Pressure cooking isn’t new, but the past few years everyone has been obsessed with the Instant Pot. At first it didn’t make sense to me why anyone would want to pressure cook their food, so I resisted diving in. It wasn’t until recently that my interest outweighed my hesitation and here I’m sharing all about my first experience with the Instant Pot.
Growing up we never had a microwave and, truth be told, that made me a bit of a snob about them. When I first heard of the Instant Pot, I thought it was a fancy microwave that wasn’t for real cooking. All I saw were posts promising “fast meals” and “simple cooking.” So I assumed it was another gimmicky appliance that would eventually collect dust.
Well, I was wrong and being a bit of a snob.
Okay, a total snob.
The Instant Pot is actually a really useful kitchen tool.
Last Christmas my in-laws bought us the Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 6 qt. Programmable Pressure Cooker and we finally broke it out a few weeks ago. For months it’s been in its box giving me some serious side eye, but I was just too intimidated to use it. If you’ve ever read through the manual on one of these cookers you know how overwhelming it can feel. Whenever I thought about using the Instant Pot I would put it off because it felt like going back to college.
We finally unboxed it and tackled the beast head on, fear be damned. Turns out that our first time cooking with the Instant Pot was a super fun experience!
I found this Chicken Coq au Vin and we agreed it was perfect for our first round with the Instant Pot. We began by cooking the bacon and then sautéed the onions, tomato paste, and garlic in the reserved bacon grease. Then comes the fun part – pressure cooking the remaining ingredients: red wine, broth, chicken, bay leaves, thyme, mushrooms, and carrots. This process only took 8 minutes to complete. Once the pressure was released (we used quick release), we went back to sauté mode and reduced the liquid.
In total this meal only took about 20 minutes to cook
and it was super easy and delicious!
I hadn’t expected something so initially overwhelming to also be this exciting, but it really was. The recipe was simple enough for an IP newbie and setting it up turned out to also be a breeze. This experience was pretty perfect. Although I was in such disbelief that the chicken was actually cooked that I cooked it a bit longer to be sure. It all just felt too good to be true, ya know? Next time I’ll have more faith in the results though because this meal was just so good. Our Instant Pot will definitely be holding near-permanent space on the counter going forward. We served ours with the crumbled bacon on top and a side of these Sage Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes. It was perfection!