Tag: Instant Pot South Africa

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

This baked cheesecake has a trio of decadent flavours. Deep, rich chocolate; smooth caramel and the warmth of roasted hazelnuts. I first made it over a decade ago, and from that moment it’s become my “famous” cheesecake, often requested at parties and events. It has a professional finish, yet it is so easy to make and it’s one of my most used recipes from the Hummingbird Bakery’s “Cake Days”.

The Instant Pot is one of the best ways to bake a cheescake, and using the waterbath method will ensure that your cheesecakes bake evenly and don’t crack.

For a quick video tutorial, you can check out my instagram here.

Recipe as follows:

yields aprrox 8-12 slices
equipment: 20cm/8 inch round cake tin (preferably springform pan), deep roasting tin, aluminium foil


220gr digestive/tennis biscuits (for an extra decadent cheescake you could crush lotus biscuits)
100gr unsalted butter

700gr full-fat cream cheese
120gr caster sugar
3 eggs
50gr Nestle tinned caramel
50gr dark chocolate broken into pieces

4 tbsp tinned caramel
50gr hazelnuts, roasted and chopped into halves

1. Line the base of the cake tin with baking parchment.

2. Place the biscuits in a plastic bag and crush the biscuits with a rolling pin.

3. Melt the butter, add to the biscuit crumbs in a bowl and stir together. Tip the biscuit mixture into the tin and press it firmly in with a spoon. Place in the fridge and chill for 20-30 minutes.

4. If you are baking in an oven, preheat to 160C at this point (alternatively, Instant Pot requires no pre preperation) Preheat the oven to 160C.

5. Cream the cream cheese and sugar with an electric whisk until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time mixing at medium speed, scraping the sides of the bowl after each addition. Make sure not to overmix, as this can cause cracks in the cheesecake when baked.

6. Set a third of the cheesecake mixture aside in a separate bowl. Stir the tinned caramel in the remaining two thirds and spoon into the cake tin onto the biscuit base.

7. Melt the chocolate, leave it to cool slightly and stir into the cheesecake mixture that you’ve set aside. Spoon this mixture onto the caramel cheesecake mixture in the tin and smooth over. 

8. Wrap the cake tin in aluminium foil so that no water can enter the tin, folding it slightly over the sides of the tin. Place a cup of water at the bottom of your Instant Pot and close the lid and set valve to seal. Select pressure cook function and choose 40 minutes. Let it do a natural release for about 20 minutes and then open valve to venting. Once your metal popper has gone done, safely open up you lid and take your cheesecake out. It should have a slight wobble in the middle. (If Baking, fill a roasting tin until the water is about 5mm(1/4inch) from the top of the tin. Place the cheesecake in and bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes).

9. Once baked, allow cheesecake to cool in the tin (to room temperature). Then place it in the fridge for at least a few hours, but preferably overnight.

10. Remove the cheesecake from the spring-form tin, then top with the tinned caramel and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

Trust me, this cheesecake is well worth the wait, the flavour, and presentation, is amazing!

Instant Pot Valentines Day Recipes

Instant Pot Valentines Day Recipes

Valentines this year is certainly going to look very different. Ever since we started to have children we have incorporated them into our valentines celebrations, after all it’s a day to celebrate love, but this year we are almost certainly spending it at home. I’m a sucker for a picnic, though my husband doesn’t always share my love for sitting on the damp grass and letting bugs walk on your food 🙂 So this year I’ve met him halfway, and planned an “indoor” picnic with easy to cook recipes all done in my trusty Instant Pot.

The first is a winner for every entertaining event. Whether it’s a picnic, a game night or just a casual weekend with friends these sweet siracha flavoured chicken wings are sure to become your go to recipe for easy entertaining.

Sweet Sriracha Chicken Wings

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time16 mins
Total Time21 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Chicken Wings, Instant Pot chicken wings, sriracha chicken wings, sweet chilli chicken wings
Servings: 4


  • Pressure Cooker


  • 1 kg chicken wings
  • Salt and Pepper to Season
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 2 TBLSP Sriracha Hot Sauce
  • 2 tsp Minced Ginger
  • 2 cloves Minced Garlic
  • sesame seeds to garnish
  • spring onion to garnish


  • Season chicken wings with salt and pepper and combine the honey, Sriracha, ginger and garlic to marinade. Leave on for 2 hours before hand if possible.
  • Add a cup of water into your Instant Pot and add the trivet stand. Put the marinated meat on top of the trivet.
  • Close Pot with Lid, seal and set to high pressure for 6 minutes.
  • Natural pressure release for 10 minutes.
  • Take the wings out and brush with any leftover marinade, transfer to a baking sheet and grill for 3-5 minutes until golden brown.
  • Serve with your choice of dip and a sprinkle of sesame seed and chopped up spring onion.

For dessert I’ve picked one of my all time favourites, though I honestly couldn’t decide between these delectable chocolate lava pots or the white chocolate and vanilla pot du creme I made previously. Both are perfectly in tune for a day of love.

Chocolate Lava Cakes

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time7 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chcolate lava cakes instant pots, Chocolate lava cakes, Instant Pot cake, Instant Pot chocolate cakes, melted middle chocolate cake
Servings: 4 People


  • Pressure Cooker


  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 125 grams unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup castor sugar
  • 110 grams dark chocolate
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • pinch salt


  • Melt the chocolate and butter together in a glass bowl in the microwave,at 30 second intervals. After 30 seconds, stop, mix and pop in again until all melted and combined.
  • In a large bowl add 2 large eggs, 2 large egg yolks, ¼ cup castor sugar, and a pinch of salt.
  • Slowly mix the melted butter into the egg and sugar mixture
  • Fold in flour and vanilla extract
  • Pour into buttered ramekin dishes
  • Add in one cup of water to your instant pot and place trivet stand inside. Place chocolate filled ramekin dishes inside (you should fit 3 at the bottom on at the top).
  • Close Lid and seal, set to high pressure for 8 minutes (I think I did 9 in the end) and quick pressure release.
  • Lift lid carefully off taking care not to spill condensation onto cakes.
  • You can either serve immediately or refrigerate until needed (and then warm up)
  • Dust with a little icing sugar and cocoa powder.

Let me know if you try these recipes and how you will be spending Valentines Day with your loved ones!

** These recipes were written in collaboration with Instant Pot South Africa.**

2020 – a year of Gratitude

2020 – a year of Gratitude

It’s just past midnight on the 29th December 2020. The year the World “stood still”. Instead of jumping into bed as I planned on doing, I find myself typing at my computer, reminiscing on the year gone by.

You see, I am such a serial “planner” and “goal setter”, that I am always moving forward, thinking about the “next thing”. The New Year doesn’t mean much to me, to be honest, it’s just the start of another 12-month cycle, but what it does afford me is the time to actually stop. The time to pause and reflect on the months gone by and think about the possibilities moving forward.

Across the globe, the message is that 2020 sucked. It was the “year of COVID”, lockdowns, cancelled plans and disrupted schedules. It caused the whole world to rethink how we work and how we operate, but it also should us possibility and opportunity. It showed us which professions really truly mattered and it taught a large majority of the world, that working remotely, for most people, is actually possible. It taught us that we dont need exorbitant “Oscar” styled weddings or birthday parties that cost enough to feed a small orphanage. It gave the earth a chance to breathe, a pause from carbon emissions and thousands of feet walking through ancient cities. It gave us a chance to really miss those that are truly important to us, and it also showed us who we could do without.

Looking back at the year, once again, I find myself truly humbled and grateful. Under such circumstances there were truly some incredible moments and milestones that need to be celebrated.

It started off with winning an award, not just coming “runner up”, but actually winning in the “SA Blog Awards.” I didn’t dwell on it too much at the time, because there is a lot of drama involved in these awards, but actually, I should have. I work damn hard at what I do, creating content is not as easy as it seems, and it is something I am proud of. So THANK YOU, to each of you who took the time to vote. I haven’t entered again this year, I actually didn’t even get think about it, but it is something that I should be proud of, So thank you!

In February, literally a week before the world started to “lockdown”, we managed to spend two weeks with my sister and her beautiful family. An odd time for a “family holiday”, but look at Gods’ timing, giving us the chance just before we weren’t able to see each other again. We got to spend time in my family home all together, one last time before we said goodbye. My parents were surrounded by their grandchildren and days were filled with swimming and hammock naps. It’s been over 10 months since I have seen any family member now. My “baby” has grown up into a full blown, walking/talking toddler in that time and I am so grateful that we had those 2 weeks, at least.

We were thrown into juggling home schooling and working from home, as a family. Whilst I truly pray I never have to home school again, it taught me appreciation, like never before, for our teachers. I managed to find the balance that I always wanted, managing school drop offs, afternoon activities and work, yet I also realised that having “some” time in the office is sometimes a very good thing. I am in awe of the resilience our children taught us, taking every single thing in their stride. Never questioning “why” or “when will this end”. Wearing their masks every single day without complaint, they just accepted the new normal and moved on.

