Instant Pot Potatoes – A complete guide

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This Instant Pot Potato recipe yields fork-tender potatoes no matter the size. Learn how to cook this classic, comfort food side dish with just two ingredients and very little prep work.
 
Four potatoes in the instant pot before cooking.
Instant Pot Russet Potatoes
 
Finding ways to quickly get delicious and filling dishes on the table after a full day of online learning with my kids can feel like another chore which is why the Instant Pot is always my first step for a weeknight dinner.
 
After finding the perfect balance for easily making sweet potatoes in the Instant Pot, my next step was to see if regular potatoes could be made just as easily. I love how making a filling and delicious side dish like these instant pot potatoes takes very little effort but provides a comforting dish everyone in my family enjoys.

Health benefits of potatoes

I think potatoes often get a bad rap. Many people consider them empty calories and tend to favor sweet potatoes over traditional potatoes. I have even been guilty of thinking sweet potatoes are the healthier potato but have come to learn both kinds of potatoes offer great health benefits.
 
Potatoes contain no fat, no sodium, and no cholesterol, at least until you load them up with salt, butter, and sour cream. They are naturally gluten-free and vegan, perfect for many different diets. Potatoes also contain high amounts of potassium, vitamin C, folate, and vitamin B6. 

Why you will love this Instant Pot Potato Recipe

  • Minimal hands-on time allows you to make these potatoes while working on other things.
  • A quick way to meal prep for recipes later in the week. 
  • Gluten-free and vegan food.
  • Allows you to cook the potatoes in the instant pot and continue using the stove or oven for other recipes.

How long to cook potatoes in the Instant Pot?

The time to cook potatoes depends on the size of this vegetable. And their sizes can vary a lot. That’s why it is important to buy the ones that are similar in size so that they cook evenly. 

Total time to cook potatoes = Pressure building time (10 minutes) + cooking time below (based on size) + time to completely release pressure (~15 minutes).

To calculate the pressure cooking time of the sweet potatoes, use the cheatsheet below. 

To get a good estimate, it is important to measure the circumference of the potatoes. After a while, you’ll get a hang of it and will be able to cook them without measuring. To get the circumference, find the widest section of the potato and measure the circumference. 

A visual guide telling you how long to cook each sized potato from largest at the top to smallest at the bottom and the words Instant Pot Potato Cooking Times at the top.
Instant Pot Potato Cooking Times

How to boil potatoes in the Instant Pot

Ingredients: Idaho or Russet Potatoes and water

Note: I used Idaho potatoes to test the cooking timings. 

Instructions 

  1. Select potatoes that are the same size
  2. Scrub them with water to remove any dirt. 
  3. Poke the potatoes evenly with a fork. This prevents the potatoes from exploding or cracking in the Instant Pot. 
  4. Place a trivet in the Instant Pot and then add water. Use 1 cup for 6-quarts and 1.5 cups for 8 quarts. 
  5. Place the potatoes over the trivet. Cover the Instant Pot and cook the potatoes on high as per the timings mentioned below. These timings are estimates only – make sure to adjust it for any altitude difference. To cook potatoes with a bite, use the lower end of the estimate.
    • Large (8 inches+ in circumference, weighing 10 oz+): 18-20 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Russets potatoes fall in this category because of their large size. I use this size to boil potatoes for aloo parathas
    • Medium (7 inches in circumference, weighing 6-9 oz): 14-16 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Medium-sized potatoes are great for sandwiches. While making sandwiches, I usually cook for around 13-14 minutes so that they don’t fall apart when slicing.
    • Small (5-6 inches in circumference, weighing 4-5 oz): 10-12 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. I use this size for side dishes like jeera aloo (potatoes cooked with cumin seeds) or any other Indian potato side dish. 
    • Baby potatoes (4 inches in circumference): 5 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Baby potatoes are perfect to make Dum aloo
    • Diced potatoes (1-.5 to 2-inch size cubes)3-4 minutes and release pressure in 5 minutes after the cooking cycle is complete. When you add diced potatoes to any gravy they cook pretty quickly in the Instant Pot, like in this aloo matar recipe
    • Mashed potatoes – 10 minutes with quick release. Click here for a detailed recipe.
  6. Let the pressure release naturally or if you are in a rush, wait for 10 minutes, and then release pressure. 
  7. If your potato is uncooked, just put it right back in and pressure cook for an additional 5-10 minutes or as required. 
  8. Enjoy it with the toppings of your choice. 

