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Instant Pot Broccoli

This recipe for Instant Pot steamed broccoli is simple to prepare and takes just minutes to cook. Steamed broccoli is a healthy and delicious side dish for any meal, and this hands-off steaming method makes it perfect for a busy weeknight.

Instant Pot steamed broccoli in a white bowl.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Instant Pot broccoli is a healthy side dish that goes with just about any meal
  • This recipe is completely hands-off once you have put the broccoli in the Instant Pot
  • You can make this recipe with or without using a steamer basket

One of the many benefits of the Instant Pot is that you can cook vegetables quickly and easily. Most of them have only a very short cook time once the Instant Pot has come up to pressure (this recipe actually has a 0 minute cook time!). Try Instant Pot steamed carrots, and Instant pot steamed potatoes.

>> Related post: How To Steam in an Instant Pot

If you are really short on time and can’t wait for the pressure cooker then you can also try steaming vegetables in the microwave (though they won’t be quite as tasty as pressure cooker steamed veggies!).

Scroll down for the printable card for this easy Instant Pot steamed broccoli recipe, or read on for all the details. 

What do you need

An Instant Pot, a steamer basket, a jug of water, and a head of broccoli.
What you need to steam broccoli in an Instant Pot.

Electric pressure cooker

This recipe uses an Instant Pot, but you can use any brand of electric pressure cooker or multicooker with a pressure cook function.

Steamer basket (optional)

The easiest way to steam broccoli in an Instant Pot is to use a steamer basket.

You can use any type of steamer basket. I have a silicone one and a stainless-steel one, both of which work fine in my Instant Pot.

This is optional, but if you want to steam broccoli rather than boil it you will need to find a way to hold the broccoli florets up out of the water during cooking.

If you don’t have a steamer basket, see below for more ideas on how to steam broccoli in an Instant Pot without a steamer basket.


I normally use fresh broccoli, but you can also cook frozen broccoli in the Instant Pot. If using fresh broccoli, one medium head of broccoli is usually a good amount for four servings.

Cold water

Steaming requires water, and pressure cookers require water to get up to pressure. You will need to use at least one cup of water.

However, all pressure cookers will have a minimum amount of water that they require to operate, so check your manual if you are unsure what this is for your pressure cooker, and adjust the amount if needed. 

Instant Pot steamed broccoli.

How to steam broccoli in the Instant Pot

1. Prepare the broccoli. Rinse the broccoli, and cut it onto florets.

2. Place the broccoli florets into the Instant Pot inner pot in a steamer basket. The broccoli needs to be elevated out of the water so that it cooks in the steam rather than by boiling in the water. Set the pressure valve to the ‘sealing’ position.

Broccoli in the instant pot.
Place broccoli in Instant Pot inner pot in a steamer basket.

3. Cook broccoli in the Instant Pot on HIGH for 0 minutes. Yes, that’s right, zero minutes. The pressure cooker will heat up and create steam as it comes to pressure, and the broccoli will cook while that is happening.

Because it is a tender vegetable it doesn’t take long to cook, and so will be perfectly steamed by the time the Instant Pot gets to full pressure. I do love a zero-cook time recipe!

4. Use Quick Release to open the Instant Pot when the pressure cooking cycle finishes. The broccoli should be a bright green color and have the perfect texture, tender but not soft.

If the broccoli florets remain in the Instant Pot for longer, they will end up overcooked, so don’t use natural pressure release.  

Steamed broccoli in the Instant Pot.
Steam broccoli in Instant Pot until it reaches full pressure, then manually release.

Instant Pot steamed broccoli without steamer basket

If you are wondering how to steam broccoli in the Instant Pot without a steamer basket, there are a few options you can try. You just need to find a way to elevate the florets out of the water so that they cook in the steam rather than in the boiling water. 

The metal steamer rack or trivet that comes with all Instant Pots can be used. The spaces between the bars may be too large for broccoli depending on the size of your florets (meaning they may fall through into the water. You can try placing the larger florets directly on the trivet, with the smaller florets on top.

There are a few other options to improvise a steamer basket. You can actually just steam broccoli in a bowl inside the instant pot if you have a heat-proof bowl with sides high enough to be above the waterline.

Alternatively, you can place a small plate or bowl onto the Instant Pot trivet and steam the broccoli on that, or roll up balls or logs of aluminum foil that will elevate the florets out of the water.

Broccoli in a glass bowl in Instant Pot.
You can steam broccoli in an Instant Pot without a steamer basket.

Serving suggestions

To serve this steamed broccoli, season with salt and black pepper, and top with butter. Or try one of these options to take it to the next level:

  • Top with garlic and herb butter
  • Smother with cheese sauce
  • Drizzle with pesto and add a sprinkling of flaked almonds
  • Toss the broccoli with crumbled goats cheese and chopped walnuts

Storage and reheating

Store any leftover broccoli in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, and use within 3 days.

To reheat the broccoli, I would recommend microwaving it for 1-2 minutes in a microwave-safe bowl. If you try to reheat it in the Instant Pot, it is likely to end up overcooked and very soft.

Alternatively, toss the florets in olive oil and roast them in the air fryer: air fryer roasted broccoli.

Instant Pot steamed broccoli in a white bowl.

Instant Pot Steamed Broccoli

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How to steam broccoli in an Instant Pot (with or without a steamer basket).
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time15 minutes
Serves4 servings


  • 1 head of broccoli
  • 1 cup water


  • Rinse the broccoli and cut into florets.
  • Add the water to the Instant Pot inner bowl. Place steamer basket into the inner Instant Pot bowl [Note 1], and add the broccoli florets.
  • Place the lid on the Instant Pot and close the valve (turn to 'Sealing').
  • Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook on High for 0 minutes.
  • When the cooking time is up, use the 'quick release' method to open the Instant Pot and carefully remove the broccoli.


1. To cook broccoli in the Instant Pot without a steamer basket, either:
  • Use the Instant Pot trivet with a small plate on top,
  • Place the broccoli florets into a high-sided heatproof bowl and place in the water, or
  • Place 4 balls of aluminum foil in the instant pot for the broccoli to sit on


Serving: 1  Calories: 42kcal  Carbohydrates: 4g  Fat: 3g  Saturated Fat: 2g  Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g  Cholesterol: 8mg  Sodium: 52mg  Fiber: 1g  Sugar: 2g

Nutrition information is an estimate and provided for informational purposes only.

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