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Eating keto has never been easier, thanks to the Instant Pot®, an electric multicooker that can sauté, bake, slow cook, and pressure cook healthy, flavorful meals. Perfect for all models of the Instant Pot, we’re serving up 210 wholesome recipes that will have you eating in a fraction of the time.
Casey’s delicious meals contain no processed foods, are free from sugars, and omit inflammatory grains. You’ll feel great indulging in keto staples like Easy Healing Bone Broth and Butter Pecan Fat Bombs; comfort food favorites like Classic Lasagna, Chicken Pot Pie, and Basil-Lime Carnitas; and guilt-free desserts like Luscious Lemon Squares, Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites, and more.
Featuring guest recipes from some of the biggest names in the paleo and keto communities-like Danielle Walker, Dr. Kellyann Petrucci, and Robb Wolf-THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT® KETO COOKBOOK is your ultimate resource for eating clean and getting lean.
The keto diet and the Instant Pot have both exploded in popularity over the last few years. Many have found that cutting out sugar is a life-changing experience, and can lead to better health, sustained weight loss, increased mental clarity, and a longer lifespan. The Instant Pot, in a different way, has been just as revolutionary. By offering a faster, easier, and cleaner way to make healthy meals, the Instant Pot has sold more than five million units since 2014. It is truly a game-changing phenomenon.
In my daily life, I find myself more often making meals that are not quite as fancy as what you may find in a gourmet, five-star restaurant. While complex meals sound great, by the time Wednesday night rolls around, I’m one step away from ordering pizza, just because I am so crunched for time.
This is where the magic of the ketogenic diet and the Instant Pot come together. In no time at all, I can throw some vegetables and meat into the inner pot, set the timer, and keep on doing whatever else I need to do. Within 30 minutes, I have dinner! No fuss, no hassle, and barely any clean up. A truly perfect solution for my busy life, and one which also allows me to stay healthy.
I am far from alone in discovering both of these groundbreaking trends. The online Reddit community for keto now has more than 700,000 members. And the Instant Pot? Well, in just one day, on Amazon’s Prime Day 2018, the Instant Pot sold more than 300,000 units. While that statistic is incredible on its own, what’s more incredible is that there seems to be no sign of it slowing down. Buckle up, because it looks like the keto diet and the Instant Pot are both here to stay.
Inside this book, you will find 210 keto Instant Pot recipes, all designed to help you live your best life, lose weight, and feel absolutely amazing. There are recipes for lasagna, cookies, cakes, pies, muffins, quiche, lobster bisque, crème brûlée, mahi mahi, mac and cheese, pizza, baby back ribs—and so much more.
Each recipe will fit the macronutrient requirements of a ketogenic diet, and the nutritional information is listed for easy reference. I have designed every recipe to be as easy to follow and as quick to prepare as possible. As I’ve learned by directly helping individuals in the gym (and in the kitchen), ease of use is paramount. It is hard enough eating healthy; if you don’t have quick, delicious, easy recipes, it is almost impossible. Fortunately, every recipe in this cookbook can help you lose weight, build muscle, and stay away from junk food. Simply try one of the easy-to-make keto desserts if you feel a craving for something sweet coming on. Or make a whole chicken or baby back ribs for dinner—that way you will have leftovers for a few days more of healthy, low-carb eating.
As I have seen firsthand with my personal training clients, sugar is not only inflammatory, it causes you to gain weight. While some sugar is okay, anything more than small amounts can quickly lead to problems. By adopting a ketogenic approach, you will cut out sugar drastically, and watch as the pounds fall away. Even though I constantly get the question “What is the best thing to do in the gym to lose weight?,” the real answer is that it’s actually what you do in the kitchen that helps to move the needle.
I hope you enjoy reading this book as much as I enjoyed writing it. Here’s to a newer, healthier you—and an entirely new way of preparing and eating meals!
The keto diet has been rapidly increasing in popularity over the last few years. In fact, Cosmopolitan and Forbes have deemed it the most popular weight-loss trend. According to Google, currently more than one million people search for the term “keto diet” every month. This previously obscure dietary approach leaves out almost all carbohydrates and sugar and retrains your body and brain to run off dietary and stored fat, not carbs and sugar. Some scientific research (most notably from the New England Journal of Medicine and Harvard University) has even shown that a keto approach may be associated with health benefits like slower aging, sustained and better weight loss, a decreased risk of developing Alzheimer’s, and a longer lifespan. From a nutrition standpoint, a keto approach is particularly beneficial because it lowers your daily intake of sugar and trains your body to burn fat, rather than glucose.