Testers notes / Tips

  1. It is okay to stack them and the number of potatoes does not impact the cooking time. I would not stack it beyond 2 layers.
  2. To reduce the cooking time in half – you can always halve the potatoes.
  3. To make mashed potatoes, it is better to chop and cook them for 10 minutes. Wait for 10 minutes to release pressure. Mush them using a potato masher. 

Instant Pot Baked Potatoes recipe

Idaho or Russet potatoes are what I prefer to use while making baked potatoes. If you like the buttery taste of Yukon potatoes, you can use them as a substitute too. 

I love how easy it is to make baked potatoes in the Instant Pot. Here are the steps I follow after I have scrubbed the potatoes clean and poked holes evenly with a fork. 

  1. Add 1 cup of water to the Instant Pot.
  2. Place a trivet in the Instant Pot and then add water. Use 1 cup for 6-quarts and 1.5 cups for 8 quarts. 
  3. Place the potatoes over the trivet. Cover the Instant Pot and cook the potatoes on high for 20 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally.
  4. Open the lid. Use tongs to remove the potatoes. Use a knife to create an opening in the center. Make sure to not slice the potatoes completely.
  5. Using both your hands press the edges of the potatoes to widen the opening. 
  6. Use a fork to fluff the potatoes and serve it immediately with toppings of your choice. 

Note: To crisp the baked potatoes, remove the potatoes from the Instant Pot and slather it with butter or oil. Sprinkle it with sea salt. Broil them on high for about 2 minutes. 

A black counter with a blue plate and two baked potatoes cut down the center vertically and topped with sour cream and chives with a silver fork on the right side of the plate.
Instant Pot Baked Potato

How to easily peel Instant Pot Boiled Potatoes

Believe it or not, the best time to peel a potato is after cooking. This allows the peel to slip off the cooked potato and give you a much easier time preparing potatoes.

One of the easiest ways to peel boiled potatoes is to allow the potatoes to cool slightly before peeling. Once they are cool to touch slice the skin with a pairing knife and simply pull away at the skin, it should slide off easily. 

Another way to easily peel potatoes involves cutting the potato before boiling. Slice around the circumference of the potato, cutting the skin only, do not cut the potato in half. After cooking, the potato skin should slide off the sides with a pinch. I haven’t tried this method yet but you could check out this article on how to slide the potatoes out of their skin and give it a shot.

Frequently asked questions 

Steam vs Pressure cook

You can do either. I have tested this recipe using the pressure cook function. Just remember this, if you decide to use the steam function make sure you use a trivet and do not place the food directly in the inner pot. 

Can you cook potatoes too long?

Yes. It is possible to over-cook a potato. If you allow the potato to cook too long they become dry and less flavorful.

How much water do you need to steam potatoes?

When using the Instant Pot to steam potatoes the amount of water needed varies by the size of the Instant pot, not the number of potatoes. For a 6-qt Instant Pot use 1 cup of water and for an 8-qt use 1.5 cups of water.
 
Potatoes in an instant pot after cooking with a fork poking into one of the potatoes to check if it is done.
Russet Potatoes

Other delicious side dishes to try in the Instant Pot 

If you enjoyed making these quick and easy Instant Pot steamed potatoes, here are a few other potato recipes you might like to try next.
  1. Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes– This easy recipe yields creamy and fluffy mashed potatoes all in one pot and in under 30 minutes.
  2. Instant Pot Brussel Sprouts – Quickly and easily make steamed and sautéed Brussels sprouts with your Instant Pot in under 30 minutes. These tender on the inside, pan crisped Brussels sprouts make the perfect vegetarian side dish for any weeknight meal!
  3. Honey Glazed Instant Pot Carrots– Learn how to steam carrots in the Instant Pot and glaze them to make this delicious side dish. This carrot side dish is perfect for busy weeknights and for holiday dinners. 
  4. Instant Pot Sweet Potatoes – Make these Instant Pot Sweet Potatoes for all of your busy weeknight dinners or holiday meal prep! This naturally vegan and gluten-free sweet potato recipe uses two ingredients for fork-tender sweet potatoes every time.