I realised, as a mother, that any guilt around screen time, especially during the hard lockdown period we faced in South Africa, should be thrown out the window. I was initially so against time on the PlayStation or too many cartoons, and had full days planned of activities to keep them busy. But, I actually realised, with the right games mind you, how it hasn’t hurt at all. In fact, it’s been a saving grace on many an afternoon when I have had deadlines looming. Of course, I try to balance it out with quality time, but I learnt to let go of misconceptions I once had.

It was the year that uncovered new passions, even pre-covid. Quizzing my aunts on old school household hacks and actually having the time to deep clean my home. I use the term home because, finally, our house started to resemble more of a “home”. Spending more time within it allowed us to give back more to it, with room renovations and painting, furniture restoring and ticking off goals. Without my handyman dad around, we were forced to do more ourselves and I can proudly proclaim that I now my way around a drill now, my husband is a pool expert and I have a re-found love for upscaling furniture. My organization skills were ramped up and I finally got around to projects like my pantry, kitchen cupboards and our constantly messy garage. All of these things deserve a moment of reflection and a “Wow, I did that” thought.

I was given the opportunity to work with brands that blow my mind, brands that I grew up with and companies that I stand behind wholeheartedly. Companies like Woolworths and Builders South Africa are a dream to me and to have the honour of working with them has been such a massive highlight of my year. My Instant Pot family have once again challenged me to rethink the way I cook and I adore being pushed to try new ways of cooking things, and boy did we cook this year! Who didn’t try recreating KFC or Nandos during lockdown? I am so grateful to every brand I have gotten to work with, being recognised by a product that you truly use everyday never ceases to amaze me. The team at Omo South Africa, Sunlight and Handy Andy, I am truly grateful. Being asked to contribute to LEGO will forever leave me in awe and words can’t begin to describe how much I value these opportunities.

2020 also gave us the biggest surprise, and challenge, yet. Finding out that we were expecting a 4th baby was no where near on our “plan”, but Allah is the best of planners. After the initial crash into a brick wall shock, we are both excited and can’t wait for our little girl to have another younger sibling to play with. Now I just have to deal with all my giving birth during a pandemic anxiety.

We threw ourselves into our work and while I do miss the office interaction, it also showed us just how much we could achieve at home. It was a year of promotions and awards, a year of learning and embracing new ways of working, new technologies and fresh portfolios. Pushing our knowledge into spaces we have never explored before.

It was a year which taught me value. The value of relationships, the value of our health, the value in every day moments and beautiful sunsets. Gratitude. Gratitude at keeping our heads above the water while the country around us battled this virus, not only physically but from an economical point of view. It gave us gratitude at the things we so often took for granted, being able to hop on a flight to visit our siblings or parents, or escaping the city for a “weekend break”. I experienced hurt and heartache, I saw competition and comparison rear its ugly head and a lack of support from areas I once turned to. Through it all though I am grateful, for showing me what is truly important and for the people I can truly turn to.

Gratitude in being able to pay our bills and provide our children with food, comfort and knowledge. It schooled me in thankfulness for my husband too. As much as I “complain”, I thank Allah everyday at the rock he has become. My foundation, my support. If you are reading this babe, I really, truly value you, and I am thankful for all that you do.

We went back to basics with crafts, with Raya Maryam starting to enjoy sensory play and at the same time we explored deeper activities with the boys, learning about crystals and science.

2020 was definitely a year of gratitude for me. I blogged slightly less, but I did more video content and like many of us, found myself on Tiktok more 🙂 Not taking myself so seriously.

For 2021, I have no grand plans or “goals”. I have prayers.

I pray for a healthy birth and delivery of our 4th child and I pray that Allah SWT keeps us safe from this virus. I pray for the people that have been affected, the families whose courses have changed. I pray that the vaccination is effective and quick to get here, because the 2nd quarter still seems very very far away. I pray for our economy, that we may recover somewhat, and that we are able to keep people employed. I pray that whatever may happen, my faith will continue to push me through and lift me up. We can get through this, day by day. 2021 is my year of hope, and lots of prayer.

Thank you, once again, for being a part of my community. Thank you for commenting, sharing and trying my ideas. Thank you for engaging and reaching out. We are all in this together, and without you reading this, my platform wouldn’t even exist! Happy New Year from us, and I look forward to growing more with you in 2021!

