We know why you’re reading this: You had a little too much fun over the holidays, and those days off came with a lot of really heavy food that probably has you feeling super blah right now. So it’s no wonder you’re devoting January to the Whole30. A fresh start with some clean eats and hopefully a lot more energy—what’s not to love?
And yet, we also know that with a diet as admittedly limiting as the Whole30—no grains, legumes, dairy, soy, alcohol, and sugar is no joke!—it’s important to be realistic about how you’re going to handle it. If you don’t have a lot of time to prep or cook meals, it’s just not going to happen. Go for expedited ease with the help of the Instant Pot. With its ability to sauté, pressure-cook, and steam in record time, it’s an all but surefire route to Whole30 success. Start with these 19 Whole30 recipes.
With a 22-minute cooking time from start to finish and the Instant Pot doing most of that work, these meatballs are anything but labor-intensive. They’re also a great bet if you’re craving comfort food on the Whole30: Made with eggs, garlic, and oregano and nestled in an equally garlicky tomato sauce, they’ve got all the familiar flavors of the classic recipe.
While the Whole30 can feel restrictive, the diet can also present a great opportunity to experiment with ingredients you’ve always taken for granted. This recipe is a perfect example; you may not have ever thought to put chicken, peaches, and basil together, but with a few simple seasonings and a bit of time in the Instant Pot, they merge into such a cohesive sweet and savory dish that you’ll wonder what you ever did without it.
Paella purists may need to avert their eyes, but otherwise, anyone on the Whole30 will appreciate this rice-free version of the classic Spanish dish. Aside from using cauliflower in place of the grain, it’s got everything you’d expect from the traditional recipe: sausage, shrimp, peas, all dusted with paprika and seasoned with a garlicky broth.
With potatoes, carrots, and asparagus alongside the chicken in the Instant Pot, this one-and-done dish is just the sort of efficient recipe for busy weeknights while you’re on the Whole30. Italian seasoning, fresh parsley, and a tangy balsamic-lemon sauce make sure that it’s just as big on flavor as it is low on fuss.
Nestled into cool and refreshing lettuce cups, shredded beef, stewed tomatoes, tender bell peppers come together for such a flavorful mix that you won’t even miss the tortillas. This may not be Havana street food, but it’s pretty darn close while sticking to Whole30 rules.
With curry powder and coconut milk, it’s by no means traditional, but if it’s chicken curry you want on the Whole30, there’s no denying this recipe totally delivers on taste. Subtly spiced, perfectly creamy, and full of tender pieces of meat, it hits all the right notes—and as a bonus, it’s ready in just 20 minutes in the Instant Pot.
We don’t know many people who dislike the popular bread and tomato appetizer, but when grains are out of the question on the Whole30, enjoy your bruschetta a less traditional way, using chicken as the base instead. Combined in the Instant Pot with a simple sauce of diced tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, and dried herbs, this meal gets the flavors of the original down while significantly amping up the protein.
This roux-free gumbo may not contain sausage or okra, but it tastes authentic all the same. Brimming with sea bass and shrimp, chock-full of bell peppers and onions, and generously flavored with Cajun seasoning, every part of it comes together in the Instant Pot in fewer than 30 minutes—not too shabby seeing as a quicker version of a dish can traditionally take up to three hours!
This soy-free version of a common delivery meal relies on coconut aminos, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and onion powder to get that signature savory flavor. It also uses arrowroot flour instead of cornstarch for a perfectly thick sauce that stays within Whole30 parameters. And finally, it’s made in the Instant Pot rather than your local Chinese restaurant and still probably comes together in less time than it would for your order to show up.
Don’t be thrown off by the mention of the Crock-Pot in this recipe’s title. There’s an Instant Pot method outlined too, and it works just as well—and it’s obviously quicker. Combining several common pantry spices and crushed tomatoes with the chicken thighs, this soup provides all the quintessential enchilada flavor, no tortillas required.
With no beans in sight (they’re not allowed on the Whole30!), this chili gets its substance from lots of ground beef, chunky veggies, and thick pumpkin pureé swirled into the broth. Warm, satisfying, and just spicy enough, it’s an ideal cold-weather meal that comes together in less than 30 minutes.
With large chunks of carrots and potatoes, chopped beef, and a simple garlicky gravy, this pot roast isn’t all that different from Grandma’s recipe—aside from being made in the Instant Pot, of course. It’s perfect for nights on the Whole30 where you need a meal that’s more familiar.
If actually coring peppers and putting ground meat into them is too fussy a job, ditch the stuffed method for soup. The Instant Pot gets the job done in 20 minutes, and what’s more, a bowlful of that beefy tomato mixture is so much more filling than a stuffed pepper’s worth of it.
Coconut milk gives this soup the trademark thickness that would usually come from dairy, white sweet potatoes gives it a subtle sweetness, and nutritional yeast keeps the cheesy flavor intact. Choose from plenty of Whole30-friendly toppings, from compliant bacon and green onions to sweet potato croutons, to make it as loaded—or not—as you’d like.
As long as you’ve got bacon that meets Whole30 guidelines, you’re good to go for this turkey meatloaf. Rather than a store-bought seasoning packet (the dairy and preservatives have no place here!), the homemade blend of garlic, onion, dill, and parsley lends that all-important ranch flavor that gives the recipe an extra bit of oomph.
No grains? No problem. Stuff your taco-spiced ground beef mixture into perfectly cooked potatoes instead. From the spuds to the meat, everything is cooked in stages in the Instant Pot, making this one heck of an easy meal to prepare—and to clean up.
You’ll likely be eating a lot of cauliflower rice on the Whole30, but we’re willing to bet that this will be your favorite way to prepare it. It’s cheesy from the nutritional yeast, packed with umami flavor from the mushrooms, and ready in just 25 minutes with the Instant Pot—honestly, why would you ever go back to regular risotto after this?
As long as your green curry paste doesn’t have non-compliant ingredients in it, this chicken curry recipe can totally be a part of your Whole30 menus—and it makes for a really filling meal, at that. Coconut cream provides texture and healthy fats, while butternut squash alongside the chicken keeps it hearty even if you’re not eating it with rice.
The first impressive thing about this meal is that it takes just six ingredients to make. The second impressive thing is the balsamic vinegar and apples cook down to a thickened, glaze-like topping that’s so perfectly sweet, you won’t believe there’s no added sugar in here. Whether you're doing Whole30 or not, this should become your new go-to pork chop recipe.