I love polenta. Or more accurately, I loooooooove polenta. First of all, it’s delicious. Second of all, it’s so versatile! You can use it as a soft and creamy base for a saucy braised dish or you can let it solidify and then pan fry it or grill it. What I do not love, however, is making it on the stovetop. No matter how low I turn the heat, it always seems to spit back up at me and let’s not even mention the near-constant stirring. But good news – you can make polenta in your Instant Pot and it couldn’t be easier to do.
When I discovered this method of making polenta, it felt like a major epiphany even though I didn’t think of it myself. It makes polenta so easy. Really. This is a completely set it and forget it cooking method; you don’t have to stand over a hot stove stirring anything. You just whisk together polenta, water, and salt and set your pressure cooker to cook for fifteen minutes.
Once the cooking time is done, you’ll let the pressure release naturally for ten minutes and then use the quick release function. All that’s left to do is stir in some butter and parm and adjust the seasoning and you’re ready to serve. When you open the pot there will be liquid sitting on the top, but it stirs right in for perfectly smooth, creamy polenta.
Because of the liquid, it takes a bit of time for this to come up to pressure, but it’s still done in less time than it takes to make on the stovetop and you don’t have to stand around stirring it. It’s the only way I make polenta now!
Instant Pot Polenta
5m prep time
30m cook time
- 1 cup polenta
- 4 1/2 cups water
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 oz Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Combine water, polenta, and salt in the insert of your Instant Pot and whisk together. Close lid and set valve to 'sealing'.
- On Manual setting on High pressure, set to cook for 15 minutes. Once cook time is done, let pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then switch valve to 'venting'.
- Whisk polenta, then add butter, cheese, and season with salt and pepper and whisk again.
- Serve now or close lid and set to 'keep warm' until you're ready to use. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit.