Instant Pot Kale is the easiest side dish to ever come out of your pressure cooker! Add a splash of lemon, a drizzle of olive oil, and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and you will find yourself in kale eating heaven!
Wanna know what used to be my least favorite vegetable in the world? Kale.
Wanna know my least favorite vegetable since figuring out how to make kale in the Instant Pot? Beets – can't stand them and I've tried because they're just so darn pretty and look so yummy and then . . . dirt. All I taste is dirt.
Prior to today's recipe, I would complain that kale was just so grassy and off-tasting, and no matter how I prepared it, it just kind of made me gag.
Smoothies, salads, pasta dishes . . . all of them made worse by this offensive green vegetable.
Then I came upon this Everyday Kale Salad and for whatever reason, decided I was going to give it another try.
WHOA! It was so GOOD!!! I happily munched like a cow through a half-pound of kale and enjoyed every single bite.
My husband on the other hand, a fellow kale hater, looked at me as if I had betrayed our truce to hate kale for all eternity and quietly pushed his bowl of kale aside in stubborn disgust. Don't worry, there's a happy ending coming on this one.
I quickly discovered that I quite enjoyed the taste of kale with a hit of lemon and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. And like magic, once I enjoyed this dish several times, my palate changed and suddenly I became a happy Kale eating fool, who still feels a little cow-like when I do.
Except for kale in smoothies, ugh, that one's still a gagger.
WHY YOU WILL LOVE INSTANT POT KALE
- File this recipe under the list of ridiculously easy Instant Pot recipes. Prep is about 10 seconds if you buy the 1 pound bag of prewashed and chopped kale at the grocery store (which I highly recommend).
- Kale is outrageously nutrient-rich. Low in calories and packed with protein, fiber, and vitamins – this is definitely a veg you want in your diet.
- The pressure cooker alone seems to tame the flavor of kale to make it absolutely enjoyable. Add a splash of lemon juice and you will surely fall in love too!
HOW TO MAKE KALE IN THE INSTANT POT
- Fill your pot to the brim with washed, stemmed, and chopped kale
- Pressure cook for 3 minutes with a quick pressure release.
- Dress it with lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes and dive in!
SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW FOR DETAILED COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
TIPS FOR MAKING KALE IN THE PRESSURE COOKER
- As I mentioned above, stemmed, prewashed kale is typically pretty easy to find in the produce department in a one-pound bag. The convenience is amazing, but I will add this one caveat: there are a lot of the woody stems left in the mix, and even the pressure cooker can't quite make them edible. It's simple enough to pick out the large pieces, but prepping your own is also quite easy.
- To prep kale, curl your fingers around the leaves, and strip them away from the woody stem. It is a quick and easy task that is also quite fun. Give them a rough chop, a quick rinse, and you're in business.
- Add seasonings after the kale is cooked. Kale cooks down a TON in the pressure cooker so it's much easier to decide the salt needed after it's cooked.
- Fill the pressure cooker to the top. Don't be concerned if the kale goes above the fill line. It's not a liquid that is going to overflow. As long as it isn't packed in so tight that it's messing with the pressure valve, you are good to go. A one-pound bag fits great in an 8 quart. For a 6 quart I was filling it with just over a half-pound.
- Make a bunch, use all week. I like to eat it hot out of the pot, but the leftovers are great to mix into other dishes. Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl, Chicken Tikka Masala, and Egg Roll Bowl all benefit with a little extra green stirred in.
HOW TO STORE, REHEAT, AND FREEZE INSTANT POT KALE
- Store: Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Reheat: Warm in the microwave or on the stovetop in a skillet until hot.
- Freeze: Lay cooked kale out on a sheet pan lined with parchment or nonstick foil. Freeze. Once frozen, transfer to a freezer safe bag. Use it the same way you would use frozen spinach. Stir into soups, enchilada fillings, egg scrambles, etc. Or if you enjoy kale in your smoothies, this would be a perfect use as well.
What are your feelings about kale? Have you ever imagined yourself as someone to eat a gigantic pile of kale for dinner? Well, you're about to!
And to recap on my kale hating husband's status, last week he ate an entire plate of kale with a gigantic shake of lemon pepper and even took seconds.
So if you think you don't like kale, you haven't tried this kale. Give it a go and let me know what you think!
Enjoy your soon to be, super healthy, super strong, kale scarfing self!
MORE INSTANT POT SIMPLE VEGETABLE RECIPES
- Instant Pot Vegetable Medley
- Instant Pot Salt Potatoes
- Instant Pot Honey Glazed Carrots
- Instant Pot Corn on the Cob
- Instant Pot Baked Potato
- Instant Pot Sweet Potato
TOOL USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT KALEPrint
Instant Pot Kale with Lemon
Instant Pot Kale is easy to make and tastes amazing too!
- Prep Time: 1 minute
- Cook Time: 3 minutes
- Total Time: 8 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 1 pound kale, stemmed and roughly chopped
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Optional: red pepper flakes, lemon wedges, grated parmesan cheese
- Add 3/4 cup of water or chicken broth to the pressure cooker pot. Place chopped kale inside.
- Note: it will be very full but the kale will cook down quite a bit. Fill it with as much kale as will fit without hitting the lid. It’s okay if the kale is above the “fill line” since it is not a liquid and will cook down under pressure.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 3 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, use a quick release.
- Stir the kale. If there is a much liquid leftover you can drain it or press saute and let it evaporate.
- Add kosher salt and pepper to taste; serve hot.
- Note: A fresh squeeze of lemon juice and sprinkle of red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese does wonders for kale if you’re eating it on it’s own as a side dish.
- 1 pound of kale fits perfectly in an 8 quart pressure cooker. If using a 6 quart you may need to smash it down or only cook about ¾ of a pound at a time.
- For a time saver, look for prewashed and chopped kale in the produce department.
- If you’re not a huge fan of kale, be sure and dress it with lemon and parmesan. It makes a huge difference!
- This kale can be eaten as a side dish as is or be mixed into casseroles, enchiladas, eggs, etc.
- Be sure and stem your kale before cooking it. The pressure cooker softens the stems but they can still a bit stringy and hard to chew.
Keywords: Instant Pot Kale, Steamed Kale, Easy Side Dish