Category: Budget Friendly – Instantly Delicious

The BEST Instant Pot® Chicken Noodle Soup -

Brrrr. Much of the country is under the influence of the Great Polar Vortex of 2019. I am in Chicago, which seems to be getting the brunt of winter storm Jayden, and like much of the region, we are home for the next few days.  I decided this was the perfect time to make (again) and write about my new favorite Chicken Noodle Soup recipe.  It is taken from the Farmhouse Chicken Noodle Soup recipe from America’s Test Kitchen – one of my favorite cooking shows.  Sometime in early January, I was watching a recorded episode, and almost passed it over.  I mean, it’s Chicken Noodle Soup, not exactly something novel. Since they made it in a pressure cooker, it did pique my interest, and since I happened to have all of the ingredients, I made it.  WOW.  Seriously, it is the best Chicken Noodle Soup I have ever made – and I make a lot.


Instant Pot® Caramelized Onions -

One of the first recipes I shared on Instantly Delicious was a recipe for Instant Pot® Caramelized Onions.  It was a popular recipe, but I received a lot of comments that people had problems.  I did a quick test and one time it worked, another it didn’t.  I decided that since I didn’t have time to work on the recipe, I would just take it down until I could fix it.  Since then, I have received several emails asking where the recipe went.  In my haste, I deleted the post without saving my work (story of my life), so I had to start again.  I am kind of glad that I did, so I wouldn’t continue testing something that wasn’t working.  I did a lot of reading and revisited the Serious Eats post for Instant Pot® caramelized onions, which I originally read to see if I could learn why my method wasn’t working.  However, there were mixed reviews for that recipe, too.  I decided I would borrow the addition of baking soda to speed up the browning process (Maillard reaction), and rethink how I cooked the onions entirely.  I am really pleased with the results and am ready to share them again.


Instant Pot® No-Boil

I stumbled upon the “cold start” yogurt technique on Pinterest from This Old Gal. It’s funny, when I bought my Instant Pot®, I immediately thought about all of the wonderful things I would be making.  Little did I know that more than anything else, I would use my Instant Pot® to make Greek Yogurt. I make a batch of yogurt, pretty much every week.  Up until recently, I have been using this method for homemade yogurt. After making the yogurt, I chill it in the fridge overnight and then strain off the whey until I have thick and creamy Greek Yogurt. Delicious.  The no-boil method is SO MUCH BETTER.  No fussing with thermometers.  No icky film to remove. No worry about scorching on the bottom – just thick, creamy, perfect yogurt, ready to eat or strain into Greek Yogurt.  The trick is to use ultra-pasteurized milk.  Ultra-pasteurized milk is heated to a higher temperature than regular pasteurized milk, which kills more bacteria.  Because of this, you can skip the step of heating your milk to 180-200F. I have experimented with two different brands and both have worked for me.



Colcannon is a traditional Irish dish made with boiled potatoes and cabbage. I believe that kale is the most authentic cruciferous vegetable – please correct me if I am wrong.  I prefer cabbage, so that is what I use.  People use a variety of sturdy green vegetables. Use your favorite. For St. Patrick’s Day, I usually serve corned beef with boiled carrots and potatoes, and then braise cabbage separately in butter.  I wanted a change this year, so I made colcannon, which is a family favorite.  I made it ahead of time in myInstant Pot® and then froze it.  I will thaw and reheat on St. Patrick’s Day.


Easy and healthy Instant Pot® Minestrone (vegan, vegetarian) -

Two years ago today, I shared this blog with the world.  It has been really fun being a part of this whole Instant Pot® craze, creating delicious recipes, and sharing them with my readers.  To honor this anniversary, I could have come up with something flashier, but instead, I am sharing a recipe that speaks to me and my family – minestrone.  For whatever reason, this is a no-complaint dinner.  It’s comforting, humble, and budget-friendly.  We love it and think you will too.  It is so versatile – make it vegan by omitting the Parmesan cheese. Use chicken or vegetable stock, in place of water.  Use whatever beans you have in the cabinet.  Add extra vegetables.  I usually serve this with warm, crusty bread.


Easy Instant Pot® Oatmeal in a Jar -

I have been getting a lot of feedback on my oatmeal recipes lately, specifically related to the “burn” message on the newer Instant Pot®. My Banana Bread Steel-cut Oats and Peaches and Cream Oatmeal are huge hits, but some users are getting the “burn” message because of the fruit sugars and thickness of oatmeal. I never like to have unresolved problems with my recipes, so I decided to try and remedy this.  I cooked the oatmeal in jars on a trivet. It worked really well and should take care of this problem.


Instant Pot® Split Pea Soup (vegan, gluten-free) -

Split Pea Soup ​is a humble soup, and definitely a hard sell in my family.  Thick, green, obviously full of vegetables, everyone seems to turn their nose up at it. I love it, though, and usually, make it a couple of times a year to satisfy my craving. I really think you should, too! If I happen to have a leftover ham bone, I make it with that, but if not, I don’t let that hold me back. This recipe is vegan and gluten-free and equally yummy.  Split pea soup is also easy on your wallet if you need to stretch your food budget.  I love using the Instant Pot® for this recipe because the soup cooks really fast.


Instant Pot White Rice | Pot-in-Pot Method -

As I have mentioned before, I make a lot of rice.  My go-to method is basic Instant Pot White Rice, but some readers have mentioned that they don’t like to clean the rice that sticks on the bottom of the pot.  I understand completely, so I wanted to share the “pot-in-pot” method, which is just as easy and there is absolutely no mess to clean up after cooking.


Instant Pot Tomato Basil Sauce - Thick, rich, and delicious.

This time of year makes me a little sad.  My kids are growing up so fast, and late August always means that a new school year is right around the corner.  For some reason (and it happens every year), I tire of caring for my garden.  Maybe it is because September marks the end of our summer fun.  Maybe I am gearing up for busier days of school and work commitments, or maybe I am just ready for the change in seasons. That said, I usually grow an abundance of basil in my garden.  I diligently water it all summer and then for some reason, I just stop.  This year, I decided I was not going to kill off my basil before I could use it up.  This Instant Pot® Tomato Basil Sauce uses half a cup of basil.  I made a significant dent in my plant and feel so good about making something so delicious for a late-summer dinner.  Tomato Basil sauce is easy, fresh, and fast and it translates really well to cooking in the Instant Pot.


Basic Millet in an Instant Pot® pressure cooker -

I first learned about millet from my friend Kim Lutz of Welcoming Kitchen. She was writing her fifth cookbook, Ancient Grains, and she needed recipe testers. I was lucky enough to be able to help her out. Her recipes are delicious, healthy, vegan, and many are gluten-free. Kim has a ton of great information about it and other ancient grains in her cookbook, which I use frequently.

I have had the  bag of millet from recipe testing over two years a year ago sitting in my freezer and honestly, I had forgotten all about it. I had planned on making a rice pilaf today, but I was all out of white rice.  I went looking through what I had and found the forgotten bag of millet.  I am so glad I did! Millet cooks up fluffy like quinoa, couscous, or rice, and it is naturally gluten-free. It also keeps really well in the freezer, if you happen to forget about it.  If you can get your hands on millet, you should definitely try it. I also suggest that you get your hands on Kim’s book, because it is amazing.