The Instant Pot: Yogurt


A very interesting option. I’m mostly off dairy at this point but not entirely, and I do like yogurt. Also I find it curious that the Instant Pot can MAKE yogurt, and so I definitely had to try it. And, I’ve never made my own yogurt.

The result? Lovely, fresh, pure yogurt that’s better than store bought for sure. I recommend it. I was surprised that it took so long, but really only because so far the Instant Pot has meant instant meals, instant grains, quickly cooked things, and I had conveniently forgotten that it also has a slow cooker function, and that it professes to make yogurt. Which means, time to ferment, der.

So. Here’s the lowdown.


  • 1/2 gallon whole milk (preferably raw but definitely as un-homogenized as possible)
  • 2 tbls (ish) plain yogurt with active bacterial cultures (the back of the package will tell you if it’s got ’em).


  1. Pour the milk directly into the Instant Pot. Cover, and press the Yogurt button. Then, press the adjust button to more. Wait for the pot to turn on. It should say “Boil” on the screen.
  2. That should take about 30 – 45 minutes or so. When it’s boiling, the screen will say “yogt”. Open the lid and check the temperature in a few spots. It should be over 180 degrees F. Stir with a spatula and check the temperature again. It should still be above 180. If not, pop the lid back on and use the slow cook less function for another 15 minutes. If it is over 180, then proceed.
  3. Skim away any skin that’s formed on top of the milk, remove the inner pot and set the milk aside on the countertop to cool.
  4. Once it’s cooled, add 1/2 cup of the cooled milk to a separate cup and add the yogurt starter. Mix gently, but well.
  5. Pour that mixture into the cooled milk, and gently stir a few times.
  6. Place the inner pot back in the Instant Pot, cover with lid, and hit the yogurt function.
  7. You can set the time anywhere from 8 – 12 hours — the longer you incubate, the tangier the yogurt, so really it just depends on your personal preference.
  8. Once the incubation is complete (that many hours later), remove the inner pot and place into the fridge for a few hours.
  9. Serve.

Congratulations. You just made yogurt. Add toppings that make you happy and enjoy.


The Instant Pot: Crème Brûlée


IMG_6572.JPGWell, I wouldn’t normally make this, but the Instant Pot has me making all sorts of things I shouldn’t make. Stop being so easy, Instant Pot!!!

I took this recipe right from the book that comes with the pot. Why mess around with what’s obviously tried and true?


  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbls. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • turbinado sugar for topping


  1. Place the trivet into the Instant Pot and pour two cups of water in below.
  2. Crack eggs into a mixing bowl, add sugar and whisk well.
  3. Add cream and vanilla and whisk just until combined, do not whip!!
  4. Pour the mixture through a strainer. Instant Pot suggests you pour it into a container with a spout in order to transfer the mixture to the ramekins. I just strained it right into the ramekins.
  5. Cover ramekins tightly with tin foil and place in the pot.
  6. Place lid on pot and set to 10 minutes on manual.
  7. Use the natural release method once it’s done.
  8. Remove ramekins from pot and allow to cool, uncovered for 30 – 45 minutes on your counter.
  9. Wrap ramekins in plastic wrap and place in fridge for 3 – 4 hours.
  10. Remove plastic wrap, sprinkle with turbinado sugar, and either use a torch or place ramekins under your broiler for 5 minutes to caramelize.



The Instant Pot: Korean Style Braised Oxtail

Well, this is just delicious. Also, oxtail usually takes hours to cook to perfection, and now, thanks to my amazing Instant Pot, I have achieved melt-in-your-mouth fall-off-the-bone oxtail in slightly over an hour. What?? Yes.


Here’s what to do:


  • 2 lbs oxtail
  • 1 yellow onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 carrots, cut into dimes
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1″ chunk of ginger, minced
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons gochujang (Korean chili sauce)
  • scallions for serving


  1. Brown oxtail in a skillet. You can use the Instant Pot but there’s too much oxtail and you want it done right, so just suck it up and use the skillet.
  2. Transfer to Instant Pot
  3. Mix remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl (not scallions) and pour over the oxtail.
  4. Set on manual for 1 hour, or press the Meat setting and then adjust it up to an hour.
  5. Use the 10 minute quick release method. Serve over brown rice and sprinkle with scallions.



The Instant Pot: Sushi Rice

FullSizeRender (5).jpgI think the thing I’m most impressed by with the Instant Pot is how flawlessly it cooks grains. Grains are hard to master, and I am no exception. I rarely make things like quinoa, since it takes forever, and I tend to make rice in my rice cooker.

Well, ever since my AMAZING oatmeal experience with the Instant Pot, I have been trying all the grains in there. And, for each and every one, they’ve turned out perfect. Goodbye, rice cooker!!

I had some amazing quality tuna, and there is nothing to do with that but eat it raw. I’ve made plenty of tuna tartar and chirachi type meals, but never sushi, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to see how the rice held up to formation and whatnot.

Don’t judge the rice based on what the sushi looks like, I say again, this was my first time making sushi. But the rice was stellar. Here’s how I done it.


  • 1 cup sushi rice
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar


  1. Rinse rice well.
  2. Place in Instant Pot and cover with water.
  3. Place lid on instant pot and set for 7 minutes on manual.
  4. Allow to cool using the 10 minute release method.
  5. Add rice vinegar and sugar and mix well.

Voila. Then make your sushi. Or just stick some fish on top of that rice with chunks of avocado. That works, too.

The Instant Pot: Black Bean Soup with Pork Belly

I’ve been trying all the stuff you’re supposed to try in the Instant Pot, but I’ve also just been throwing in whatever’s in my pantry and freezer, which is…a lot of stuff.


