This hearty, creamy soup feels extra indulgent on chilly nights. And while it tastes absolutely sinful, each portion clocks just 300 calories! It's also extremely affordable, so you can feed the whole family on a serious budget. Instant Pot Loaded Baked Potato Soup is about to become your chilly weather weeknight favorite!
Do y'all love potatoes as much as I do? I swear, I could eat the humble spud in just about any form: hash browns, home fries, french fries, tater tots, mashed potatoes (on a Shepherd's Pie!), hasselback, you name it. I'm verging on Bubba status with my love of all things tater. This Loaded Baked Potato Soup is no exception to the rule.
If you haven't yet jumped on the Instant Pot bandwagon, let me be the first to say: get you one. Now. They're a gee-dang lifesaver on busy nights! I mean, have you ever once thought that something as creamy, delicious, hearty and filling as this soup could be on your dinner table in less than a half hour flat? Seriously, folks. At least put it on your holiday wish list.
Table of Contents
- Prepping the ingredients for potato soup
- Making baked potato soup in the Instant Pot
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Want more soup/stew inspiration? Check out these other hearty recipes:
Prepping the ingredients for potato soup
First up, prep and gather your ingredients and Instant Pot for the baked potato soup. If y'all don't drink much milk at home, I absolutely adore these little shelf stable guys that you can buy at Costco or most major grocery stores. I actually fell in love with shelf stable dairy when I lived abroad in France and was pumped when the trend finally made it here to the states.
They come in perfectly portioned single cup containers, so if you get a hankering for a latte or decide to make pudding one night, you can just pull one from the pantry without risking a whole container going sour. And if you're very short on refrigerator space like we are, they're amazing. Oh, and the tetrapaks are recyclable, so they're quite sustainable.
Open after you've measured your single cup of milk, pour a couple tablespoons of it into a small bowl with your cornstarch and stir with a fork to combine. This slurry will be your thickening agent to make the soup a bit more chowder-y than brothy. Set both the milk and slurry aside for later.
Next, wash and prep your veggies. Peel and medium dice an onion, small dice a celery stalk, and small to medium dice a carrot (no need to peel it, unless you're feeling fancy).
Depending on the potato type you use, you may or may not need to peel your taters before cutting them into a large dice. Wax potatoes can keep their skins, while thick skinned russets should definitely be peeled.
Next up, mince your garlic and thyme. You can actually mince them together to save time rather than keeping them separate. Told you this was a quick recipe!
Making baked potato soup in the Instant Pot
One of the great things about the Instant Pot is the super convenient sauté function. Why did slow cookers never think of this?!? Anyway, it saves you the step of having a separate pan for browning anything, and it's just genius.
So, set your machine to sauté on high. Add a glug of olive oil (or 1-2 tablespoons of butter if you want to be extra indulgent) and wait for it to shimmer (or bubble). Add the mirepoix to the pot with some salt and pepper, then stir to coat.
TIP: Mirepoix is the French trinity of carrots, celery and onion.
Cook the mirepoix about 5-8 minutes, until the vegetables are beginning to soften. Add in the garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about a minute. Now add the remaining plain milk, bone broth or stock and the potatoes.
Seal the lid on the Instant Pot and switch it to the Manual/Pressure Cook setting. Pressure cook on High for 7 minutes, then do a quick release.
TIP: The quick release will release a lot of steam very quickly. Be sure to take the proper precautions to safeguard your skin and any cabinetry around. I like to keep a kitchen towel nearby to toss over the valve to keep it from steaming the underside of my cabinets.
Remove the lid and change the setting back to sauté. Add in the cream and the slurry, then allow to simmer for about 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Taste for seasoning, then plate it and enjoy! Sluuuuuurrrrrrrrppppp!
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes this Instant Pot baked potato soup "loaded"?
Why, all the fixins, of course! We love to top ours with some grated cheddar (preferably Trader Joe's Unexpected Cheddar), Cholula, sliced green onions and crumbled bacon. Feel free to dress it up however you like - cheese, sour cream, bacon, chives, green onions, chopped ham or turkey, hot sauce are all fair game.
Can I make this vegan or vegetarian?
Yes! To make this vegetarian, simply swap out the chicken bone broth for vegetable stock. These bacon bits are also totally vegetarian/vegan.
To make the soup vegan, you could ostensibly substitute an alternative milk and cream (e.g. coconut). I haven't tried it, though, so if you take a stab at it let me know how it goes in the comments!
What can I substitute for the corn starch?
Corn starch is an effective thickening agent, but if you're trying to avoid corn products, you can substitute:
- 6 tablespoon AP Flour - reduce initial pressure cook time to 6 minutes and increase simmer time to 10-15 minutes. This will not have as glossy of a finish, but should taste equally delicious.
- 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoon Arrowroot Flour - same cook times
- 2 teaspoon either Instant Potato Flakes, Tapioca Starch or Rice Starch - same cook times
Be sure that whatever ingredient you decide to use, you still add to a slurry. The amount of milk required to absorb the thickening agent will vary, but the total amount of milk added to the soup should remain constant.
What kind of potatoes should I use?
I personally like to use a half and half mix of russet potatoes and gold potatoes for a bit of textural interest. Be sure to thoroughly wash either kind of potato before prepping. Russets will need to be peeled, while wax variety potatoes will just need to have eyes or any damage removed.
Want more soup/stew inspiration? Check out these other hearty recipes:
- Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
- Corn and Sweet Potato Tom Kha (Vegan)
- Easy & Thrifty Steak Chili
If you tried this Instant Pot Baked Potato Soup, please rate and review it below so I know how it turned out for you. If you'd like more delicious recipe inspiration delivered straight to your inbox, be sure to sign up for my email newsletter. You can also follow me on Instagram, Pinterest or Facebook for more yummy and easy grub ideas!
Instant Pot Loaded Baked Potato Soup
- 1 C Milk divided
- 2 tablespoon Corn Starch
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 large Yellow Onion medium chop
- 1 large Celery Stalk small dice
- 1 large Carrot medium dice
- 1 tablespoon Fresh Thyme finely minced
- 3-5 cloves Garlic minced
- 2.5 lbs Potatoes** see note, large dice
- 4 C Chicken Bone Broth or substitute Vegetable Stock for vegetarian
- ½ C Heavy Cream or half and half
- Kosher Salt and Pepper to Taste
- Whisk the cornstarch with a few tablespoons of the milk to make a quick slurry. Set both milk and slurry aside.
- Set the Instant Pot to sauté. Heat butter till beginning to bubble, then add mirepoix (carrots, onions, celery). Stir and cook for 5-8 minutes, until veggies are beginning to soften. Add garlic and thyme to Instant Pot, stirring to coat. Cook until fragrant, about a minute. Add milk, bone broth (or stock) and potatoes. Stir to incorporate.
- Place lid on Instant Pot. Set to Manual/Pressure for 7 minutes, then do a quick release.* See note.
- Remove lid and set Instant Pot to Sauté. Tip in slurry and heavy cream. Stir to combine. Allow to come to a simmer and simmer for about 5 minutes, until slightly thickened.
- Scoop into bowls and top with desired toppings. Enjoy!
- *To activate the quick release, you have to push a button. Be wary for your skin (steam burns!) and also for surrounding cabinetry. The excessive steam can damage paint or wood stains on cabinetry.
- **Any potatoes should work for this. I used a mix of russet (4 small) and gold (3 large) potatoes for some textural interest. For russets, be sure to peel before dicing. With wax skin potatoes, you can keep the skin on. Be sure to thoroughly wash and remove any damage before dicing.
- Nutritional Facts do not include any toppings