A keto approach is also noteworthy for its improved hormonal response, compared to the Standard American Diet (SAD). One of the biggest culprits in this equation is insulin. Sugar intake (especially in excess) causes insulin to spike, then to fall rapidly. You likely know this phenomenon as a “sugar crash.” But insulin is a big problem when it comes to weight loss, and the more insulin we are releasing, the less fat we are burning. Therefore, to oversimplify just a bit, the more carbs and sugar you are consuming, the less likely your body is to burn off its stored fat. There are exceptions to this rule—ironman athletes, marathon runners, etc.—but they are exceedingly rare. For the large majority of us, too many carbs and too much sugar is a direct recipe for weight gain.
A keto approach fixes all of this, as instead of slamming down carb-heavy favorites, we instead take in large amounts of healthy fats. These fats let our bodies and brains run smoothly and efficiently via ketone bodies, instead of using glucose. Ketone bodies are produced by our liver when our carbohydrate intake drops low, and our body starts shifting to fat as its preferred fuel source. When our carbohydrate intake drops to less than 100 grams per day (and often less than 50, or even 20 grams), we enter a metabolic state called ketosis. This is a great place to be if your goal is to lose weight and body fat.
With a keto approach, protein intake is kept at moderate levels, as too much protein can actually kick us out of ketosis. Sometimes you can also pair a keto approach with intermittent fasting, which is another dietary approach that has been rapidly increasing in popularity in recent years. With intermittent fasting, by not eating for prolonged periods of time, we are actually increasing our insulin sensitivity.
Keto recipes are filled with flavor, which is a big relief, as when most of my clients first hear that they are going to be eliminating almost all carbs and sugar, they go into a mini panic. But inside this cookbook you will find delicious recipes for keto donuts, keto ice cream, keto mac and cheese—and even keto fudge. Just because you might be eliminating carbs, does not mean you will be eliminating flavor.
The first few days shifting from the Standard American Diet (which is extremely heavy on carbohydrates) to a very low-carb keto diet, may be fairly tough. The difficulty of this “keto flu” period is directly proportional to how many carbs you were taking in before you made the switch. The more carbs and sugar you were taking in, the more pronounced the keto flu will feel. But do not worry—this period does not last long.
Luckily, there are also a few ways to combat the keto flu. You may want to try a variety of things, like getting more sleep, exercising lightly, drinking plenty of water, making sure you are still getting enough carbs, ramping up your fat intake, being mindful of your electrolytes, and possibly even taking supplements (usually electrolyte or ketone supplements work best).
Once you shift into fat-burning ketosis, you will find that your body starts to burn fat more efficiently and is running on ketones. This happens once you stop taking in so much glucose (sugar). There are even some scholars and researchers, like Dr. Loren Cordain (New York Times bestselling author and founder of the paleo diet), who believe a keto diet more closely mimics the way our ancestors may have eaten. This is because it allows for long periods of survival between meals and allows the body and brain to thrive without large amounts of glucose (or any food at all, really).
It is important to note that the keto diet should be adopted and followed fairly precisely, and it is always a good idea to get your doctor’s input before drastically changing your dietary intake. It is crucial to note your macronutrient intake when adopting a keto approach. The macronutrients we will be concerned with are fat, protein, and carbohydrates.
Typically, a keto diet will allow for about 60–70% of dietary intake to come from fat, 20–30% to come from protein, and the remaining intake to come from carbohydrates. It is obviously almost impossible to maintain these exact percentages at every meal, but they are key numbers to keep in mind for the big picture. Though the exact grams of carbohydrate intake per day will vary per person, typically, ketosis is achieved at 20 to 100 grams of carbs, per day. However, typically, ketosis is maintained with lower carb intake, usually between 20 and 50 grams of net carbs, per day. This brings us to the important point of differentiating between carbs and net carbs. When you are pursuing a keto diet, it is important to count net carbs, not total carbs.
