Instant Pot Cream Of Potato Soup Recipe

Have you ever used your Instant Pot for a fairly involved recipe, only to be left wondering what the hype was for? Maybe you retired the clunky appliance to the back of your cabinets — or worse, the basement. If that's the case, dust it off and give it one more try. This recipe highlights what makes Instant Pot so great.

Potato soup isn't hard to cook by any means, but softening potatoes in boiling water can take some time. Getting them soft enough to mash takes even longer, but that's just what Instant Pot is made for. In four short minutes, the potatoes are as tender as if you'd been cooking them for an hour. The leeks infuse the broth with a delicate flavor, the potato flakes bulk it up, and the sour cream adds a pleasant tang. Best of all, it comes together in less than 20 minutes. In fact, the soup only cooks for about four minutes.

This recipe developed by Michelle McGlinn is perfect for using up potatoes, leeks, onions, or any sort of aromatics you have lying around in the winter. It's rich and cozy, perfect for dipping warm bread into or serving in a bread bowl, and can be made in a flash any night of the week.

The ingredients needed for Instant Pot cream of potato soup

To build flavor, you'll need olive oil, celery, garlic, and leek. If you can't find leeks, just use yellow onions or shallots instead. Remember to wash the thoroughly since dirt hides between the leaves. Next, you'll need about 3–4 cups of diced russet (also called Idaho) potatoes, which will be about three medium-sized russets. We don't recommend using red or gold potatoes for this soup, because they won't get quite as creamy, but any potato will work in a pinch.

You'll also need vegetable stock or broth, salt, pepper, bay leaves, and dried thyme. 

To make the soup thick and creamy, you'll need sour cream, heavy whipping cream, and instant potato flakes. The instant potato flakes are a secret weapon for creamy soups: the flakes thicken the soup into a luscious, rich texture with extra-buttery flavor.

Sauté the aromatics

Tempting as it may be to skip this step, an important way to develop flavor in soups is by sautéeing the aromatics first, even in the Instant Pot. Add a little oil to the Instant Pot and turn it to the sauté function. You'll feel the inner basin get hot and start to sizzle. Drop in the white part of the leeks, garlic, and celery and sweat the veggies until softened and fragrant. Don't worry, this takes only a couple of minutes.

Pressure cook the potatoes

Your Instant Pot may require you to hit "cancel" to stop the sauté mode. If so, cancel it then add the potatoes, stock, seasonings, and whole leek leaves. Secure the lid and ensure the knob is set to "sealing." Hit the button used for custom pressure cooking; on a standard Instant Pot, this will say "manual." Set the time for four minutes, then wait until you hear a click and several beeps. This indicates that the lid is locked and the pot is building pressure. Once the pressure builds, about 5–10 minutes, the timer will start, and the soup will start to cook.

Add the cream and potato flakes

When the soup is done, the Instant Pot will beep several times again. Carefully turn the top knob to "venting" to release the steam. When you hear a click, take the lid off and remove the leeks and bay leaves. Use a potato masher to mash the potatoes until very smooth, then pour in the instant potato flakes and stir well until thickened. If it seems too thick at this point, don't worry — the heavy cream will thin it back out.

With the pot still warm, pour in the sour cream and whipping cream and stir well. If the soup is still too thick for your preference, stir in another splash of whipping cream until you've reached your desired consistency.

Serving cream of potato soup

When the soup's consistency is how you like it, taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Once seasoned, divide into bowls and serve with scallions, red pepper flakes, and crusty bread. This creamy, super-rich soup works especially well for bread bowls and pairs well with light dishes like Caesar salad, BLTs, or grain bowls. It saves well, too, and can be microwaved gently until warmed through. 

If the soup thickens further, just add a little broth or cream to loosen the texture again. And if you want a little protein for lunch? Add bacon crumbles, ground beef, or shredded cheese on top.

Instant Pot Cream Of Potato Soup Recipe
5 from 29 ratings
Making potato soup isn't difficult, but it does take a lot of time. Thankfully, this recipe utilizes the Instant Pot to cut down on the time commitment.
Prep Time
Cook Time
spoon lifting soup from bowl
Total time: 28 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 leek, whites finely chopped and green leaves left whole
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3 Idaho potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon salt, or to taste
  • ½ tablespoon pepper, or to taste
  • ½ cup instant potato flakes
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
Optional Ingredients
  • Scallions, for serving
  • Red pepper flakes, for serving
  1. Set the Instant Pot to sauté mode. Add the oil. Once hot, add the white parts of the leek, garlic, and celery. Cook until softened, about 2–3 minutes. Turn the Instant Pot to "Cancel/Off."
  2. Add the potatoes, vegetable stock, the greens of the leeks, bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper. Close the lid, then set to "Manual/Pressure." Set the time for 4 minutes.
  3. The Instant Pot will come to pressure for 5–10 minutes, then cook for 4 minutes. Once the timer runs out, quick release the pressure by turning the knob to "Venting."
  4. Open the lid. Mash the mixture using a potato masher; optionally, you can transfer to a blender to blend smooth.
  5. While hot, stir in the potato flakes, heavy cream, and sour cream. Stir well to activate the potato flakes. For thicker soup, add more flakes. To thin the soup, add more heavy cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Divide into bowls and garnish with scallions and red pepper flakes to serve.
Calories per Serving 458
Total Fat 31.5 g
Saturated Fat 16.2 g
Trans Fat 0.9 g
Cholesterol 75.7 mg
Total Carbohydrates 40.4 g
Dietary Fiber 5.3 g
Total Sugars 5.1 g
Sodium 1,254.3 mg
Protein 6.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Rate this recipe