This Instant Pot borscht recipe is such a lovely, hearty beet soup and it’s quick and easy when made with the pressure cooker. It’s delicious, full of nutrients. vegan-friendly, and gluten-free.
Having grown up in Ukraine, this pressure cooker borscht recipe is very close to my heart. We use to eat borscht almost every week, and I’ve tried many variations over the years: with and without beef, with and without beans, vegetarian only, pureed and with diced vegetables, and the list goes on.
Almost every country in East Europe has its own version of this delicious beetroot-based soup. Today, I am sharing MY borscht recipe using the Instant Pot – it’s quick, easy and full of nutrients.
HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT BORSCHT
The borscht recipe is super easy but it does take a little bit of prep work. It is full of veggies and they all need to be diced and shredded. The essential borscht vegetables are beets and cabbage, then you will usually also see diced potatoes and carrots, and some variation will add peppers. Of course, you will also need onion and garlic as they are staples in Slavic cuisines.
This recipe is made without meat but I did use a combination of beef and vegetable stock cubes. You can use all vegetable stock to make this completely plant-based. The broth is also flavored with tomatoes or tomato paste and a little acidity from vinegar or lemon juice. I am also adding mushrooms, which will give a lot of depth and umami flavor to this borscht.
Once everything is diced and shredded, the process is very simple.
Step 1. Saute the veggies in some olive oil.
Step 2. Pressure cook on HIGH for 10 minutes with 5-minute natural pressure release.
Step 3. Finish the soup with fresh herbs (usually dill or parsley) and sour cream.
Traditionally, a dollop of sour cream or yoghurt is added to a bowl of borscht (trust me, it’s GOOD!) but for a vegan and paleo-friendly version, you can easily go without or add a little plant-based yoghurt or coconut cream.
For extra protein: you can cook the soup with diced meat of choice and if you’re plant-based, throw in a can of beans (which is very common in Ukrainian borscht soups). A slice of toasted rye bread or sourdough and the sour cream will also add some protein to this meal. Adding spinach or kale and beans will also provide extra iron for those on a plant-based diet.
Fresh dill or parsley are the preferred herbs in Borscht.
MORE INSTANT POT RECIPES
- Find all our delicious Instant Pot soups here
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- Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana
- Instant Pot Sweet Potato, Corn & Chipotle Soup
- Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup
Instant Pot Borscht (Beet Soup)
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 30 mins
- Yield: 4 1x
- Category: Soup
- Method: Instant Pot
- Cuisine: Ukrainian
This Instant Pot borscht is such a lovely, hearty beet soup and it’s quick and easy when made with the pressure cooker. It’s delicious, full of nutrients. vegan-friendly, and gluten-free.
- 1 medium white onion, chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 large white potatoes, peeled and diced into small cubes (about 1lb / 450 g)
- 1 large carrot, grated (about 4.5 oz/ 125 g)
- 2 medium beets or 3 small ones, grated (7–8 oz / 200–250 g)
- 1/4 medium white cabbage, thinly sliced (12 oz / 350 g)
- 4 medium cloves of garlic, diced
- 10–15 g / 1 oz dried porcini mushrooms
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 cube beef stock (or replace with another vegetable cube for vegan version)
- 1 cube vegetable stock (I like this organic brand)
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1.25 Litres filtered water (5 x 250 ml cups)
- Fresh parsley and sour cream/yoghurt to serve
- Turn the Instant Pot on and press the Sauté function key (it should say High, 30 mins).
- Add the onions and olive oil and sauté for 2 minutes, until softened. Add potatoes, carrots and beets, and stir through, then add the cabbage, garlic and the rest of the ingredients. Stir through and press Keep Warm/Cancel button.
- Place and lock the lid, make sure the steam releasing handle is pointing to Sealing. Press Manual (High Pressure) and set to 10 minutes. After 3 beeps the pressure cooker will start going. Once the time is up, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then use the quick release to let off the rest of the steam.