Orange Infused Creme Caramel

Orange Infused Creme Caramel

An orange scented custard, floating in a sea of toffee coloured sauce, topped with a deep rich caramel. Learn how to make this smooth, creamy caramel and fall head over heels with the combination of flavours. This easy pressure cooker dessert is sure to wow your guests and bring a touch of flair to the Christmas table.

There are few things in life that are better then a really good Creme Caramel, or Creme Brulee and one of the things I have been enjoying the most in my Instant Pot is experimenting with these custard desserts. From my white chocolate “Pot du Creme” last year, to Creme Brulee and now this Orange Infused Creme Caramel, Instant Pot has really made preparing these decadent desserts an easy task.

Queue endless dessert options for gatherings… (post COVID of course).

Christmas time in our house always features oranges for some reason, whether its an orange at the end of your stocking, or dried oranges in garlands or potpourri, we have always featured citrus. When I was thinking of a unique take on the Creme Caramel, gently infusing it with orange just made sense.

The whole thing is cooked from start to finish in the Instant Pot. From the toffee coloured caramel to the orange infused milk. This is a great addition to any festive table and can be ready in under 30 minutes (with overnight refrigeration). This recipe is a keeper and one I will turn to time and time again!

Orange Infused Creme Caramel

Creamy, orange infused Creme Caramel, made from start to finish in an Instant Pot. Wow your guests with this incredible simple, yet show stopping dessert this festive season.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Creme Caramel, Custard Desserts, Instant Pot Creme Caramel, Instant Pot Flan, Orange Infused Creme Caramel
Servings: 5


  • Pressure Cooker


For Caramel:

  • 3/4 cup (150g) white sugar
  • 80 ml water

For Custard:

  • 1 cup (250ml) full cream milk
  • 1 cup (250ml)  double thick cream 
  • 1/4 cup (50g) sugar 
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) vanilla extract 
  • Zest of one orange
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten 
  • Pinch of salt
  • Summer Berries to top


  • For the caramel: Switch on your Instant Pot and set to Sauté, wait until you see the "hot" display. Add the sugar and water and stir once to combine. Allow the sugar to caramelize and then gently swirl until everything is an even dark golden brown, careful not to burn it!  As soon as the golden colour has been achieved quickly remove the inner pot and carefully pour the caramel equally across your ramekins (you should get between 5 and 6). Allow the caramel syrup to cool.
  • Wash out your Inner Pot and once clean, set to Sauté once again. Heat up 1 cup (250ml) full cream milk and 1 cup (250ml) double thick cream. Add in your sugar, 2 tsp (10ml) vanilla extract, the orange zest and a pinch of salt to the warm milk. Stir until the sugar fully dissolves. Remove from the heat and strain through a sieve.
  • Beat 3 eggs in a medium bowl. You are going to temper the eggs, so slowly bring the eggs' temperature up by pouring the warm milk mixture in little by little. Continue to whisk as you pour the remaining milk, make sure you are slow in this step, you don't want to "cook" your eggs.  Pour the mixture in the caramel-filled ramekins through a strainer. Cover each ramekin tightly with foil. 
  • Into clean inner pit, pour 1 cup cold water. Insert the steamer rack and put the covered ramekins on the rack. Secure the lid and move the vent to Sealing Position. Set to Pressure Cook on High for 9 minutes then allow a Natural Release.  
  • Once the valve drops, open lid carefully, try to make sure no water falls onto the foil.  Remove ramekins from Instant Pot and aside to cool, then refrigerate overnight.  When ready to serve, dip your ramekins into a bowl of warm water to allow them to invert easily, flip onto a plate and serve with some mint, berries and a touch of orange!
Milk Tart Flavoured Creme Brulee

Milk Tart Flavoured Creme Brulee

Creme Brulee has never been quicker than this! Cooked in an Instant Pot Pressure Cooker, this uniquely South African flavoured Creme Brulee is silky, flavourful and oh so easy to make. No messy water baths in sight!

Milk Tart and Creme Brulee both have to be right up there in my top 5 desserts of all time. Creamy, delicious and sweet, for this heritage day I decided to combine my two favourite dishes. It’s easy enough to whip up as a weekday treat, or fancy enough to serve at a dinner party, this may just be the ultimate dessert.

I cooked up two batches, one on high pressure and one on low pressure and the results were good on both. If you prefer a slightly firmer custard then go with the high pressure option, if you want a thinner texture opt for the low pressure cook.