To get an accurate net carb count, simply subtract any fiber grams from your carb intake. Fiber does not raise your blood sugar or cause insulin to be released, so we do not need to worry about it for optimal ketosis. Vegetables are particularly high in fiber, so do not be too worried about eating lots of vegetables while maintaining a keto approach.
However, one important caveat—do not overconsume root vegetables. The most popular root veggies that are often accidentally overconsumed with a keto approach are yams, carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, spaghetti squash, and turnips. These starchier vegetables are typically higher in carbs, with less fiber, and sometimes even have a little sugar in them. Tread lightly with these.
Every recipe in this cookbook will provide you with a very small amount of net carbs and is extremely low (or completely devoid) of sugar, moderate in protein, and full of healthy fats. If you feel like an expert after reading this cookbook and want to make your own keto Instant Pot recipes, make sure you keep the ideal keto macronutrient ratios in mind. Mix and match from the following foods listed on here and here to create your own keto Instant Pot recipes.
INSTANT POT BASICS
The Instant Pot has become a bestseller in just a couple of years—and for good reason. It can make a cheesecake, make tough meats palatable in less than an hour, and cook a few days’ worth of food with minimal clean up. Once you try the Instant Pot a few times, you will definitely be hooked. The Instant Pot is also perfectly suited for the meat- and vegetable-centric keto diet.
One of the hidden bonuses of the Instant Pot is more flavorful cooking. That’s because pressure-cooking allows more of the herbs and spices to be absorbed into your food. Since a keto diet lacks large amounts of sugar, it is extremely important to keep things interesting by using a large variety of herbs and spices. An Instant Pot is also great for keto cooking because you can batch-prepare food for the week ahead, meaning you won’t resort to reaching for the sugary snacks.
One of my favorite features of the Instant Pot is the very simple cleanup. No one likes having to do a lot of dishes, and the Instant Pot keeps all the cleanup to just one pot. Even if you are making yogurt, a chocolate pie, or a pot roast, you still have almost nothing to clean up.
Which brings us to the next great aspect of the Instant Pot: it combines several different kitchen gadgets into just one device. It is a rice cooker, slow cooker, pressure cooker, steamer, and much more. You can cook an entire roast chicken in an Instant Pot—or make a chocolate cake. The versatility, ease of use, and speed of the Instant Pot are what has truly caught everyone’s attention.
However, to a newbie, the Instant Pot can seem intimidating and daunting. The front of the pot can at first look confusing—even though it really could not be simpler. While there are a wide variety of features and buttons, I have simplified it all for you. Almost every recipe in this book uses the Manual mode. On some Instant Pot models this is called Pressure Cook mode.
While not true of all, just about every recipe in this book is to be cooked at high pressure, which is the default setting once you press the Manual (or Pressure Cook) button. From here, you simply adjust the time, and you are on your way! It is also important to properly close the Instant Pot and make sure it is sealed.
When opening the Instant Pot after cooking is complete, sometimes you will want to let the pressure release naturally, and sometimes you will want to perform a “quick release.” But do not be intimidated. A quick release simply means that you carefully turn the pressure valve to Venting as soon as cooking is done, and this quickly releases the pressure that has built up during cooking.
INSTANT POT BUTTONS AND COOKING TERMS
Sauté: For this button, simply think of how your stove top cooks. This setting works on low, medium, or high heat, and is great for quickly warming, melting, searing, or browning your food. Many recipes begin by greasing the bottom of your Instant Pot with coconut oil (or other keto-friendly oil), then setting the Instant Pot to Sauté mode.
Manual/Pressure Cook: This is your go-to button. I have written this cookbook to be as easy to follow as possible, and this button allows you to set the Instant Pot in less than 15 seconds. Essentially, this mode defaults to cooking under high pressure, then allows you set the cooking time. While other buttons and modes can be useful, this is the most common way to cook with the Instant Pot.
Steam: I have not written many recipes in this cookbook to use the Steam function, but it can be useful. However, it should be clear that this is not really “steaming” food, per se—your food is still being pressure-cooked. The advantage to this mode is that the temperature of the pot rises very quickly (perfect for some vegetables and most fish). Note that you should always use a steamer basket or trivet when using this mode—otherwise you will burn your food.
