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How to Boil Potatoes in an Instant Pot? Foolproof Method

By: Shivani Choudhary
Updated On: January 17, 2024

The aroma of a home-cooked meal always warms up the ambiance of any home, filling it with delicious anticipation. One of the most loved ingredients that we often turn to is the humble, yet versatile, potato. Be it a hearty stew or a side dish, potatoes are amazing when cooked right. Now, you might wonder, how can you enhance the texture and flavor of this culinary staple? Well, the answer lies in learning how to boil potatoes in an Instant Pot. This portable, multi-purpose kitchen gadget has transformed the way we approach our kitchen chores, and boiling potatoes in it is a game-changer. Let me guide you through the process. It’s simpler than you think! Prepare yourself to master the art of boiling potatoes perfectly in an instant pot. The spuds are ready, are you?

Also Read: How to Reheat Seafood Boil in a Bag?

How to Boil Potatoes in an Instant Pot?

How to Boil Potatoes in an Instant Pot?

Boiling potatoes in an Instant Pot can seem a little daunting if you’re doing it for the first time. But trust me, with the right steps, it’s almost like magic – quick and flawless! So, let’s begin:

Step 1: Choosing Your Potatoes

First things first, decide which potatoes you’re using. Different potatoes may vary in taste, but for boiling, I usually stick to starchy ones like Russets or Yukon Gold. Select similar sized potatoes for consistent cooking.

Step 2: Prep Those Spuds

Go ahead, give those potatoes a good scrub under cold water. While many people peel their potatoes before boiling, I’ve found that leaving the skin on gives more flavor and nutrients. If you decide to peel your potatoes, make sure to do it evenly.

Step 3: Cut it Out

If you’re using large potatoes, cut them into smaller pieces for even and quicker cooking. The ideal size is about one and a half to two inches wide. If you’re using baby potatoes, no need to cut them at all.

Step 4: Time to Use the Instant Pot

Place the steamer insert in the Instant Pot and add about a cup of water. Arrange the prepared potatoes on the steamer. Secure the lid and select the manual setting. Cook on high pressure for about 10-20 minutes, depending on the potato size. A little trick: if you’re unsure about the time, start with less. You can always add more minutes, but you can’t undo mushy potatoes!

Step 5: Pressure Release and Voila!

Allow the pressure to release naturally for about 10 minutes, and then carefully turn the valve to ‘Venting’ for quick release of any remaining pressure. Open the lid carefully (remember, it’s hot), check if the potatoes are done by piercing with a fork. If it goes in without resistance, congratulations – mission accomplished!

Choosing the Right Potatoes for Your Instant Pot

Before we dive into the boiling process, let’s spare a moment to talk about the star of the show – the potatoes. Picking the right type of potatoes could significantly affect the texture and taste of your dish.

When shopping for potatoes, you’ll probably notice that they aren’t all the same. From russets and Yukon gold to red and fingerling potatoes, the choices can be overwhelming. So which one should you go for when boiling in an Instant Pot? Russet potatoes are generally an excellent choice due to their high-starch content, rendering a fluffy texture upon boiling. Next, Yukon Golds, being medium-starch potatoes, serve as perfect alternatives, offering both creaminess and texture.

Now that you know what type to pick, let’s head to the selection process. Always lookout for potatoes that are firm to touch, have a smooth skin, and are free from dark spots or discolorations.

Preparation Before Boiling: An Essential Step in the Process

Preparation Before Boiling: An Essential Step in the Process

One cannot ignore the importance of pre-boiling preparations. It’s simple and far from time-consuming but can significantly enhance the result of your boiled potatoes.

Start with a good rinse. Regardless of the type of potato you choose, rinsing is essential to get rid of any dirt or residues. Use cold water and a brush to gently scrub the surface.

Then, comes the peel. Now you might be wondering, to peel or not to peel? That’s mostly a matter of personal choice. While some prefer their potatoes peeled, others love the rustic touch the skin brings. If you decide to keep the skin on, ensure to scrub it thoroughly. If you choose to peel, do so before boiling for a clean cut.

Lastly, consider cutting your potatoes into evenly sized pieces, especially if you are going for old, large potatoes. This ensures that all pieces cook evenly. Keep the pieces immersed in cool water until you are ready to move onto the boiling stage to avoid discoloration.

By now, you must have realized that boiling potatoes is more than just tossing them into a pot. It’s an art, and to master it, every step counts.

