Road Map: Pot Pie
Here’s one recipe with dozens of ways to make pot pie using frozen meat and vegetables in the cooker. Admittedly, the process is a tad complicated. First, you steam the frozen meat until thawed and partially ready, then you add frozen vegetables and heat them to simmering before thickening the sauce. Finally, you make a drop-biscuit dough and use the pot’s SLOW COOK function to create the topping. See? It’s all a fair amount of work. But worth it, for sure. The drop biscuits can be sprinkled with cheese, but they should be sprinkled with paprika no matter what. The little dumplings won’t brown in the pot and the paprika gives them a more appealing appearance.
Servings Prep Time
4people 5minutes
Cook Time
50minutes
Servings Prep Time
4people 5minutes
Cook Time
50minutes
Ingredients
For the Stew
  • 2cups broth of any sort
  • 1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1lb frozen ground meatChoose from beef, buffalo, venison, pork, turkey, chicken, or even sausage meat—or a combo of any two you prefer.
  • 2tsp dried seasoning blendChoose either a prepared seasoning such as Italian or Tex-Mex or a blend you create (rosemary, oregano, thyme, parsley, and basil are the norms, but enhance them with a little ground allspice or grated nutmeg).
  • 1/2tsp table saltoptional (check to see if the seasoning blend includes salt)
  • 1/2tsp ground black pepper
  • 1lb frozen unseasoned mixed vegetables(4-5 cups ) Choose from any unseasoned blend, so long as you omit any flavoring packets. Or use a combination of frozen corn kernels, bell pepper strips, chopped onion, and/or sliced carrots.
  • 1/2cup heavy or light creambut not “fat-­free” cream
  • 2 1/2tbsp all-purpose flour
For the Biscuit Topping
  • 1 1/4cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2tsp baking powder
  • 1/2tsp table salt
  • 6tbsp whole or low-­fat milk
  • 1tbsp buttermelted and cooled; or 1 tbsp oil of any sort you prefer
  • 1 large egg
  • 4oz shredded semi-­firm cheese(1 cup) such as Cheddar, Swiss, or even a prepared blend, optional.
  • 1/2tsp mild paprika
Instructions
  1. To make the stew, pour the broth and Worcestershire sauce into an Instant Pot. Set the pot’s rack (with the handles up) or a large, open vegetable steamer inside the pot. Set the ground meat on the rack or in the steamer. Sprinkle the seasoning blend, salt (if using), and pepper over the meat. Lock the lid onto the pot.
  2. Option 1 Max Pressure Cooker
    Press Pressure cook on Max Pressure for 18 minutes with the Keep Warm setting off and the valve closed.

    Option 2 All Pressure Cookers
    Press Meat/Stew or Pressure cook or Manual on High pressure for 20 minutes with the Keep Warm setting off and the valve closed.
  3. Use the quick-­release method to bring the pot’s pressure back to normal. Unlatch the lid and open the cooker. Use silicone cooking mitts or thick hot pads to remove the rack or steamer, letting the meat fall down into the liquid below. Use the edge of a large, metal spoon and a meat fork to break the meat up into little chunks, about the size of very small meatballs. Stir in the frozen vegetables.
  4. Press the SAUTÉ button. Set it for HIGH, MORE or CUSTOM 400°F. Set the time for 5 Minutes and if necessary press START
  5. Whisk the cream and flour in a small bowl until smooth. Once the liquid is simmering in the pot, add this cream mixture and whisk until bubbling. Turn off the SAUTÉ function.
  6. To make the biscuit topping, stir the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl until uniform. Add the milk, melted butter or oil, and the egg. Continue stirring until the mixture has no dry ingredients in the bottom of the bowl.
  7. Drop the mixture by eight blobs on top of the hot stew. Sprinkle the cheese (if using) over each of the blobs, then sprinkle each with a little paprika. Latch the lid onto the pot but do not engage the pressure valve.
  8. Set the Instant Pot for SLOW COOK, set the level for HIGH and the valve must be OPEN. Set the timer for 30 minutes with the KEEP WARM setting off, and if necessary press the START button.
  9. When the machine has finished cooking, turn it off and open the lid. Cool for a few minutes, then use a large cooking spoon to scoop the biscuits and stew into serving bowls.
Recipe Notes

Beyond
• For a simpler recipe, there’s no need to make your own drop biscuits. Instead, set eight of the ten or so biscuits from a 10-ounce can right on top of the stew, top them with cheese (if you want) and paprika, then cook with the SLOW COOK function as directed.
• If you want to make your own dried seasoning blend, try 1/2 teaspoon dried sage, 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1/2 teaspoon onion powder. Or experiment with a blend of all sorts of dried herbs and even spices (thyme, parsley, and cinnamon make a good grouping). Use only dried herbs, not fresh. The fresh don’t add quite the punch to this long, involved cooking process.