I use my Instant Pot for everything now, even when making Cabbage Soup! I love the one pot dinner element in many recipes, and how it saves time. Cabbage has been a staple in Russian cooking forever, so it only makes sense that I would adapt my recipes to be used in an Instant Pot.
Instant Pot Soup Broth
You might not know what and Instant Pot is, as it's not available everywhere in the world yet. It's an electric pressure cooker that makes the most amazing soup stocks and bone broths. Check out my easy Bone Broth recipe, which was the main reason I bought this electric pressure cooker. However, any pressure cooker will work for this recipe.
I explain more in my Bone Broth recipe about the benefits of this type of broth vs regular stock. You can use store bought beef stock when making this recipe, but after making homemade bone broth, you won't every buy broth again! Make the Bone Broth ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to use it.
Cabbage Soup Fads
Cabbage Soups are often used in fad diets. Back in the 1990's, there was a Cabbage Soup Diet that allowed you to eat as much Cabbage Soup that you liked. I remember my sister making that recipe, and we even tried it of a week. This isn't that recipe, but I should try making it again. Cabbage soups are full of nutrients, healthy and can aid in weight loss. This Instant Pot Cabbage Soup also isn't a fad, as pressure cookers have been around for years. Instant Pot has just improved the cooking experience by adding extra features.
Instant Pot Cabbage Soup - Russian Style
There are many different types of cabbage soup recipes out there, across many cultures. This recipe is based on the Russian Cabbage Soup called Shchi, which is a classic Russian recipe. If you click the link, it takes you through the classic stove top instructions, if you don't have an Instant Pot.
Shchi Soup should be a bit sour, so I add sauerkraut alongside the fresh cabbage. For instance, when you make Borscht, you add some red wine vinegar for the extra bit of sour to balance our the flavors. You don't need to do that in this recipe, as the sauerkraut adds the sour (thus the name).
Russian foods always have lots of fresh dill in our recipes, we can't get enough of dill! I add a hint of tomato and a red pepper just for a bit of color and flavor. Many Russian cabbage soup recipes don't, as the cabbage is the hero of the dish. If you add more tomato and red peppers and other vegetables, it changes the flavor and turns into a vegetable minestrone. The balance of the cabbage, potatoes and dill in this recipe makes it just right.
How To Make Instant Pot Cabbage Soup
The beauty of using an Instant Pot is that it's basically a one pot meal that's so easy to make. This recipe is make in 2 parts. Firstly, I make the Instant Pot Bone Broth using meaty bones. Strain and remove the meat from the bones to add back into the soup. You can use store bought broth too, but it's so easy to make homemade broth, you have to try it.
Now comes the easy part. Saute in the Instant Pot to cook the onion, garlic and carrot for about 5 minutes until soft and caramelized. Add shredded cabbage, sauerkraut, potatoes, chopped tomatoes, meat from soup bones, bay leaf and fill with broth up to the fill line. It says MAX ⅔, you can't miss it. Close the lid and set to SEAL and set the MANUAL setting to 4 minutes.
Instant Pot Timing
If you've never cooked with an Instant Pot before, 4 minutes seems like a very quick cook time. But it takes a bit longer than that! After locking the lid and setting the vent to SEALING, it takes about 25 minutes for the soup to heat up and pressure to build. When the pressure release valve pops up, then the 4 minutes starts. It also takes a few minutes to release the pressure after your time is complete.
The Instant Pot is pressurized with very hot liquid, so be careful not to burn yourself. I use a tea towel to cover the release valve to VENTING. Release carefully, hot steam and boiling liquids can spray and burn you too. It's only safe to open and unlock your Instant Pot after the valve drops. So a 4 minute cooking instruction actually takes about 30 minutes. The benefit of this is that you don't need to worry about the timing and mixing of the soup on the stove. The Instant Pot also allows you to sauté in the same pot, so there is less dishes to wash.
How To Serve Cabbage Soup
It's always served with homemade sour cream and dark rye bread. If you can find a Russian Rye called Borodinsky Bread. It's a very heavy loaf of bread made with rye flour, malt, coriander and caraway seeds. I like heavy bread. If you were to throw a loaf of Borodinsky bread, it should leave a mark on you. It's not the bleached tasteless white bread you buy in supermarkets these days. It's the perfect bread to go along side cabbage soup.
Other Instant Pot Recipes
So here is my easy Cabbage Soup recipe. As a huge fan of the Instant Pot, we are cooking with it more and more each day. You should see how tender pulled beef is after 1 hour in the instant pot. You won't ever go back to slow cooking again! Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
- 10 cups of beef stock
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 carrot grated
- ½ small cabbage shredded
- 1 cup sauerkraut
- 3 medium potatoes cubed
- 1 tomato diced
- 1 red pepper cubed in small pieces
- shredded meat from soup bones
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper
- ¼ cup chopped dill
- serve with sour cream and dark rye bread
- Add oil to the Instant Pot and turn onto Saute. Cook onion, garlic and carrot for about 5 minutes until soft and caramelized.
- Add shredded cabbage, sauerkraut, potatoes, chopped tomatoes, meat from soup bones, bay leaf. Fill with beef broth to the MAX ⅔ line. Close lid and set vent to SEALING. Set the instant pot to MANUAL function for 4 minutes.
- When complete, carefully slightly open the sealed valve to VENTING to slowly release pressure. I use a tea towel to cover the release so it doesn't spray everywhere, and won't burn me.
- When released, unlock the Instant Pot and season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in fresh dill. Serve with Rye Bread and sour cream.
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