Chicken and lentil soup made in the pressure cooker – a healthy, nourishing meal that will fill you up and make plenty of servings so you can have leftovers for lunch or freeze the rest!
I’ve been hearing a lot about the Instant Pot (a multi-cooker that does the job of a slow cooker, electric pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, sauté/browning pan, and warming pot all in one) but it wasn’t until 2 weeks ago I started getting tons of requests for Instant Pot recipes. My curiosity led me to Amazon, where I found thousands of glowing reviews. Do I need one more appliance? Well of course I bought it to see what the big deal was and here is the first recipe I tried.
I decided to make a recipe I’m very familiar with (and my family loves) to see how it compares to my original and I have to tell you, I loved the results! I made some minor adjustments to my stove top Chicken and Lentil Soup, basically I reduced the liquid since nothing evaporates and I put all the ingredients in the pot at the same time. Closed the pot, pressed the “soup” button and let it cook 30 minutes (stove top takes closer to 2 hours). When it was ready I didn’t even have to shred the chicken, it was so tender it fell apart with my spoon.
This soup is so filling, I often make it with chicken thighs but breasts would also work. And if you are on Weight Watchers it’s only 5 Smart Points! Now let’s talk more about Weight Watcher’s new Beyond The Scale. So much to tell!
I was part of a special group who received early access to this program (thank you Weight Watchers!) to try out their new program (I was not paid in any way for my effort or time). My first reaction when I was told about the new plan was panic because all I could think about was all the work I had in front of me to change the points on my recipes! But then I realized how lucky I am to test this out, especially right before the holidays. So I’ve been cooking, tracking, and following Smart Points these past 3 weeks and my experience with the new plan has been wonderful – I even lost those extra stubborn few pounds I put on from my last vacation but I also really love how the new program puts a focus on a whole foods diet.
Will I be changing my recipes to Smart Points? YES! I hope you’ll be patient, I will try to get this done asap! I will start with 2015 and work my way down, if it says SP next to the points you will know it’s updated.
Here’s what changed: Most of you will get more points per day, I now have 30 per day plus 21 weekly points. Lean protein such as poultry, shrimp, fish are lower in points. All fruits and vegetables are now zero when used in recipes and this includes smoothies! Fats such as olive oil went up slightly. Carbs such as rice and pasta increased a bit. Sugar and desserts have now gone up A LOT! Does that mean you can’t eat them? Not really, it’s still about finding a balance so if you want the occasional treat you can still have it if you make great choices throughout your day.
What did I eat? Everything I usually eat, I just planned them a little better. Example, lots of eggs and smoothies for breakfast. Lunch I usually had a bowl of soup (my Slow Cooker Butternut Soup is only 2 Smart Points) or a salad, and dinner I ate everything I normally eat – pasta dishes, rice, potatoes, chicken, etc. and I even had points left to fit in a glass of wine most nights.
I’ll be busy all day updating my blog, feel free to comment if you have any questions about my Instant Pot or the new Weight Watchers Smart Points.
Instant Pot (Pressure Cooker) Chicken and Lentil Soup
Servings: 8 • Serving Size: 1 1/3 cups • Smart Points: 5
Calories: 126 • Fat: 2 g • Saturated Fat: 0 • Carbs: 16 g • Fiber: 5 g • Protein: 15 g
Sugar: 0 g • Sodium: 496 mg • Cholesterol: 36 mg
- 1 lb dried lentils
- 12 oz (3) boneless skinless chicken thighs, all fat trimmed
- 7 cups water
- 2 tbsp chicken Better than Bouillon
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 medium ripe tomato, diced
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp sazon (I used my homemade blend) or paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Place all the ingredients into the instant pot, stir and cover. Use “Soup” button and cook 30 minutes. When done and the pressure releases, shred the chicken and stir.
Makes about 11 cups.