[Full Guide] How Long To Boil Soup In Instant Pot

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot is a convenient and efficient way to prepare a delicious and hearty meal. Instant Pot, a popular brand of electric pressure cooker, offers a time-saving alternative to traditional stovetop cooking. Boiling soup in an Instant Pot can help save time and energy while enhancing the flavors of the ingredients. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the selection of ingredients, preparation methods, and the step-by-step process of boiling soup in an Instant Pot. Additionally, we will address the commonly asked question of how long it takes to boil soup in an Instant Pot to ensure that your soups are perfectly cooked every time.

Quick Answer: How Long To Boil Soup In Instant Pot

The time it takes to boil soup in an Instant Pot can vary depending on the specific recipe and ingredients being used. However, as a general guideline, it typically takes about 10-15 minutes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure, followed by 20-30 minutes of actual cooking time for most soup recipes. Factors such as the type of ingredients, desired consistency, and whether the soup contains meat will influence the cooking time. Additional time for natural pressure release or quick pressure release should also be considered in the overall cooking process.


Choosing the right ingredients is essential for boiling soup in an Instant Pot. The selection of vegetables, meats, broth, and seasonings will ultimately determine the flavor profile and texture of the soup. When selecting ingredients for Instant Pot soup recipes, it is important to consider factors such as cooking time, flavor compatibility, and desired consistency. Certain ingredients, such as root vegetables and tougher cuts of meat, are well-suited for the efficient cooking process of an Instant Pot. Additionally, incorporating aromatic herbs and spices can further enhance the depth of flavor in the soup.


Proper preparation of ingredients is crucial to the success of boiling soup in an Instant Pot. This includes washing and chopping vegetables, trimming and seasoning meats, and measuring out the broth or liquid component. Preparing the ingredients in advance can streamline the cooking process and ensure that the soup cooks evenly. Furthermore, precooking certain ingredients, such as searing meat or sautéing aromatics, can add another layer of flavor to the soup. Adequate preparation allows for a smooth and efficient cooking experience with the Instant Pot.

How To Boil Soup In Instant Pot

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot involves a systematic process that optimizes the flavors and textures of the ingredients. Follow these step-by-step instructions for boiling soup in an Instant Pot:

  1. Sautéing (Optional): Begin by using the "Sauté" function on the Instant Pot to cook any ingredients that benefit from browning or initial cooking, such as onions, garlic, or meats. This step can enhance the depth of flavor in the soup.

  2. Adding Ingredients: Once any initial sautéing is complete, add the remaining ingredients to the Instant Pot. This includes vegetables, meats, seasonings, and broth. Ensure that the total volume of ingredients does not exceed the maximum fill line indicated on the Instant Pot.

  3. Adjusting Liquid: Take note of the recommended liquid requirements in the soup recipe. Adjust the amount of broth or liquid to ensure that there is adequate liquid for pressure cooking and to prevent a burn risk.

  4. Sealing the Instant Pot: Secure the lid onto the Instant Pot and set the venting knob to the "Sealing" position.

  5. Setting the Cooking Time: Select the appropriate cooking time based on the specific soup recipe. High-pressure cooking is typically used for boiling soup in an Instant Pot. Use the manual or pressure cook setting to input the cooking time.

  6. Natural Pressure Release (NPR) or Quick Pressure Release (QPR): After the cooking cycle is complete, the Instant Pot will need time to release the pressure naturally, or you can opt for a quick pressure release. Follow the recipe instructions for the recommended pressure release method.

  7. Adjusting Consistency (Optional): Once the pressure has been released and it is safe to open the Instant Pot, check the consistency of the soup. If a thicker consistency is desired, you can use the "Sauté" function to reduce the liquid, or add a thickening agent if necessary.

  8. Seasoning and Serving: Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning as needed. Once the soup has reached the desired flavor and consistency, it is ready to be served hot and enjoyed.

