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Instant Pot Vegetable Stew

4.55 from 128 votes

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This Instant Pot Vegetable Stew is the ultimate vegan comfort food. The potatoes, carrots, celery, onion, and peas are cooked in a thick, savory tomato broth to keep you warm and cozy during these cold fall and winter months.

Bowl of Instant Pot Vegetable Stew in a white bowl, sitting on a wooden surface, with another bowl of stew and sliced multi-grain bread in the background

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Winter is coming! I can tell by the bitter cold nights we’ve had this week here in the Pacific Northwest. The cold temperatures were a great reason for me to cook up a pot of this Instant Pot Vegetable Stew. Who doesn’t love a good stew? They are so satisfying when the weather is cold, and they are also a great way to get more veggies into your diet.

This vegan stew is inspired by a pot roast recipe I used to make way back before I was vegan. I remember cooking it for hours in my slow cooker, and the house smelling so delicious. Well, this stew is just as good without meat. And because it’s thickened with red lentils, it has an extra boost of protein. It also cooks fast in my Instant Pot and fills the house with a mouth watering aroma!

This stew is so delicious! The vegetables practically melt in your mouth, and the broth is so thick and savory. This is the perfect meal for the cold winter months!

To make this stew meatier, you can add in some seitan when you add the peas. Or add some mushrooms, like my husband does. I’m not a mushroom fan, however, so I make the stew without.

How to Make Instant Pot Vegetable Stew

Bowl of Instant Pot Vegetable Stew in a white bowl, sitting on a wooden surface, with sliced whole grain bread in background

Begin by sautéing the onion and celery in the Instant Pot on the Sauté setting, until the onion is translucent. Add in the garlic and saute for about a minute, until the garlic is fragrant, but be careful not to burn it. Then add the tomato paste and cook for one more minute.

Add the rest of the ingredients, except the peas. Stir, and then cook on the Manual setting for 10 minutes with a natural pressure release.

Once the pressure has come down, remove the lid and stir in the peas. Replace the lid, but don’t seal it, and let the peas cook in the stew for about 5 minutes on the Keep Warm setting.

Serve the stew with some nice crusty whole grain bread and enjoy!

For other savory, warming meals, see:

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Bowl of Instant Pot Vegetable Stew with sliced whole grain bread in background
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4.55 from 128 votes

Instant Pot Vegetable Stew

This Instant Pot Vegetable Stew is the ultimate vegan comfort food. The potatoes, carrots, celery, onion, and peas are cooked in a thick, savory tomato broth to keep you warm and cozy during these cold fall and winter months.
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword Carrots, Gluten Free, Oil Free, Potatoes, Vegetable Stew
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6
Calories 377.3kcal
Author Teresa Sklenicka


  • Instant Pot


  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3 celery stalks diced
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 6 carrots roughly chopped
  • 8 small to medium Russet potatoes cut in large cubes
  • 5 cups veggie broth
  • ¾ cup dry red lentils rinsed
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoon dry parsley
  • 1 ½ teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup frozen peas


  • In the Instant Pot, sauté the onion and celery on the Sauté setting until soft. Add a small amount of water to loosen vegetables if they begin to stick.
  • Add the garlic and sauté 1 or two more minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the carrots, potatoes, veggie broth, red lentils, and the seasonings. Cook in the Instant Pot on manual setting for 10 minutes with a natural pressure release.
  • When the pressure has come down, remove the lid and stir in the peas. Replace the lid and leave the pot on the “Keep Warm” setting for approximately 5 minutes or until the peas are cooked.


If you want a meatier stew, add in some pieces of seitan or some mushrooms, but I love this stew with just the vegetables.
For the vegetable broth, I prefer to use Better Than Bouillon. Feel free to substitute with any vegetable broth you like.


Calories: 377.3kcal | Carbohydrates: 80.7g | Protein: 14.1g | Fat: 1.5g | Sodium: 341mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 12.4g | Vitamin A: 13603IU | Vitamin C: 34.85mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 4.34mg

Nutrition calculations are approximate.

By on November 1st, 2019

About Teresa Sklenicka

I love creating tasty, oil-free, vegan recipes that everyone will love (even non-vegans)! Here you'll find vegan versions of your favorite comfort foods, as well as some new tastes! Join me on a path to improving your health, helping the planet, and saving animals.

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63 thoughts on “Instant Pot Vegetable Stew”

  1. 4 stars
    I loved this stew. I did not have any red lentils, but next time I will. Also, I will be adding in some mushrooms. Oh, I did not have any regular paprika, but the smoked paprika did the trick. I will be making this again and again. Next time, I will be trying it with Better Than Bouillon no-beef vegetable base. Thank you for taking your time to make this recipe, as I have been missing stew.

    • I’m glad you were able to make it work with what you had on hand. Smoked paprika sounds like a delicious alternative to the sweet paprika. And the BTB no-beef base would also be delicious!

