Instant Pot – Meatloaf


Didn’t really use any one specific source, but rather a mash-up of several. I try to keep my recipes simple and straightforward with minimal ingredients!

I Save A to Z – Pressure Cooker Meatloaf –


  • 2 lbs of ground beef
  • 1/2 chopped onions (yields ~1 cup; doesn’t need to be precise)
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup of Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • ketchup (About half a cup, maybe more. Eyeball it!)
  • mustard (A few squeezes.)
  • spices (salt and pepper is fine, or consider using Monterrey Steak seasoning)
  • Optional: I cooked the meatloaf with 1.5 lbs of mini-red potatoes. One pot. One more item cooked. One less pot to clean!


Notes: Two notes. Meatloaf is really easy. Don’t worry about getting exact measurements of the ingredients. There’s a lot of variations of meatloaf with various additional ingredients. For the most part, if you have ground beef, onions, bread crumbs, and ketchup, you are in really good shape.

Second note: For the Instant Pot, consider using these mini bread loaf pans. Each mini pan feeds about 1.5 people. This recipe makes enough for about 4 of these mini pans. I ended up cooking two in the Instant Pot and freezing the others for later use.

  1. Preparation: Chop your onions and place it in a large bowl. Then add the other ingredients: ground beef, Parmesan Cheese, bread crumbs, eggs, salt and pepper (or Monterrey Steak Seasoning), ketchup (about 1/2 cup), and mustard (a few good squeezes, maybe 1/8 of a cup). Pretty much all your ingredients.
  2. Prior to mixing the ingredients, I would recommend lightly greasing your mini bread loaf pans and setting them to the side of your mixing bowl.
  3. Once you have the pans ready, go ahead and start mixing the meatloaf mixture. I prefer to use my hands. Mix it with your hands until the mixture is uniform. If you feel like your mixture is a little dry, add some ketchup.
  4. Once mixed, add the mixture to the mini loaf pans. Press the mixture into the pan and leave about 3/4″ space at the top.
  5. Once all your pans are filled, grab your ketchup and apply a thin layer of ketchup on top of the mixture.
  6. Wrap the tops of each pan with foil.
  7. In the Instant Pot, place the trivet into the stainless steel pan. Add water so it fills up to just about below of the trivet.
  8. This is where your Tetris skills come in. Tetris 2 of the meatloaf pans and your mini red potatoes into your Instant Pot. I ended up stacking the two on top of each other so they make a plus (+) sign and placing the potatoes around them.
  9. Cook on Manual for 30 minutes.
  10. Quick Release the Instant Pot valve when done.
  11. Remove the meatloaf pans, remove the foil, and place the meatloaf under the broiler for a few minutes!
  12. Optional: The mini red potatoes were cooked perfectly. Consider dressing them with your favorite spices/flavors.

My Cousin’s Meatloaf

Amy Nguyen’s Meatloaf with a twist on the sauce

Amy’s Meatloaf Sauce

  • Ketchup
  • BBQ sauce
  • Worcester sauce
  • brown sugar

Instant Pot – Barbacoa


Didn’t really use any one specific source, but rather a mash-up of several. I try to keep my recipes simple and straightforward with minimal ingredients!

Rick Mammana –
Chef Tips –
Taste and Tell –
No Bun Please –



Notes: Super easy to make! I mostly followed the directions on the Frontera packaging and then cooked in the Instant Pot on manual for 65 minutes.

  1. Prep your beef chuck and onions. Cut the beef chuck into 2″ cubes and lightly season with salt and pepper, then set aside. The beef chunks doesn’t have to be precise. Thinly slice the red onions and set aside also.
  2. Oil the bottom of the Instant Pot pan and set the Instant Pot to saute.
  3. Add the onions and slightly saute.
  4. Add the beef cubes to the Instant Pot also and allow the cubes to lightly brown.
  5. After all the beef cubes are browned, give the onion/beef cube mixture a  nice mix.
  6. Add the 1 package of Frontera Barbacoa marinade and 2 cups of water. Make sure that the two are well mixed. You can do this in a separate bowl, but I chose to mix it in the Instant Pot to avoid cleaning another bowl.
  7. Cook on Manual for 65 minutes. After cooking, do a pressure Quick Release.
  8. Remove all the cubes, then shred. The cubes should be really easy to shred. If they aren’t, you might need to cook them a little longer. Return the shredded beef to the marinade.
  9. For best flavor, allow the shredded beef to soak in the marinade for several more hours using the Keep Warm function on the Instant Pot.

