Instant Pot Test Kitchen

I took major advantage of the book sale during Amazon’s Prime Day. I picked up a few fiction titles I had on my list, but more importantly, I snagged a copy of The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook by Coco Morante.

Why an instant pot cookbook? Well, every Monday night is instant pot night on our meal plan. I have my knitting circle on Monday nights, and Kevin usually closes at work and doesn’t get home until later. So there’s no real reason to plan an elaborate meal for dinner on those nights. Instead, I made a house rule. On Mondays, we use the instant pot.

It works great. I can toss the ingredients in, hit start, go about my evening plans, then come home to dinner. The only hiccup is that while I can eat the same meal day in and day out, my dear husband cannot. Hence why I picked up the new cookbook.

Since I had a little time this weekend, I packed up my machine and cookbook and headed to my mother-in-law’s house for a little Instant Pot Test Kitchen. We picked three recipes from Morante’s book to test out: Classic Meatloaf, Chili Plum Chicken, and Walnut Pomegranate Chicken. We also tried out a Philly Cheesesteak recipe from The Salty Marshmallow.

We cooked them straight from the recipes, no riffing or substituting ingredients. Then served them up to our men for an official taste test. There were no rules to tasting, but everyone had to like it before it was officially added to the list of Instant Pot Monday Meals.

Here are our Instant Pot Test Kitchen final results:

Classic Meatloaf

I don’t like meatloaf, but this meatloaf won me (and everyone else) over. It was super easy to put together with ingredients that are always in my fridge. I fibbed up there by saying we didn’t substitute ingredients. I used venison instead of ground beef, but that was my only change. Next time I will combine all of the ingredients using my stand mixer.
Time: 25 minutes
Flavor Profile: Savory and sweet
Overall Rating: 5/5

Chili Plum Chicken

I had a few hesitations about this chicken because it used salem obelek, which I had no idea was chili paste. I’m not a huge fan of spice. I don’t like to be in pain when I’m eating dinner, you know? Well the plum jam evened out the heat perfectly. It was a nice mixup to our cilantro and lime-based chicken dishes. This was my second favorite.
Time: 20 minutes
Flavor Profile: Savory and sweet, mild heat
Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Walnut Pomegranate Chicken

If you ever come over for dinner, expect to see this on the menu. It made the prettiest plate of food. This was the most labor-intensive meal we made because you had to brown the chicken thighs, seed a pomegranate, locate pomegranate molasses in the store, etc. etc. But man, oh man, was it worth it. The fresh pomegranate seeds gave each bite a satisfying crunch and pop, although my father-in-law didn’t appreciate that.
Time: 35 minutes
Flavor Profile: Savory, tangy texture
Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Philly Cheesesteak

This was pretty straightforward. We did leave the peppers out and nixed the cheese sauce for deli-sliced provolone, but I thought it was delicious. It made a TON of food, too. It would be perfect for a Super Bowl Party or if you have a large crowd to feed on the regular.
Time: 20 minutes
Flavor Profile: Savory, comfort food
Overall Rating: 4/5

You can find the first three recipes in The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook, and you can find the cheesesteak recipe online.

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