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Instant Pot Broccoli – Side Dish Ready in Minutes

Does your family love to eat steamed vegetables like broccoli as a side dish? It’s one of my favorite ways to prepare fresh vegetables because it’s such a fast way of cooking and the vegetables retain so much of their nutritional value.

Instant Pot steamed broccoli text steamed broccoli on white plate

To make Instant Pot broccoli, start by washing and cutting your broccoli into florets. Place them in the Instant Pot with one cup of water, set the timer for 1-2 minutes on manual, then quick release the pressure. Season with salt and pepper, and you’re done! For a more detailed explanation and helpful tips on steamed broccoli, keep reading.

And steamed broccoli is one of my family’s favorites! Plus, it’s such an easy recipe. I count myself lucky that everyone of us, even the girls, love to eat broccoli. The girls will tell you it’s one of their favorite vegetables!

I think it’s so important to introduce kids to vegetables at a young age and keep serving them as they grow up. I can definitely tell that the more they are exposed to a food, the more likely they are to eat it.

Broccoli is one of those foods that I serve at least twice a week, and I think that’s the main reason they love it so much. I used to steam broccoli in the microwave and that definitely works, but once we tried instant pot broccoli, we found a new favorite!

If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can always steam broccoli in the microwave, but if you’re like me, you love this multi-function cooking appliance because it’s a fool proof method of making vegetables!

Instant Pot settings and buttons

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And you don’t have to have an Instant Pot particularly. This recipe will work just the same in any type of electric pressure cookers.

I love that it’s a “set it and forget it” type appliance and I can make perfectly steamed broccoli in less than 5 minutes.

While my Instant Pot has a steam button, I rarely use it. The “steam” button actually cooks at super high heat for 10 minutes. I find that this cooks my vegetables to long for my liking. I love steamed vegetables to retain a bit of crispness!

If you do use this Steam function, be SURE to use a steamer basket as your pot will get VERY hot and risk burning the vegetables.

How to Make Instant Pot Broccoli

If you have an Instant Pot, odds are you have a silicone steamer basket for your Instant Pot. If you don’t, I highly recommend one. I use my steamer basket weekly.

bright green steamed broccoli on white plate

To make perfectly steamed broccoli in your Instant Pot, here’s what you do:

  1. Wash fresh broccoli thoroughly.
  2. Place entire head of broccoli into silicone steamer basket in your Instant Pot.
  3. Add just enough water, usually about 1 cup of water, to cover the base of your Instant Pot bowl.
  4. Add any seasonings you choose [garlic, salt, butter, etc – optional]
  5. Put on lid and lock. Turn valve to seal.
  6. Hit the Manual button and set “0” minutes. Yes, zero minutes!
  7. Once the Instant Pot beeps and reaches pressure, do a quick pressure release [watching out for the hot steam] and you’ll have perfectly cooked Instant Pot broccoli!

Using “0” or even “1” on Manual pressuring setting simply bring that pressure and temperature high enough to steam the broccoli quickly. Again, I like my steamed broccoli to retain some crispness so I find the “0” minute setting is best.

Fried rice with chicken noodles and  steamed broccoli

If you like more tender broccoli, try using the “1” minute setting on Manual pressure. As with any appliance, trial and error is the best way to learn how to use your Instant Pot for steaming broccoli and other vegetables. You definitely don’t want to cook too long or you’ll get soggy broccoli!

Note: While the actual cook time will be between 0-1 minute, it will take a few minutes for your Instant Pot to come to pressure. So, please allow about 5 minutes of cooking time for this easy Instant Pot broccoli recipe.

I feel like steamed broccoli goes with just about any meal as a healthy side and it’s so easy to change up too! My family loves Asian dishes and we often make a variation on this instant pot steamed broccoli to go along with fried rice.

Steamed broccoli in Instant Pot with soy sauce lemon and garlic

To make the broccoli fit with our Asian-inspired dinners a little more, I add in garlic, a little lemon juice, and soy sauce with my water before I steam in my Instant Pot.

I’m telling you – this instant pot steamed broccoli is so versatile because you can easily change up the added spices and liquids to go with just about any meal! It really is such an easy way to make a healthy side dish for your family!

Do you still have questions about how to make steamed broccoli in the Instant Pot? Here are some questions that I’ve been asked to help you.

How long do you steam broccoli in the Instant Pot?

While you will simply set the manual setting to “0” or “1”, depending on how tender you like your steamed broccoli, it will take approximately 8 minutes for your Instant Pot to come to pressure. Plan for this side dish to take about 10 minutes to prepare when factoring that into your timing.

Should I use the “Steam” button on the Instant Pot for broccoli?

You can, but just know that your broccoli will come out much more tender and cooked if you do. I prefer the “Manual” setting at “0 or 1” to get the best, fresh steamed broccoli. It keeps the vegetable a little crisp and bright green.

Can you use frozen broccoli to make Instant Pot broccoli?

Yes! In fact, I do this about half the time! If you are using frozen broccoli, you might want to up your time to about 3 minutes on the Manual Instant Pot setting.

Instant Pot Steamed Broccoli

Instant Pot Steamed Broccoli

If you love a quick side dish, you’re going to love this Steamed Broccoli. Steam up perfect broccoli florets in under 5 minutes with minimal effort with your Instant Pot!

Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 1 minute
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes


  • Fresh Broccoli Florets
  • 1 cup Water
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Butter [optional]


  1. Thoroughly wash broccoli.
  2. Place rinsed broccoli florets onto steamer basket in Instant Pot.
  3. Add 1 cup of water to the bottom of your Instant Pot. Add other ingredients if you choose to make flavor variants. [Butter, salt, pepper, garlic, etc]
  4. Place Instant Pot lid on and turn to lock. Be sure valve is set to seal.
  5. Touch "Manual" button on Instant Pot and lower timer to "0" or "1", depending on your liking.
  6. When Instant Pot beeps to let you know it's reached pressure, do a quick release [by moving valve to release]. Watch out for steam!
  7. Remove broccoli immediately.
  8. Enjoy!


I find that the bigger florets cook better. Split after steaming.

To make Soy Sauce version, add 2 tbsp Soy Sauce and 2 cloves chopped Garlic.

This steamed broccoli can be enjoyed with SO MANY variants - garlic, butter, lemon garlic seasoning, etc. Make it your own!

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Instant Pot Broccoli Without Steamer Basket

I recommend a silicon steamer basket to make Instant Pot broccoli in this post, but are you wondering “Can I make Instant Pot broccoli without a steamer basket?” Yes, you can!

While a steamer basket seems to work the best for me, catching any small pieces of broccoli that might fall away from the larger pieces, it’s possible to use the tray that came with your Instant Pot. If you’ve lost yours, you can buy a replacement on Amazon here.

This stainless steel tray works the same way as the steamer baskets – the important use of it is to simply keep your broccoli out of the water, which makes the broccoli more tender and less boiled-tasting.

Other Ways to Cook Steamed Broccoli

While making instant pot steamed broccoli is my preferred way, there are other methods you can use to make steamed broccoli.

  • Microwave – Before buying an Instant Pot, I always steamed broccoli in the microwave.
    • Cut the broccoli florets in smaller pieces and put into a microwave-safe bowl with a small amount of water in the bottom of the bowl.
    • Place a microwave-safe lid or plate upside down on top of the bowl.
    • Be sure the steam can vent through a small hole or crack into the microwave.
    • Cook for about 2 minutes and check. Microwaves vary on cooking times.
  • Stove-top – This closely mirrors the directions for steaming broccoli in the microwave, but instead using a pot with a lid. You can definitely use this same steamer basket with this method.
 Broccoli steamed in white bowl with rice

Recipes that Use Instant Pot Broccoli

While I love the instant pot steamed broccoli as a side on it’s own, I do love to use lightly steamed broccoli in a few family favorite meals.

And I’ve been working on a delicious broccoli cheese soup recipe to make in your Instant Pot and I’ll be sharing that soon!


Thursday 4th of March 2021

I even added some asparagus with the broccoli. And it came out perfect! I have never made such perfectly steamed veggies before. Thanks a lot for sharing.


Thursday 4th of March 2021

Oh! I'll have to try asparagus next time too! Thanks for sharing!

Lori Lyon

Friday 18th of May 2018

I would love to have an instapot to steam broccoli and many other things!

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