By Leslie Kelly
January 31, 2017

The hottest kitchen helper to land on your counter does so much. The Instant Pot and its competitors promise to do everything except clean up. It's an electric pressure cooker -- no more worrying about pots exploding on the stovetop -- plus, a steamer, a braiser, a genius slow-cooking soup maker, an incubator for dreamy yogurt and a mini oven all rolled into one. Here are 8 brilliant recipes, hand picked from our collection of Instant Pot recipes, which put this multitasker through its paces and make you the big winner.

This shows off the clever combo of saute and pressure cooking in the same vessel! "Chunks of pork shoulder are smothered in an easy-to-make New Mexico red chile sauce and pressure cooked to succulent tenderness," says bd.weld. "Perfect for taco or burrito fillings."

Photo by bd.weld

This family favorite is truly a one-pot meal. You'll pressure cook the meat until fork tender, adding egg noodles toward the end and finishing with a swirl of sour cream.

The Instant Pot takes fish from frozen to moist and delicious in under 10 minutes -- no thawing required. "Salmon doesn't get much easier than this," says thedailygourmet. "This turned out so moist and I like how it can be seasoned to individual preference."

Wait, lasagna in the Instant Pot? Oh yes, you can Instant Pot that! "A delicious layered lasagna pie in 30 minutes," says Shauna. "And if you want to make it ahead, you can prep the lasagna, put it in the freezer, then put it right into the Instant Pot for an easy dinner."

Photo by Shauna James Ahern

"Traditional risotto is made slowly, stirring often, adding a little hot stock at a time, then more stirring," explains Shauna. "It's a labor-intensive dish that's worth the fuss. However, risotto made in a pressure cooker is so simple and quick that it feels like cheating. It's not. This is the real stuff. You'll probably start making risotto far more often after you try this one."

"Forget about the box mac-n-cheese," says luzflcat. "And make homemade mac and cheese for a weeknight dinner. The ham, peas, and optional hot sauce add some pizzazz to classic mac and cheese."

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Ham and Peas | Photo by lutzflcat

"This wonderful, traditionally slow-cooked recipe has been translated into a quick and easy pressure cooker meal," says Diana. "Using the Instant Pot®, you get an intensely flavorful meal made in minutes that will have your family thinking you simmered this all day. Serve over spaghetti noodles, rice, cauliflower rice, or eat as a stew!"

Photo by France C.

"No pre-soaking beans required," says lutzflcat. "I know it sounds strange, but my mother-in-law always added a can of pork and beans to her homemade bean soup and, seriously, it adds another layer of flavor."

Check out our collection of Instant Pot® Recipes.