Instant Pot Beets – The Healthy Low-down

Why are these ruby red gems so good for you? I am going to give you the healthy low-down AND show you how easy they are to cook in the Instant Pot. If beets are not your thing, I encourage you to give them another go.

We got the BEET, the health beat that is.

Beets are loaded with nutritional properties which make them a great addition to any meal. You really can do a lot with them, once they are cooked.

What are the benefits of eating beets?

  • Promote Heart Health
  • High in Antioxidants
  • Relieve Inflammation
  • Support Digestive Health
  • Aid in Detoxification
  • Boost Stamina

Promote a healthy heart

Beets have naturally occurring nitrates, which are converted into nitric oxide in your body. Nitric oxide, in turn, helps to relax and dilate your blood vessels, improving blood flow and lowering blood pressure.

One study shows how drinking beet juice can lower blood pressure 4-5 points within hours.  Another study in 2017 shows how beet juice helped lower levels of bad LDL cholesterol in people with uncontrolled blood pressure.

 

instant pot beets

High in antioxidants

Beets are high in disease-fighting phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, and trace minerals. In fact, beets are an excellent source of a certain type of phytonutrients called betalains. Betalains are responsible for providing beets with their vibrant color. In vitro studies have found that these potent pigments may help protect against the development of certain types of cancer and disease.

Relieve Inflammation

Chronic inflammation is the root of most diseases and may be a major contributor to chronic conditions like heart disease, cancer, and even obesity.

Foods that are processed and that contain high amounts of sugar and low amounts of nutrients are huge culprits for creating inflammation. So consuming whole foods like beets is an excellent way to keep inflammation in check.

This study confirmed the anti-inflammatory properties of beets, showing that both cooked beets and beet juice were able to lower levels of inflammatory markers in people with high blood pressure.

Support digestive health

Beets are loaded with fiber, providing 3.8 grams in each cup. Fiber is important because it moves through the intestines undigested, adding bulk to the stool to help support regularity and promote better digestive health.

Research also suggests that upping your fiber intake through foods like beets benefits digestive health and may be protective against conditions like diverticulitis, hemorrhoids and GERD.

Aid in Detoxification

Beet juice benefits liver function, which helps to keep it working efficiently so it can keep your body free of toxins. An animal model published in the journal Phytotherapy Research showed that beetroot juice helped increase the levels of specific enzymes involved in detoxification.

Boost Stamina

If you need a boost to make it through your next workout, or to make it through your day as a mother of young children, beet juice may prove a valuable addition to your diet. An interesting study showed those who drank beet juice prior to exercise were able to exercise for up to 16 percent longer.

This benefit is also related to nitrates turning into nitric oxide, which may reduce the oxygen cost of low-intensity exercise as well as enhance tolerance to high-intensity exercise.

I think a lot of us could use this superfood into our diet. What do you think?

 

Some ways you can add this brightly colored root into your diet

  • Raw – Juice them and drink
  • Cooked – Add them to salads, side dishes, rice bowls or pureed with butter. Yum!

Don’t throw the beet greens away!

Beet greens also contain a good amount of lutein and zeaxanthin, two carotenoids that play a central role in eye health and can reduce the risk of conditions like macular degeneration and cataracts.

To make sure your beets are fresh, buy them with the greens still attached. When I cut off the greens, I like to wash them and put them in a zip bag to either juice them or steam them. They are really yummy steamed with a little butter and lemon on top!

How do you cook beets?

With the Instant Pot of course! You can just steam them on the stove, but why do that when you can save time and stress less.

Place steam basket into the pot

This is the steam basket I use. I use it for so many things!

instant pot beets

Cut the beets into halves or quarters, depending on size, and place them into the instant pot.

Add 1 cup water.

Place the lid on the Instant Pot.

Choose “STEAM” or “MANUAL” setting and set for 17 minutes.

Flip valve to pressure position

When beeper goes off, flip valve switch to “QUICK RELEASE”

instant pot beets pressure valve

Remove steam basket

These red silicone mitts work really well for removing the inner pot without getting burnt. Hot pads are bulky and a little harder to manipulate.

