Mediterranean Instant Pot

February 12, 2020   10 Comments

Mediterranean Instant Pot is a cookbook by America’s Test Kitchen. I took a look at it because I think it is a great idea.

Mediterranean Instant Pot

I happen to love my TWO Instant Pots. Yes, I have two because I tried the biggest size. I found that when I made a meal for my family I had no leftovers.

Leftovers are key to my success as a cook. Without “leftover night” I can’t make it through the week!

The Instant Pot sizes range from 3 quarts to 8 quarts. I have a 6 quart and I bought an 8 quart model but it isn’t as good as the 6 quart model. It takes too long to heat up and cook the food.

Usually, I double my Instant Pot recipes by using 2 pots. Call me crazy.

When I saw this cookbook, I wanted it instantly (but I had to wait).

I have been talking about the Mediterranean diet for years - most recently in my post on the best diet to lose weight.

America's Test Kitchen’s Mediterranean Instant Pot Cookbook combines three great things for making a meal.

First, America's Test Kitchen can write a recipe. I have cooked from their magazine for years and never have I had a recipe fail. Some have been good, others have been great - but all of them have been edible.

Second, Mediterranean! I use the flavors of Mediterranean cooking all the time most recently in my healthy baked chicken recipe and baked tilapia.

Lemon, thyme, olive oil…. yum! Following a Mediterranean diet has been proven as one of the healthiest way to eat. Low in saturated fats, whole grains, vegetables, lots of fish, and less meat, the Mediterranean diet is a great choice if you are looking for a shift.

Finally, you have the Instant Pot which makes cooking a blast. Toss everything in it (maybe saute a bit before you start), turn it on, and walk away.

You have a delicious meal and you didn’t slave over the stove.

I have made a bunch of recipes from this book and below are two of my favorites. You can never go wrong with chicken and rice and I love the flavors of the soup below.

What do you think of a Mediterranean Instant Pot book? Does it appeal to you?

Greek-style Chicken and Rice Recipe

1.9 from 26 reviews

reprinted with permission from Mediterranean Instant Pot

serves 4
total time 1 hour

A steaming bowl of oregano-scented rice studded with sweet peas and briny capers, and served alongside juicy chicken breasts, is our idea of a feel-good meal. Bone-in chicken breasts ensured the meat stayed moist, and browning the breasts before cooking them with the rice added depth to the whole dish. The key to avoiding gluey rice? We simply fluffed the rice with a fork to combine it with peas and capers instead of ­stirring.

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2 (12‑ounce) bone-in split chicken breasts, trimmed
3/4 teaspoon table salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped fine
2 celery ribs, sliced 1/4 inch thick
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice, rinsed
3 bay leaves
3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
4 teaspoons capers, rinsed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano


Pat chicken dry with paper towels and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Using highest sauté function, heat oil in Instant Pot for 5 minutes (or until just smoking). Place chicken skin side down in pot and cook until well browned on 1 side, about 5 minutes; transfer to plate.

Add onion, celery, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt to fat left in pot and cook, using highest sauté function, until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth, rice, and bay leaves, scraping up any browned bits. Nestle chicken skin side up into rice and add any accumulated juices. Lock lid in place and close pressure release valve. Select high pressure cook function and cook for 4 minutes.

Turn off Instant Pot and quick-release pressure. Carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you. Transfer chicken to cutting board and discard skin, if desired. Tent with ­aluminum foil and let rest while finishing rice.

Discard bay leaves. Add peas and capers and gently fluff rice with fork to combine. Lay clean dish towel over pot, replace lid, and let sit for 5 minutes. Gently fold in oregano. Carve chicken from bones and slice 1/2 inch thick. Serve with rice.

Nutrition Facts

Per serving: Cal 470; Total Fat 8g; Sat Fat 2g; Chol 85mg; Sodium 870mg; Total Carbs 64g, Fiber 2g, Total Sugar 5g; Added Sugar 0g; Protein 35g 12 Green, 6 Blue, 6 Purple SmartPts

Spiced Chicken Soup with Squash and Chickpeas

reprinted with permission from Mediterranean Instant Pot

serves 6 to 8
total time 1 hour 20 minutes

Inspired by hararat, a North African blend of spices like cumin, coriander, and allspice (also called Libyan ­five-spice blend, or bzaar), we employed a blend of earthy spices with subtle heat. Hearty butternut cooked to silky perfection with the chicken under high pressure, and the canned chickpeas were simply warmed through, along with the shredded chicken, in the finished soup. Chopped cilantro added a final dose of herbal freshness.