Yogurt: This button stands out slightly, in that you can make yogurt (!) with the normal, default setting. However, since we are following a keto approach, most yogurts will be more like fermented cream, or Greek yogurt. Try making your own keto-friendly yogurt by using some heavy cream, with a tiny bit of coconut milk mixed in (bonus recipe!). In the More mode, this button also allows you to pasteurize milk.
Soup: Admittedly, I do not use this function very much. It can be used to keep some foods from separating and offers a very slow warm-up time. Some recipes could easily be made using this button, but I generally prefer Manual/Pressure Cook mode, as it cooks foods faster.
Keep Warm/Cancel: This button is pretty self-explanatory. When ending a program, the Cancel function is what to use, and the Keep Warm function comes on automatically after the cooking time is complete. This function allows your food to stay warm, even if you are not able to check on the Instant Pot right away. By default, the Keep Warm setting is always on (though it can be turned off, if desired).
Slow Cook: One of the features commonly spoken about when introducing the Instant Pot to someone is that it also works as a slow cooker. There are some slight differences in cooking temperatures when using an Instant Pot versus a traditional slow cooker, so make sure to pay attention to the following: Use the medium or high setting for actual slow cooking, and the low setting for keeping your food warm.
[+] and [-]: These buttons adjust your cooking time. Simple as that!
Quick Release: This is simply immediately switching the valve to Venting, after the cooking time is complete. This is useful for vegetables and some meats, but also produces a large blast of steam, which you should be very careful to avoid getting into contact with. Carefully release the valve and keep your face far away from the steam’s path.
Natural Release: A natural release means that you let the pressure naturally disperse from the Instant Pot once it is done cooking. This avoids the large release of steam that occurs when immediately releasing the pressure via the quick release technique.
INSTANT POT ACCESSORIES
The most affordable (and most Instant Pot–friendly) versions of these accessories are all categorized for you at InstantPotKetoCookbook.com. Note that there are even more ways to customize your Instant Pot experience, and many, many other tools out there. I have listed the ones I use most frequently.
Tongs: These are essential for removing anything from inside the Instant Pot that might be difficult to get a good grip on (I’m looking at you, mason jars!). They can also be great for mixing and moving around ingredients.
Flexible Turner: Ever have something get stuck to the pot while you are cooking? Now imagine that that something is stuck inside a deep pot that might be very warm. This is where a flexible turner comes in.
Glass Lids: These are great for Sauté or Slow Cook modes. They are also great for minimizing the hot steam coming up into your face while using either of these functions.
Steamer Basket: This is a vital tool for steaming vegetables, cooking eggs, or cooking really any food that you do not want to have resting in liquid. A true must-have for any Instant Pot owner.
Kitchen Thermometer: This is a very versatile tool that will get a lot more use than with just your Instant Pot. A kitchen thermometer is vital for checking the temperature of meat and poultry, but can also be used in making yogurt.
7-inch Dishes and Pans: There is a wide variety of sizes of pans and dishes. If you have an 8-quart Instant Pot, use 8-inch round pans and dishes. If you own a 6-quart Instant Pot, be sure to buy 7-inch round versions. A springform pan is great for cheesecake, a round cake pan is vital for other desserts, and a Pyrex dish will cover just about everything else!
Gravy/Fat Separator: This can be used to separate liquids, fats, and juices. Depending on how you like to cook, this can be a great tool for completely changing the taste of certain dishes. If you want to remove fat from broth, this is also a good go-to.
Silicone Pans: Great for muffins, egg cups, loaves, cakes, and other dishes, these can also be used for separating cooking ingredients before they are used. Getting some of these pans can eliminate the need to make slings out of aluminum foil (see here) as well (which means you are far less likely to drop your favorite foods!).
Trivet: That’s right—the simple stand that came with your Instant Pot. This has multiple uses, but an extra one allows you to do pot-in-pot (PIP) cooking. This is because it is usually taller than the one that comes with your Instant Pot, letting you save even more time by cooking two different foods at once.
Inner Pot: An extra inner pot is not entirely necessary, I will admit. But it definitely is nice to have one for meal prep, or when you are doing a lot of Instant Pot cooking in one day. Why? Because it saves you from having to immediately clean your original inner pot! Simple, but useful.