Potato Troubles: Common Mistakes and How to Overcome Them

We’ve all been there – uncooked centers, mushy outsides, or that disappointing lack of flavor. Don’t let these potato troubles get you down. Here are the common mistakes and how you can overcome them.

1. Choosing the wrong type of potato

Every potato variety has its unique texture and moisture content, which can significantly affect the outcome of your boiled potatoes. If your potatoes turn out too hard or too mushy, you might be using the wrong type. A quick tip for picking the perfect boiling potato – go for the waxy varieties like Red Bliss or Yukon Gold.

2. Skipping the wash

Dirty potatoes can ruin the taste of your dish as the dirt and microbial residues can seep into the end product. Always remember to wash your potatoes thoroughly before boiling them. Consider using a vegetable brush to get into those tiny crevices as well.

3. Forget to season the water

Potatoes are like sponges. They absorb the liquid around them, so if you’re not seasoning your water adequately, your potatoes might turn out bland. Save yourself from this potato trouble by adding ample salt to your boiling water.

Post-Boil Best Practices: Making the Most Out of Your Boiled Potatoes

Post-Boil Best Practices: Making the Most Out of Your Boiled Potatoes

You’ve now successfully boiled your potatoes. Congratulations! But wait, the job’s not over yet. Let’s talk about best practices after boiling your potatoes to ensure maximum flavor and longevity.

1. Venting and Cooling

Let your spuds breathe! It’s a great idea to vent your potatoes immediately after boiling. This practice helps prevent overcooking and keeps the texture just right.

2. Storing leftovers

Storing your boiled potatoes properly is crucial to avoid spoilage. Cool your potatoes down rapidly to reduce the risk of bacteria, then store them in an airtight container in your fridge. They’ll be good for 2-3 days. Remember, leftovers are love reimagined!

3. Reheating boiled potatoes

Reheating can feel tricky. You’ve got to preserve the taste and texture without drying out your potatoes. A quick tip here – sprinkle some water over the potatoes before popping them into the microwave. This trick helps retain the moisture and keeps your boiled potatoes tasting fresh.

Also Read: Best Dipping Sauces For Sweet Potato Fries

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I boil potatoes in an Instant Pot?

Boiling potatoes in an Instant Pot is not only quick but also helps retain the nutrients and flavor of the potato better than traditional methods.

Can I put raw potatoes directly into the Instant Pot?

Yes, you can put raw potatoes in the Instant Pot. Ensure they’re properly cleaned and, if you prefer, peeled before placing them in the pot.

What type of potato is best for boiling in an Instant Pot?

Yukon Gold and Russet potatoes work well for boiling in an Instant Pot due to their starchy content. However, you can use any variety you have on hand, as the Instant Pot is versatile in handling different types.

Do I need to cut my potatoes before boiling them in an Instant Pot?

It’s up to personal preference. Cutting potatoes can speed up the cooking process slightly, but whole potatoes can also be boiled efficiently in an Instant Pot.

How much water should I use when boiling potatoes in an Instant Pot?

About a cup or two of water is usually sufficient to boil potatoes in an Instant Pot, depending upon the quantity of the potatoes.

How long does it take to boil potatoes in an Instant Pot?

On average, it takes about 10-15 minutes to boil potatoes in an Instant Pot, but this can vary depending on the size and type of potato.

Can I overcook potatoes in the Instant Pot?

Yes, as in any form of cooking, it’s possible to overcook potatoes in your Instant Pot. It’s recommended to keep a close eye on the cooking time.

How can I store boiled potatoes?

A: Once the boiled potatoes are completely cooled, they can be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to one week.


After going through these steps, you’ll have boiled potatoes ready whenever you need them, without the hassle of constantly checking them or worrying about overcooking. Boiling potatoes in an Instant Pot is expedient and a guarantee that they will come out flawlessly each time. So, the next time you decide to whip up some potato salad or just add a hearty touch to your meals with boiled potatoes, remember, your Instant Pot can be your best friend in the kitchen.

Now that you know this easy and effective way of boiling potatoes, go forth and create flavorsome potato dishes that will have your taste buds dancing. Bring out that Instant Pot and let the potato magic begin!

Food Lover and Storyteller 🍽️✨ With a fork in one hand and a pen in the other, Shivani brings her culinary adventures to life through evocative words and tantalizing tastes. Her love for food knows no bounds, and she's on a mission to share the magic of flavors with fellow enthusiasts.
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