  2. 5 stars
    We and 2 neighbors all liked. I used a sprouted bean trio in place of lentils as that is what I had, I added 1 tsp turmeric because I add it for immune boosting to most everything. I used homemade vegetable broth. ( I save all my vegetable trimmings in the freezer, except cabbage family, and cook them down for broth. Next time I think I will add some additional spices and herbs but this is great as is. I put everything in the insta pot together, pressure cooked it for 6 min, stirred it up and served it. I forgot to add the peas! I would have just stirred them in and let it set for a few minutes had I remembered them. I added no salt so that would have made a difference too. Will definitely make again

  3. I have a different version of this stew (mainly a different spice profile) that calls for only 3 Tbs of tomato paste and have never had the burn warning. Definitely stick with just one 6 oz can.

  4. Hi I just tried this wonderful sounding recipe but I kept getting the “Burn” signal on my Instant Pot. Had never seen this before but it was right. It was starting to burn on bottom. I emptied, checked for leaks or obstacles to pressure and cleaned the liner. I stayed below the full line. Did this twice and gave up and went to bed. But I saved the mix to try again. I followed all of your directions except I added an extra 6 oz can of tomato paste. I’m not sure what to do differently. Should I reduce from high heat pressure to low? Add more time? Any suggestions/corrections? Thanks

    • It’s possible that the extra can of tomato paste made the broth too thick. That could prevent the Instant Pot from coming to pressure and burn on the bottom. Also, when adding the broth after sauteing the vegetables, make sure to fully deglaze the bottom of the pot and make sure there are not any browned spots remaining on the bottom of the pot.

    • Hi Mark, I know I’m late to this party. The reason for the burn warning was because of the tomato paste. Tomato anything will burn in an Instapot and sound be added after everything else had cooked.

      • Thanks for your tip. I haven’t had this problem when making the recipe, but should help others who are having the burn warning. Another tip is to make sure to release any vegetables that may be sticking to the bottom of the pan after sauteing them.

  5. 4 stars
    My first time using an Instant Pot and my first time cooking anything in a long time, so I was in the kitchen for hours! There was no “instant” in my pot! Other than that it turned out well even though I didn’t have red lentils. I found it be a little bland so I added salt and Old Bay seasoning at the table. I will try some of these folks’ suggestions next time for extra zing. Thank you!

    • Good for you for getting in the kitchen and using your Instant Pot! Hopefully things will become easier and faster for you as you begin cooking more.

    • Hi Erica – I added red wine, a bit of red miso paste, and some vegan Worcestershire sauce. I forgot to add the mustard powder but will do that next time. I also left out the lentils and used thyme instead of oregano. Mushroom or umami powder might be a nice add in as well. I also caramelized about half an onion. I used some red wine to deglaze the pot. Then I added my broth (I only had Better than Bouillon no-chicken, so that’s what I used), the tomato paste, miso, Worcestershire and about a tablespoon of flour and blended it up with an immersion stick blender. I added another cup of broth and the rest of my veggies (quartered onions, carrots and potatoes), and it’s cooking now. I tasted the “gravy” mixture prior to adding the veggies in to cook and it was delicious, so it should be great once it’s done. I will serve it with Gardein beef-less tips, which should mimic my mother’s amazing stew that I haven’t eaten in 13 years since becoming vegetarian and then vegan. I suggest preparing the beef-less tips separately according to the package directions. In my experience, they lose their texture when left to sit in liquid or when reheated, so best to make them a serving at a time. This recipe was the closest I’ve found to my mom’s family recipe (thank you, Teresa!), and my first attempt at stew in the instapot. : )

    • I find those instant pots a PIA. Got it as a gift. So I stick to my regular soup pots on the range too. Lots quicker and easier for me.

  6. 4 stars
    This is a lovely one pot meal for using the veggies in the fridge!

    I used kale stems in place of celery and added kale leaves and peas after the pressure valve came down.

    I also added additional seasonings (garlic, onion, Italian seasoning) per other people’s feedback.

    I also added some vegan meatballs in the stew.

    I enjoyed it and will freeze some for later ????

  7. 5 stars
    Can’t wait to make this – I have everything on-hand regarding the ingredients! I like that it has red lentils in it, we definitely need legumes in our meals! Thanks for this recipe!!

  8. 5 stars
    So tasty. This one is going in the regular rotation, for sure.

    I saw in comments above questions about freezing it. We froze our leftovers and have since eaten them, and enjoyed it just as much the second time. The potatoes probably did get mushier, but we still liked it just as well.

    • Good to know. I haven’t had a lot of success freezing potatoes, but I will definitely try it with this stew. It’s one of my husband’s favorites, and it would be great to have it on hand in the freezer.

  9. 5 stars
    Delicious!!! Made this for my husband and myself. I added mushrooms. We both really enjoyed it. Thank you!! Will be trying more of your recipes.

  10. I found it to be a bit bland. I put the mix in a regular pot, added a bit more vegetable broth, more paprika (smoked) and a fair amount of curry powder. I let it simmer for an hour and the result was delicious.