Immersion Blender: Blending right inside the Instant Pot is easy. Just grab an immersion blender and be careful if the inner pot is hot. Immersion blenders can also be used quickly and easily in bowls, or any other place where you’re preparing something in which you might want a slightly smoother texture (like a frosting).
Electric Mixer: An electric mixer is more of a general, everyday kitchen appliance—but it is very useful for obtaining the best results for cakes, pies, cookies, or any other dish that requires the batter to have a perfectly even texture. I like to save lots of time (and hand-cramp pain), and just use the electric mixer with a large bowl compatible with the mixer. I’m done in 30 to 40 seconds, and can even do other things while the mixer does the heavy lifting for me.
INSTANT POT QUICK REFERENCE CHART
Cooking Time (Minutes): 25 to 30
Cooking Time (Minutes): 15 to 20
Cooking Time (Minutes): 5 to 10
Cooking Time (Minutes): 2 to 5
Cooking Time (Minutes): 20 to 25
Cooking Time (Minutes): 15 to 25
Cooking Time (Minutes): 2 to 4
*These are general cooking times, intended only as a rough guide. Actual cooking times may sometimes range slightly outside of the minutes listed (especially if cooking foods in large quantities, or frozen foods).
KETO FOOD LIST
Dark Berries (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries)
Dark Leafy Greens
Nuts and Seeds
Dark Organic Chocolate
Sugar-Free Chocolate Chips
* This is a general list, not an exhaustive one.
** All food should be sourced as best as possible. Look for: organic, wild caught, grass fed, free range, sugar free/no sugar added, full fat.
KETO HERBS AND SPICES
Crushed Red Pepper
- Casey has outdone himself and put together a must-have for any keto- or paleo-minded cook. With quick and easy recipes that are packed with flavor, THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK takes away any excuses you might have to not eat healthy.—Cain Credicott, founder of Paleo Magazine
- I have been following a keto approach for years, and like most people, I also own an Instant Pot®. However, I never thought to really make my life easier by combining the two. From baby back ribs, to lasagna, and even cheesecake, this book will truly make a keto lifestyle attainable for anyone.—Dr. Anthony Gustin, cofounder of Perfect Keto
- [L]ife-changing for the busy keto dieter, Thaler's dishes save you time on grocery shopping and food prep, as many of his recipes call for few ingredients and make the most of bold spices and rich proteins . . . With a detailed introduction about Instant Pot techniques and keto basics, THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK is ideal for both novice and experienced low-carb cooks.—Brit+Co
Like many people, I am extremely busy--so I love the Instant Pot(R). What I didn't know was how easy it is to make keto-friendly meals with it. THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK has some of my absolute favorite low-carb recipes--from chocolate cake to mahi mahi, and even lobster bisque! It's truly a must-buy.
—Casey Armstrong, VP, Marketing of Big Commerce, former CEO of Paleohacks
THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK is a game-changer for anyone trying to eat a quality keto diet! The recipes are creative and simple, and packed with healthy fats. I highly recommend it to anyone cooking keto who is cutting out the carbage!
—Emily Schromm, MTV's The Real World: DC and personal trainer
As a busy single mom I am all about finding ways to make keto cooking as simple as possible. That's why I absolutely love Casey's recipes and cooking with tools like the Instant Pot(R)! It helps me create delicious flavors in a fraction of the time.
—Jen Fisch, author of The Easy 5-Ingredient Ketogenic Diet Cookbook
We are always on the lookout for great tools and appliances to make eating healthy quick and easy. The Instant Pot(r) is such an incredible tool for making nourishing meals in a cinch. One of our favorite things to cook up is bacon broth! Having access to easy keto recipes from THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK will be helpful for anyone looking to integrate more keto meals into their lifestyle.
—Marni Wasserman, author of Fermenting for Dummies and co-host of The Ultimate Health podcast
I'm a busy guy, and my ability to maintain a ketogenic lifestyle has improved so much by being able to use the Instant Pot(r). It allows me to still be able to enjoy cooking--but without spending hours in front of the stove. Now, with a new baby in the picture, my time is even more valuable, so THE ESSENTIAL INSTANT POT KETO COOKBOOK became an integral part of my life!
—Thomas DeLauer, personal trainer, Muscle & Fitness magazine
- On Sale
- Jan 8, 2019
- Page Count
- 272 pages
- Grand Central Publishing