I instantly fell in love with this way of cooking brulee and will definitely be making it again! Recipe below, let me know your thoughts!

For a full video check out my Instagram page here.

Milk Tart Flavoured Creme Brulee

Silky, smooth Creme Brulee with a uniquely South African twist
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time13 mins
Total Time28 mins
Course: Dessert
Keyword: creme brulee, milk tart, milk tart creme brulee
Servings: 6 people


  • Instant Pot
  • Pressure Cooker


  • 500 ml Heavy Cream
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 6 large Egg yolks
  • 2 sticks Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
  • Pinch Salt
  • 6 Tbsp Castor Sugar
  • Extra Castor Sugar for topping


  • Using an electric beater, whisk up the egg yolks and castor sugar.
  • Bring the heavy cream, vanilla extract, cinnamon sticks and nutmeg up to a warm heat in a pot (DO NOT BOIL).
  • Temper the egg yolks and sugar by pouring a small amount of the warm cream mixture into the large mixing bowl. Mix well. Then, pour and the remaining cream mixture into the eggs.
  • Pour the cream mixture into 6 ramekins until about 3/4 full. Remove any air bubbles on the surface with a spoon. Wrap the ramekins tightly with foil.
  • Add 1 cup of water and steamer rack in your Instant Pot. Place the wrapped ramekins on steamer rack (4 at the bottom with 2 stacked on top).
  • Pressure Cook at Low Pressure for 13 minutes, and 15 minutes Natural Release.Then, release remaining pressure. IF you choose to go for a thicker brulee then Pressure Cook on HIGH for 7 minutes, with a NP release of 5 minutes.
  • Unwrap and refrigerate your brulee for a minimum of 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  • Before serving, sprinkle the remaining castor sugar over the top and use your blow torch to achieve that beautiful hard, crackled caramel top!
Instant Pot Lamb Stew

Instant Pot Lamb Stew

When I think of winter comforts, lamb stew features in my top five without a doubt. This classic lamb stew features hearty, healthy ingredients and cooked in the pressure cooker the lamb is tender and flavourful, surround by a rich, deeply flavoured sauce.

As simple as this recipe is, it produces the most incredible stew that the entire family enjoys, from my 1 year old daughter through to my eldest, 6 year old son. I often dish up for them first and then will go in and add a bit of red chilli for my husband and I afterwards.

Ingredients for this Lamb Stew

It contains all the classics, small yellow potatoes, sweet baby carrots, earthy onions and fresh mushrooms (that even my kids don’t mind). Paired with Thyme, Bay Leaf and Fresh Parsley it really is the traditional lamb stew, adjusted to cook in quicker time in my Instant Pot.

How to make this easy lamb stew

  1. Season your trimmed lamb pieces with flour, garlic salt, pepper and a little paprika. Toss to combine all the flour and ensure every piece of lamb is covered.
  2. Switch on your Instant Pot to Saute and gently brown the lamb on all sides. Remove the lamb.
  3. Gently saute the onions along with the garlic until soft. The original recipe calls for wine, however we don’t drink alcohol, so I substituted this with some balsamic vinegar to deglaze the pot. Add in the thickly sliced mushrooms and brown.
  4. Return the lamb to the pot, along with the baby carrots, potatoes, bay leaves, thyme, 4 cups of stock, 1 TBSP tomato paste, salt and pepper.
  5. Make sure the potatoes are covered with liquid.
  6. Place lid on and set to sealing. Select “Stew” function and choose a 30 minute cook time.
  7. Once the time is up, do a natural release for about 5 minutes and then manually release. Open the lid and check the consistency. When making stews and curries in the instant pot, you usually have to saute it up a bit for the sauce to thicken. I also added in one heaped teaspoon of corn flour, mixed with a little water to thicken the sauce.
  8. Serve with either Crusty Bread or a soft, fluffy mash dependent on your preference.