Since I discovered that frozen foods can be cooked to perfection by adding a couple of minutes to the cook time, I’ve been much more willing to just throw shit in there and see what works. What’s the worst that could happen? I end up with deliciously cooked foods but the dish is slightly not what I planned? I can live with that.

So, I decided to make black bean soup. I knew I had some bacon pieces in the freezer in a bag marked “Bacon for split pea soup or something”, meaning it couldn’t be sliced for one reason or another, so I thought that would be perfect. But alas, I couldn’t find it! Then, my eye fell on a large chunk of pork belly I had in there. I had such great success with the frozen chicken, I thought, why not.

I took the entire chunk of pork belly, frozen, and put it right into the Instant Pot along with the rest of it. The result? Fall off the bone meat that I simply shredded into the soup with a fork. Oh, Instant Pot. You had me at pork belly.


  • 1 lb. black beans, soaked for 12 hours or overnight
  • 1 lb. pork belly, frozen is fine
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbls. cumin
  • 1 tsp. cayenne
  • salt to taste
  • about a quart of stock, chicken, beef, veggie, whey, water…whatever ya got.
  • avocado and cilantro to serve


  1. drain beans and place in the Instant Pot. Add pork belly, onion, garlic, spices and top with the stock.
  2. Close the pot and set it on manual for 45 minutes, 35 if the pork belly isn’t frozen.
  3. Allow to cool using natural release.
  4. Remove the pork belly, carefully, and shred with a fork.
  5. Add back into the soup.
  6. Top with avocado chunks and cilantro and serve immediately.

This also makes a lot, keeps well, freezes well, and tastes better and better the longer it sits.

The Instant Pot: Oatmeal

The more I use the Instant Pot, the more impressed I am. PERFECT oatmeal in 3 MINUTES!!!! Not instant oatmeal, which I never like, but real, quality steel cut or really any other type of oatmeal. YUM!!!

I threw in a cup of oats, 3 cups of whey that I had in the house, but water will do as well. Then throw in whatever you want. I had some goji berries sitting around so I tossed them in, along with a pinch of cinnamon, some nutmug, a bit of honey. Close up the pot, set it to 3 minutes on manual, and have at it.

Once it’s ready, use the natural release method and serve. You can then toss on additional toppings: banana, apple, whatever your little heart desires.

Really into this for the summer specifically, not to have to cook oatmeal over a hot stove for 1/2 hour. Yes. I don’t even have a picture. I ate it all.

The Instant Pot: Chocolate Lava Cake


This is a glorious cake. And, it can be cooked in nine, yes, NINE, minutes in the instant pot.

Do this.

I stole this recipe directly from this nurse’s cooking blog.  It does not need tweaking. Thank you, cooking nurse.


  • 1 stick butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tbs Vanilla
  • 6 tbs flour
  • 1 cup powdered sugar


  1. Place chocolate chips and butter in a large bowl and microwave for 2 minutes.
  2. Mix well
  3. Mix in powdered sugar
  4. Add 3 eggs and the yolk
  5. Add vanilla and flour. Stir well.
  6. Butter your ramekins or 6oz pyrex bowls, and pour batter into each bowl.
  7. Place your trivet in your instant pot with one cup of water.
  8. Place your bowls on the trivet. (I used larger ramekins so only had to make 2)
  9. Close the instant pot and set to 9 minutes on manual.
  10. When it’s done, use the quick release method and eat!
  11. I am not going to put the ice cream and magic shell in my version of this recipe because I don’t want anyone having a heart attack. But if you’re feeling very decadent, a topping of vanilla ice cream would certainly go very nicely with this. The rest of it and you’re just asking for trouble.


The Instant Pot: Lamb Curry

FullSizeRender (4).jpg

I’m really enjoying my Instant Pot. It seems it makes everything really easy. Also, summer is approaching, and it will provide me an option to cook real meals without using my stove, so, yay!!

For this meal I experimented with a regular recipe that I got from the NY Times Cooking Section, West Indian Lamb Curry. I basically followed the recipe up through step 3. Then, I browned the meat with seasonings directly in the Instant Pot, left them in there, covered it with water, added potatoes, peppers and carrots,  and set the Instant Pot for manual setting for 15 minutes. And then I left and let the pot work it’s magic.  I spooned the chunks out and simmered the sauce in a sauce pan on the stove until it reduced down. Delicious!!!

The Instant Pot: Whole Frozen Chicken

I have a friend who also has an Instant Pot, and we were geeking out seriously about it the other day, and she mentioned that you could pop frozen meat in there and it would be perfect if you add just a few minutes to the time you would cook it regularly. Naturally, I had to try it out.

Fortunately I had a bunch of frozen chickens in my freezer. What, doesn’t everyone?!?

I threw it into the instant pot and added a cup of chicken broth, some fresh herbs and garlic, and set it for 40 minutes. The result? Fall apart chicken, with a few cups of gorgeous chicken broth at the bottom.

FullSizeRender (3).jpg

I ripped mine apart and popped it in a bowl with some spinach and then poured the broth on top. From freezer to chicken soup in less than an hour. Highly recommend.


New Project: The Instant Pot!

I got an Instant Pot for my birthday. I was just about to launch my Pok Pok Cookbook project, but then that happened. So. Now you’re gonna have to put up with a quickie side project. I have been VERY curious about the Instant Pot, so I’m super excited to explore the many things I can supposedly do with it.


According to the Instant Pot, it can be/do the following things:

  • A Pressure Cooker
  • A Slow Cooker
  • A Rice Steamer
  • A Yogurt Maker
  • Saute
  • Steam
  • Egg Cooker
  • Warmer
  • Also you can make cake in it and it comes with an Instant Pot recipe for creme brulee.

So. I’ll be posting a bunch of stuff about it. Get excited. I know you’ve been missing on me and my projects.