Healthy Cooking

5 Instant Pot Recipes With 3-Ingredients (or Less) Packed With Protein and Gut-Healthy Nutrients

Photo: Stocksy/ Susan Brooks-Dammann
As the temperatures continue to dramatically drop and we need at least 10 layers of clothing to keep our teeth from chattering, hearty, home-cooked meals become the ultimate source of warmth and comfort.

That being said, when it’s dark out before we’ve even left work, the last thing we might want to do is make a chaotic mess in the kitchen cooking up a storm that we have to clean up before lounging on the sofa and actually resting. Here to save the day are these life-saving three-ingredient (or less!) Instant Pot recipes packed with protein and gut-healthy nutrients that do all the cooking for you and are virtually mess-free. Best of all, they’re ideal for making in big batches... meaning you’ll have plenty of leftovers for tomorrow, the day after that, and so on.

Five 3-ingredient (or less) gut-healthy Instant Pot recipes packed with protein

steel cut oatmeal instant pot recipe
Photo: Love and Lemons

1. Creamy Steel-Cut Oats

As you may already know, breakfast is the most important meal of the day, according to registered dietitians. That’s why eating a hearty meal—like these creamy steel-cut oats by Love and Lemons—first thing in the day is a staple in our morning routine. The best part? You can hands-free cook a large batch of oatmeal for the entire family as you tend to other important get-out-the-door-quickly tasks—like picking an effortlessly chic outfit for the day. Bonus: The recipe is fully customizable. Keep it simple with just oats and water, or spruce it up with optional toppings like maple syrup, pecans, almonds, or blueberries.

Get the recipe: Instant Pot Steel Cut Oats

vegan bolognese recipe instant pot
Photo: Detoxinista

2. Hearty Vegetarian Bolognese

Cozy comfort is the name of the game when the last thing you want to do is head out the door and brace yourself for below-zero temperatures. A great way to thaw the chill in your bones is by serving yourself a heaping serving of this warming vegetarian bolognese recipe by Detoxinista. To make it, all you need are two ingredients you likely already have stashed in your cupboard: lentils and jarred tomato sauce. After just a quick 15 minutes in the Instant Pot, you’ll have a hearty meal ready to go. Plus, if you’re feeling extra (which we totally suggest doing), serving it atop spiralized zucchini will definitely up the ante.

Get the recipe: Instant Vegetarian Bolognese

coconut yogurt instant pot recipe
Photo: Minimalist Baker

3. Probiotic-Filled Coconut Yogurt

We were absolutely mind-blown the first time we heard that you could make homemade yogurt in your Instant Pot. And the fact that it only requires two (yes, two!) ingredients calls for an obligatory mic drop moment. So, how is this even possible? Minimalist Baker shows us that by adding a few vegan-friendly probiotics, a can of full-fat coconut milk, and letting the Instant Pot work its magic, you can accelerate the fermentation process to yield a super gut-nourishing and probiotic-rich batch of homemade coconut yogurt. Plus, this recipe yields about six quarter-cup servings, which is definitely far more cost-effective than buying a store-bought case of single-serve yogurts.

Get the recipe: Easy 2-Ingredient Coconut Yogurt

slow cooker chicken instant pot recipe
Photo: Gimme Some Oven

4. Protein-Packed Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken

POV: You work remotely but have a pressing deadline to meet. Frankly, making dinner by the time your loved ones are home is the last thing on your mind. Here to help you deal is this slow cooker salsa chicken recipe by Gimme Some Oven—it's a surefire way to get dinner on the table without breaking a sweat. Like a true dump-and-set recipe, simply combine protein-rich chicken breasts with a jar of your favorite salsa and let it simmer away for a few hours while you work. Before you know it, your house will be filled with the delicious aromas of the simmering sauce. Granted, it’ll make focusing on the screen in front of you slightly challenging.

Get the recipe: 2-Ingredient Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken

bone broth instant pot recipe
Photo: Minimalist Baker

5. Homemade Collagen-Boosting Bone Broth

ICYMI, experts say that consuming bone broth can help promote healthy skin, hair, and nail growth. But it’s no secret that buying store-bought collagen can be extremely pricy. Thankfully, you can easily make it at home with the help of this zero-waste homemade bone broth recipe by Minimalist Baker. The hardest part? Remembering to save the remains from your whole chicken recipe to fill your broth with loads of collagen-boosting nutrients.

Get the recipe: How to Make Bone Broth

An RD unpacks all of the health benefits of chickpeas:

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