Do you always eat fish with lemon? Try using tarty and sweet cherry tomatoes and vinegary capers, instead!  Salty olives and husky Thyme add excitement to an otherwise ho-hum white fish fillet.

I have already taught you how to make pesce al cartoccio (fancy fish packets with extraordinary presentation), now here is an easier method which cooks very quickly due to the fish’s direct exposure to super-heated steam inside your pressure cooker.

You can either use the unperforated insert, a heat proof dish, or line your steamer basket with oven paper (cut the extra around the edges off so it does not interfere with the inner workings of the pressure cooker or obstruct any of the valves).

Pressure Cooker Accessories Pr. Cook Time Pr. Level Open
3 L or larger steamer basket, heat-proof bowl 7-8 min. Low (1) Normal

Pressure Cooked Fish Filets
Recipe type: pressure cooker
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 4 White Fish fillets (any white fish, I used cod)
  • 1 lb (500g) Cherry Tomatoes, halced
  • 1 cup Black salt-cured Olives (Taggiesche, French or Kalamata)
  • 2 Tbsp.Pickled Capers
  • 1 bunch of fresh Thyme
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, pressed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Prepare the base of the pressure cooker with 1½ to 2 cups of water and trivet or steamer basket.
  2. Line the bottom of the heat-proof bowl with cherry tomato halves (to keep the fish filet from sticking), add Thyme (reserve a few springs for garnish).
  3. Place the fish fillets over the cherry tomatoes, sprinkle with remaining tomatoes, crushed garlic, a dash of olive oil and a pinch of salt.
  4. Insert the dish in the pressure cooker - if your heat proof dish does not have handles construct them by making a long aluminum sling.
  5. Set the pressure level to LOW. Turn the heat up high and when the pan reaches pressure, lower the heat and count 7-8 minutes cooking time at LOW pressure (or 4-5 at HIGH). When time is up, release pressure using the Normal method - release vapor through the valve.
  6. Distribute fish into individual plates, top with cherry tomatoes, and sprinkle with olives, capers, fresh Thyme, a crackle of pepper and a little swirl of fresh olive oil.

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  1. light, but very yummy!!!

  2. This is the second recipe I tried (last night) with my new pressure cooker. I used a steamer basket instead of a heat-proof dish, and lined the basket with the tomatoes. The food came out perfect. Using a pressure cooker is such a nice (and healthy) way to cook fish. Next time, I am going to cook about half of the olives with the fish in the pressure cooker in hopes that some of the olive flavor will impart itself into the fish. Tonight (day 3 with the pressure cooker), I am making up my own recipe and anticipate I will end up with something that resembles shredded beef (for tacos). Thanks for the great info and inspiration!

  3. CMY, I have not had a chance to add this to the “acessories” page, but if you have a steamer basket and no heat-proof dish, you can line your steamer basket with wax paper! Just be sure to cut the “corners” off so there is not danger that they clog the inner-workings and safety systems of your pressure cooker.

    Come to my facebook page, and let me know how your beef “shred” turned out!



  4. This recipe is perfect. I have perforated insert and didn’t line it (I had no wax paper at home). I used small Roma tomatoes and sliced them. I had olives stuffed with almonds in my fridge so I used them. I thought that small stalk of fresh celery, oregano and thyme wouldn’t harm. I put all ingredients in PC. After 7 min with slice of fresh bread I was already in heaven!

  5. Oh and another thing! I used sea bass. Could it be salmon instead?

    1. Lena, that sounds delicious – the stuffed olives were a great improvisation!

      You can ABSOLUTELY do salmon this way, one reader already did it and blogged about it. Check out Charlotte’s pressure cooked salmon recipe here:



  6. Can’t wait to try this recipe! Unless I missed this…does the pressure cooker need to be prepped with water like the Fish in a Packet recipe or is this cooked without liquid? Thanks!

    1. You should have water in the base and a steamer basket or trivet below the heat-proof bowl. I have updated the recipe to reflect this.



  7. Absolutely positively delicious. We used gulf trout that we caught. After trying a couple of your recipes I now own your book. I LOVE the book!

    1. Thanks, for sharing a photo – so glad to read you enjoyed this recipe – and the book!



    2. Thanks so much for sharing a photo, it looks great and I’m so glad to read you enjoyed this recipe – and the book!



  8. I am preparing this recipe and have a question about step five. I have set the pressure too low. I’m confused about how to set the heat to high.

    1. It sounds like you are using an electric pressure cooker. This is an old recipe that only has explicit instructions for stove tops. Now you have pointed it out, Laura will probably come back and change it.

      But go ahead and cook it Just set the pressure to low. The Electric will sort out the correct heat setting for you. Use the longer time (8 minutes). Actually it is fish. I would be inclined to use the shorter time. I would rather my fish be slightly under cooked than over. It will cook a little more while waiting to get to the table anyway.

      Don’t forget to release the valve immediately.

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