The Instant Pot, a popular brand of electric slow cooker, keeps growing in popularity. It takes some of the anxiety out of using a stove top pressure cooker (and the fear of having a hot, high pressure explosion in the kitchen) while cooking foods very quickly.
These 10 appetizer recipes use the Instant Pot to make short work out of your New Year's Eve party preparations.
1. Black Bean Dip: One of an electric pressure cooker's best features is its ability to cook dried beans quickly. This black bean dip recipe takes 30 minutes to cook and it's full of tomatoes and peppers. It can be used as a dip as is, or it can be used as the basis for a cheesy black been dip by adding cheese and cooking in the oven a bit longer.
2. Cocktail Meatballs: You can use any kind of frozen meatballs for this easy appetizer — beef, turkey, chicken, buffalo. With an Instant Pot, these sweet and slightly sour meatballs take only 10 minutes from start to finish.
3. Buffalo Ranch Chicken Dip: People tend to congregate around any kind of Buffalo chicken dip. In the Instant Pot, you can cook the chicken along with the other ingredients at the same time, and then shred the chicken back in after cooking. Ready in under 20 minutes.
4. Hard Boiled Eggs (for Deviled Eggs): In addition to being quicker than boiling eggs, cooking them in the pressure cooker just may make the eggs peel more easily because of the steam pressure applied to them. Once you have hard-boiled, peeled eggs, you can use them for deviled eggs. Eggs are cooked in under 10 minutes.
5. Cranberry Pecan Baked Brie: Warm, gooey baked brie is always a party hit, and in the Instant Pot, you can cook it right in the dish you're going to serve it in. This recipe tops the brie with cranberry jalapeño preserves and candied pecans, but you can switch up the jam/nut choices to anything you desire. Ready in 15 minutes.
6. Chili: Sure, this isn't technically an appetizer, but it's often a favorite party food, especially when you add a toppings bar (avocado slices, cheese, sour cream, diced tomatoes, pepper rings...) to the mix. The Instant Pot gets chili done in under an hour, but makes it taste like it's been simmering all day.
7. Popcorn: It's like making popcorn on your stovetop only faster and without out all the shaking back and forth of the pan. You'll need the glass lid that's made for the Instant Pot or a glass lid from your own cookware that happens to fit perfectly on the electric slow cooker.
8. Vegetable Pot Stickers: You can cook the filling in the Instant Pot, fill the dough, and then cook the filled pot stickers in the Instant Pot. Or, you can buy pre-made pot stickers and steam them perfectly in the slow cooker. Either way, you'll need a bamboo steamer that inserts into the Instant Pot to cook them.
9. Prosciutto-wrapped Asparagus: This super-fast appetizer cooks in two to three minutes and results in perfectly cooked asparagus every time (never woody or dried out). They are cooked on a bed of unwrapped asparagus to keep them from sticking or having to use oil.
10. Chicken Wings: The Instant Pot doesn't do the crisping, but it does cook tender, fall-off-the-bone, flavorful chicken in 10 minutes before you crisp them under the broiler. So while it's a two-step process and takes a little longer than some of the other recipes here, starting the wings in the Instant Pot keeps them from drying out.
Note: Any pressure cooker, including an electric one, will need time to release the pressure slowly when cooking time is done. So although these recipes cook quickly, you'll need to factor in the pressure release time before you can take the food out and serve.