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot offers a convenient and efficient method of preparing a variety of flavorful soups. By carefully selecting ingredients, proper preparation, and following the step-by-step process outlined in this guide, you can achieve delicious, well-cooked soups with your Instant Pot. It is important to note that cooking times and methods may vary depending on the specific soup recipe and ingredients used, so always refer to the recipe instructions for the most accurate guidance. With the versatility and reliability of an Instant Pot, you can confidently boil soup to perfection, whether it’s a comforting bowl of chicken noodle soup or a robust beef stew. Enjoy the simplicity and delicious results that boiling soup in an Instant Pot brings to your culinary repertoire.

Science Behind Boiling

Boiling is a fundamental cooking technique used in various recipes, including soups. Traditionally, boiling soup involves simmering ingredients in a pot over a stovetop. However, with the advent of modern kitchen appliances like the Instant Pot, boiling soup has become even more convenient and efficient.

Boiling is a process in which a liquid reaches its boiling point and starts to vaporize. This occurs when the temperature of the liquid has risen to the point where its vapor pressure equals the atmospheric pressure. In the case of soup, the liquid that undergoes boiling is often water-based, enriched with various ingredients such as vegetables, meat, or spices.

When soup ingredients are heated, two main processes take place: conduction and convection. Conduction is the transfer of heat through direct contact between the heat source and the soup ingredients. This occurs as the heat from the bottom of the Instant Pot transfers to the liquid and ingredients, causing them to heat up.

Convection refers to the movement of the liquid within the soup as it heats up. As the liquid near the bottom of the pot gets hotter, it becomes less dense and rises towards the surface, while cooler liquid descends to take its place. This circulation of the liquid helps to evenly distribute the heat and flavors throughout the soup.

As the soup reaches its boiling point, bubbles of water vapor form and rise to the surface. These bubbles are the result of the boiling liquid vaporizing and escaping into the surrounding atmosphere. Eventually, the boiling process leads to the reduction of the soup’s volume, as water evaporates and concentrates the flavors.

Optimal Boiling Times

The optimal boiling time for soup can vary depending on the specific recipe and ingredients used. However, there are some general guidelines to consider. It’s important to note that the Instant Pot offers different settings and functions, allowing you to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

For soups with tender ingredients such as vegetables or boneless meat, a typical boiling time in the Instant Pot ranges from 6 to 12 minutes on high pressure. This duration ensures that the ingredients are cooked thoroughly and that the flavors are infused into the soup.

On the other hand, if your soup recipe includes tougher ingredients like bone-in meat or legumes, a longer boiling time is required to break down the collagen or make the legumes tender. In such cases, the boiling time can extend to 20-30 minutes on high pressure.

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It’s crucial to follow specific recipes or guidelines to determine the optimal boiling time for your soup. Overcooking can lead to mushy vegetables or dry meat, while undercooking can leave ingredients raw and unappetizing.

Doneness Test

Testing the doneness of soup is essential to ensure that all the ingredients have been properly cooked. There are several ways to check if your soup is done:

  1. Visual Inspection: Look for signs that the ingredients are cooked thoroughly. Vegetables should be tender but not mushy, meat should be cooked through with no raw portions, and legumes should be soft but not overcooked.

  2. Taste Test: Take a small spoonful of the soup and taste it carefully. Pay attention to the texture and tenderness of the ingredients. If they are too firm or undercooked, additional boiling time is required.

  3. Temperature Check: Use a food thermometer to measure the internal temperature of meats or thicker portions of the soup. It should reach a safe minimum temperature, according to food safety guidelines. For example, poultry should reach 165°F (74°C), while most meats should be cooked to at least 145°F (63°C).

Remember, the doneness of the soup may depend on personal preference as well. Some individuals prefer their vegetables to have more bite, while others prefer them to be softer. Adjust the cooking time accordingly to achieve the desired texture and flavor.

Factors Affecting Boiling Soup

While using an Instant Pot can streamline the boiling process, there are several factors that can affect how your soup boils and cooks. It’s important to consider these factors to achieve the best results:

  1. Ingredient Size and Quantity: The size and quantity of the ingredients can impact the boiling time. Larger cuts of meat or vegetables will take longer to cook compared to smaller, chopped pieces. Additionally, overcrowding the Instant Pot can hinder heat circulation and result in uneven cooking.

