Instant Pot Mini Monday — Onion Chopped Steak with Easy Gravy


The last few weeks I have been cooking in my Instant Pot mini almost exclusively.  Partly because I am having so much fun seeing what it can do and partly because it avoids heating up my kitchen.  Since I now have a huge pile of tried and tested IP mini recipes and I don’t want to turn A Solitary Feast into a pressure cooking blog,  I am going to make Monday my Instant Pot mini recipe day until I run out of recipes.

My first month’s recipes are all going to be adaptions of some of my all time favorite recipes.  Onion Chopped Steak with Easy Gravy is one of my all time favorite recipes.  The original recipe call for an envelope of onion soup mix and a packet of brown gravy mix.  It took a bit of tinkering but I got the same flavor without the processed ingredients.  This is one of those recipes that isn’t necessarily faster in the Instant Pot than on the stove.  I like the convience of just throwing things in the liner and letting it go until I am ready to eat.

Onion Chopped Steak with Easy Gravy

Adapted From The Desperation Dinners Cookbook

½ lb ground beef
¼ cup bread crumbs
2 TBS milk
4 tsp dried onion flakes
2 tsp beef bouillon
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp celery salt
1 1/2  cup beef, chicken or vegetable broth
2 TBS flour

In a small bowl, combine the beef, bread crumbs, milk and spices; mix well with your hands.  Form into 2 patties of roughly equal size.  Lay 2 squares of aluminum foil on the counter.  Add 1 patty to each square.  Seal each packet by folding the edges together twice.  Place each packet on the trivet in the liner.  Add the beef broth to the liner.  Lock the lid and cook 12 minutes then quick release the pressure.  Remove the hamburger packets and set aside.  Measure 3 tablespoons  of broth from the liner into a small bowl.  Add the flour and stir until a smooth paste forms.  Using the saute function, bring the broth to a boil.  Add the flour paste and whisk until the broth thickens.  Serve the gravy over the beef patties. 

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Thanksgiving Round Up 2017


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Thanksgiving is only 18 days away.  Since I was planning on doing a Whole 30 in November, I planned a Whole 30 Thanksgiving feast.  I still plan on posting those recipes this month even though I am not doing a Whole 30.   For those of you not interested in Whole 30 Thanksgiving recipes, I am posting a round up of all the Thanksgiving recipes I have posted since the beginning of A Solitary Feast so you can plan your holiday meal.  I hope you can find things to enjoy.

Brown Sugar Rubbed Turkey Breast

Wildrice Stuffing With Cranberries And Walnuts

Balsamic Honey Brussels Sprouts

Scoop And Bake Dinner Rolls

Cranberry Pie

Spiced Cornish Game Hens

Homemade Stuffing

Mashed Potatoes and Gravy

Classic Green Bean Casserole

Cranberry Sauce

Pumpkin Pie


A Solitary Thanksgiving Feast–Mashed Potatoes and Gravy

I have come to the conclusion that mashed potatoes and gravy are the least photogenic food on the planet. Fortunately, they taste a lot better than they look.

Steph's Smashed Potatoes

3 small Yukon Gold potatoes
1 TBS butter
1 TBS milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Place the potatoes into a small saucepan. Add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 60 minutes. Drain the potatoes and roughly mash with a fork or a potato masher. Add the milk, butter and salt. Continue mashing until the butter is melted and the potatoes are the desired consistency, you want them mashed not liquefied.

Variation: Mince one clove garlic and microwave 45 seconds. Add garlic and 1 ½ teaspoons chopped chives to the potatoes and mix well.

Adapted from a recipe by Steph Norton

The key to success with the gravy is to use the best broth you can find. I usually use my homemade vegetable broth but was out this time. Instead, I used Swanson’s chicken broth. Make sure you taste before you season, especially with canned broth. You may need to add very little extra salt.


2 cup broth
2 TBS flour
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a medium saucepan, heat the broth until hot but not boiling. Place the flour in a small bowl and ladle in enough hot broth to dissolve the flour, about ¾ cup broth. Use a small whisk and whisk until smooth. Pour it back into the hot broth, whisking the broth as you pour. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, for 5-8 minutes or until lightly thickened. Add salt and pepper, if desired. 2 cups gravy.

Adapted from a Mollie Katzen Cookbook, I don’t remember which one