Thanks to the Instant Pot charming the aprons off home cooks everywhere (and for good reason), the humble pressure cooker is finally getting its moment in the limelight. It’s high time too—most varieties are affordable, simple to use once you get the hang of them, and dramatically decrease the amount of time and effort you have to put into your meals. In fact, it’s baffling the pressure cooker isn’t a staple like the microwave. There are so many awesome dishes to make with it, from soups and stews to stir-fries and risottos. We’re highlighting 23 pressure cooker recipes that show you why the appliance might be the best sous chef you could have.

Beef/Pork

Photo: A Calculated Whisk

Ropa vieja usually requires stewing meat for… well, a long time. Most people use a slow cooker for that, but an electric pressure cooker makes the process much faster but still produces a ton of flavor.

Photo: Kitschen Cat

Jambalaya can be an intimidating recipe because of how many ingredients it typically calls for and how much time it takes. This recipe fixes both problems—and still keeps the flavors authentic—by cutting down on the amount of spices required and using a pressure cooker to slash the cooking time in half.

Photo: The Missing Lokness

Give beef stew an Asian twist by using daikon radish plus a soy and sake seasoning. You do need to brown the meat manually first, but 25 minutes in the pressure cooker with the sauce is really what takes it to mouthwatering levels.

Photo: I Save A to Z

For this version of the Chinese take-out staple, the recipe instructs you to throw the ingredients into the pressure cooker rather than stir-frying it. Ten minutes is all it takes for the beef to cook, the sauce to thicken, and the marinade to seep into the meat.

Photo: Chattavore

The great thing about serving up the classic French dip flavors in a bowl instead of a sandwich is that you’re not trying to squeeze the amount of filling you really want into the limited space between two slices of bread. When the pressure cooker can yield meat this yummy, you want as big a serving as possible. Bread can always be eaten on the side.

Photo: Veggie Balance

Some context: This dish is this blogger’s very first recipe using a pressure cooker, so you know it isn’t overly difficult. With just seven simple ingredients and 10 minutes of prep, it effortlessly turns humble pork chops and green beans into honey mustard-coated deliciousness that’s as suitable for a family dinner as it is for entertaining.

Poultry

Photo: Kitschen Cat

Why wait for a soup to simmer on the stove when a pressure cooker can cook, heat, and deliver results that yield similar results in 10 minutes? To give you a better idea of just how easy this fragrant tortilla soup is, consider that the hardest part about making it is stirring in frozen corn and a can of black beans.

Photo: Lemon Press

Using a pressure cooker gives this hearty soup that I-stirred-a-pot-for-hours taste when in reality, it just required 25 minutes of cooking time. Packed with chicken sausage, lentils, and veggies, this is a super-easy way to get in a ton of nutrients without working too hard.

Photo: Gluten Free Pressure Cooker

The stir-fry method usually used to prepare this dish is already pretty easy. But going the pressure cooker route is just as simple—in fact, it’s even better at getting the flavors of the sauce to soak in to the chicken and veggies. Go for chicken thighs, which don’t dry out as fast under the pressure cooker’s… pressure.

Photo: The Creative Bite

You’ll need an electric pressure cooker with multiple settings for this recipe, but it’s totally worth it for this peanutty one-pot meal. Everything from the chicken to the veggies to the rice noodles cooks in there, giving you all the goodness of the original dish with a fraction of the cleanup.

Photo: Tasting Page

Simple but effective seasonings such as garlic, cumin, chili powder, and lime juice make this chicken dinner anything but basic. The drippings do double duty as a thick gravy (also made in the pressure cooker), which gets poured over the top of the meat to make it even juicier.

Photo: Chef de Home

Need a gluten-free spin on chicken noodle soup that’s also really easy to make? This recipe has you covered. It swaps out the noodles for rice, gets made in one pressure cooker, and adds a big squeeze of lemon for a refreshing, tangy twist. You’ll be slurping this up whether you’re feeling under the weather or not.

Photo: The Creative Bite

Don’t let the neutral colors of this dish fool you—the turkey’s been soaked in a generous amount of spicy salsa verde, while the brown rice adds a hearty, nutty flavor. The best part? The meat and the rice both get cooked together, thanks to the electric pressure cooker.

Chicken Tikka Masala

Gone are the days when you had to run out to your favorite Indian restaurant to get your tikka masala fix. All you need is a pressure cooker, and you can whip up a version just as delicious in under an hour. (The secret? Don't skimp on the sauce!)

Seafood

Photo: Little Kitchen Blue

We’re all about any risotto recipe that cuts down on stirring time, and this one requires all of five minutes. The rest comes together in the pressure cooker, and this blogger thoughtfully includes instructions for both the electric and the stovetop kind.

Photo: Health Starts in the Kitchen

The half cup of heavy cream in this recipe doesn’t exactly scream healthy, but you can substitute coconut milk for a version that’s vegan. Plus, the coconut flavor goes incredibly well with the white fish and the tomato broth. Thanks to the pressure cooker, this restaurant-quality meal can become part of your regular dinner rotation.

Photo: Beyond Mere Sustenance

This recipe looks like it has a long ingredient list, but you’ll see that it repeats a lot of items, so don’t get intimidated. There’s a great mix of flavors and textures here, as the fresh chimichurri sauce brightens up the buttery pressure-cooked salmon and rice.

Photo: What the Fork's for Dinner

Yep, another risotto (because really, is there such a thing as too much?). It’s cheesy. It’s packed with protein. There’s wine in it. And the pressure cooker cooks it in less than 30 minutes. It’s perfect.

Photo: Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom

A Low Country boil sounds like a lot of work, but this recipe uses just four main ingredients. Plus, all you have to do is add them in stages to the pressure cooker and let it do its thing—no need to babysit a big pot of boiling water.

Meatless

Photo: The Conscientious Eater

A pressure cooker is the ultimate appliance for cooking dried beans and lentils. You do need to soak the black beans before cooking them, but once you see how easy and delicious the results are, you may never buy the canned kind again.

Photo: Chef de Home

Using a pressure cooker makes Indian food a lot less daunting to tackle in your own kitchen. The onion and tomato gravy get thick and creamy, while the dried chickpeas soften to perfection every time.

Photo: The Diva Dish

Mild coconut milk, slightly spicy curry powder, sweet potato chunks, and soft lentils make this stew a party of textures and flavors. Plus, there’s no need to steam the potatoes or cook the lentils beforehand. It all happens right in the pressure cooker.

Photo: Hip Pressure Cooking

Oh, yes, another risotto. This one keeps things vegan but still manages to be rich in protein thanks to the addition of dried lentils. They only take seven minutes to cook in a conventional pressure cooker—and add so much quality nutrition and fiber to the dish.

Photo: Budget Bytes

You don’t need any dairy or even a blender to give this soup its creamy consistency—all credit goes to the pressure cooker, which gets the peas and veggies incredibly soft on its own. Add a crusty piece of bread, and you’re all set.

Butternut Squash Soup

This soup is a fall favorite that should be on the menu all year long. Not interested in spending hours watching the oven in the summertime? With a pressure cooker, you don't have to—just pop it in the pot, let the magic happen, blend it up, and serve hot or chilled.

Ethiopian Lentils

If you're looking for a way to heat things up in your pressure cooker, look no further. This savory and spicy lentil dish features the distinctive Ethiopian Berbere spice blend, which you can buy in stores or whip up yourself. It's a delightful dish on its own, but if the simplicity of the pressure cooker has left you wanting more of a challenge, you can try making some homemade injera.

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