instant Pot dinner meals.
Sweet and Sour Chicken
- 1 pound True Goodness® by Meijer® boneless, skinless chicken breast, no antibiotics, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 (8-ounce) can pineapple chunks in 100% juice
- 1 (10-ounce) bottle of sweet and sour sauce
- ½ white onion, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, cut into 1-inch squares
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- ¼ cup cold water
- Place chicken in Instant Pot. Pour pineapple juice from canned pineapple over chicken.
- In a bowl, combine pineapple chunks, sauce, onions and bell pepper.
- Pour pineapple-pepper mixture over chicken.
- Place lid on Instant Pot and lock into place.
- Press “poultry” and then use “+” or “–“ button to choose 8 minute cooking time.
- Instant Pot will beep when the cooking is complete. Use the quick pressure release by pressing Cancel and then twisting the steam release handle on the lid to “Venting” position. Remove lid.
- In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with cold water until smooth. Gradually stir corn starch into hot sweet and sour sauce in Instant Pot. The corn starch will help thicken the sauce.
Serve with True Goodness® by Meijer® Organic Long Grain Brown Rice.
Source: Adapted from Instant Pot Cookbook 5 Ingredients or less. Easy, Delicious & Healthy Instant Pot Recipes for your Family
Nutrition Information (per serving): 326 calories, 4g fat, 1g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 262mg sodium, 43g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 25g protein
Harissa-Spiced Beef & Chickpea Stuffed Peppers
- 4 bell peppers (green, yellow, orange, red), seeded, tops removed
- ½ pound True Goodness® by Meijer® 90% lean 10% fat grass fed ground beef, no antibiotics, no added hormones, gluten free
- ¼ cup water
- 2 tablespoons Harissa seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup canned True Goodness® by Meijer® Organic Low Sodium Garbanzo Beans (chickpea), rinsed and drained
- ½ cup chopped tomatoes
- ½ cup True Goodness® by Meijer® Organic crumbled Feta cheese
- Place peppers on a steamer rack in the Instant Pot with ½ cup of water. Lock the lid in place. Press “Manual” and use “+” or “-“ button to set to cook for 3 minutes.
- Use the quick pressure release by pressing “Cancel” and then twisting the steam release handle on the lid to “Venting” position.
- Remove peppers from pot. Set aside. Cover to keep warm.
- Press “Sauté”. Crumble and brown the ground beef in the Instant Pot. Drain meat. Place drained meat back in Instant Pot. Add water, Harissa seasoning and salt to beef and sauté until it thickens.
- Drain excess water from bell peppers.
- In a bowl, combine cooked beef, beans, tomatoes, and feta cheese. Scoop beef mixture into bell peppers. Serve.
Serve with True Goodness® by Meijer® Organic Greek Yogurt and Grapes.
Source: Maribel Alchin, MBA, RDN, LDN, Meijer Healthy Living Advisor, Bilingual Dietitian & Personal Chef
Nutrition Information (per serving): 229 calories, 10g fat, 4g saturated fat, 48mg cholesterol, 413mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 18g protein
15 Bean Soup
- 1 (20-ounce) bag 15 bean soup, cleaned, rinsed and drained
- 8 cups water
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 8 ounces True Goodness® by Meijer® Smoked, Uncured Ham (2 cups), cut into cubes*
- 1 cup chopped cilantro
- Place beans in Instant Pot. Add water and garlic.
- Place lid on Instant Pot and lock into place.
- Cook using “bean” mode.
- After beans are cooked, do a quick pressure release by pressing “Cancel” and then twisting the steam release handle on the lid to “Venting” position.
- Add salt, tomatoes, onion, ham, and cilantro. Stir.
- Place lid on Instant Pot. Cook for 10 minutes more using bean setting.
- After beans have cooked, allow the pressure to naturally release by letting the cooker go into “Keep warm” mode for 10 minutes. Then press “Cancel” and twist the steam release handle on the lid to “Venting” position. Serve.
*Note: Freeze leftover soup in resealable plastic bags or enjoy the next day for lunch or dinner.
Serve with Cornbread, True Goodness® by Meijer® Organic Lowfat Milk, and SweeTango Apple.
Source: Maribel Alchin, MBA, RDN, LDN, Meijer Healthy Living Advisor, Bilingual Dietitian and Personal Chef
Nutrition Information (per 1 cup serving): 192 calories, 1g fat, 0g saturated fat, 10mg cholesterol, 527mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate, 13g fiber, 14g protein