As one of Amazon's perennial best sellers and an internet sensation, the Instant Pot is a cult favorite kitchen essential across the board. It seems like this genius gadget can do just about anything, from pressure cooking beans (in a fraction of the time it would take on the stovetop), to slow cooking (also in less time) savory dishes with meat so tender, it falls off the bone.
Everyone loves the Instant Pot for those cold winter evenings when all you want is some hearty beef stew, Netflix, and a big, cozy blanket. But the Instant Pot is also a key player for all those on non-hibernating days as well (we're talking weeknight meals, work snacks, and best of all, summer shindigs). Because the very last thing you'll want to do when it's 100 degrees outside is to turn on the stove.
Enter the Instant Pot. Prep your ingredients, toss inside, close up the lid and let it do its thing. This hands-free approach means that you'll have more time to set the table, chat with guests, or just lounge on the sofa in front of the AC with a chilled glass of rosé. It's a win-win situation.
So the next time you're having friends over to a backyard party, bring out the Instant Pot and get cooking (or rather, turn it on, sit back and relax). Here are seven of our favorite Instant Pot summer recipes that are guaranteed to have people coming back for seconds.
Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Pulled Chicken Tacos
This colorful summer dish is filled with all the good stuff and features flavorful shredded chicken infused with honey, lime and cilantro. When serving, just set out a bunch of different toppings—from diced tomatoes to shredded cheese—and let your guests assemble their own plates.
Instant Pot Black Bean Dip
Another Mexican-inspired crowd pleaser, this dip is insanely fast and easy to make using dried beans (yes, dried beans!), which are so much more flavorful than their canned counterparts. Keep it simple healthy vegan option or top with melted cheese for a decadent (and delicious) version.
Instant Pot Pulled Pork
One of the Instant Pot's claim to fame is the ability to cook super flavorful meat in a very short time frame, without sacrificing flavor. You won't believe how fast this summer classic comes together; it'll be out on the table before you know it. A melting pot of flavors, including brown sugar, chili pepper, and a secret ingredient (Coca Cola!) make this recipe a winner.
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese
We often think of hot casseroles like macaroni and cheese as a quintessential snow day meal. But bring it out as a side dish at your next potluck (it especially goes well with barbecued meats) and we guarantee your guests will be happy.
Instant Pot Potato Salad
Potato salad is another favorite summer side dish and a backyard BBQ staple. This recipe cuts down prep time (and cooking pots) by steaming the eggs at the same time as the potatoes. Fresh dill and a blend of several kinds of mustard adds a pop of flavor to the traditional mayonnaise dressing.
Beet Salad with Arugula, Goat Cheese and Walnuts
Can you really make salad from your Instant Pot? The answer is YES. The base of this pretty (and healthy) dish is a plate of perfectly cooked beets, steamed in half the time it would take on the stove or in the oven. Tossed with some candied walnuts, peppery arugula, creamy goat cheese and a balsamic vinaigrette, and it's a match made in heaven.
Instant Pot Key Lime Cheesecake
Did you know that you can even make dessert in an Instant Pot? This citrus flavored, creamy cake is the perfect finish to an outdoor feast.