  2. Starting Temperature: The starting temperature of the ingredients and liquid can affect the boiling time. If you add cold or refrigerated ingredients to the Instant Pot, the cooking time may be slightly longer to bring them up to temperature. Pre-warming ingredients can help reduce the overall boiling time.

  3. Lid Seal and Pressure Build-up: Ensure that the Instant Pot’s lid is properly sealed before starting the cooking process. A proper seal is crucial for creating the necessary pressure inside the pot. If the lid is not sealed correctly, the boiling time may be prolonged, and the soup may not cook evenly.

  4. Liquid Quantity: The amount of liquid in the soup affects the boiling process. Insufficient liquid can result in the soup burning or sticking to the bottom of the Instant Pot. On the other hand, too much liquid may prolong the boiling process and dilute the flavors. Follow the recipe guidelines for the recommended liquid quantity.

  5. Altitude: Altitude can impact the boiling point of water and, consequently, the cooking time. At higher altitudes, where atmospheric pressure is lower, water boils at a lower temperature. This means that cooking times may need to be adjusted when using an Instant Pot at higher altitudes.

By considering these factors and making the necessary adjustments, you can ensure that your soup boils and cooks evenly, resulting in a delicious, well-cooked dish.

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot offers a convenient and efficient way to prepare delicious meals. Understanding the science behind boiling, optimal boiling times, doneness tests, and the factors that can affect the boiling process is essential for achieving the best results.

By following cooking guidelines, adjusting boiling times for different ingredients, and considering factors such as ingredient size, temperature, lid seal, liquid quantity, and altitude, you can create flavorful soups that are perfectly cooked to your liking.

Experiment with various recipes and techniques to become familiar with your Instant Pot's capabilities and how it influences the boiling process. With practice, you'll master the art of boiling soup in an Instant Pot, creating culinary delights that are both time-saving and delectable.

Texture After Boiling

The Instant Pot has become a staple in many kitchens due to its convenience and versatility. This multi-purpose electric pressure cooker can be used for various cooking techniques, including boiling soup. Boiling soup in an Instant Pot offers several advantages over traditional stovetop methods, such as faster cooking times and the ability to lock in flavors.

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot can yield different textures compared to other cooking methods. The high pressure generated by the Instant Pot helps to break down tough fibers in ingredients, resulting in tender and succulent meat and vegetables. The pressure cooking process also allows flavors to penetrate deep into the ingredients, enhancing the overall taste of the soup.

By using the Instant Pot’s sauté function before boiling, you can achieve a delightful texture in your soup. Sautéing the ingredients before adding the liquid helps in caramelizing them, adding depth and complexity to the flavors. This step can be particularly beneficial for recipes that call for ingredients such as onions, garlic, and spices. The resulting soup will have a richer and more robust texture, making it a truly satisfying dish.

Additionally, using the Instant Pot’s slow cooker function can create a different texture in your soup. Slow cooking allows the flavors to meld together over a longer period, resulting in a smoother and more homogenous soup. This method is particularly suitable for creamy soups like tomato bisque or butternut squash soup.

Taste After Boiling

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot has a significant impact on the taste profile of the final dish. The sealed environment of the Instant Pot helps to retain the flavors of the ingredients, creating a more concentrated and intense taste experience.

One of the advantages of using the Instant Pot for boiling soup is the ability to infuse flavors into the broth. By adding aromatic herbs and spices to the soup, the pressure cooking process effectively extracts and distributes the essence of these ingredients throughout the broth. This results in a deeply flavorful soup that is sure to impress your taste buds.

Additionally, the pressurized environment of the Instant Pot allows for faster cooking times, which can lead to a more vibrant and fresher taste in the soup. Vegetables cooked under pressure retain their natural colors, flavors, and nutrients, resulting in a more enjoyable and wholesome dining experience.

Smell After Boiling

The aroma of a soup is often one of its most enticing qualities, and boiling soup in an Instant Pot can help intensify and enhance these aromas. The sealed environment traps the fragrances within the pot, preventing them from escaping and dissipating into the air. As a result, the aromatic compounds released during the cooking process become more concentrated, creating a delightful olfactory experience.

