It takes A LOT for me to get a new small kitchen appliance. If it can only do one thing, why do I need it? An Instant Pot? What the heck is an Instant Pot? I was so mistaken about the Instant Pot. An Instant Pot is far from a one-trick kitchen appliance. I am sorry for all the mean things I said about you, Instant Pot. When I was craving a hot soup and fresh, Asian flavors, this Instant Pot Vietnamese Beef Pho blew me away.
An Instant Pot is just an electric pressure cooker. But this is not your mama’s pressure cooker. This is no clunky metal pot with an angry black jiggling regulator. Plug it in. Lock the top. Close the steam valve. Turn it on. You are minutes away from steamed beets, creamy risotto, tasty sweet potatoes, VIETNAMESE BEEF PHO. Woohoo.
I was inspired to make pho after eating lunch at one of my favorite local restaurants here in Charlotte – Luna’s Living Kitchen. Luna’s is mainly raw and vegan so, clearly, there was no beef in their pho, but wow did their broth and the amazing bowl of herbs and vegetables knock my socks off. I knew I needed to try to make this dish at home.
For this pho, my initial grand plan for making the pho broth involved beef bones. Alas, I was all out of beef bones. I did, however, have some frozen beef bone broth so I added that to 5 cups of water for my liquid. So much flavor! I am restocked with beef bones so I will keep you posted when I make this with bones!
Good pho has two main components – the cooked beefy broth and the fresh, crisp veggies. My kids loved the DIY component of pho. I laid out an assortment of herbs and vegetables and let the kids pick what they wanted to put into their bowls before we pour the hot pho over the cooked rice noodles and fresh vegetables and herbs.
If you have an Instant Pot nearby, make this pho.
If you want to see my real-life messy kitchen… here it is!! Pantry door open, homework on the counter, milk cups out but no milk poured. Real life. 😉
Instant Pot Vietnamese Beef Pho
- 1 large onion
- 5 to 6 cloves garlic
- 1 small bunch carrots, chopped
- 1 apple, peeled and chopped
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 T fennel seeds
- 4 to 5 cloves
- 1 inch ginger, sliced
- 1 t black peppercorns
- 1 t salt
- 1 t fish sauce
- 1 lb sirloin tips
- 3 cups beef bone broth
- 5 cups water
- rice noodles, prepared
- sliced carrots
- sliced peppers
- bean curds
- jalapenos, sliced
- Add onions, carrots, garlic, cinnamon stick, fennel, cloves, peppercorns, and salt. Saute in a little bit of oil for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add sirloin tips, bone broth, and water in the instant pot.
- Close the steam valve. Set the instant pot to manual for 25 minutes.
- While the pho is cooking, prepare the rice noodles and the other veggies and herbs for the bowls. Add some prepared rice noodles to each bowl.
- When the Instant Pot finishes cooking, let the steam naturally release for about 15 to 20 minutes if you have time.
- Strain the pho broth over a large colander. Take out the pieces of beef and add them to the bowls with the prepared rice noodles. Discard the mushy onions and carrots. Add fish sauce and additional salt as needed.
- Let your guests select the herbs and vegetables they would like in their bowls. Pour the pho broth over the rice noodles and veggies. Top with chili garlic sauce if you desire additional spiciness!