Our Instant Pot scalloped potatoes recipe can help you make this traditional favorite in just 20 minutes. The deep-baked dish holds stacks of fork-tender potato slices embraced by a fragrant, luscious cream sauce — classic and comforting.
Scalloped potatoes usually take more than an hour to finish, but with an Instant Pot, things go much faster. It will be done before you know it, and the results are exactly what you’re after — we promise!
What Are Scalloped Potatoes?
“Scalloped” potatoes are sliced potatoes cooked in butter and garlic, mixed with cream sauce, topped with cheese, then baked to perfection. Original versions of this recipe used thick potato slices that looked like real scallops, hence the name.
To reduce the cooking time, most people prefer to slice the potatoes half an inch thick or less. They might not look like scallops anymore, but the original name has stuck.
Although sliced thinner than before, they still demand a whopping 1 hour in the oven. With the Instant Pot, we only need 15 minutes: 10 minutes of pressure-cooking, and 5 minutes of baking time.
How Healthy Are Our Instant Pot Scalloped Potatoes?
Usually packed with cream and cheese, scalloped potatoes often get a bad rap for their high saturated fat content. Overconsumption of saturated fat is linked to increased risks of heart diseases.
Our Instant Pot scalloped potatoes recipe has a safe level of fat because we used only a moderate amount of dairy. Don’t worry, we gave our test batches a taste afterward to make sure our adjustments are still just as enjoyable.
Apart from fats, scalloped potatoes contain a good amount of complex carbs. They pair nicely with main dishes that are heavy in protein so you can round out a wholesome meal.
Ingredients for Instant Pot Scalloped Potatoes
1. Best Potatoes for Scalloped Potatoes
The dish is famous for its tender potato slices, so the starchy ones like Yukon gold or russet are the best options. Waxy ones like red potatoes remain firm even after baking, so we recommend avoiding them in this case.
2. Thick Cream Sauce
The cooking process begins with sautéing the garlic in butter. We’re not going for brown, crunchy garlic — we just want to cook it briefly to mellow out the pungent aroma.
After that, the potatoes are pressure-cooked with the softened garlic and some water, and when they’re all fork-tender, the cream sauce is added.
Our cream sauce mix has flour, milk, heavy cream, garlic powder, salt, and lemon juice. The lemon juice is not usually called for, but we think it brightens everything a little and makes the comfort food taste better.
We also sprinkled in a dash of paprika to give it a little kick. Disregard it if you prefer — it’s optional.
You can add most of these ingredients one by one straight to the pot instead of mixing them together first. For the flour, however, we highly recommend that you stir it with milk first to avoid lumps.
Once all is in the pot, give everything a toss so the potatoes get coated. Do it gently to avoid breaking the nice shape of the potatoes.
3. The Toppings
With kitchen mittens, slowly tip the potatoes into a baking dish, and sprinkle cheese on top. We used cheddar for the golden, appetizing color, but it works just as well with mozzarella or a mixture of the two.
When you take the potatoes out of the oven, sprinkle some freshly chopped parsley on top and wait for it to cool down before you dig in. If you really can’t wait, spoon just a little bit and blow on it before you eat (like we did).
How to Make Instant Pot Scalloped Potatoes
Here’s a quick summary:
Cook garlic with butter
Pressure-cook potatoes with water and preheat the oven
Make the milk slurry
Cook the potatoes with the slurry, cream, and seasoning
Add the potatoes to a baking dish and bake
Top with parsley and serve
To get the measurements, timings, and other specifics, refer to our Instant Pot scalloped potatoes recipe card down below.Jump to Recipe
How to Store and Reheat Leftover Scalloped Potatoes
If you intend to eat all the potatoes within the next five days, simply cover the baking dish with cling wrap and place it into the fridge. To reheat, bake them for about 10 minutes at 400°F in a preheated oven.
You can also scoop the portion you want to reheat into a smaller container and microwave it on high for 2 minutes.
To keep scalloped potatoes for longer, there’s no other way but to freeze them. Sadly, precooked potatoes turn mushy as they thaw. To avoid this, the potatoes should be cooked just briefly and not fork-tender like these ones.
Here’s our suggestion:
- In step 4, only cook the potatoes for about 5 minutes instead of 10.
- Portion the amount you want to save into airtight containers that are also oven-friendly. Finish cooking the rest in the oven for 10 minutes instead of 5.
- Let the containers cool to room temperature before placing them into your freezer. To reheat, cover them with foil, and bake them at 400°F for 20 minutes.
Frozen scalloped potatoes can last up to 3 months.
Instant Pot Scalloped Potatoes Recipe
- 32 oz potatoes sliced into 1/2-inch-thick discs
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 tsp garlic minced
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 2 1/2 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 oz cheddar cheese shredded
- 2 tbsp parsley finely chopped
- Prep your Instant Pot and select the “Sauté” mode. Melt 1 tbsp butter and then stir in 2 tsp minced garlic to cook until fragrant.
- Add 32 oz sliced potatoes into the pot along with 1 cup water. Close the lid, turn the steam handle to “Sealed,” select “Meat Stew” mode, and adjust the timer to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F.
- In a small bowl, mix 1/4 cup whole milk with 2 tbsp all-purpose flour. Make sure there are no lumps.
- Place a kitchen rag onto the steam handle, and use a spoon to turn it to “Venting.” Open the lid and pour in the milk-flour mixture along with 2 1/2 tbsp heavy cream, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp paprika, and 1 tsp lemon juice. Select the “Sauté” mode and very gently toss the potato slices to coat them evenly.
- Put your kitchen mittens on and carefully tip the potatoes into a large baking dish. Top it with 1 oz shredded cheddar (or cheese of your choice), slide it into the preheated oven, and bake it for 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle 2 tbsp finely chopped parsley on top and serve hot.