Last weekend I spent an idyllic day at the pool with my family, but when we came home, there was nothing for dinner and it was the witching hour. To say that our blissful pool day turned sour would be a bit of an understatement. I scrambled to whip something up, while both my girls were in meltdown mode. If you can relate, you’ll be happy to know that there are some amazing summer Instant Pot recipes that cook under 30 minutes that will barely disrupt your day of summer fun.
If you’re not already a proud owner of an Instant Pot, now might be the time to dive in. The art of pressure-cooking has got quite the cult following, and it’s not hard to see why: Crowd-pleasing staples from grains to soups to meats cook in a fraction of the time it would over the stove — it is called an "Instant Pot" after all. And fans love that you can basically leave the appliance unattended (that means you can do laundry, catch up on some shows, read, work, or play with their kids) while the appliance does all the cooking for you. They come in an array of sizes, too, to suit each family’s individual needs, but in my humble opinion, go big or go home. Sure a smaller pot will barely take up any counter or cabinet space, but with an 8-quart, you can easily cook whole chickens, and have the room to double recipes, which means you’ll likely have leftovers for days.
Whether you’re an Instant Pot pro, or new to the game, these simple summer recipes will save the day when you’re time-crunched and hungry.
4-Ingredient Instant Pot Chicken Chile Verde
If you’re craving Mexican and a margarita, you won’t find a better — or easier — Chicken Chili Verde recipe than this one from Two Peas & Their Pod. It contains just four delectable ingredients: chicken, a jar of salsa verde, cumin, and garlic powder. Let the appliance work its magic for just 25 minutes, and you’re ready to feast. You can serve it with tortillas or use it as a protein-base for burrito bowls.
Easy Instant Pot Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta
I love eating spicy food when it’s hot out, for its surprisingly cooling effects. That’s why this Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta recipe from A Spicy Perspective is so perfect for the dog days of summer. It features sriracha and Thai sweet chili sauce. The best part is that the dish only takes 8 minutes to cook, so there’s no sweating in the kitchen. That happens later!
Instant Pot Salmon with Chili-Lime Sauce
A perfectly cooked salmon in just 5 minutes? Yes, please! This delectable Instant Pot Salmon with Chili-Lime Sauce from Savory Tooth is a real crowd-pleaser. Once you discover the power of the instant pot "steam" function for cooking seafood, you’ll never cook fish any other way.
Instant Pot Potato Salad
Whether you’re grilling out in your own backyard or you’re headed to a friend’s BBQ, this Instant Pot Potato Salad recipe from Real Food Real Deals makes the ultimate side dish. It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and only takes 25 minutes to make (and that includes prep time!)
Instant Pot Chicken Biryani
In the mood for Indian? This exceptional Instant Pot Chicken Biryani from Two Sleevers is so easy, you’ll want to make it every week. The complex flavors taste like the dish has been simmering all day but it actually only takes takes 30 minutes to cook. The recipe does call for some exotic ingredients, like cardamom pods and whole cloves, so you may need to hit the grocery store in advance to stock up.
Instant Pot Carrot Soup Recipe
There’s nothing better than cooking with fresh, seasonal ingredients. That’s what takes this scrumptious Instant Pot Carrot Soup recipe from Plated Cravings to the next level. With a total cook time of just 26 minutes, this could be your new favorite soup.
Instant Pot Moroccan Chicken Bowls
Spice things up with this too-die-for Instant Pot Moroccan Chicken recipe from Fit Foodie Finds. It cooks in under 25 minutes and has the richest flavors. The sweet potatoes do need to be made separately, but they can bake in the oven at the same time as the chicken simmers in the instant pot, so it’s actually pretty easy.
Instant Pot Honey Sesame Chicken Noodle Bowls
If you’re craving Asian takeout, you might want to reconsider hitting speed dial. This yummy Instant Pot Honey Sesame Chicken Noodle Bowl recipe from The Girl On Bloor only takes 20 minutes to cook, and that could beat even the fastest delivery guy. Once you toss the ingredients into the pot, your work is done. It’s so easy and so good.
Instant Pot Butter Chicken Curry
This Butter Chicken Curry from A Spicy Perspective is guaranteed to wake up your tastebuds. With a cook time of just 14 minutes, this sensational curry really is done in a hurry. The best part, the flavors get even more nuanced the next day. Leftovers for the win!
Instant Pot Cherry Clafoutis
This elegant Instant Pot Cherry Clafoutis recipe from Two Sleevers is the perfect (French) summer dessert. Thanks to a cook time of just 20 minutes, it’s ready faster than you can say Voilà. The recipe calls for cherries, but you can sub in any berry or stoned fruit.