Cool and peel the beets

Let them cool just a bit and then peel off the skin.

BIG TIP: If you don’t want red hands, I have a little trick. Grab a couple pieces of cling wrap and place them over your hands. Then pick up a beet and rub it.  The skin will just slip off.

Ta dah! No stained hands..

Shred, Dice or Slice and enjoy!

I like to save the beet water that is leftover in the pot. Why? Because it is chuck full of nutritional goodness. When the liquid is cool, it actually tastes pretty good. It makes for a yummy drink snack.

If you don’t eat all the beets in one sitting, save them to put in rice bowls or salads the next day.

Instant Pot Beets – The Healthy Low-down

I am going to give you the healthy low-down AND show you how easy beets are to cook in the Instant Pot.

  • Prep Time5 min
  • Cook Time17 min
  • Total Time22 min

Ingredients

    • Beets cut into halves or quarters, depending on size

INSTUCTIONS

1

Place steam basket into the pot

 
2

Cut the beets into halves or quarters, depending on size, and place them into the instant pot.

ADD 1 CUP WATER

3

Place the lid on the Instant Pot.

Choose “STEAM” or “MANUAL” setting and set for 17 minutes.

4

Flip valve to pressure position

When beeper goes off, flip valve switch to “QUICK RELEASE”

5

Remove steam basket

6

These red silicone mitts work really well for removing the inner pot without getting burnt. Hot pads are bulky and a little harder to manipulate.

7

Cool and peel the beets

Let them cool just a bit and then peel off the skin.

8

Shred, Dice or Slice and enjoy!

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Chicken ZOODLE Soup – INSTANT POT – Soothing and Delicious

chicken zoodle soup

Are you feeling a little under the weather, cold or do you just need a little comfort food? How about a hot bowl of Chicken Zoodle Soup? Yep, I said “zoodle”.  Zoodles are just spiralized zucchini that make a great alternative to egg noodles, for those folks who need to go gluten-free.

Now the zoodle thing, it is just spiralized zucchini and I use them in everything. Since I am avoiding grains right now, these green spiral ribbons come in quite handy. I decided to add them to my chicken noodle soup recipe and make it up in the Instant Pot. Worked like a charm. My husband even commented that if he couldn’t see, he wouldn’t even know the difference.

I really have enjoyed this spiralizer. It is simple, inexpensive, and lightweight. I use it to spiralize zucchini, carrots, apples, and potatoes. It works great to serialize things to add to salads and soups. If you haven’t spiralized, you ought to give it a whirl. (Pun intended)!

 

Let’s get back to the soup recipe.

CHICKEN ZOODLE SOUP Ingredients

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 8 chicken tenderloins ( I use frozen chicken tenderloin or frozen breasts) *You can also use pre-cooked shredded chicken
  • 3 Tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil
  • 3-4 carrots sliced
  • 3-4 stalks celery sliced
  • 2 small zucchini spiralized (optional egg noodles)
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 3 quarts broth (chicken or vegetable)
  • 4 cups raw sprialized zucchini noodles or uncooked egg noodles
  • 1/2 teaspoon basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (2 teaspoons fresh)
  • 2-3 bay leaves

Instructions

1 – Spiralize 2 small zucchini and set aside

 

2 – Chop all vegetables

 

3 – Choose the “SAUTE” method on the Instant Pot

4 – Add oil, carrot, celery, herbs, and onion to the pot and cook stirring frequently for 1-2 minutes

5 – Place the bay leaves, chicken and salt, and pepper in the pot and give it a stir

*If using pre-cooked shredded chicken, adjust time as indicated below.

6 – Add the broth, making sure not to go over the maximum fill line

*If you are using egg noodles, add them now.

