Advertising
Advertising

Published on November 7, 2019

27 Healthy Pressure Cooker Meals (with Easy Recipes)

27 Healthy Pressure Cooker Meals (with Easy Recipes)

Do you want to be able to make healthy meals on a weeknight, but feel like it just takes too long?

This is where pressure cooker meals come to the rescue! With an electric pressure cooker, like an Instant Pot, you can make meals a lot faster than on the stove or in the oven. You also just set the time, and let it do its thing while you do yours, until you hear the beep.

Taking advantage of this time-saving device to make healthy meals is easy, but it’s hard to know where to start in searching through all of the recipes online. It takes forever to browse around and find something you want to make.

Let’s get you started with 27 easy recipes for healthy pressure cooker meals you can make this week – along with some info on why they’re healthy to motivate you to make them.

1. Chipotle Burrito Bowls

    This recipe is not only spectacularly delicious, but shows you how to use the pot-in-pot method for your pressure cooker to make rice and beans at the same time. This way, you can flavor them differently, and portion out each section of your burrito bowl for a gorgeous meal.

    Check out the recipe here!

    2. Maple Bourbon Chili

      Adding sweet potatoes and a little splash of maple syrup and bourbon takes an already delicious chili to the next level. This one is also vegetarian, so it’s free from cholesterol and saturated fats, and the kidney beans bring cholesterol-lowering fiber and homocysteine-lowering folate for a heart-healthy bowl of goodness.

      Check out the recipe here!

      3. Butternut Squash & Sage Risotto

        Risotto is so luxuriously creamy and rich, but the traditional method takes a lot of time and constant stirring. Making it in your electric pressure cooker means you can set it for five minutes, and let it go on its own. This recipe pairs slightly sweet butternut squash and earthy sage for a perfect fall meal.

        Check out the recipe here!

        4. Lentil Ragu

          Lentils make a perfect stand in for ground beef in this hearty and flavorful ragu. They’re a good source of folate, iron, B vitamins, and fiber – all of which help contribute to your energy levels and heart health.

          Check out the recipe here!

          5. Moroccan Winter Squash and Chickpea Tagine

            A lighter take on a traditionally slow-cooked North African dish, this vegetarian tagine from is cooked quickly in the pressure cooker. The easy pickled raisins sound like an exciting flavor boost to try!

            Advertising

            Check out the recipe here!

            6. Chickpea Bolognese Spaghetti Squash

              Swap the meat for protein- and mineral-rich chickpeas, and the spaghetti for vitamin-rich gluten-free spaghetti squash! Cooking spaghetti squash in your pressure cooker cuts the time down significantly from baking it, so you have this delicious and nutritious meal on the table quick enough to enjoy even on a weeknight.

              Check out the recipe here!

              7. Lasagna Soup

                All the delicious comfort of lasagna, but as a one-pot stew you can make quickly in your pressure cooker. Richa gives the helpful tip that because pasta cooking times can vary, look at the time on the package you’re using and divide by two to get the time you should set on your pressure cooker.

                Check out the recipe here!

                8. Cranberry Pumpkin Seed Quinoa Salad

                  Learn how to make perfectly cooked quinoa in your pressure cooker with the helpful video, and then toss it into a tasty salad that you can pack up for lunches on the go.

                  Check out the recipe here!

                  9. Thai Coconut Chickpea Stew

                    A flavorful, creamy, protein-rich soup with just five main ingredients, and ready in twenty-three minutes. Perfect for a weeknight, with enough leftovers to take for lunch the following day.

                    Check out the recipe here!

                    10. Pasta Puttanesca

                      Making pasta in your pressure cooker is easy and quick, and perfectly flavored here with capers, olives, and tomato sauce. Including crushed red pepper flakes gives a little kick of spiciness, and also works as a slight appetite suppressant, so that you’ll be less likely overeat this yummy dish.

                      Check out the recipe here!

                      11. Butternut Squash Soup

                        This gorgeous golden-colored soup is full of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory carotenoids. It’s dairy-free, gluten-free, and oil-free – but doesn’t skimp on flavor! The addition of a granny smith apple is brilliant, to add to the depth of flavor and bring out the natural sweetness of butternut squash.