Instant Pot – Apple Pie Bread Pudding


Buzzfeed Tasty Apple Pie Pudding:

Buzzfeed Tasty Apple Pie Bake:

Reviews by Pink:


2 packages of cinnamon rolls with frosting (or 6 slices of white bread)
1 can of apple pie filling
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Notes: I used the combination of the three source recipes to come up with this recipe. Instead of making my own apple pie filling, I chose to buy the pre-made filling to keep ingredients to a minimum.

  1. Take your unbaked cinnamon rolls and cut each into quarters. Cut into 6 or 8 pieces if you are using large cinnamon rolls. Set aside. If you decided to use white bread, cut the bread into 1″x1″ pieces (4×4).
  2. Next, make the batter that will be used to soak the cinnamon rolls. Mix the milk, eggs, cinnamon, and vanilla extra in a bowl.
  3. Combine the cinnamon roll pieces with the batter.
  4. Once soaked, take out the soaked cinnamon roll pieces and mix together with the apple pie filling.
  5. In a greased pan, place the cinnamon roll and apple pie filling combination.Cover with foil. Covering the pan will keep the pudding from becoming soggy during the cooking process.
  6. Cook in Instant Pot on Manual for 20-25 minutes. Depending on the size of your pan, you may need to cook for a little longer.
  7. After the cooking process is complete, quick release the pressure valve and remove. Top with frosting and/or ice cream and enjoy!

Instant Pot – Carnitas

Carnitas (Shredded Pork)

Source Recipe: Flo Lum Carnitas

Video (YouTube)

Ingredients: (source: Flo Lum)

  • 2lbs pork butt/shoulder roast KB: I ended up using 3 lbs as that was the last package left
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 garlic cloves, bruised KB: I forgot to grab these so I went ahead without them.
  • 1T kosher salt
  • 1-2 cups of water KB: I tried to keep the ratio 1 cup of liquid to 1 lb of pork. In this case, I ended up using 2 cups of water and 1 cup of liquid carnita seasoning.
  • KB: I ended up using this for seasoning. 8 oz. packet of chipotle-lime carnita seasoning. This and 2 cups of water ended up being 3 cups of liquid to my 3 lbs of pork shoulder.

Instructions: (source: Flo Lum)

  1. Cut up the roast into 1.5″-2″ cubes and put all the ingredients in the liner of the Instant Pot. KB: Water, liquid spices, seasoning, salt, pork shoulder, and bayleaf.
  2. Close and lock the lid, making sure the sealing knob is on sealing. KB: Instant Pot Manual Mode for 45 minutes.
  3. Once the cooking is done, you can release the pressure by the quick or natural pressure release.
  4. Option 1: Heat up a frying pan and add some oil. Fry the pieces of pork until nicely browned on both sides. Option 2: Spread the meat out on a sheet pan (KB: Shred the carnitas. You can use a fork or similar to just crush them. They’ll fall apart easily.) and place under broiler (KB: On Hi.) until nicely browned and turn them over and brown the other side. KB: We ended up using option 2 as it was a much cleaner method. For best results, we recommended you really allow the carnitas to burn. Get them to a nice dark brown color/almost black. Some burning is GOOD! Experiment and see what works best for you!
  5. Serve with rice, beans, salsa, guacamole and sour cream. You can also make burritos or tacos.

Other Notes:

Super easy and super delicious. 3 lbs of pork shoulder was enough to serve 4 people. We ended up using the carnitas for tacos. Corn tortillas and topped with cilantro, onions, and lime juice.