Instant Pot Lamb Stew

This classic lamb stew is a firm family favourite. It has hearty, wholesome ingredients and cooked in your pressure cooker, the lamb is melt in your mouth tender.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: English
Keyword: Classic lamb Stew, Instant Pot Lamb Stew, Lamb Stew, Lamb Stew Recipe
Servings: 5 people
Author: Rebecca


  • Pressure Cooker


  • 700 grams Stewing Lamb (bone on) (If using boneless you need about 500g)
  • 1 medium Onion Diced
  • 1 packet baby carrots
  • 5-6 small baby yellow potatoes
  • Half a packet of button mushrooms thickly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Flour
  • Salt, pepper, paprika to season
  • Handful Thyme
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 TBSP Tomato paste
  • Balsamic Vinegar to deglaze
  • 4 cups Beef stock
  • Fresh Parsley to garnish


  • Season your trimmed lamb pieces with flour, garlic salt, pepper and a little paprika. Toss to combine all the flour and ensure every piece of lamb is covered.
  • Switch on your Instant Pot to Saute and gently brown the lamb on all sides. Remove the lamb.
  • Gently saute the onions along with the garlic until soft.
  • The original recipe calls for wine, however we don't drink alcohol, so I substituted this with some balsamic vinegar to de-glaze the pot.
  • Add in the thickly sliced mushrooms and brown.
  • Return the lamb to the pot, along with the baby carrots, potatoes, bay leaves, thyme, 4 cups of stock, 1 TBSP tomato paste, salt and pepper.Make sure the potatoes are covered with liquid.
  • Place lid on and set to sealing. Select "Stew" function and choose a 30 minute cook time.
  • Once the time is up, do a natural release for about 5 minutes and then manually release. Open the lid and check the consistency.
  • When making stews and curries in the instant pot, you usually have to saute it up a bit for the sauce to thicken. I also added in one heaped teaspoon of corn flour, mixed with a little water to thicken the sauce.Serve with either Crusty Bread or a soft, fluffy mash dependent on your preference.
Instant Pot Potato And Leek Soup

Instant Pot Potato And Leek Soup

This classic potato leek soup has been adapted to the Instant Pot. With the potato and leeks cooked under pressure, your favourite wholesome soup is cooked in record time for a smooth and creamy soup, perfect for a starter or lunch time meal.

Leeks are probably one of the most underutilised vegetables but can add a lot of depth and flavor to any dish. This wholesome soup has the most basic ingredients but soothes the soul with its earthy, classic flavours. It’s one of my absolute best and is perfect for the cold weather.

How to make Instant Pot potato and leek soup

  • Prep your potatoes and leeks.
  • Sauté the leeks in butter for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, followed by the stock, potatoes, and thyme.
  • Cook on high pressure for 7 minutes, and then do a natural pressure release.
  • Blend the soup until it’s smooth (I used an immersion blender). 
  • Season as needed and enjoy! 

Vegan Friendly Option

I use butter to Saute my leeks and add in cream at the end for an extra touch of decadence, but you don’t have to do this. This soup is a perfect vegan recipe .

Instant Pot Potato And Leek Soup

A classic, creamy potato and leek soup adapted to a pressure cooker.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time22 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Appetizer, Dessert, Soup
Keyword: Potato and Leek Soup, Pressure Cooker Soups, Soup, Wholesome Soup
Servings: 4 people
Author: Rebecca


  • Instant Pot


  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cups chopped leaks
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 3 cups chopped potatoes peeled and cut into inch cubes
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup thick cream
  • 1/4 cup full cream milk
  • salt & pepper to season
  • 1 bay leaf


  • Select the "Saute" function on the Instant Pot.
  • Add the butter and olive oil to the pot, once hot add the leeks. Saute until softened, stirring frequently.
  • Add garlic and saute to release flavour, if using green chilli, add it in here.
  • Add potatoes, stock, salt, bay leaf and thyme. Stir to combine.
  • Place the lid on your Instant Pot and set to "sealing"
  • Select the "High Pressure" setting and set timer to Set the timer to 7 minutes . It usually takes 5-10 minutes for your Pressure Cooker to reach high pressure and then the countdown begins.
  • Natural Pressure Release for 15 minutes.
  • Remove and discard bay leaf and thyme sprigs.
  • Using your hand blender, blend the soup until smooth.
  • Add in milk, heavy cream and pepper, stirring to combine
  • Garnish with a drizzle of cream and chives or croutons


MAKE IT DAIRY-FREE & VEGAN: Substitute butter with olive oil, omit the cream and milk.
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon (14 g) unsalted butter
  • 4 cups (312 g) chopped leeks, white and light green parts, ⅛-inch slices
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 3 cups (454 g) russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 cups unsalted vegetable broth, or stock
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) heavy cream
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) whole milk
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon (3 g) chopped chive
Pantry Staples – Instant Pot Butter Bean Curry

Pantry Staples – Instant Pot Butter Bean Curry

A simple, quick and delicious recipe for Butter Bean/ Lima Bean Curry. This curry literally has a cook time of under 10 minutes in the Instant Pot. It’s packed full of protein and is meat free, making it the perfect dish for “Meat Free Monday”.