- Serve the soup with chopped fresh parsley and a dollop of sour cream or full-fat Greek yoghurt.
I suggest using kitchen gloves when grating the beets or do it near the sink so you can quickly rinse your hands after handling the stain-prone beetroot.
Dried porcini mushrooms add a lovely umami flavour. You can get them at most deli shops and online. Regular mushrooms or dried shiitake mushrooms can be used instead.
This beet soup keeps well in the refrigerator – 3-4 days – and it’s delicious cold or hot. You can add pieces of some cooked beans or beef/chicken for extra protein.
- Serving Size: 2 cups
- Calories: 279
- Sugar: 12.4 g
- Sodium: 1235 mg
- Fat: 5.7 g
- Saturated Fat: 1.7 g
- Carbohydrates: 53.4 g
- Fiber: 9.7 g
- Protein: 7.3 g
- Cholesterol: 4.2 mg
Very good borscht, cooks quickly and very tasty. The only point I would make is that prep time is definitely not 15 minutes. I had to chop and shred the veggies by hand and use a grater so unless you have a food processor be prepared for the prep time to be closer to an hour.
Can this be frozen and still be good once de-frosted?
Yes, this soup can be frosted. The texture of some of the vegetables might be a little softer but the flavor will still be just as good 🙂
Good recipe! Very comforting and nutritious. Can this be doubled in a 6 qt?
I made this recipe using mostly home-canned locally grown ingredients (beets, potatoes, chicken broth, white beans) and home-dehydrated ingredients (carrots, puffball, kale, parsley) and fresh home-grown garlic. Italian tomato paste was the only ingredient besides salt, pepper and apple cider vinegar that came from a store. Delicious.
Home-grown is always the best!
This was really, really delicious and tasted exactly like a borscht that I had in a restaurant. Great recipe and so simple to make. I left out the garlic due to allergies, and added leeks and half an onion, plus a bit of dill.
Thanks!!! Glad you liked it. Great call for replacing garlic with leeks as they do have a little garlicky taste. Dill is wonderful in borscht!
Way too much vinegar, the taste drowns out everything else. Would be better with just 1tbsp
We haven’t had any similar feedback. I am wondering if you use white vinegar or apple cider? I know vinegar types can be more sour/acidic than others, so it could be that you may need more. Might also have been slightly different measurements of other things.
Thanks for this recipe!
I use 1 – 2 tbls of lemon juice instead of apple cider vinegar.
Made this soup yesterday. It is Wonderful!!
I just made this and served with a dallop of sour cream, fresh dill, and crusty rolls. My Husband said it was damn delicious and reminded him of his Baba’s borscht. Thx for a keeper recipe.
Awww, thank you. Isn’t it wonderful when food brings back memories 🙂
Can this recipe be used for a 3 qtr Instant Pot?
Yes, you might need to reduce the ingredients by maybe a third but the timings should all be the same.
I lived in Russia in the 1990s and had been searching for a quick way to make the delicious vegetarian cold borscht we ate all summer long. This brought me back a few decades. The recipe was really easy (once I finished all the tedious chopping, which is just par for the course for soup anyway), and so addictively healthy that I couldn’t stop going back for more. I substituted all of the water and bouillon with vegetable broth I had made from kitchen scraps in the Instant Pot the day before, and I omitted the mushrooms simply because I didn’t have any. We served this with fresh smetana and chopped dill, along with a few sliced hard-boiled eggs. Oh, the memories! Also, to address a prior comment, my soup was also somewhat orange in color (despite my having used dark red beets) until I chilled it overnight. It was a very dark ruby color when I served it for lunch the following day.
I forgot to rate it with my reply, and give it 5 stars! I would give it 10 if possible: 5 for the great, authentic flavor, and 5 for the wonderful memories it evoked!
