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Adventures in Convenience: Instant Pot Edition (Plus, a Recipe!)

January 23, 2018 4 Comments

This past Christmas, I was very lucky to receive an Instant Pot from my in-laws. Kitchen gadgets are the only item I still ask for since becoming a minimalist and I was downright bananas about actually getting one.

Fast forward to last week when I decided to put my Instant Pot through its paces. I decided to give it a try with some of the vegetables we got in our bi-weekly CSA box (more on that later). I read the manual, found a recipe, prepped the ingredients and then turned on the pot to start the cooking process.

I’m not going to lie, I was pretty stressed about the whole process. Never having used a pressure cooker before, I was convinced I was going to somehow blow up my house. The Instant Pot is supposed to help you cook things quickly – that’s one of its main purposes. But, since I had never used it before I didn’t have a sense of how it was supposed to work, so I went into major overdrive. The problem is, my brain doesn’t really do ‘quickly’. Unless I know precisely what I’m doing, I’m more of a methodical turtle.

But, guess what? I didn’t blow up my house! And I didn’t ruin dinner – it was actually delicious. No, but actually, like, really delicious.

I merged together two different recipes, this one for Instant Pot directions, and this one for a base of ingredients. I have a serious problem with being able to follow directions, so I’m a major recipe ad-libber.

Why am I sharing a recipe on a blog about minimalism, the simple life, and tiny houses? Well, when something works well in my life, I want to share that with you guys! I’ve done it before with my DIY computer detoxand my week of frugal eating experiment. Part of my 2018 Shopping Ban will include DIYing things like making my own toiletries, mending/sewing my own clothes and, making good use of all the food in our fridge.

That’s where the recipe below comes in!

Like I said above, I used produce from our CSA box to make this recipe. So, what is a CSA? CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture.

Community Supported Agriculture is a model where farmers sell seasonal shares of their harvest directly to customers in their area. You become a  CSA member by purchasing a share in the CSA in advance. Then you receive regular baskets of fresh produce throughout the winter months (when access to fresh local produce is limited). – Root Cellar Gardens (where we get out CSA from)

We paid $260 for seven boxes spread out over 14 weeks from December to February. That works out to about $37 a box for food that makes up a good chunk of our produce and diet.

What I love about the food boxes is that you often get items you may not normally buy. Which means you get to experiment in the kitchen! The box we most recently received was full of delicious hardy winter vegetables like shallots, potatoes, honeyboat squash, carrots, parsnips, and garlic.

It’s been really cold here lately, so I knew I wanted to try soup in the Instant Pot. It also seemed like a pretty easy place to start.

The resulting soup was delicious. We’ve already made it twice in two weeks!

I’m not convinced that the Instant Pot made the soup any faster than I could have done it on the stove. However, I do like the one-potness of the experience. I also think it will be great in the tiny house because our current design doesn’t have a stove and only features a two-burner cooktop.

So, if you’re looking for a delicious Instant Pot recipe that used staple type vegetables – this is the recipe for you!

P.S. Sorry I don’t have more photos of the dish. The lighting in my kitchen is truly awful and is not conducive to drool-worthy food photography. Happy souping!

Do you have an Instant Pot? What’s your favourite Instant Pot recipe? Let me know in the comments! 

Did you miss last week’s episode of Tiny Bites, all about social shaming? You can listen to it here.

Image Credit: Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash



Print Recipe
Curry Potato and Butternut Squash Soup
Deliciously smooth and spicy, this dairy-free, and gluten-free soup will warm your soul on the coldest day.
Curry Potato and Butternut Squash Soup | Tiny Ambitions
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Curry Potato and Butternut Squash Soup | Tiny Ambitions
  1. Once all your veggies are prepped, press Saute on the Instant Pot. Add your cooking fat. Once melted, add the onions and garlic and cook until translucent and fragrant.
  2. Press Keep Warm/Cancel. Add all other ingredients to the pot. Put lid on pot and secure, making sure the vent is in the Sealed position. Press the Manual button and press the + button until the display reads 12.
  3. When the time is up, do a Quick Release by turning the vent to the Venting position. Wait for the pressure to release.
  4. Remove the lid. Puree the soup with an immersion blender.
  5. Stuff your face.
Recipe Notes

If you don't like spice, start with 1 tbsp or less. Feel free to use whatever cooking fat you prefer. You can also try the recipe with other milk-like beverages in place of the coconut milk.

Share this Recipe


  • Lisa January 24, 2018 at 12:27 am

    What a yummy looking soup Britt! I just love pumpkin soup (that’s what we call it here…in Australia squash refers to those little yellow vegetables with a dot of green on top – very confusing!). So glad to hear you are enjoying your new contraption! I hadn’t heard of an Instant Pot before now but it sounds like a stove/slow cooker/pressure cooker rolled into one. That will definitely be an awesome asset for your tiny house, since you will be able to cook so many different things with the one appliance. I am all about minimising how many kitchen appliances I have, as they take up so much space and are really heavy and awkward to move from house to house. I wish it was cold enough to make a batch of this in my slow cooker right now. Our diet has mostly consisted of salad these last few weeks as it’s just too hot and humid to eat much else!!

    • Britt January 24, 2018 at 7:41 pm

      I don’t know how we managed to name things so differently, but I find it very fascinating! The Instant Pot is a pressure cooker, slow cooker, oven, rice cooker, etc all in one. I’m still not convinced that it makes thing any easier. But, I do have the benefit of a full kitchen. I’m sure people who only have kitchenettes would find it very handy.

      We actually made this soup again last night because it was so cold here. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for warmer weather soon! I can’t wait to eat some amazing garden fresh salads in the summer!

  • Erin | Reaching for FI January 23, 2018 at 11:44 am

    Yum, soup! I will put this recipe to good use when it inevitably gets horrendously cold here again!

    Glad to hear your first foray went well! No instant pot for me at the moment because I just don’t have the space for yet another kitchen gadget (my kryptonite, omg). So I’ll just make do with my crockpot and stove 🙂

    • Britt January 23, 2018 at 11:48 am

      The instructions for this recipe would actually be simpler if you did it in a Crock-Pot or stove. Put it all in. Cook it. Blend.

      Sometimes it’s easier to not be high-tech. That being said, I’m making this again for dinner tonight! It’s a serious favourite.

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    Hey! I'm Britt. I write about living a tiny, simple, intentional life. Because life doesn't need to be lived big.