Serve this up for a hearty and comforting weeknight meal, and you can just adjust the chilli content to suit the family. Butter beans are creamy, full beans that don’t have an obtuse flavour.

I know we are allowed to go out to get essentials during lockdown, but to be honest, I don’t want to. As much as I can I chose to stay home, minimising the risk to my family, and to others. So we are using our pantry essentials as much as we can, and it’s allowing me to get a bit more creative in the kitchen. So if you are looking for a vegan option to add to your weeks routine, print out this super easy recipe and let me know how it goes.

And yes, you read that right, this curry is ready in less then 15 minutes total. I love pressure cooking.

Butter Bean Curry

This highly nutritious curry has a total cook time of 6 minutes in your pressure cooker. Butter beans/ lima beans are delicious cooked in curry and served with rice or roti for a deeply satisfying meat-free dish.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Bean Curry, Butter Bean Curry, Lima Bean Curry
Servings: 4 people


  • Pressure Cooker


  • 2 cans butter beans
  • 1 tsp ginger & garlic paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp chilli Powder
  • A few sprigs of Thyme
  • 2 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 cinnamon Stick
  • 1 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 2 tomatoes grated
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 large potatoes quartered
  • oil to fry
  • 1 cup water
  • handful of green beans


  • Set your Instant Pot to "saute" mode
  • Add in oil, onion, cinnamon, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, cloves, bay leaves and ginger garlic and braise onion until soft.
  • Add in chilli powder, turmeric, coriander + cumin powder, salt and fry until fragrant
  • Add in tomatoes
  • Add in potatoes and about a cup of water (to just cover potatoes).
  • Set to Manual, Seal vent and set to 4 minutes
  • Quick Release and add in your green beans and canned butter beans
  • Lid back on and seal, setting manual time to 2 minutes
  • Quick pressure release and if need be saute to thicken sauce.


If you are using dry beans as opposed to canned you would soak them overnight and cook in the same time. The beauty of the Instant Pot is you can cook beans without soaking, if you go this route your cook time will be about 25 minutes, just remember to only through in the potatoes and green beans closer to the end.
Instant Pot Dhal

Instant Pot Dhal

This warm, comforting Dhal is the perfect recipe for a pick me up. We are definitely in a time of uncertainly, and while a large portion of South Africans have already started to “social distance” themselves, the reality is that this hasn’t even started to hit us yet! The main of social distancing is to prevent the COVID-19 virus from spreading, so if that means us not going into the grocery store, so be it. We’ve stocked up on pantry essentials, but are we used to cooking with them?

I bet my husband is secretly thanking my “Zimbabwe ways” now. You see my parents grew up in a war situation. Commodities were hard to come by and you had to learn to do what you could with the basics. So I grew up with frozen butter in the freezer and the pantry was always stocked with the basics, every item of food was saved and rehashed into another meal, so nothing was wasted. It just makes you realise how much food is typically wasted.

Together with Instant Pot, I’ll be focusing on some pantry essential meals over this next month.

Lets start by looking at my one go to. Lentils. Dried lentils can keep for years in a packet and are rich in iron and folate and an excellent source of protein. Dhal used to take a good hour or so to cook on the stove, with constant supervision to make sure it doesn’t burn. Cooking Dhal in my Instant Pot had honestly revolutionised the way I make it, and I will never do stove top again!

You can choose to add meat, or cook them plain, but very few ingredients are needed for a good dhaal. Some onion, grated tomato and spices are your core base.

When cooking in the Instant Pot, just remember to add enough water, otherwise the “burn” function will kick in.

Let me know your thoughts, but I guarantee once you try Dhal in your IP, you’ll never cook it any other way!

