Pressure Cooker Thanksgiving Recipes

The holidays are a perfect time for using your pressure cooker. You can get things done quickly and predictably, and with more flavor. Most importantly it’s a chance to share this cooking technique with friends and family – while spending more time with them! Here’s recipe ideas and my tips for the big feast!


Soups are one of those things that you don’t want to make ahead. But, what you can do ahead of time is wash, peel and chop all of the ingredients and have the necessary spices and seasonings measured out and ready to go!


All of this salads can be prepared up to a day in advance. If your refrigerator is low on space just store the slad in a giant ziploc and stuff it where you can and pour into a serving bowl before about an hour before serving.

Simple Sides

These can be served at room temperature or just warmed up in the oven – if you’ve got the oven going at full blast to make the main event you can just sit the serving dish on top to heat up a little before serving.

If you’re not going whole turkey…
…these alternatives which can both be prepared and cooked the day before, and then just re-heated right before serving!


If you’re so OVER turkey…

…go with another main dish that still brings the holiday spirit but without “the bird”.


Sweet Endings

All of these delicious desserts can be prepared a day or two in advance and served at room temperature (take them out of the refrigerator as you are starting to serve dinner so that they are not too cold).


Your Plans?
What are your favorite Thanksgiving Pressure Cooker recipes and time-saving tips?

Tell me about them in the comments section, or add a link to it if it’s online!!!

Ciao and Happy Thanksgiving from my family, to yours!

Laura, Roberto, Ada and Vito <3

30 Thanksgiving Instant Pot  and Pressure Cooker RECIPE ideas!!


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  1. Hi Laura!
    Wish you were still here in San Mateo! I am so proud of all that you have accomplished since those long ago days of Kaiser Mom’s Group. You have started me wanting a pressure cooker with all of your yummy recipes and lovely photos! Christmas is coming and I am asking Santa for a really nice cooker. Can you suggest one that you feel is the most versatile? And can I use any pressure cooker to can?

    1. Renae, what a wonderful surprise to hear from you! You can’t really can in a pressure cooker – you need a minimum size (10L) that is too bulky for everyday cooking. Why don’t you start by looking at this article, and then let me know if you have any questions:

      I wish you a speedy and delicious New Year! ; )



  2. Laura, my favorite uses of the Instant Pot for holiday dinners are usually the simplest. First, I make a simple soup that becomes the gravy: browned onions, carrots. celery, onions, low sodium chicken broth, a peeled potato {to make a smooth puree], cooked and pureed with a stick blender. Set this aside and add the meat or turkey juices later, seasoning to taste at the end.

    Second, use the Instant Pot to make brown rice; it is even better than in the rice cooker, and it can keep the rice warm a long time after the Instant Pot is turned off.

    Or you can make a vegetable risotto. Our family and friends are a mix of meat eaters and vegetarians, and a vegetable risotto is hearty fare for the vegetarians.

    These are my tricks for all big parties and pretty much always save time and energy and use the Instant Pot to its best advantage.

    Thanks for stating me on the Instant Pot. I love your cookbook.

    Regards, Julia

    1. Thanks for sharing your story Julia – what veggies do you add to your holiday brown rice risottos. Pumpkin?!?! Mushrooms?



  3. Hi Laura! I can’t tell you how much I use your book! I started pressure cooking a year ago and I am always running to your book for advice! Since then I have gotten the hang of what times should be and have adapted my own recipes, thanks to your lovely book.

    1. Thanks Chef Chrissy – I’m so glad to read you’ve gotten good use out of it!!



  4. I am cooking for 20 people and my question is how to cook and prepare sweet potatoes? This is for Thanksgiving, Nov.23/17. Also, how many sweet potatoes should I buy?

    1. Annie, what are you trying to do? Do you want to make a mash? What is the size of your pressure cooker?



  5. Laura I’m so happy to have found this site.
    First I was reading comments, surprised to see your in San Mateo, I grew up in San Carlos.
    Anyway. Can you pleas tell me if it’s true that canning in electric pressure cookers is no longer considered safe?? I bought a 10qt elite with the plan of canning , now people are telling me it’s not safe. ?? Help

    1. Actually, the issue is that we don’t know if it’s safe or not to pressure can in an electric pressure cooker. I has never been tested. Manufacturers went ahead and made cookers with this feature, anyway – which is actually dangerous given that it has not been proven to be safe.

      Here are more details:



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