I am Ukrainian, and grew up with my grandmother and mother cooking all Ukrainian dishes. This recipe is wonderful, and once I added a bit of cream, I could close my eyes and I was in my childhood home, eating my grandmother’s borscht once again! Thank you for the fabulous borscht and the lovely memories. My Italian husband always loved this soup, and is thrilled I found your cite and the recipe! I make it once every week now!
Thank you, Sandra, for such a beautiful comment. I too think of my Ukrainian nanna when I make this soup. Glad you enjoyed it!
I hadn’t had borscht in many years so thought I would try it out. So delicious! I am planning on making it again. As a vegetarian it was perfect without meat . Thank you!
Thank you 🙂
I love borscht! Whenever I am in Ukraine I have it at nearly every meal! This is the best Instant Pot recipe for borscht I’ve been able to find. Easy to do in one pot and very authentic tasting! Thanks for sharing!
I’d like to try this recipe. Can you describe how to prepare the beets for cooking? The rest sounds great— but I have a bad history when working with beets. Do you peel and then grate- sounds like beet juice will get all over.
Yes, just peel and grate. You can wear kitchen gloves to avoid staining and I often do it into a bowl in a kitchen sink to avoid any juice splashes.
Looking forward to making this especially because I have everything in the house. The only issue is I have a 1 lb container of dried mushrooms (porcino and others). Can you give me a ballpark on how many mushrooms 5 grams is? Something like, “about 3 – 3″ dried mushrooms. ” Don’t own a scale so would really help. Thanks!
Hi Valerie. 3-4 3″ dried mushrooms should suit this recipe well.
Great recipe!! I added 2 stalks of celery, 1/2 tsp caraway seeds, 3 small bay leaves, and 1/4 cup tomato paste. I left out the porcini mushrooms to keep the cost down. At the end, I squeezed in the juice of one lemon. It was the best borscht I’ve ever had!! Thank you.
Sounds great! Ive been on instant pot beet thing for a couple of days now, I’ve never made home made before, excellent! So now I’ll try my hand at this recipe. Any ideas for adding meat? Problem is I’m staying away from red meat, any suggestions? How much? etc. And you said beans?? Suggestions there too please, how much etc.
Hi Rob! If you’re avoiding meat, you can add beans or lentils to this. Unfortunately, the cook time is rather short with this recipe so I would cook any type of protein you use separately as most legumes or lentils will take longer, poultry requires around 20 minutes to cook (and of course needs to be thoroughly cooked), and tougher cuts will also take longer.
My wife and I were very impressed. Had never even heard of beet soup before. This is completely worth trying.
Really great recipe, I made it as written and it’s a definite keeper. Next time I’ll try it with lemon juice instead of apple cider vinegar even tho it’s kinda perfect the way it is.
Thanks Dianna 🙂 Lemon juice would also work well.
I followed the directions exactly, but for some reason it wasn’t as a deep red as your in color, it was more of a very light red-orangey. Do you know why this can happen?
Hi Tatyana. I don’t know exactly why this happened, but my best guess is that it’s due to the type of beets you used. In-season, fresh farmer’s markets beets for example will be a very deep red and are often very juicy! Some other beet varieties like golden beets or striped beets will be a paler shade. Did you enjoy the taste? The colour is bound to vary, but the end result in flavour/texture is what really matters.
Add vinegar + 1 tbl spoon of lemon juice before you put in the beets, it will help to keep the color.
Thanks, and great tip!
This is the best recipe I have ever tried. Even my 12 year old ate it without a fuss.
Such great feedback Urszula!! So glad you and your 12 y/o are enjoying this healthy dish.
I doubled the recipe and it fit perfectly in my 8qt. Instant pot. I had chicken bone broth on hand, so I used that in place of most of the water and boullion (when I ran out I used water.) Otherwise, I followed the recipe exactly, including the mushrooms. It was tasty, and cooked perfectly without adjusting the time. It has a mild but pleasant flavor, and I like it even though I’m not a beet fan. Thank you!
Fantastic! Thank you for sharing how you tweaked the recipe – hopefully this comment can help others who want to double it!