I’m back with another Instant Pot recipe today, but don’t worry if you don’t have one! I’ve included instructions on how to make this in a slow cooker, and an outline for cooking it in the oven.
I’ve been doing lots of Instant Pot recipes lately and everyone is asking for more. So if you have any recipe requests, be sure and leave me a comment below.
Todays’ recipe is for a classic Italian dish made simpler for a weeknight dinner, or for easy entertaining. Traditionally the Italian Cacciatore is a braised dish, but it works well in the Instant Pot too. Cacciatore means to be prepared ‘hunter style’ when presumably you’d have a fresh chicken or rabbit to be working with.
It’s usually made with peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes along with a few different herbs. It’s been a favorite of ours for many years now, and so of course we’re loving having an easier to make version now!
The first time I made this, I sliced the mushrooms about 1/2″ thick. But the second time, I tried just quartering them which I thought had a better, more ‘meaty’ texture.
The Instant Pot tends to turn veggies to mush, so make sure you cut the veggies a little larger than you’d normally think – sizing is included below in the recipe as a guide.
After you have the ingredients prepped, brown the chicken thighs starting with the skin side down. I personally don’t like to use the sauté function of the Instant Pot and find myself sautéing in a cast iron skillet instead.
Then the sauce and veggies are placed over the top along with some sprigs of thyme. If you don’t have fresh herbs around, check out the notes section in the recipe for alternative suggestions.
Once it’s done cooking, you can serve it as you’d like!
But be sure and leave off the parmesan if you happen to be doing a Whole30. Although the cheese lover in me just couldn’t resist adding a touch of parmesan to this comforting bowl situation.
We had this on spaghetti squash a few times, but you can also try my ‘Cauliflower Polenta’ which was also fantastic. Both pasta and a plain parmesan risotto are great options as well if you eat grains.Print
A classic Italian comfort dish made simpler for everyday living!
4 chicken thighs, bone in and skin on, about 2 pounds
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, 10 oz, halved and then sliced 1/2″ thick
2 bell peppers, 1 each yellow and red looks nice, sliced 1″ thick
14 crimini mushrooms, 12 oz, washed and quartered or sliced 1/2″
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 – 14 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
4–5 sprigs fresh thyme, see notes
1 Teaspoon dried oregano, or 5–6 sprigs of fresh
1/2 Teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 Teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
To serve: spaghetti squash, ‘Cauliflower Polenta’, pasta, or risotto – the last 2 options along with the optional parmesan are not Whole30
Chopped fresh basil
Prep all the ingredients listed and choose a side dish to serve this with. If you go with spaghetti squash, get that roasting first or use a 2nd Instant Pot if you have one.
Using the sauté function or a cast iron skillet and sauté the chicken thighs skin side down in the olive oil. Brown both sides, then add the blended fire roasted tomatoes and scrape up all the brown bits from the bottom. Add the prepped veggies and spices along with the sea salt.
Then set the Instant Pot to pressure cook for 10 minutes. When the cooking time is done, carefully use the quick release function. When the Instant Pot is safe to open, remove the lid and pull out any sprigs of herbs if you’re using them. Turn the Instant Pot to sauté again, and thicken the sauce if desired by drizzling in 1-2 Teaspoons tapioca starch mixed with 2 Tablespoons of water.
Serve the Cacciatore immediately with your choice of sides along with a sprinkle of fresh basil.
To make this in a slow cooker, sauté the chicken thighs in a cast iron pan, then add everything to a slow cooker, and set at low heat for 6-8 hours, or high heat for 3-4 hours.
To make in the oven, sauté the chicken thighs in a large Dutch oven, then add the rest of the ingredients. Place a oven safe lid on the pan and cook in the oven at 350º for 45 minutes, then continue to bake another 15 minutes uncovered. This is how I used to make Cacciatore before the Instant Pot!
If you don’t have fresh herbs available, omit both the fresh thyme and oregano and add 1 Teaspoon dried Italian season with 1/4 Teaspoon dried oregano instead. Be sure to read the labels to make sure your spices are Whole30 compliant and without additives.
Keywords: Instant Pot, Whole30, Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Grain Free, Keto