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 3/4 teaspoons table salt
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon ground ­coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ­cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
7 cups water, divided
2 (12-ounce) bone-in split chicken breasts, trimmed
4 (5- to 7-ounce) bone-in chicken thighs, trimmed
11/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 11/2‑inch pieces (4 cups)
1 (15‑ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Using highest sauté function, heat oil in Instant Pot until ­shimmering. Add onion and salt and cook until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, garlic, coriander, cumin, ­cardamom, allspice, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in 5 cups water, scraping up any browned bits. Nestle chicken breasts and thighs in pot, then arrange squash evenly around chicken.

Lock lid in place and close pressure release valve. Select high pressure cook function and cook for 20 minutes. Turn off Instant Pot and quick-release pressure. Carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.

Transfer chicken to cutting board, let cool slightly, then shred into bite-size pieces using 2 forks; discard skin and bones.

Using wide, shallow spoon, skim excess fat from surface of soup, then break squash into bite-size pieces. Stir chicken and any accumulated juices, chickpeas, and remaining 2 cups water into soup and let sit until heated through, about 3 minutes. Stir in cilantro and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

Per Serving: Cal 190; Total Fat 7g; Sat Fat 1g; Chol 60mg; Sodium 700mg; Total Carbs 16g, Fiber 4g, Total Sugar 3g; Added Sugar 0g; Protein 20g, 4 Green, 2 Blue, 2 Purple SmartPts

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

Other posts you might like:

Healthy Baked Chicken Recipe

This healthy baked chicken recipe is for all the haters out there who don’t believe you can do anything with skinless chicken breast.....

Baked Tilapia From Frozen

You can’t miss with this baked tilapia from frozen recipe. It is fast and easy - a perfect weeknight dish.

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I do not have an Instant Pot. I am a sucker for kitchen appliances, but I am afraid they will take up a lot of counter space. Of all the gadgets, though, this seems very purposeful and saves time while guaranteeing leftovers. These recipes look yummy - love Mediterranean! Healthy and delicious. Will try them without the pot then with if I decide to get one!

I do not have an instant pot. Don’t want another appliance. I’m thinking of trying it in the slow cooker.

These recipes look great! I agree that I don’t want another appliance. Will this work in a slow cooker if left to cook for longer?

Loved those recipes, Mediterranean diet is the best. wonderful. Please look into the Tilapia from China, not good. We no longer eat it. Enjoy all your "e" mails

have a healthy & Blessed Day,


ps. I maid the chicken w/all mix Italian spices, It was GREAT!

For the people who don't have instant pots - the first recipe is tricky because of the rice. I am not sure the timing on a slow cooker. The soup will definitely work in a slow cooker - I would say 3 hours on high. Thanks for your comments!! I totally get not wanting yet another appliance.

I have a wonderful 5-piece Fagor multi-purpose stove-top pressure cooker, which came with both a 8-qt and 4-qt with pressure cooker lid, tempered glass lid, and pasta/steamer basket. (Fagor company was bought out and the brand is now named Zavor.) Meat is moist and tender in a fraction of the time. For example, 1 1/2 racks of ribs are cooked at pressure for 30 minutes and another 20-30 minutes of slow release (letting it cool without releasing the lid), then a quick 15 minutes in the oven for the bbq glaze. YUM!

I am confused about the total times listed on the recipe. The first recipe says that the total time needed is 1 hour, but if I add up everything that's done in the recipe, it seems to be about 30 minutes. What am I missing? Thanks!

@Melissa - I believe it is the time it takes to prepare plus cook time that should be one hour. It takes time for the Instant Pot to heat up - so that might be what is missing. Thanks for your question!


So I just tried this in a slow cooker. I left it on low for 3 hours and the rice is overcooked - burnt around the edges and otherwise mushy. I haven't cut into the chicken yet but I assume it's fully cooked. I might try it again and leave it on for only an hour (the same amount of time my rice cooker takes). It smells and tastes great except for the texture of the rice!

For the Greek-style chicken, I wonder what the point spread is for Personal Points, with skin removed. Also, is 2 cups of water enough for 1.5 cups of dry rice?

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