Got a new Instant Pot? Check out the links below to make the most of your pressure cooker -  
Four potatoes in an instant pot before cooking.

How to cook potatoes in Instant Pot - a complete guide

4 from 1 vote
Make this two-ingredient recipe for fork-tender Instant Pot Potatoes for an easy side dish everyone can enjoy.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Pressure building time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Diet : Gluten-free, Vegetarian
Course : Side Dish
Method: Instant Pot
Cuisine : American

Ingredients
  

  • 4 potatoes
  • 1 cup water

Instructions
 

  • Rinse the potatoes and scrub them to remove any dirt.
  • Poke the potatoes evenly. This prevents the potatoes from exploding in the Instant Pot.
  • Place a trivet in the Instant Pot and then add a cup of water for 6-quarts and 1.5 cups for 8 quarts.
  • Place the potatoes over the trivet. Cover the Instant Pot and cook the potatoes on high as per the timings mentioned below. These timings are estimates only - make sure to adjust it for any altitude difference. To make potatoes with a bite, use the lower end of the estimate.
    - Large (8 inches+ in circumference, weighing 10 oz+): 18-20 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Russets potatoes fall in this category because of their large size. I use this size to boil potatoes for aloo parathas
    - Medium (7 inches in circumference, weighing 6-9 oz): 14-16 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Medium-sized potatoes are great for sandwiches. While making sandwiches, I usually cook for around 13-14 minutes so that they don't fall apart when slicing.
    - Small (5-6 inches in circumference, weighing 4-5 oz): 10-12 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. I use this size for side dishes like jeera aloo (potatoes cooked with cumin seeds) or any other Indian potato side dish. 
    - Baby potatoes (4 inches in circumference): 5 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Baby potatoes are perfect to make Dum aloo
    - Diced potatoes (1-.5 to 2-inch size cubes) - 3-4 minutes and release pressure in 5 minutes after the cooking is done. When you add diced potatoes to any gravy they cook pretty quickly in the Instant Pot, like in this aloo matar recipe
    - Mashed potatoes - 10 minutes with quick release. Click here for a detailed recipe.
  • Let the pressure release naturally or if you are in a rush, wait for 10 minutes, and then release pressure.
  • If the potato is uncooked, just put it right back in and pressure cook for an additional 5-10 minutes or as required.
  • Enjoy it with the toppings of your choice.

Notes

Testers notes / Tips
  1. Important: Select potatoes that are the same size so that it cooks evenly.
  2. This recipe was tested using Idaho / Russet potatoes. 
  3. It is okay to stack them but no more than 2 layers. Stacking will not impact the cooking time.
  4. To reduce the cooking time into half -  halve the potatoes.
  5. To make mashed potatoes, it is better to chop into 1-2 inch cubes and cook them for 10 minutes. Check out this detailed recipe on how to make mashed potatoes. 

Instant Pot Baked Potatoes recipe

Idaho or Russet potatoes are what I prefer to use while making baked potatoes. If you like the buttery taste of Yukon potatoes, you can use them as a substitute too. 
I love how easy it is to make baked potatoes in the Instant Pot. Here are the steps to follow after scrubbing the potatoes clean and poking holes evenly with a fork. 
  1. Add 1 cup of water in the Instant Pot.
  2. Place a trivet in the Instant Pot and then add water. Use 1 cup for 6-quarts and 1.5 cups for 8 quarts. 
  3. Place the potatoes over the trivet. Cover the Instant Pot and cook the potatoes on high for 20 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally.
  4. Open the lid. Use tongs to remove the potatoes. Use a knife to create an opening in the center. Make sure to not slice the potatoes completely.
  5. Using both your hands press the edges of the potatoes at the same time to widen the opening. 
  6. Use a fork to fluff the potatoes and serve it immediately with toppings of your choice. 
Note: To crisp the baked potatoes, remove the potatoes from the Instant Pot and slather it with butter or oil. Sprinkle it with sea salt. Broil them on high for about 2 minutes. 

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Disclosure: This recipe contains affiliate links to products we love and recommend. As an affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition

Calories: 194kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 4gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 127mgPotassium: 762mgFiber: 7gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 32063IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 68mgIron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Approximate Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and can vary depending on the exact ingredients/brands used. If you have health issues, please work with a registered dietician or nutritionist.

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Keyword : Baked, boiled, steamed
 

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