3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer

Delicious vegan Instant Pot recipes that are perfect for summer! Choose from a light yet flavorful Couscous and Lentil Salad (a dump-and-go recipe), the creamiest Corn Chowder you’ll ever try, or an easy Nectarine and Blueberry Crisp for summer baking that doesn’t require an oven. When it’s hot and sweaty outside, cooking can seem daunting….

Delicious vegan Instant Pot recipes that are perfect for summer! Choose from a light yet flavorful Couscous and Lentil Salad (a dump-and-go recipe), the creamiest Corn Chowder you’ll ever try, or an easy Nectarine and Blueberry Crisp for summer baking that doesn’t require an oven.


3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer

When it’s hot and sweaty outside, cooking can seem daunting. I know that when I turn on my oven, my apartment can go from a cool 74 degrees to a sweltering 85 degrees.

And that’s why the Instant Pot can be so handy during the summer! While the Instant Pot is often used for heavy, rich winter foods like chilis and stews, there are many light and fresh recipes you can make in it! Today I’m sharing three recipes from my cookbook, The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook, that are perfect for summer. They feature seasonal ingredients, are packed with fresh flavor, and don’t require you to turn on your oven!

If you want to read more about my cookbook and what’s inside, you can do that here!

If you try out one of these recipes, be sure to let me know on Youtube or down below in the comments :) And to see all the recipes in action, check out the Youtube video below!


3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer. Vegan instant pot corn chowder. Vegan corn chowder. instant pot corn chowder.

Vegan Instant Pot Corn Chowder

This is the best corn chowder you will ever taste and it’s so easy, thanks to the Instant Pot! Featuring fresh corn and jalapeños, along with potatoes and cashews for a corn chowder that’s as creamy as a bisque!

You can find this recipe on page 241 of my cookbook, The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook, as well as more detail in this blog post.

Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free 

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup raw cashews

  • 4 large ears fresh sweet corn, husked, or 3 cups canned or frozen kernels

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil  

  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 jalapeño peppers, diced (omit seeds and membranes for less heat) 

  • 1 medium carrot, diced 

  • 1 cup diced celery (2 to 3 medium stalks)

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste

  • Freshly cracked black pepper

  • 1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin 

  • ½ teaspoon celery salt

  • 2 to 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

  • 1 (13.5-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk

  • 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast  

  • 1 lime, halved

Garnishes

  • Reserved corn kernels

  • 1/4 cup chopped chives (optional)

  • Diced tomatoes or red bell pepper (optional)

  • Chopped cilantro or finely slivered basil leaves (optional)

Directions

  1. Place the cashews in a bowl and cover with boiling water while you prepare the other ingredients. Drain after 20 to 30 minutes.

  2. Optional step: To enhance the flavor of the soup, place the husked ears of corn over an open flame and turn occasionally until the kernels are lightly charred, repeating with each ear.

  3. Hold an ear of corn upright in a large bowl and shave off the kernels with a sharp knife. (If you charred the ears of corn, wait until the corn is cool enough to handle.). Repeat with the remaining ears. Place the kernels in a bowl and reserve a tablespoon or two for garnish

  4. Select the Sauté setting on the Instant Pot and let the pot heat up for a few minutes before adding the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the onion. Cook until the onion is translucent, 4 to 5 minutes.

  5. Add the garlic & jalapeños and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add the carrot and celery with a pinch each of salt and black pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Add the potatoes and cook for 2 more minutes, tossing frequently to prevent the potatoes from sticking. Select the Cancel setting.

  6. Add the corn kernels, drained cashews, 1 teaspoon salt, black pepper to taste, bay leaves, smoked paprika, cumin, celery salt, 2 cups of the vegetable broth, the coconut milk, and nutritional yeast. Stir well to combine.  

  7. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure and set the cook time to 6 minutes.

  8. Once the 6-minute timer has completed and beeps, allow a natural pressure release for 5 minutes and then carefully switch the Pressure Release knob from Sealing to Venting to release any remaining steam.

  9. Open the pot and discard the bay leaves. Squeeze the juice 1/2 lime into the soup, stir, and taste for seasonings. Add more lime juice or salt and black pepper as needed. The soup will be very thick at this point, so I like to thin it out a bit with additional vegetable broth during the blending stage (see next step).  

  10. Transfer the soup in two or three batches to a high-speed blender (don’t fill the blender to capacity). Be sure to remove the center cap from the blender to vent steam, but cover the hole with a kitchen towel. Start at low speed and gradually work your way up and blend until the soup is thick and creamy. I typically add 1 additional cup of broth, but if you prefer a slightly thinner soup, add more broth. Alternatively, use an immersion blender directly in the Instant Pot to blend the soup for a few minutes until the soup is pureed and thick, thinning with the additional broth as you blend.

  11. Transfer the puréed soup to bowls and top each bowl with the reserved corn kernels and other garnishes as desired.


3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer. vegan couscous and lentils. vegan instant pot couscous and lentils.

Vegan Instant Pot Pearl Couscous and Lentils

Pearl/Israeli couscous and French green lentils get cooked with fresh veggies, and once they’re cooled, they get paired with fresh dill and parsley and a tangy red wine vinaigrette. I like to let the couscous mixture come to room temperature before adding the “salad” components so it feels more like a salad, and not a hot grain lentil dish.

This is the perfect light and refreshing dish to bring to a picnic, potluck, or barbecue, but it’s also hearty enough to act as a main course and is great for meal prep. Plus, it’s an easy dump-and-go recipe that doesn’t sacrifice on flavor.

You can find this recipe on page 115 of my cookbook, The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook, as well as in more detail in this blog post.