The Instant Pot’s pressure cooking function also contributes to the development of rich and enticing smells. As the soup boils under pressure, moisture evaporates and condenses, allowing the flavors and aromas to further mingle and intensify. For instance, if you are preparing a hearty beef stew, the Instant Pot’s pressure cooking can infuse the broth with the mouthwatering aroma of slow-cooked beef, herbs, and spices.

Boiling Techniques For Different Culinary Preferences

While boiling soup in an Instant Pot offers numerous benefits, it is important to consider the specific culinary preferences you wish to achieve. By adapting your boiling techniques, you can tailor the final outcome to suit your preferences.

  1. Quick Release Method: If you desire a soup with a fresher and more vibrant taste, you may opt for the quick release method. This method involves manually releasing the pressure immediately after boiling the soup. By doing so, you can prevent overcooking the ingredients, ensuring that vegetables retain their crispness and bright colors. This method works well for soups with delicate ingredients like seafood or vegetable-based soups.

  2. Natural Release Method: On the other hand, if you prefer a soup with a deeper and richer flavor profile, the natural release method is ideal. This technique involves allowing the pressure to release naturally without manually releasing it. This prolongs the cooking process, allowing the flavors to further develop and intensify. It is particularly suitable for hearty soups with meat or beans, as the extra time under pressure helps to tenderize these ingredients.

  3. Hybrid Method: For those seeking a balanced approach, the hybrid method combines aspects of both quick and natural release. After the initial high pressure cooking, the soup is left to naturally release some of the pressure before manually releasing the remaining pressure. This method strikes a middle ground, resulting in a soup with well-developed flavors and tender ingredients.

  4. Sautéing Before Boiling: As mentioned earlier, sautéing the ingredients before boiling can significantly impact the texture and flavor of the soup. This technique is particularly useful when you want to enhance the Maillard reaction, a chemical process that occurs when proteins and sugars become caramelized. Sautéing ingredients like onions, garlic, or meat before adding the liquid to the Instant Pot can add a rich depth of flavor to your soup.

  5. Adding Ingredients in Stages: Another technique to consider is adding ingredients in stages during the boiling process. This allows for varying degrees of tenderness and texture within the soup. For example, if you’re making a vegetable soup, you may wish to add vegetables that take longer to cook, such as carrots or potatoes, earlier in the process. By adding more delicate vegetables like peas or spinach towards the end, you can ensure they retain their vibrant colors and maintain a slight crunch.

Boiling soup in an Instant Pot offers numerous advantages in terms of texture, taste, and smell. The high pressure and sealed environment of the Instant Pot contribute to tender and succulent ingredients, concentrated flavors, and intensified aromas. By understanding different boiling techniques, such as quick release, natural release, hybrid methods, sautéing before boiling, and adding ingredients in stages, you can tailor the final outcome to align with your culinary preferences.

Whether you seek a soup with vibrant and fresh flavors or one with deep and complex tastes, the Instant Pot can help you achieve your desired results. Explore the possibilities and experiment with various recipes to discover the joy of boiling soup in an Instant Pot.

Retaining Nutrition

The Instant Pot has become a popular appliance in many households, and for good reason. It is a versatile kitchen gadget that can be used for cooking various types of food, including boiling soup. Boiling soup in an Instant Pot is an easy and efficient way to prepare a hearty meal for your family and friends.

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Boiling soup in an Instant Pot allows you to retain the nutrients in the ingredients you use, which is a major advantage over stove-top cooking. When you are boiling soup in an Instant Pot, the ingredients are cooked in a sealed environment with very little moisture loss. This helps to preserve the nutrients in the food, resulting in a healthier meal and more flavorful soup.

It is also important to note that cooking soup in an Instant Pot takes less time than stove-top cooking, which means that the ingredients are exposed to heat for a shorter period. This reduces the risk of overcooking the food and losing valuable nutrients.

Common Mistakes To Avoid

While boiling soup in an Instant Pot is generally a straightforward process, there are some common mistakes that people make. Here are a few things to avoid:

Over-filling The Instant Pot

It is essential to avoid overfilling the Instant Pot when boiling soup, as it can lead to unwanted spills and accidents. Make sure that you fill the Instant Pot no more than 2/3 of the way full when adding ingredients.

