How To Cook Potatoes in the Instant Pot
How To Cook Potatoes in the Instant Pot

How do you cook perfect potatoes in the Instant Pot? Find out how to make a big batch and use it in potato salad, breakfast skillets, and roast potatoes for dinner all week long.

In this recipe

  • Instant pot vs. stovetop pressure cooker
  • Instant Pot Models
  • The best potatoes for quick cooking
  • How to choose a steamer
  • Ideas for using boiled potatoes

I don’t always prep or cook ahead of time, but boy am I glad when I do. It’s so nice to open the fridge and find things that are easy to put together for a quick meal.

You might think that pulling out the pressure cooker for a simple kitchen task like steaming veggies is overkill, but this is how it works for me.

I like loading up the stove, pushing a button and walking away, rather than standing around tending a pot on the stove. My Instant Pot also beeps 10 times in a row when it’s done, and I can hear it from almost anywhere in my small apartment. So I know when my food is ready.

Using the pressure cooker doesn’t always save you time on these types of kitchen prep tasks, but I think it makes them more convenient. I pretty much always have my Instant Pot on the counter because I use it almost every day!

Which potatoes are best for the Instant Pot?

You can use any type of potato for this recipe, such as Yukon Gold, red, or russet potatoes. Cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces, and they’re ready in under 15 minutes (about 10 minutes until the pot is pressurized, then 3 minutes until the potatoes are steamed). Take them out right after the timer goes off to keep them from overcooking, then use them as you please!

As is, they can be folded into a potato salad (warm or cold, whichever you prefer). For breakfast, I toss them in a pan to make a quick hash with onions and peppers, or I pan-fry them with fried eggs.

For dinner, I mash them up right in the hot pot after they’re done steaming to make easy mashed potatoes, or throw them in the oven to roast until crisp, like pictured here.

Timing in an Instant Pot vs. Pressure Cooker on the Stovetop

Using an electric pressure cooker like an Instant Pot will take longer to cook some dishes than using a stovetop pressure cooker. A traditional pressure cooker on the stovetop can reach PSI levels as high as 15 PSI, while the Instant Pot sits at 12 PSI. However, when recipes call for such a short cook time as this, there is usually no noticeable difference. If using a stovetop model, use the same cooking time (3 minutes).

Instant Pot Models

This recipe works with all six and eight quart models as described. If you have a mini (that’s three liters) you may need to add a minute of cook time or use natural release. This is because the three liter stove is not as powerful as the larger models and uses a lower PSI.

Some newer models use a computer controlled pressure relief system and will not allow you to drain quickly if the pot is found to be too full. This safety mechanism is designed to help prevent dangerous splashes, but can sometimes be triggered inadvertently. If your pot won’t release the pressure, don’t panic. Your potatoes will still be well cooked, just release the pressure naturally.

The best potato variety for quick cooking

  • This method and cooking time works with any type of white or yellow potato, such as B. Russet and Yukon Gold. Do not swap for sweet potatoes.
  • A big factor that can affect cooking time is the age of your potatoes. Older potatoes will take longer to cook and especially old potatoes will not soften at all.
  • Be sure to cut your potatoes into 1 1/2 inch pieces. Smaller pieces can boil over and larger pieces will not cook through.

How to choose a steamer

While the Instant Pot doesn’t require many accessories, a steamer basket comes in handy. Make sure the basket fits completely into the pot without blocking the lid. Hatrigo makes a nifty basket, and there are a number of metal and silicone options available specifically for the Instant Pot. Many old-school collapsible metal baskets work beautifully too.

How to use stewed potatoes

  • Classic potato salad
  • Garlic mashed potatoes
  • Salted ground beef
  • Homemade potato bread
  • Mashed Potato Pancakes

From the editors of Simply Recipes

How to cook potatoes in the Instant Pot

preparation time
5 minutes

cooking time
3 minutes

Pressure build-up and release
12 minutes

total time
20 minutes

6 servings

2 pounds

You can peel the potatoes for this recipe or leave them unpeeled.

For crispy roast potatoes like the ones pictured, toss the steamed potatoes with the olive oil, salt, and ground pepper and spread on a baking sheet. Roast at 425°F until browned and crispy on the outside.


  • 1 Cup water

  • 2 lb potatoes


  1. Prepare the potatoes for cooking:

    Cut the potatoes into 1 ½ inch pieces.

    Pour the water into the inner pot of the pressure cooker. Place the potatoes in the steamer basket, then lower it into the pot.

    Simple tip!

    Make sure your potatoes are the right size. Otherwise they won’t cook properly. Don’t be afraid to use a ruler to check your measurements.

  2. Pressure cook the potatoes:

    Secure the lid on the pressure cooker, making sure it is set to its “sealing” position. Choose the Pressure Cook or Manual setting and set the cook time to 3 minutes at high pressure. If your pot has an automatic pressure release, set it to release quickly. (The pot takes about 10 minutes to come up to pressure.)

  3. “Quick release” pressure:

    When the cooking program is finished, perform a quick depressurization by turning the pressure release valve to the “Vent” position or by pressing the pressure release button (depending on your Instant Pot model).

  4. Remove the potatoes and check if they are done:

    When the pressure is completely released, open the pot. Use a pair of heat-resistant gloves to remove the steamer basket containing the potatoes. The potatoes are ready when they are soft.

    Simple tip!

    If the potatoes aren’t quite done yet, put the lid back on. High pressure cooking program 2 to 3 minutes longer depending on how hard your potatoes are. Then release the pressure naturally if you want the potatoes to cook longer. Alternatively, after cooking, you can do a quick release before opening the lid.

    If you’re not going to use the potatoes right away, let them cool completely, then place in a covered container in the refrigerator. Potatoes can be kept for about 1 week.

nutritional information (per serving)
141 calories
0g Fat
32g carbohydrates
4g protein
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Hello everybody, Even if you're limited on time and money, I believe you can prepare wonderful food with everyday products. All you have to do is cook cleverly and creatively!