Warming dishes you can make using your instant pot

Anita Nesbit from Instant Pot shares two popular winter recipes

10 June 2021 - 10:17
Jess Levin's vegan barley risotto.
Jess Levin's vegan barley risotto.
Image: Supplied


This version bucks tradition, using barley instead of arborio rice, for a novel twist on the classic … Deliciously creamy and accidentally vegan, this easy peasy, 10-ingredient barley risotto comes together in 30 minutes using my Instant Pot, which cuts down on washing up and frees me from mundane pot-stirring duties. Simply start by sautéing your ingredients, then set the pot to pressure cook for a while and do the rest of the work, says Culinary Cartel author Jess Levin.

Cook time: 25 mins

Serves: 2


5 large mushrooms


Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic

Jess Levin's vegan barley risotto.
Jess Levin's vegan barley risotto.
Image: Supplied

1 cup (250ml) pearl barley

½ glass white wine (optional)

750ml (3 cups) vegetable stock

60ml (¼ cup) cashew cream/coconut cream

30ml (2 tbsp) ready-made pesto of choice

Chopped parsley, sage or oregano for garnish

Crispy onions


  1. Roast the mushrooms whole for 15 minutes at 200°C drizzled with oil, salt and pepper or thinly sliced and cooked until soft with your onions below.
  2. Add a little oil to the metal insert of the Instant Pot and press the sauté function. Adjust the sauté intensity to “normal”.
  3. Add the chopped onion and garlic, and sauté until the onions are soft. Add the sliced mushrooms in, at this point, if not roasting them.
  4. Add in the barley, stirring it to coat it with the oil. Then add the wine and stir the barley until the wine has evaporated.
  5. Finally, add the stock and stir it through the barley. Place the lid on the Instant Pot, and set it to Pressure Cook on High Pressure for 15 minutes.
  6. Once the timer beeps, allow a Natural Pressure Release for 10 minutes, before releasing the remaining pressure and safely removing the lid.  
  7. Turn the Instant Pot back to sauté, on “more” (the highest heat setting for sautéing), then add the coconut cream, or cashew cream, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  8. Spoon the barley risotto into bowls, then garnish with herb of choice, crispy onions and roasted mushrooms. Serve warm.

• Tip: If you're not following a dairy-free or vegan diet, you can add in ¼ cup of Parmesan once the risotto has finished pressure cooking.


Short-cutting my way around slow roasting, this bredie is made in the Instant Pot, it’s a game changer for slow cooking recipes. After 45 minutes, the meat falls away from the bone and is soft enough to eat with a spoon.

Once I’ve reduced and thickened the sauce with a cornflour slurry, I mix in creamy white beans and sliced lemon to cut through the fattiness of the lamb and brighten the flavours. Serve with a bowl of fluffy mash or couscous tossed with currants and toasted almonds, says Bibby's Kitchen at 36's Di Bibby.

Di Bibby's lamb knuckle bredie with white beans.
Di Bibby's lamb knuckle bredie with white beans.
Image: Supplied

Cook time: 1 h 20 mins

Serves: 6


Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1.4kg lamb knuckles, at room temperature

30ml (2 tbsp) olive oil

2 red onions, sliced into half moons

10ml (2 tsp) cumin seeds

5ml (1 tsp) ground coriander

10ml (2 tsp) garam masala

2.5ml (½ tsp) dried red chilli flakes

2 cloves garlic, minced

15ml (1 tbsp) freshly grated ginger

30ml (2 tablespoons) tomato paste

2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes

10ml (2 tsp) honey

250ml (1 cup) chicken stock

15ml (1 tbsp) corn flour mixed with 30ml (2 tbsp) cold water

1 x 400g can white beans, rinsed and drained

1 lemon, sliced into rounds, seeds removed

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Season the lamb on both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  2. Set the Instant Pot on the Sauté function. Heat 1 tbsp of oil until hot, then brown the meat on both sides. I do this in batches to ensure the meat develops good caramelisation. Remove from the pot and set aside.
  3. Drizzle in another tablespoon of oil, add the onions and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add all the aromatics (spices), garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.
  4. Stir in the tomato paste, chopped tomatoes, honey and stock. Stir and scrape down the sides and bottom of the inner pot well. Return the meat to the pot and submerge in the sauce. Secure the lid and move Sealing Vent up. Select the Meat/Stew function and set the timer to 45 minutes.
  5. Once complete, allow a Natural Pressure Release for 20 minutes, then carefully turn the Sealing Vent down to release any remaining steam. With a slotted spoon, remove the meat and place in a bowl. Set the Instant Pot to Sauté and reduce the sauce for 15 minutes. Add the cornflour slurry and whisk, then simmer until the sauce is thickened, about 3 minutes.
  6. Add the beans and meat to the sauce and heat through. Place the lemon slices in the sauce.
  7. Serve the bredie with mash or couscous with slivered almonds and chopped coriander.