Instant Pot – Macaroni and Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese

Source Recipes:
Cuong Can Cook –
Stephanie Manley ––QZY8


  • 1 lb of pasta – I used elbow macaroni. Note: The boxes of pasta at the store are usually 380grams (3/4 of lb). I think there’s a pasta/water ratio you need to adhere to so that you don’t have excess liquid after cooking the pasta.
  • 4 cups of water
  • salt
  • 2 cups of shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup of shredded Monterrey Jack cheese (The Cheddar/Monterrey Jack combo offers a creamier and smoother Mac n’ Cheese flavor)
  • 1 cup of half and half milk
  • 2 Tbsp of Butter
  • Dried oregano
  • Dried mustard


  • 4 cups of water, 1 lb of pasta, some salt (1 or 2 tsp), and some dried mustard (1 tsp) goes into the Instant Pot. Cook on Manual for 4 minutes with the valve set to Sealing. Quick Release (QR) the valve when cooking is finished.
  • Mix in half-and-half, butter, and shredded cheese into pasta. Folding in ingredients a little at a time makes things easier
  • Add salt, pepper, oregano, or other to taste.


  • Try adding hot sauce for a kick in flavor
  • Try different cheese combinations to find a combo that works for you
  • Adhere to the 4 cups of water to 1 lb of pasta ratio to avoid excess water.
  • Cheddar/Monterrey Jack cheese offers a smoother and creamy flavor


New Year Goals 2017

Hi all.

Here are my resolutions for 2017. I encourage everyone to think about their own goals and reach out to me if I can help you. Write down and share your goals and

My goals for 2017 and in no particular order:

  1. Run a 9-ball rack (pool) and improve my billiards game. I’ve actually broke and ran a 9-ball game before, but haven’t done so since my session of APA League Pool. Stretch goal: Top Gun in 9-ball for my local APA league.
  2. Stage 0 Weight Reduction (lose some weight) and be a little healthier. Maybe make some time and pick up Aikido again. First milestone is to lose 20 lbs.
  3. Be a little more selfish and spend MORE time focusing on myself and the things I am passionate about.
  4. Chair at least one autocross event for the 2017 Championship Series and one event for the 2017 Slush series.
  5. Podium at an autocross event in my class with more than 5 entries.
  6. Fix the Impreza, and then fix the Porsche.
  7. Be more supportive of my friends in their interests and passions, even if those things are no interest to me.
  8. Be relatively debt-free by the end of 2017.
  9. Play more Magic: the Gathering than I did in 2016.

Instant Pot – Pho Ga Recipe (Chicken Pho)

Homemade Pho Ga

Pho Ga (Cuong Can Cook)


Recipe –


  • 4 bone in chicken breasts KB: Bone in is important. If you find that you don’t have enough flavor, you can also buy chicken bones by itself. I also found that 4 chicken breasts left me with way too much chicken. My second attempt was with 1 chicken breast with rib bone and 2 carcasses of chicken bones.
  • 1 onion KB: I used a yellow onion.
  • 1 palm sized piece of ginger
  • green onion
  • cilantro
  • thai basil
  • ¼ cup fish sauce plus to taste KB: Use 1/2 cup. Taste your broth before serving. You’ll need to add a little fish sauce and/or salt to the broth in order to get it to the flavor/taste you are looking for. Don’t be afraid of adding too much though. Like Cuong said, the noodles will dilute the broth and flavor.
  • 2 TBS sugar (preferably palm sugar) KB: Use 1 tablespoon instead of 2.
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • pho noodles
  • lime wedges
  • packet of pho spices (can omit) KB: This was one of the items available at my local Asian Market. $3.00 for 5 spice packets.
    The filter bag becomes really fragile after the cooking process. Use a ladle to remove the packet as to not break the spice bag during removal

Cooking Directions (From Cuong Can Cook with personal notes in bold):

