25 Iconic American Dishes You Can Cook In The Instant Pot

Food is history passed down through generations. From popcorn to shrimp n’ grits to biscuits and gravy, we’ve collected iconic American dishes that you can create in your Instant Pot. 

20 Iconic American Dishes In The Instant Pot

True Americana is found in the kitchen. The soul of a culture and its history is found in the dishes that have been passed down through generations and popularized in mainstream restaurants. These dishes are comfort foods that you look forward to when you’ve been out of the country for an extended period of time. Smelling aromas that bring you to your childhood and thinking of home is what this is all about. 


Sometimes we think of dishes as a staple of tradition but we are lost in knowing the origins. When we know the origin of a dish or why it is so important then we can have an insight into its role in the lives of our ancestors. Unexpected surprises are the best. So while we have this list, try looking up your own favorite American dishes that we haven’t featured and tell us in the comments.

Here are the 20 American dishes that can be made in the Instant Pot

Meatloaf With Barbecue Bacon

instant pot meatloaf

Meatloaf has always been a sort of mix of leftovers. In the 1890s, industrial-scale meatpacking helped it become a staple. During the Depression, it enabled cooks to extend protein farther. By the 1950s, meatloaf became a respected dish in American diners. Get The Recipe Here.

Macaroni & Cheese

Instant Pot Macaroni & Cheese Recipe

The earliest known recorded mac’n’cheese recipe was scribbled down in 1769. Cheese is vulnerable to mold, rot, maggots, and excess salt. Processing cheese instead was a good way to get nutrients even without refrigeration. Driven by convenience packaging and industrialization, pasta and powdered cheese in a box became what many today have grown up eating. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Tuna Casserole

Instant Pot Tuna Casserole

The first time Tuna Casserole came on the scene was on Sunset Magazine, from a “Mrs. W. F. S.” residing in Kennewick, Washington, in 1930. The same year, it appeared on a menu suggested by The Modern Hospital magazine. It became a permanent fixture in mid-century home since it was economical and time-saving, with no real cooking skill required besides the ability to wield a can opener. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Clam Chowder


Do you prefer Manhattan or New England clam chowder? The New England style of chowder was introduced by French, Nova Scotian, or British settlers. It became a common dish by the 1700s. Recipe from 4 Son ‘R’ Us.

Instant Pot Stuffed Pepper Soup

Stuffed Pepper Soup

Classic Stuffed Peppers in cookbooks date back to the 1890s. Many cuisines around the world have a traditional stuffed pepper that’s been passed down for generations. Just like the classic but this recipe is a deconstructed soup or stew form. Made with basic ingredients like ground beef, tomatoes, rice, and bell peppers, of course, this delicious recipe is nutritious and budget friendly. Get The Recipe Here.

Smoky Barbecue Ribs (Keto, Low-Carb)


Fresh meat from livestock like pigs and cows wasn’t available year-round before the Civil War, because there was no way to keep it from spoiling. The rise of industrial meatpacking, mechanical refrigeration, and commercial barbecue stands ignited its popularity and changed the way Americans ate. Get The Recipe Here.

More history on Ribs here.


Creamy Green Bean Casserole

Instant Pot Green Bean Casserole

The Campbell’s Soup Company in Camden, New Jersey, had a kitchen dedicated to creating these recipe pamphlets. A home economist, Dorcas Reilly, worked at Campbell’s kitchen, and she successfully created the infamous green bean casserole recipe in 1955. It was the perfect recipe for the holidays since it had minimal ingredients that are on hand. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Biscuits and Gravy

Instant Pot Biscuits and Gravy

Flaky, buttery biscuits topped with a sausage-studded cream gravy makes a hardy breakfast that should get you ready to start the day. Some historians attribute its birthplace in Southern Appalachia in the late 1800s. It was the ideal cheap and calorie-dense fuel for sawmill workers lifting heavy logs all day long. Recipe from Life Family Fun.

Buffalo Chicken Wings (From Frozen)

Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Wings With Buffalo Sauce

Wings can be found at every game party and barbecue or late night outings. The Buffalo wing was invented in 1964, on Sept. 5, Buffalo, N.Y. at a family-owned establishment in Buffalo called the Anchor Bar by Teressa Bellissimo. By the mid-1980s Buffalo wings had spread across the country. Get The Recipe Here.


Instant Pot Lobster rolls

Tasty And Easy Instant Pot Lobster Rolls Recipe

Eating lobster rolls is truly a New England experience. In 1929, a restaurant named Perry’s in Milford, Connecticut served the first documented lobster roll. Later, in 1965, the lobster salad roll gained popularity in Long Island, New York, at a restaurant called The Lobster Rol. Recipe from Bake Me Some Sugar.

Caesar Pasta Salad With Eggs & Crispy Bacon


A french-inspired Italian chef who immigrated to America before moving to Mexico to escape prohibition is credited with creating the Caesar salad. Caesar’s daughter Rose Cardini claimed July 4th, 1924 was the exact day that her father created the Caesar Salad. Overrun by Americans and running short of supplies in the kitchen, her father threw together what was left: stalks of lettuce, olive oil, raw egg, croutons, parmesan cheese, and Worcestershire sauce. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Cincinnati Chili

This chili featured is Cincinnati style chili which is quite different from classic Texas-style.  It is unique to the Cincinnati area. In 1922, a Macedonian immigrant, Tom (Athanas) Kiradjieff settled in Cincinnati with his brother, John, and opened a hot dog stand with Greek food called the Empress. He created a chili made with Middle Eastern spices.  His “five-way” was a concoction of a mound of spaghetti topped with chili, then with chopped onion, then red kidney beans, then shredded yellow cheese, and served with oyster crackers and a side order of hot dogs topped with shredded cheese. Get The Recipe Here.