  11. This is my second time making this. I love how quick and easy it comes together. This time I added a turnip and some kohlrabi in place of half the potatoes just for a a little more veggie variety and it was delicious. Will definitely make this again and again. It’s healthy comfort food!

    • 5 stars
      I made this and I didn’t have Red Lentil bit I had yellow and it turned out I added a little bit more vegetable broth and a little bit of tomato juice, for the liquid. I added cummin and Italian seasoning and will be making this again it was delicious.

  12. Hi I’m from the UK and really want to make this today but, we don’t have tomato paste. What we have is either tomato puree, which is a highly concentrated extremely thick paste in a tube. Or we have tomato passata which is like crushed, sieved tomato. So for your recipe I am unsure which to use. Normally our recipes call for 1 or 2 tablespoons of puree or a whole carton of pasatta.

    • It sounds like this would be your tomato puree. Our tomato paste is quite thick and comes in a can or a tube. The 6 ounce can (170 g) sounds like a lot, but this recipe makes a large pot of stew.

  13. 5 stars
    Best stew I ever had. So flavorful even with 4 cups of low sodium veggie broth and 1 cup of water and no added salt. I eat low sodium. I was going to add better than bouillon if it needed it. But it didn’t. I used smoked paprika because that’s what I had and it added a nice flavor. I also added mushrooms.
    Other than that, I followed exactly as written. It’s perfect.

  14. I was wanting to double this, but I don’t think it’ll all fit in my instant pot. Should I put in more or less veggie broth if I do it on the stovetop? Any suggestions?

    • A double recipe will definitely not fit in the Instant Pot. This fills mine pretty full. I haven’t cooked it on the stove top, but I would think you might need to add just a little more water, since there will be more evaporation than with the Instant Pot.

  15. 5 stars
    so good! i added some italian beyond sausage and it really added so much to the flavor. so easy and quick to make too, thanks so much for the recipe!

  16. 4 stars
    This was very good. When I make it again, however, I will omit the dry mustard as that flavor did not work well, at least for me. Thank you for the recipe.

  17. 5 stars
    I loved this recipe. I’ve made it a couple of times. Tonight I added blue potatoes because that is what I had. So delicious and pretty!. I followed the recipe exactly. It’s on my rotation. Thanks!

    • Thanks for the wonderful feedback! I’m so happy to hear that you like it! I bet the blue potatoes were beautiful in it.

  18. Got my Instant Pot for Christmas and wanted to try something the entire family could enjoy. I have a daughter who is vegan. Did a search and came up with this. It was FANTASTIC! Simple to follow and full of flavor. I used one of the other readers suggestions to double corn and add garlic. Already getting question for what day next week are we having it. I love this recipe. I did as someone suggested adding more corn and garlic. I also added frozen peas and Carrots. I double the dice tomatoes as well.

  19. Sounds like some great additions! Isn’t it amazing how soup and stew flavors meld together overnight in the refrigerator? So happy to hear that you enjoyed it!

  20. I’m a tinkerer: added a 10 oz bag of frozen green beans, a teaspoon of ground corander and a half a tablespoon of dill. T was yummy but (gasp) OMG the next day it was ambrosial!

      • This is a stupid question but what size russets? Ours are at least 7 inches long and wider than a tennis ball. That’s a lot of potatoes. By the way, can you freeze the leftovers?…..do the potatoes thaw well?
        Thank you. This looks SO good!j

        • My russets are quite a bit smaller than that. Probably about half that size. I don’t freeze soups or stews with potatoes, because, no, the potatoes don’t thaw well.

    • I haven’t tried this yet in a slow cooker, and actually haven’t used my slow cooker much since getting my Instant Pot years ago. I would try 3 to 4 hours on high, or 6 to 8 hours on low, checking to see if the veggies are tender. If you make this in the crock pot before I have a chance to, please let me know how it works out for you! I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  21. 4 stars
    Thabks for the recipe. I made it numerous times. I prefer double the seasonings but live the flavor and healthiness of it. I’m trying it with chickpeas tonight since o ran out of lentils.

    • Thanks for the feedback, Angel! I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying this recipe. It’s great that you’re finding ways to modify it to your taste and preferences. Let me know how it goes with the chickpeas. I’m sure it will taste great, but I don’t believe the chickpeas will have the thickening properties that the red lentils have, so if you want a thicker broth, you may want to add a thickener at the end.

  22. 5 stars
    I loved this, so simple but so tasty and I took leftovers in a food flask for lunch at work next day which was much nicer than sandwiches or salad on a cold day. A really nice warming, comforting and nutritious meal that could easily be adapted with diffent veg, herbs and spices etc. One I will definitely make again

  23. 4 stars
    Thanks for the recipe. I made it today. I added more seasoning than called for, mushrooms and brocolli (instead of peas). I would add double the seasoning next time. The texture is wonderfully soft and I will look forward to all the leftovers. It filled my instapot to the brim so I’ll have many meals from this.


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