  • Over direct heat gas flame, char the whole onion and ginger, 5 minutes. If a gas burner is not available, you can use a dry pan on the stove, broil in the oven, or use your outdoor BBQ grill.
  • Place chicken, fish sauce, sugar, charred onion and ginger, salt, and spice packet into Instant Pot and fill with hot water (can use cold, it just takes longer to heat up). Close lid, set vent knob to Sealing, and use Manual for 20 minutes. KB: Try to use hot water if possible. It will save you a lot of time. We also found the chicken to be a little bland. Consider preparing the chicken ahead of time by seasoning with some salt and pepper.
  • While the chicken is cooking, slice green onion and cilantro into small pieces
  • After 20 minute cook time, you can QR (Quick Release) or NPR (Natural Pressure Release). Taste and season broth. KB: I ended up cooking on Manual for 25 minutes. I also don’t think it hurts to let the broth sit after cooking. I feel like the flavors really start to settle in more the longer you let it sit. My only recommendation is to remove the spice packet with a ladle as I think the packet will become more prone to breaking. According to Cuong, you want the broth to be a bit more flavorful than what you like. When you add the rice noodles into the soup, it will dilute the flavor a little bit. This is very much true!
  • In a separate pot, boil some water, Using a noodle strainer if available, boil the dry pho noodles about 5 to 20 seconds until it is loose and pliable. Place into soup bowl. KB: I was told to wash the noodles again after cooking it. Something about a better taste.
  • Slice or pull chicken meat and add to soup bowl
  • Garnish with green onion and cilantro, pour hot soup broth into bowl KB: If the noodles are cold, consider microwaving the bowl for 30-45 secs prior to adding the broth.
  • Top with Thai basil and a squeeze of fresh lime juice
  • Stay lubed during all steps of the cooking process!



MTG Deckbuilder’s Tool Kit League

Hi all.

Just wanted to share this format that we decided to try. I give you the deck builder tool kit league. It’s actually very similar to a sealed deck league, but with MTG deck builder’s tool kit. I suggested the tool kit for several reasons.

  1. Cost ($16 on Amazon)
  2. 4 packs + semi-random set of cards, not to mention a large diversity of cards
  3. Little friendlier for new and returning players

One of my autocross buddies and I play tested this format, and it seems really solid. The power level was nice and even, and though I lost my match, both games were close. Here’s the framework of our league. Feel free to edit these league rules to best suit your play group. I think this format is a great way to make the game more inclusive for players of various skill levels, while keeping costs to a minimum and the power level even.

Deckbuilder’s Toolkit League Rules Framework

Deck Building Rules:

Each participant will start with either a Shadows Over Innistrad or Kaladesh Deck Builder’s Toolkit. This toolkit, and its content, is his or her card pool. From this pool, he/she will build a limited deck.

  • Limited decks must contain a minimum of 40 cards. …
  • Players are not restricted to four of any one card in Limited tournament play.
  • Any drafted or opened cards not used in a player’s Limited deck function as his or her sideboard.

The Kaladesh Deckbuilder’s Tool Kit is $16 from Amazon

Match Rules:

  • 50 minute matches
  • Best out of 3 games
  • Casual REL (casual rules enforcement)
  • After 50 minutes, if the match hasn’t been determined, the match will go on for 5 more turns. Active player is turn 0. If no winner is determined, the game ends in a draw.

League Rules:

  • Round Robin format
  • 1 point for game win, 0 points for game lose or draw
    • Ex. If you won your match 2-1, you receive two points, and your opponent receives 1 point.
  • After all the players have played their matches for the round, the cumulative points from all the matches will determine the round’s standing.
  • After the end of the round, all players are allowed to add a single Standard booster pack to their pool.
  • 1st place each round is awarded 2 additional bonus points; 2nd place is awarded 1 additional bonus point. If a tie occurs, both players are awarded the bonus points.
  • Bottom two players are allowed to add an additional Standard booster pack to their pool.
    • This is in addition to the weekly allowance.
  • After 3 (or more) rounds, the player with most points wins the league event
    • Possible prizes:
      • Booster Packs
      • Prize money to defray next tool kit
      • Nothing

Kevin’s Chili Recipe

For my future reference…

14oz pinto beans
14oz black beans
14oz kidney beans
1 chopped onion
1 chopped green pepper
1.5lbs ground beef
1 McCormicks Chili Mix
1 large jalepeno
14oz tomato sauce
14oz diced tomatoes
3 – 14 oz stewed tomatoes
1 cup of water