Vegan, Nut-Free, Soy-Free 

Serves 4 as a main dish, 8 as a side dish

Ingredients 

Couscous and Lentils

  • 1 cup French green (Puy) lentils, soaked for 1-2 hours*

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 2 red, yellow, or orange bell peppers, diced

  • 2 carrots, diced

  • 6 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 cup pearl or Israeli couscous

  • 3 1/2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • Freshly cracked black pepper

  • 2 bay leaves

  • Handful of fresh thyme sprigs

To Finish

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 1 small bunch of fresh dill (about 1 cup), finely chopped

  • 1 cup fresh Italian-flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 15 pitted green olives, sliced

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered

  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper

Recipe Notes

* In the recipe in my cookbook, I mention you should soak the lentils for 8 hours before using them, but I’ve found that soaking for just 1-2 hours is sufficient. The soaking step is necessary to soften them up, as they get cooked for just 3 minutes in the Instant Pot, which is the ideal cook time for pearl couscous.

Directions

  1. Soak the lentils in water to cover for 1-2 hours. Drain the lentils.

  2. Place the soaked and drained lentils, onions, bell peppers, carrots, garlic, couscous, vegetable broth, salt, pepper to taste, bay leaves, and thyme sprigs in the Instant Pot and stir well to combine.

  3. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure and set the cook time to 3 minutes.

  4. Once the 3-minute timer has completed and beeps, allow a natural pressure release for 10 minutes and then switch the Pressure Release knob from Sealing to Venting to release any remaining steam.

  5. Open the pot and discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs.

  6. Transfer the couscous-lentil mixture to a large bowl and allow to come to room temperature.

  7. To the couscous-lentil mixture, add the extra-virgin olive oil, vinegar, dill, parsley, olives, tomatoes, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine and taste for seasonings, adding more salt and pepper as needed, or a splash more vinegar for acidity.


3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer. nectarine berry crisp. blueberry crisp. vegan blueberry crisp. vegan instant pot berry crisp.

Vegan Instant Pot Nectarine Blueberry Crisp 

A fruit crisp is a classic summer dessert, but turning on your oven for an hour in the midst of summer is less than ideal. No need to do that with this Instant Pot version!

The stone fruit and berries cook separately in the Instant Pot (a 1-minute cook time!) until jammy and syrupy, and get topped with a stovetop crisp topping that takes just 5-7 minutes to make. This vegan Instant Pot version is a deconstructed crisp but no less delicious than the classic.

To ensure your nectarines don’t totally disintegrate under the high pressure of the Instant Pot, here are a few tips: (1) choose nectarines that are slightly firmer than you would chose for snacking; (2) use a serrated knife for clean slices; (3) don’t slice them too thinly.

This recipe is adapted from the Peach Raspberry Crisp on page 307 of my cookbook, The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook , as well as more detail in this blog post. Which means you can customize it to use peaches instead of nectarines (or use a combination) and use your favorite berry (or a mixture). And, this should go without saying, but it’s even tastier when served with vegan vanilla ice cream.

Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free 

Serves 8 to 10

Ingredients 

Nectarine-Blueberry Filling

  • 8 firm-ripe medium nectarines

  • Cooking spray or neutral-flavored oil, for the pot

  • 1 pint blueberries

  • 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar

  • 1 tablespoon organic brown sugar or organic cane sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

  • 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)

  • Pinch of kosher salt or fine sea salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract (or pure vanilla extract)

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch or arrowroot powder

Crisp Topping

  • ⅓ cup refined coconut oil 

  • 1 cup rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)

  • 1/2 cup almond flour

  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

  • 1/2 cup packed organic brown sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½ cup almond meal or almond flour

For serving (optional)

  • Vegan vanilla ice cream

Directions

  1. Leave the nectarines unpeeled and use a serrated knife to slice them into 3/4-inch-thick wedges. You will end up with about 6 cups of sliced nectarines.

  2. Coat the inner pot of the Instant Pot with cooking spray or lightly grease with oil.

  3. Add the sliced nectarines and blueberries to the inner pot. Top with the cane sugar, brown sugar, a pinch of salt, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom (if using), almond extract (or vanilla extract), and lemon juice. Stir gently to coat the fruit. 

  4. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure and set the cook time to 1 minute.

  5. Meanwhile, prepare the Crisp Topping: In a large skillet, heat the coconut oil over medium heat. Once the oil is melted and hot, add the oats, almond flour, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Cook, tossing frequently to prevent burning, until toasted and lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Carefully transfer the crisp topping to a large piece of parchment paper and spread out to cool slightly.

  6. Once the 1-minute timer has completed and beeps, perform a quick pressure release by carefully switching the Pressure Release knob from Sealing to Venting.

  7. In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water until dissolved into a slurry. Open the pot and pour the slurry into the nectarine-blueberry filling. Select the Sauté setting and bring to a boil, stirring gently until the filling has thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.

  8. Transfer the nectarine-blueberry filling to a large serving bowl or individual dessert bowls and sprinkle generously with the Crisp Topping. Serve warm with vegan vanilla ice cream if desired.  

Did you make this recipe?

Tag @rainbowplantlife and hashtag it #rainbowplantlife

Leave a Comment & Rating

If you enjoyed this recipe, please consider giving it a star rating along with your comment! It helps others discover my blog and recipes, and your comments always make my day :) Thank you for your support!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

1 comment on 3 Vegan Instant Pot Recipes for Summer

  1. Koko

    I made the lentil salad – I halved the recipe because I have a 3 qt instant pot and am only cooking for myself. It still made a huge amount! It is so delicious and feels healthy and indulgent at the same time. I’ve made so many of your recipes since I discovered your blog a month or two after lockdown and everything tastes amazing. Thank you!

Development Alchemy + Aim