Check out these chili classics:

Classic Instant Pot Chili from Oh Sweet Basil

Instant Pot White Chicken Chili from Natasha’s Kitchen


Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

If you travel to Italy, you won’t likely find a dish called spaghetti and meatballs on the menu. For Italian-American cuisine, canned tomatoes were among the only items available at local grocers. Spaghetti also became greatly popular in the U.S. because it was one of the only Italian ingredients available. Recipe from I Wash You Dry.

Firecracker Pulled Pork

The American version of “barbecue” can be traced to a time period prior to The Civil War. Plantation owners in the South would have BBQ festivals but gave the slaves cheap, tough cuts to prepare. So they learned to slow cook these cuts over coals. They would “pull the pork” off of the coals when the meat was done and could easily be pulled away from the roast. Get The Recipe Here.

Easy CheesyShrimp & Grits


Grits’ origins come from the Native American Muskogee tribe’s preparation of Indian corn. Shrimp and grits was a breakfast dish found in the low country until 1982. Bill Neal became a chef at Crook’s Corner, a restaurant in Chapel Hill, North Carolina changed the status of shrimp and grits. The once humble dish gained popularity as a dinner entree. Recipe from Stay Snatched.

Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad Sandwich (With Instant Pot Cooked Chicken)

In 1863, at Town Meats in Wakefield, Rhode Island, owner, Liam Gray, mixed his leftover chicken with mayonnaise, tarragon, and grapes. A few decades later, the first chicken salad recipes appeared in Southern cookbooks in 1947 and began to spread across America. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Sloppy Joes

Paleo Sloppy Joes In Instant Pot

Who is this sloppy Joe? There are two theories. Theory one, in Havana, Cuba, José Abeal Otero named his bar “Sloppy Joe’s.” Then Ernest Hemingway convinced his friend Joew Russell to serve the sandwich at his bar in Key West, Florida. The second theory is that a cook named Joe in Sioux City came up with the idea of mixing tomato sauce with ground beef, thus creating the Sloppy Joe. Recipe from Instant Pot Eats.

Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Dip

Buffalo Chicken Dip (Instant Pot Recipe)

The actual name has nothing to do with buffalo or bison, but it does imply the restaurant’s location in Buffalo, New York; the credit goes to a small family-owned restaurant called Anchor Bar. This is where this tasty snack first arrived. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Popcorn


In 1948, Herbert Dick and Earle Smith discovered small heads of corn and individually popped kernels deep in a dry cave. The popularity grew at approximately the same time that movies became popular. The mobile popcorn vendors outside of theatres gave birth to popcorn being sold inside movie theatres. Recipe from Cooking With Curls.


Classic Apple Pie

Apple Pie

Apple pie was brought to the colonies by European settlers. It was easy and affordable. But, it didn’t become popular until the 20th century, when advertising, news, and two world wars transformed the dish into a nationalist symbol. By WWII it was a symbol of the warmth of home, and soldiers were proudly proclaiming that they were fighting for “mom and apple pie.” Recipe from Tidbits.

Summer Peach Cheesecake


The first “cheesecake” may have been created on the Greek island of Samos. In 1872, a New York dairy farmer accidentally discovered the creation of cream cheese while attempting to replicate the French cheese Neufchatel. Three years later, cream cheese was packaged in foil and distributed to local stores under the Philadelphia Cream Cheese brand. Get The Recipe Here.

Instant Pot Strawberry Vanilla Cheesecake

Instant Pot Vanilla Cheesecake With Strawberry Topping

This is a simple cheesecake with vanilla cream cheese filling and strawberry jam whipped cream topping and is beginner-friendly. Get The Recipe Here.

Try this classic Instant Pot New York Cheesecake from Simply Happy Foodie

Pumpkin Pie


An American Thanksgiving table must have pumpkin pie by today’s traditions. Those traditions date back to the early 18th-century. Amelia Simmons’ pioneering 1796 “American Cookery” contained pumpkin pie recipes similar to today’s custard version. In 1842 another abolitionist, Lydia Maria Child, wrote her famous poem about a New England Thanksgiving that began, “Over the river, and through the wood” and ended with a shout, “Hurra for the pumpkin pie!” Recipe from Pressure Cooking Today.

More history on Pumpkin Pie.

Key Lime Pie

Key Lime Pie

Key Lime Pie is synonymous with the Florida Keys, and especially in the city of Key West. Traditional key lime pie filling contains key lime juice, sweetened condensed milk, and egg yolks. The one thing that a true Floridian agrees on is that you should never add green food coloring.  The filling of the authentic key lime pie is a light yellow. Recipe from Living Sweet Moments.

More history on Key Lime Pie 

Instant Pot Blackberry Cobbler

blackberry cobbler

Cobblers may be called by various names such as tart, pie, torte, pandowdy, grunt, slump, buckles, crisp, croustade, bird’s nest pudding, or crow’s nest pudding. They are a deep-dish fruit dessert with a thick crust and a fruit filling. Originating in the British American colonies. They improvised when they didn’t find their favorite ingredients, using whatever was available. Recipe from Monday Is Meatloaf.



20 Iconic American Dishes In The Instant Pot
Instant Pot Recipes
By Instant Pot Eats

About us: We are a team of Instant Pot enthusiasts, who love good food and cooking. Our blog is dedicated to delicious Instant Pot recipes you can make using your trusted pressure cooker.
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