Instant Pot Dhal

In times when we are relying more on pantry essentials, this Dhal made in an Instant Pot, is quicker then ever to cook.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: dhal, dhal and rice, instant pot, instant pot dhal, pantry essentials
Servings: 4 people


  • Instant Pot
  • Pressure Cooker


  • 1 medium Onion finely chopped
  • 1.5 cups red lentils (oil dhal)
  • 1 Medium chicken (cut into pieces)
  • 1 cinnamon Stick
  • 2 cardamom Pods
  • 1 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 3 grated tomatoes
  • 2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 whole green chilli (slit)
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp cumin/coriander mix


  • Marinade chicken with ginger/garlic masala
  • Switch your Instant Pot onto Saute mode.
  • Braise your sliced onion in oil, with cumin seeds, cinnamon stick and whole slit chilli, cardamom pods
  • Add in your 1.5 cups red lentils
  • Add in your spices : salt, red chilli powder, cumin/coriander mix, tumeric
  • Add in your grated tomatoes
  • Add in your chicken pieces
  • Pour over approx 2.5 cups of water, and make sure there is no dhal stuck on the bottom, otherwise the "burn" function will come up.
  • Set to pressure cook for 25 minutes, with a 5 minute natural release.
  • Open the lid and de-bone any chicken if need be. If you prefer your dhal smoother (we do), you can blend it a little with a hand blender.
  • Serve with some thin sliced, cripsy potatoes (aloo fry), rice and some kachumber (cucumber, onion, tomato and coriander)
Instant Pot 101 – A guide for beginners

Instant Pot 101 – A guide for beginners

Let me start my saying, the first few days with my Instant Pot were rough! I couldn’t figure out how to put the lid on, I wasn’t used to pressure cooking and it took me a while to actually “fall in love” with this little firecracker. Yet now, I proudly back this product with my life, I use it on rotation at least 3 times a week, so I thought I’d write a few tips on getting you through those early days.

Did you read the manual? Nope, Didn’t think so. The good news is there are a ton of community groups out there to help across social media, so instead of letting it gather dust in the cupboard, join them, read this, and just take the leap to get started.

You can live without it

Yes I know, any good “influencer” would not say that, but you can. You lived without it for all your life. What it does help with dramatically is EASING your life. Things that used to take 5 hours to cook can be cut down to 45 minutes. So, you certainly CAN live without it, but once you have experienced it, you may not want to 🙂 Mine has literally become my mid-week meal lifesaver!

You need to Prepare your meals

Pressure cooking can deeply intensify the flavours of your dish, but because you can’t freely open and close the lid, and chuck in your spices as you go along, you need to pre-think your flavours. Add your spices and herbs in in the beginning, so that they all cook together.

What happens if I want to slow cook?

The main difference between an Instant Pot and a normal pressure cooker, is that the Instant Pot is a “multi-function” cooker. As much as you can “speed things up”, you can slow them right down by selecting the slow cooker function. You can also steam, saute and sterilise at the touch of a button, heck, I have even baked in mine.main difference between an Instant Pot and a normal pressure cooker, is that the Instant Pot is a MULTI-FUNCTION cooker. That’s right, as much as you can speed up things, select the slow cooker function to take a slow ride. Over and above the slow cook function, you can steam, saute and sterilise, all at the touch of a button! Heck, I’ve even baked in mine!

Always make sure you have enough liquid.

Make sure that you always have at least 250 ml of liquid in your pot. The pressure builds up from steam, so if there is not enough, it won’t come up to pressure.
Consider investing in Stackable steamers – This will really give you another take one “one pot” cooking.

Use the “Saute” function to thicken your liquids

At the same time, always use flour or cornstarch AFTER pressure cooking, not before, otherwise you will end up on the “burn” option, and your dish can stick. Sometimes sauces or cans with a high sugar content, like tinned tomatoes, can also make this happen. To fix this, add in ingredients that either release water or add in an extra half a cup of water to make sure that enough liquid is present to steam. the ‘Sauté’ function if you meal has too much liquid. This will help the excess liquid to reduce. Stir frequently while cooking on sauté.

Natural versus Quick Release

This was probably one of the most intimidating things for me. The first time I moved that steam vent for quick release, I had gloves on, a cloth around my arm, AND I used a spoon. The Instant Pot takes a while to build up to the pressure setting called for in each recipe, and, it also needs time to release that pressure. For the QR (quick release), turn the vent counter clockwise. If time isn’t an issue, the Natural Pressure Release (NPR) will happen on its own, most often in 10 to 15 minutes. Use the Natural release with large cuts of meat which take longer to cook and other items which have a good amount of liquid, or a high starch content like dry beans and soups

Cooking times can be deceiving

When you first see a recipe, you get super excited because you’ll see a cooking time of say 8 minutes. However, you need to realise that every recipe needs some time on the front end to come to pressure, as well as time to depressurise afterwards. Think of it like your oven having to preheat.

That’s it! Start off by cooking the more simple things like the stews or pastas and from there start experimenting. You’ll soon find that using this nifty little tool comes naturally.