7 – Place the lid on the pot and flip the steam valve to sealing position

 

8 – Turn off Instant Pot and change the settings to “MANUAL” and adjust time down to only 4 minutes

  • If using FROZEN chicken tenders, set for 6 minutes.
  • If using FROZEN chicken breasts, set for minutes
  • Pre-cooked chicken, set time for only 2 minutes

It will take several minutes for it to get up to pressure, making it about 20 minutes cook time.

9 – Once the beeper goes off, use the “Quick Release” method to release steam

10 – Carefully remove the lid

11- Using a slotted spoon or big fork, remove the chicken and place it on a plate to cool a little bit.

12- While the chicken is cooling, add the zucchini noodles to the pot and place the lid back on.

The noodles will cook quickly in the hot water. There is no need to turn it back on!

13 – When the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred the chicken with a big fork.

14 – Place the shredded chicken back in the pot and give it a stir.

Chicken ZOODLE Soup – INSTANT POT – Soothing and Delicious

chicken zoodle soup
Are you feeling a little under the weather, cold or do you just need a little comfort food? How about a hot bowl of Chicken Zoodle Soup?
  • Prep Time30 min
  • Cook Time4 min
  • Total Time34 min
  • Ready in50 minutes
  • Yield6
  • Serving Size1 cup
[MEDIAVINE EXAMPLE AD SPACE 1]

INGREDIENTS

    • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 8 chicken tenderloins ( I use frozen chicken tenderloin or frozen breasts) *You can also use pre-cooked shredded chicken
    • 3 Tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil
    • 3-4 carrots sliced
    • 3-4 stalks celery sliced
    • 2 small zucchini spiralized (optional egg noodles)
    • 1 onion diced
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper
    • 3 quarts broth (chicken or vegetable)
    • 4 cups raw sprialized zucchini noodles or uncooked egg noodles
    • 1/2 teaspoon basil
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (2 teaspoons fresh)
    • 2-3 bay leave
[MEDIAVINE EXAMPLE AD SPACE 2]

INSTUCTIONS

1

Spiralize 2 small zucchini and set aside

 

 
2

Chop all vegetables

 

3

Choose the “SAUTE” method on the Instant Pot

4

Add oil, carrot, celery, herbs, and onion to the pot and cook stirring frequently for 1-2 minutes

5

Place the bay leaves, chicken and salt, and pepper in the pot and give it a stir

*If using pre-cooked shredded chicken, adjust time as indicated below.

6

Add the broth, making sure not to go over the maximum fill line

*If you are using egg noodles, add them now.

7

Place the lid on the pot and flip the steam valve to sealing position

8

Turn off Instant Pot and change the settings to “MANUAL” and adjust time down to only 4 minutes

  • If using FROZEN chicken tenders, set for 6 minutes.
  • If using FROZEN chicken breasts, set for minutes
  • Pre-cooked chicken, set time for only 2 minutes

It will take several minutes for it to get up to pressure, making it about 20 minutes cook time.

9

Once the beeper goes off, use the “Quick Release” method to release steam

10

Carefully remove the lid

Using a slotted spoon or big fork, remove the chicken and place it on a plate to cool a little bit.

11

While the chicken is cooling, add the zucchini noodles to the pot and place the lid back on.

The noodles will cook quickly in the hot water. There is no need to turn it back on!

 

12

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred the chicken with a big fork.

13

Place the shredded chicken back in the pot and give it a stir.

  • Serving Size1 cup
  • Amount per serving
  • Calories0
  • % Daily Value*Standard DV
  • Total Fat7 g78 g8.97%
  • Saturated Fat1 g20 g5%
  • Cholesterol2 mg300 mg0.67%
  • Sodium80 mg2300 mg3.48%
  • Protein1 g50 g2%
  • Unsaturated Fat 6
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This soup freezes very well and makes a great quick “GO TO” meal.