                        Advertising

                        It has a little kick from some curry powder, but if you wanted to appeal to younger taste buds you could leave that out and it would surely be a hit.

                        Check out the recipe here!

                        12. Minestrone Soup

                          Minestrone is a perfect example of comfort food that’s wholesome at the same time. It usually needs to simmer for quite a while to cook the potatoes, but in your pressure cooker, it’s done in no time. Packed with vegetables, kidney beans, and pasta, this is a fully balanced meal in a bowl.

                          Check out the recipe here!

                          13. Chana Masala

                            Using an authentic blend of Indian spices, and perfectly pressure-cooked chickpeas, you can create your own restaurant-level chana masala at home! Spices like ginger and turmeric are anti-inflammatory, and cumin may help with blood pressure, cholesterol, and sugar balance.

                            Check out the recipe here!

                            14. Quinoa Pilaf

                              Pair protein-rich quinoa with anti-inflammatory turmeric, along with a heap of whatever vegetables you have on hand, and turn it into a delicious healthy meal in 20 minutes. This is proof that easy and healthy meals definitely don’t have to be boring!

                              Check out the recipe here!

                              15. Cajun Red Beans with Sausage

                                Infuse some red beans with cajun seasonings and vegetables, then toss in some vegan sausage if you like. This is perfect for batch cooking, to portion your meals for the week or freeze for later, so that you don’t resort to take out on those hectic days.

                                Check out the recipe here!

                                16. Cuban Black Beans and Rice

                                  Soft cooked black beans and rice, seasoned with garlic, onion, cumin and topped with an easy salsa of fresh lime juice, avocado, tomato, and red onion sounds like an absolutely perfect meal. Not only is this delicious, but you’ll get thirty-two percent of your daily protein needs in just one serving.

                                  Check out the recipe here!

                                  17. Creamy Vegetable Soup

                                  Advertising

                                    This soup has a whole lot of vegetables packed in for maximum nutritional power, including cauliflower which is loaded with cancer-fighting compounds. At the end, you stir in cashew cream to create a rich creamy broth without any dairy.

                                    Check out the recipe here!

                                    18. Chik’n Stew

                                      Go a step beyond chicken soup by adding all sorts of veggies and chickpeas for a hearty and nourishing stew. It’s so easy to put together: simply put everything in your pressure cooker, set the time, and then stir in some spinach before serving.

                                      Check out the recipe here!

                                      19. Split Pea Soup

                                        Split pea soup is so rich and hearty, and usually takes a long time to cook on the stove, so it’s a perfect one to speed up in a pressure cooker. This recipe uses all the classic flavors of split pea soup, but replaces the saturated fat and nitrates of bacon with a dash of liquid smoke. The smoky tempeh crumbles are perfect toppers, and if you don’t make your own, you could just use tempeh bacon.

                                        Check out the recipe here!

                                        20. Thai Peanut Chickpea Soup

                                          Peanut butter adds such a full, rich flavor to this soup, and packs so many vegetables in to get you all kinds of nutrients. It’s gluten-free, oil-free, vegan, uses the one pot of your pressure cooker, and is ready in just thirty minutes.

                                          Check out the recipe here!

                                          21. Portobello Pot Roast

                                            With zero cholesterol and saturated fat, this makes a healthy version of hearty comfort food – all made in your pressure cooker for a quick dinner with minimal cleanup!

                                            Check out the recipe here!

                                            22. Three Sisters Soup

                                              The three sisters are the Native American trinity of corn, beans, and squash that were planted together because they were mutually beneficial as they grew. This soup brings them together with the beautiful flavors of sage and ancho chili powder.

                                              Check out the recipe here!

                                              23. Indo Chinese Corn Soup

                                              Advertising

                                                Indo Chinese cuisine is Chinese recipes adapted to Indian tastes, so this hearty soup is flavored with toasted sesame oil, cumin, and ginger. It’s thick enough that as Kristina suggests, you could enjoy it with rice for lunch the following day.

                                                Although corn isn’t always thought of as a health food, it’s a good source of B vitamins and iron for energy, as well as zinc and selenium for immune health.

                                                Check out the recipe here!