Using The Wrong Setting

After adding ingredients to the Instant Pot, it is important to use the correct setting for boiling soup. The ‘Soup/Broth’ setting is the most appropriate for boiling soup, as it allows for a consistent and even boil.

Not Releasing The Pressure Correctly

When the boiling process is complete, it is important to release the pressure correctly. Failing to do so can lead to soup splattering everywhere, which is not only messy but also dangerous. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully and release the pressure according to the recipe.

Tips To Boil Soup

Here are some tips to make boiling soup in an Instant Pot easier and more efficient:

Choose The Right Ingredients

When boiling soup in an Instant Pot, choose ingredients that are suitable for this cooking method. Ingredients such as beans and lentils, which usually take a long time to cook on the stove, are perfect for an Instant Pot as they boil much faster.

Brown The Ingredients First

Before adding the ingredients to the Instant Pot, brown them in a pan first. This helps to develop their flavor, resulting in a more flavorful soup.

Add Enough Liquid

When boiling soup in an Instant Pot, make sure there is enough liquid to cover the ingredients. A good rule of thumb is to use at least 4 cups of liquid for every 2 cups of ingredients.

Use The Right Amount Of Seasoning

Remember that the Instant Pot retains the flavors of the ingredients, so you may need to use less salt and seasonings than you would when cooking on the stove.

Let The Soup Sit Before Serving

After boiling the soup in an Instant Pot, allow it to sit for a few minutes before serving. This lets the soup thicken and allows the flavors to meld together.

What To Do With Boiled Soup

Once you have boiled your soup in the Instant Pot, there are several options for what to do with it. You can enjoy the soup as is or use it as a base for other dishes. Here are some ideas:

Meal Prep

Boiled soup in an Instant Pot is perfect for meal prep. Allow the soup to cool, then portion it out into individual containers and freeze. When you need a quick meal, simply heat up the soup in the microwave or on the stove.


Use the boiled soup as a base for other dishes. Add rice, noodles, or potatoes for a more filling meal. You can also add meat or seafood for a heartier soup.

Serve As A Starter

Boiled soup also makes an excellent starter for a meal. Simply serve the soup with some crusty bread or crackers for a delicious first course.


Boiling soup in an Instant Pot is a great way to make a nutritious and flavorful meal quickly and easily. With the right ingredients, the correct techniques, and following some tips, you can boil your soup to perfection. Moreover, with all of the meal prep and dish combination options available, boiled soup is a versatile option to have in your cooking arsenal. So, go ahead and try it out, you will be sure to find it an excellent addition to your dinners.


What Is An Instant Pot And How Does It Work?

An Instant Pot is a popular brand of electric pressure cooker that has become a staple in many kitchens. It works by using heat and pressure to cook food quickly and evenly, similar to a traditional stovetop pressure cooker but with added convenience and safety features.

Can I Use My Instant Pot To Boil Soup?

Yes, you can use your Instant Pot to boil soup. In fact, boiling soup in an Instant Pot is a convenient and time-saving method, as it allows for one-pot cooking and reduces the cooking time significantly.

What Types Of Soups Can I Make In An Instant Pot?

You can make a wide variety of soups in an Instant Pot, including but not limited to vegetable soups, chicken noodle soups, lentil soups, and even chili or stew. As long as the ingredients can be safely pressure cooked, they can be used in an Instant Pot soup recipe.

How Do I Adjust The Cooking Time When Boiling Soup In An Instant Pot?

The cooking time for soups in an Instant Pot varies depending on the ingredients and recipe. It is important to follow the specific recipe instructions for best results. As a general rule, soups will typically take 10-15 minutes on the "Soup/Broth" or "Manual" setting.

Is It Safe To Release The Pressure Manually When Cooking Soup In An Instant Pot?

It is generally safe to manually release the pressure when cooking soup in an Instant Pot. However, it is important to use caution when doing so, as the steam released can be hot and may cause burns. It is recommended to use a long-handled utensil to switch the pressure release valve from "Sealing" to "Venting" to avoid any contact with steam.