Enjoy!

jan2

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Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash – A Great Alternative To Pasta

spaghetti squash
spaghetti squash

Spaghetti squash, is a variety of winter squash that has has strands of inner flesh that resembles cooked spaghetti. It is a great healthy low-carb substitute for pasta, and a nice alternative for those who are sensitive to grains. Spaghetti squash is very versatile and can be eaten covered with marinara sauce or alone with a dab of ghee, and a sprinkle of salt and freshly cracked pepper. One cup of this squash contains 2.2 grams of fiber and other nutrients such as vitamin A and potassium. *

Although the traditional way to cook this squash would be to bake it in the oven, I am going to show you how easy and fast it is to cook in the Instant Pot. As you know, this wonder machine can cook almost anything. The wonderful thing about it is that it takes less time, and you don’t have to sit around babysitting while it cooks.

How to cook spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot

spaghetti squash

1- Cut squash in half lengthwise

This may be a little challenging, but it ends up being a little better because the strands of squash are longer and it is easier to clean out. You can cut it in half crosswise if you prefer.

2- Using a big spoon, scoop out the seeds and discard

3- Place the trivet in the bottom of the pan and pour 1 cup of water in the inner pot

4- Next, place the squash cut side up, side by side (they can overlap without any problem)

 

IMG_9803 Instant Pot valve

5- Place the lid onto the pot and secure in place. Flip steam valve to pressure

6- Press the MANUAL BUTTON (high pressure) and adjust time to read 5 minutes

If you like it Al Dente with a little crunch to it, set at 5 minutes.

If you prefer it softer, (which I do) set the time for 7-8 minutes.

7- When the beeper goes off and cooking is complete, use the quick release method to release the pressure

spaghetti squash

8- Using a big fork, fluff and separate the strands of squash.

Apply your favorite marinara sauce with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and you are ready to roll Italian Style.The kids won’t even notice the difference between regular pasta. My favorite way to enjoy this beautiful yellow squash is with a dab of ghee (clarified butter) and some salt and pepper. A simple, healthy and quick way to prepare and enjoy this odd texture squash.

Spaghetti squash is easily found in most grocery stores or at your local farmers market. It is also very easy to grow in your garden.

Enjoy!

Refrences: http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/spaghetti-squash-calories-nutrients-1883.html

Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash – A Great Alternative To Pasta

spaghetti squash

A basic ranch dressing that goes great with everything.

  • Prep Time5 min
  • Total Time5 min
  • Yield4 Batches
  • Meta LabelLabel Value
  • Course
    • Condiment
  • Attribute Label
    • Attibute Values
[MEDIAVINE EXAMPLE AD SPACE 1]

Ingredients

Dressing Mix

    • Garlic powder, 1 tsp.
    • Dried Onion Flakes, 4 tsp.
    • Dried Parsley Flakes,  4 Tablespoons ( or 2 Tablespoons fresh)
    • Black Pepper, 2 tsp.
    • Salt, 2 tsp.
    • Onion Powder, 2 tsp
    *2 Tablespoons of prepared mix equals one store bought packet.Simply add all the ingredients to a jar and shake well. Label the jar and store with rest of your spices.

Single Batch

    • Garlic powder, 1/4 tsp.
    • Dried Onion Flakes, 1 tsp.
    • Dried Parsley Flakes,  1 Tablespoons ( or 2 Tablespoons fresh)
    • Black Pepper, 1/2 tsp.
    • Salt, 1/2 tsp.
    • Onion Powder, 1/2 tsp
    Use the mix to make dips, salad dressing and other recipes that call for Ranch Dressing Mix.

Ranch Salad Dressing

    • 1 cup mayonnaise
    • 1 cup buttermilk ( if you don’t have buttermilk, no worries).  Add one tablespoon lemon juice or white vinegar to a liquid measuring cup, and add enough milk until it measures 1 cup
    • Add dry ingredients listed above.
    • Whisk well and enjoy!
    The flavor will improve after sitting a bit.
[MEDIAVINE EXAMPLE AD SPACE 2]

INSTUCTIONS

1

Add all ingredients to small glass jar and shake well.

 
2

2 Tablespoons of mix equals 1 store bought packet.

[MEDIAVINE EXAMPLE AD SPACE 3]

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