Cooking beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot is a great way to prepare these colorful veggies. It's a faster way that's also hands off than roasting them in the oven for an hour.
[This beets in a pressure cooker recipe was originally posted in April 2019. It has been updated with new photos, cooking instructions, expert tips, FAQ, related recipes, video and ways to repurpose/use up ingredients]
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How will this Instant Pot beets recipe make your life easier?
Cooking beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot is great because all you need are the IP bowl, trivet and water. When you roast them you need a baking sheet, tin foil, you have to peel and cut all the beets, and check on them often so they don't burn.
Plus they take about ½ the time, and you can't check them so you can literally set it and forget.
Use these steamed beets in this easy beet & arugula salad, or add them to:
- white bean & farro bowl
- lamb steak
- kale apple & pecan salad
- pan fried pork chops with apples
- warm harvest bowl
- pan seared pork chops
- sheet pan maple mustard salmon
Side note, if you're interested in getting a pressure cooker, I highly recommend getting an Instant Pot. It's such a great kitchen tool, and so great for cooking for one on a budget.
Unless you already have a pressure cooker, stick to the IP, it's more user friendly and safer as it controls the heat itself. I like cooking rice, beans, and other staples in mine.
What makes this beets recipe so good?
How do I make these pressure cooker beets?
Prepare Beets: The first step to making beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot is to cut both ends off. Peel medium beet after ends have been cut off and slice into 4 pieces, if desired.
Prepare your Cooker: fill the bowl with 1 cup water, then place trivet or steaming rack inside. You'll place your beets on top of the steamer basked so they won't sit in the water and get soggy. Close lid, and set knob to sealing.
Instant Pot Settings: Set to manual and cook for 15 minutes. This works for 1-3 beets. Let steam release naturally, for about 10 more minutes.
If you're cooking beets in a pressure cooker, heat cooker over high heat until it becomes pressurized, then adjust heat to keep pressure cooker heat high. Cook 15 minutes, and let steam release naturally for about 10 minutes.
- You cook your beets the same way in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, you just need to control the heat yourself if you're cooking beets in a pressure cooker.
- You can cook additional beets and refrigerate/freeze for later, but if you're cooking more than 3, you'll need to cook them an additional 10 or so minutes. Test with a fork to determine doneness.
- Pierce a beet with a fork. If it's soft and the fork goes in and out easily, they're done. Pull steamer basket or trivet out and slice beets to store for later or use immediately.
- If your beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot aren't fork tender, restart process and cook another 5-10 minutes, or as needed.
- Other Add-Ins: Add some salt and garlic to the water if desired.
Steaming beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot is easier than roasting them. But how do they compare to roasted beets? They're not as sweet and the texture is different, but you can add sweetness to them by adding other sweet foods.
Really thinly sliced beets are good raw, but they're just too hard to eat if they're anything thicker than a few centimeters thick. It's usually best to steam or roast beets in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot so they're easy to eat.
What pairs well with beets?
Beets + goat cheese is my absolutely favorite pairing. The creamy tangy goat cheese is yummy with earthy beets. Try it in this easy beet & arugula salad.
Epicurious says that citrus, fennel, dijon mustard, nuts, and apples all go well with beets. So try those too!
What can I make with beets?
- An easy beet & goat cheese salad with your steamed beets in a pressure cooker. I recently had one with arugula, beets, goat cheese, pistachios, and blackberries with a balsamic glaze. Or try this recipe of mine.
- Beet, avocado, and goat cheese salad via Foodie Crush
- Pickle them. OMG. Pickled beets via Half Baked Harvest
- Beet, goat cheese, and honey tarts via How Sweet Eats.
Did you make these beets in a pressure cooker? Leave me a comment & rating to share how your beets turned out!
How to Cook Beets in a Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot
- cutting board
- Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot
- Steamer basket or trivet
- Measuring cup
- 1 large beet
- 1 cup water
- Prepare your beets: Slice your beets in half, down the center, then cut both ends off. Peel beets after slicing them.
- Prepare your Instant Pot: fill the bowl with 1 cup of water, then place steaming rack inside. You'll place your beets on top of the steaming rack so they won't get soggy, sitting in the water. Close lid, and set knob to sealing.If using a stovetop pressure cooker: follow same instructions as above, just heat cooker over high heat and adjust after cooker pressurizes to maintain high heat.
- Cook the beets on the MANUAL setting for 15 minutes. Once cooking is finished (remember it will take about 25-30 minutes to cook), let pressure release naturally for 10-15 additional minutes before turning knob to venting to release steam. This will ensure that your beets are cooked and soft.
- Open lid and pierce the larger beet with a fork. If beet feels soft, they're done. Fork will go into and come out of beet easily if it's done. If not, repeat the process. Just set timer for 5-10 minutes instead of 15.
- You can discard your peels in a tabletop compost bin.
- If you already have one, use your steamer basket, it's easier to get the beets out. Plus they are less likely to get soggy because they won't be sitting in the water as they're cooking.
- If you'd like to cook them for longer, repeat the process. Just set timer for 5-10 minutes instead of 15.
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