                                                24. Goulash

                                                  A bit like the building blocks of minestrone, but with paprika, this Hungarian soup makes a nourishing, wholesome, and delicious meal the whole family is sure to love. This recipe replaces meat with cholesterol-free and high-fiber lentils for a heart healthy version.

                                                  Check out the recipe here!

                                                  25. Indonesian Black Rice Pudding

                                                    This is so wholesome but also so delicious it can double as breakfast and dessert! With just three ingredients, it’s simple to make, and cooks a lot faster in your pressure cooker than on the stove. As Katie points out, the black color of the rice indicates that it has the same powerful antioxidants as blueberries.

                                                    Check out the recipe here!

                                                    26. Blueberry Quinoa Breakfast Bowl

                                                      All you need are three ingredients and two minutes on high pressure to make this delicious and protein-packed breakfast bowl. It makes four servings, so you can portion it out for the week ahead. Top it with maple syrup, pecans, and almond milk for the full experience.

                                                      Check out the recipe here!

                                                      27. Sugar-Free Apple Butter

                                                        This is so easy to make, and with the sweetness coming from the natural sugars of the apples and dates, you can’t go wrong!

                                                        A great dish to make in a big batch after going apple picking, so you can enjoy it all winter. Spread it on a bagel, scoop it on top of your oatmeal or pancakes, or have a little bowl for a snack or healthy dessert.

                                                        Check out the recipe here!

                                                        So there are no excuses left, now that you have 27 easy recipes you can start making healthy meals in your pressure cooker. The beauty of having healthy food ready to go is that it makes take out that much less tempting. And the magic of electric pressure cookers is that you can set it and forget it, while you unwind after work and come back when you hear the beep to dish up the goodness.

                                                        For more easy pressure cooker recipes to explore, check out 17 Power Pressure Cooker Recipes for Rushed Weeknight Meals .

                                                        Featured photo credit: Ella Olsson via unsplash.com

                                                        More by this author

                                                        Heather Nicholds

                                                        A vegan, a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, and a food lover.

                                                        27 Healthy Pressure Cooker Meals (with Easy Recipes) 15 Easy Recipes for Kids That Don’t Require an Oven 15 Tasty Probiotic Drinks That Are Worth Trying for Better Digestive Health 17 Healthy Vegetarian Recipes for the Meat Lovers in Your Life 15 Benefits of Probiotics (And How to Find One That Actually Suits You)

                                                        Trending in Food and Drink

                                                        1 10 Brain Vitamins for Enhanced Brain Power 2 25 Quick and Healthy Breakfast Ideas to Energize Your Day 3 15 Healthy Recipes for Dinner (For Fast Weight Loss) 4 20 Easy Smoothie Recipes for Weight Loss 5 The Best Refreshing Morning Routine: Have a Vegan Breakfast

                                                        Read Next

                                                        Advertising
                                                        Advertising
                                                        Advertising

                                                        Last Updated on July 10, 2020

                                                        How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

                                                        How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

                                                        We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

                                                        We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

                                                        So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

                                                        Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

                                                        What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

                                                        Boundaries are limits

                                                        —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

                                                        Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

                                                        Advertising

                                                        Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

                                                        Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

                                                        Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

                                                        How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

                                                        Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

                                                        1. Self-Awareness Comes First

                                                        Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

                                                        You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

                                                        To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

                                                        Advertising

                                                        You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

                                                        • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
                                                        • When do you feel disrespected?
                                                        • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
                                                        • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
                                                        • When do you want to be alone?
                                                        • How much space do you need?

                                                        You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

                                                        2. Clear Communication Is Essential

                                                        Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

                                                        Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

                                                        3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

                                                        Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

                                                        That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

                                                        Sample language:

                                                        Advertising

                                                        • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
                                                        • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
                                                        • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
                                                        • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
                                                        • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
                                                        • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
                                                        • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

                                                        Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

                                                        4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

                                                        Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

                                                        Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

                                                        Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

                                                        We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

                                                        It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

                                                        It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

                                                        Advertising

                                                        Final Thoughts

                                                        Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

                                                        Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

                                                        Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

                                                        The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

                                                        Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

                                                        Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

                                                        They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

                                                        Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

                                                        Read Next