14 Quick And Easy Instant Pot Dinner Ideas

Instant Pots are wonderful time savers. They cook using so many different methods that they replace almost all of the standard small kitchen appliances. These pots to everything but stir. So, using them to save time in the kitchen is a great hack that anyone can use. These fifteen Instant Pot dinner ideas are fast, delicious, and even pretty darn healthy, and you won’t have to spend a ton of time in the kitchen cooking. The Instant Pot does all the hard work for you.

1. Mexican Chicken

An overhead view of a white bowl filled with instant pot Mexican chicken topped with fresh tomatoes, avocado and cilantro.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

If you’re in the mood for something south of the border, try this Mexican chicken recipe to get your dinner underway. Serve it over brown rice or as a taco filler along with avocado and cilantro. You can also use this to stuff tacos or burritos.

2. Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches

Serve on buns and drizzle with ranch.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

These buffalo chicken sandwiches are great for a lazy weekend meal or a get-together with friends. They make a delicious appetizer on slider buns or a main meal on bigger buns. Make a double batch and freeze some for future meals. This is also fantastic for movie nights.

3. Lentils And Rice 

A closeup of a white bowl filled with Instant Pot Lentils and Rice.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

This lentils and rice dish is aromatic thanks to the marvelous combination of exotic but easy-to-find spices. The recipe requires newer lentils and brown rice to turn out well. The flavor is unequaled and pairs nicely with some flatbread or some soup.

4. Lentil Sloppy Joes

Two lentil sloppy joes sit on a parchment-lined baking pan.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

If you love sloppy joes, this lentil sloppy Joes recipe should definitely be on your to-make list. They are every bit as sloppy as the meat-based version, have tons more good-for-you fiber, and the flavor is simply fabulous. Serve these with a side of baked fries to round out the meal. Leftovers can be mixed with cooked brown rice for a healthy lunch the next day.

5. Chicken Ropa Vieja

A partial view of a white bowl filled with chicken ropa vieja.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

This Cuban dish is sure to please. Chicken ropa vieja is an amazing chicken dish that is often served with rice, beans, and veggies. You can make lunch wraps with it, stuff tacos and burritos with it, or mix it with some quinoa. It will freeze well for up to six months if you pack it well.

6. Cilantro Lime Chicken

Slow Cooker Cilantro Lime Chicken served over quinoa and garnished with jalapeno pepper slices, lime slices, onions and black beans.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

Served over rice or in a taco or burrito, this cilantro lime chicken is the stuff taco dreams are made of. It cooks up fast in the Instant Pot, too, and is a hearty, protein-rich meal you can serve in multiple ways.

7. Texas Cowboy Stew

The finished Instant Pot Texas Cowboy Stew Recipe served in a white bowl with a spoon.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

Got a hitch in your giddyup? This Texas cowboy stew should put you right in a hurry. It’s hearty, filling, and full of all the things you would expect from a stew like this. Enjoy it with a delicious piece of cornbread.

8. Italian Chicken

An overhead view of a ladle lifting out some crockpot Italian chicken from a slow cooker crock.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

While this is a slow cooker recipe, it also has instructions for making it in an Instant Pot. This wonderful Italian chicken dinner can be served over rice or pasta for a complete meal. It’s made with frozen ingredients, so you can also assemble it quickly for meal prep ahead of time.

9. Potato Leek Soup

The finished Instant Pot Potato Leek Soup Recipe in a white bowl with croutons sprinkled on top.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

Potatoes and leeks just go together. This potato leek soup proves that this classic combination has a delicious reputation that is well-earned. Serve this with some garlic bread or corn bread and a green side salad to complete the meal. This also makes a great Thermos lunch as well.

10. Carolina Gold BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

A closeup of a Carolina Gold BBQ Chicken sandwich topped with creamy coleslaw on a whole grain bun.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

It’s hard not to love these Carolina gold BBQ chicken sandwiches. Their robust flavor is a heady experience. The heartiness of the meat and the crisp freshness of the coleslaw is a perfect combination for dinner tonight. Make a big batch and keep some on hand in the freezer for future dinners, too.

11. Egg Roll In A Bowl

A white bowl filled with Egg Roll In A Bowl.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

If you love egg rolls, this egg roll in a bowl should be a perfect fit for your dinner table. It comes together quickly and uses all-natural ingredients. You can enjoy it as is or serve it over rice.

12. Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

A bowl of Butter Chicken on a cutting board.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

Love Indian flavors? You aren’t alone. Those aromatic spices are always a fabulous experience. This slow cooker butter chicken is a play on the Indian classic that so many love and it will not disappoint. It’s easily made in your Instant Pot, too.

13. BBQ Chicken Breast

Two BBQ chicken breasts on a white plate, topped with sliced green onions.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

You don’t need a grill to make good BBQ chicken breasts. All you need is your Instant Pot. These delicious chicken breasts are tender and fully flavored with all those spices that come with your favorite barbecue sauce. Serve with rice and veg for a complete meal.

14. French Onion Chicken

An overhead view of french onion chicken in a white bowl.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

French onion chicken tastes delicious, and is so easy to prepare, you’ll wonder if you had to do any work at all. Serve it with rice and veggies to complete the meal, or skip the rice to make this a low-carb or keto meal.

More From The Gracious Pantry

A dutch oven with a cooked whole chicken topped with rosemary twigs.
Photo Credit: The Gracious Pantry.

Need some new ideas for dinner tonight? Chicken or ground turkey make quick and simple meals that are tasty, too. Here are some suggestions to get you started on what to make for dinner tonight.

This originally appeared on The Gracious Pantry.

Author: Tiffany McCauley

Title: Food and Travel Journalist

Expertise: Food, cooking, travel


Tiffany McCauley is a nationally syndicated journalist and an award-winning cookbook author and food blogger. She has been featured on MSN, Huffington Post, Country Living Magazine, HealthLine, Redbook, and many more. Her food specialty is healthy comfort food recipes.

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