Question: What do you do when it’s an hour before dinner, you have nothing planned, you haven’t gone grocery shopping yet, and the baby is about to wake up any minute (which will inevitably coincide with the 4 year old’s meltdown over the lack of cookies or something equally important)?
Answer: Do not, I repeat…do not…resort to take out! Instead, leave dinner to your trusty Instant Pot and some pantry staples to create the world’s fastest lasagna soup (Instant Pot Lasagna Soup)!
Let’s back up here a moment…You might be asking me what this Instant Pot is. I could just explain that it’s an electric pressure cooker, but I understand that when you see those words (pressure cooker) you’ll probably start Googling the number to the local Chinese restaurant, so stick with me for a moment. If you are like what I was like, you might find the idea of a pressure cooker daunting. The sort of activity that doesn’t really belong in a kitchen, but might be included in some sort of daredevilesque stunt. Truth be told, for the past 6 years I have actually been the fearful owner of not just one, but two stovetop pressure cookers. I did do a water test in on,e but never actually used either of them for any sort of food.
But the Instant Pot assuages the fear of the pressure cooker and completely takes the guesswork out of pressure cooking.
Pressure cookers are wonderful tools that cook food well in a minimal amount of time with maximum flavor. The Instant Pot is a dream come true for anyone who is short on time, but wants great quality food. The convenience of a slow cooker with multiple functions including pressure cooking, slow cooking, steaming, sautéing, and (in some models) yogurt making, the Instant Pot really does make it possible to have a full meal in one pot.
And really, what food could use a little convenience injected into it more than lasagna? I love lasagna but it’s a big process. Lasagna is definitely not something I’m throwing together last minute and it’s not something I’m even making on a weekly basis! However, THIS yummy and family friendly instant pot lasagna soup gives you all the great flavor of lasagna with no fuss and minimal clean up. It was originally made with whatever staples I had in my fridge (and freezer and pantry) and requires very little hands on time. Chop, dump, sauté, set, walk away…Amen!
- 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil (cold-pressed, unrefined, organic virgin olive oil)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- ½ green pepper, chopped
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 1 small summer squash or 1 medium zucchini, chopped
- 2 cups veggie ground round (or ground meat)
- 1 large can diced tomatoes -1/2 of the can blended, the other ½ left as is (organic tomatoes with no preservatives in a glass jar...perfect!)
- 4 cups vegetable stock (homemade, or organic, no preservatives vegetable stock)
- 2 cups water
- ½ - ¾ box of lasagna noodles, depending on how brothy you like your soup (organic, clean-eating lasagna noodles)
- ½ tsp onion powder (organic, non-irradiated, no preservatives onion powder)
- 1 tsp black pepper (organic, non-irradiated, fair trade black pepper)
- 1 tsp oregano (organic, non-irradiated oregano leaf)
- Sea salt, to taste (USA harvested sea salt)
- Optional: pepperoncini &/or chili flakes
- Turn on your Instant Pot and set to sauté. Place oil, onions, green pepper, and carrots in the Instant Pot. Allow to sauté 5-8 minutes, until the onions are translucent and just beginning to get golden brown. While this is sautéing, start breaking up your lasagna noodles into smaller pieces for use later.
- Add chopped summer squash and veggie ground round and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add spices and stir.
- Add all diced tomatoes, broth, water, and lasagna noodles; turn the Instant Pot to manual (by pressing Cancel > Manual) and adjust the time to 4 minutes.
- At the end of the time, allow to depressurize naturally or do quick release after 5 minutes.
- Optional: Serve with shredded cheese and/or sour cream on top.