Did you buy an Instant Pot? The fact that this single appliance can do the work of seven already has us sold, but it’s also got the added bonus of helping us eat healthier. Once you get past the learning curve, the Instant Pot makes it very easy to put together a nutritious meal, minus a pile of dirty pots and pans.

There’s no excuse not to make a home-cooked meal.

Getting home late thanks to a crazy week at work? This kitchen appliance operates on your schedule. Whether you need it to keep your dinner warm until you walk through the door at 9pm or to whip something up in 20 minutes, it will work for you. Convenience and saving time matters when you are trying to eat healthier.

The many cooking settings on an Instant Pot allow you to infuse flavor into fresh vegetables in record time, so you’ll have any easier time eating more healthy vegetables. Fluffy, steamed sweet potatoes and braised kale sound way better than a microwaved bag of frozen peas.

Here’s a sample Instant Pot recipe to get you started.

Instant Pot Butternut Squash and White Bean Chili

The butternut squash and beans in this recipe gives you almost half of your daily recommended potassium intake in one meal, in addition to being a good source of fiber. Getting enough potassium helps lower your risk of heart disease and protects your muscles and bones from wearing down.

Polanco chilies are a glossy dark green, with a grassy flavor and meaty texture that makes this chili especially complex. Look for them where other hot peppers are sold. Substitute with 2 light green Anaheim peppers if you can’t find poblanos.

Time Commitment: Active time: 20 minutes Total time: 45 minutes

Instant Pot Butternut Squash and White Bean Chili

Ingredients (serves 6)

  • 1 1/2 cups dry cannellini beans
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 poblano chili, seeded and chopped
  • 3 medium cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons Mexican oregano
  • 3 cups butternut squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges


  • The night before cooking, soak the beans. Place the beans in a large bowl and cover with 10 cups cold water; soak for 8–12 hours. Drain and rinse thoroughly.
  • To make the chili, put the oil in the Instant Pot, select sauté and adjust to more/high heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and poblano chilies and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, 5 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, coriander and oregano, and cook until fragrant, 45 seconds. Press cancel.
  • Add the beans, squash, broth, corn, salt and pepper to the pot. Lock the lid, turn valve to “sealing,” select the pressure cook function and adjust to high pressure; set timer for 20 minutes.
  • When cooking time is up, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes, then quick release the remaining pressure. Stir in the cilantro. Serve with lime wedges on the side.

Nutrition (per 1 cup serving): 

Calories: 265

Total Fat: 6g

Carbohydrate: 42g

Dietary Fiber: 9g

Protein: 14g

Click here to get full Instant Pot recipe.