Ready in only a few minutes, Instant Pot Couscous is very simple to make and an easy side dish to any dinner! Serve this couscous plain or add veggies for a well-rounded dish!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. however this is at no cost to you. Read my affiliate links full disclosure policy here.
This basic recipe is a perfect addition to your kitchen recipes! It's a base recipe, so you can add any of your favorite ingredients to it to make it a main course or keep it plain to serve under your favorite stir fry.
The great thing about couscous is that it takes no time at all to make! It's ready in under 10 minutes, including the preheating of the Instant Pot!
The Instant Pot is a great way to make your favorite grain or pasta!
What Is Couscous?
Couscous has become popular with a lot of people in the past few years because of how simple it is to make. It is actually rolled semolina flour, even though many people might think it is a grain. This wheat is then mixed with water to make tiny pasta pieces.
Couscous can now be found in almost every grocery store. People love it for its chewy texture and for how quickly it cooks.
Types of Couscous
Moroccan Couscous. This is the type of couscous we will be using and is the traditional couscous people think of. It cooks in only a couple of minutes and it perfect to make when time is of the essence. You can find whole wheat Moroccan couscous as well!
Israeli Couscous. Israeli couscous, or pearl couscous, is also made from semolina wheat and looks like more traditional pasta. The tiny balls are larger than Moroccan couscous and it takes longer to cook in the Instant Pot. You could use it in an Israeli couscous salad like this Greek couscous side dish.
Lebanese Couscous. Lebanese couscous is even larger than Israeli couscous and more resembles regular pasta. It has a nutty flavor and is golden brown because the durum or semolina wheat flour is toasted before being shaped into balls.
Ingredients To Make Instant Pot Couscous
- Oil. Olive oil or vegetable oil.
- Broth. Chicken broth or vegetable broth can be used in this recipe.
- Moroccan couscous.
- Italian seasoning. To add some flavor to the couscous.
Equipment To Gather
- Instant Pot. I have a 6-quart Instant Pot Duo that I love!
- Measuring Cups
- Liquid measuring cup
- Measuring Spoons
How To Make Instant Pot Couscous
Press the saute button on your Instant Pot. Add the olive oil and the couscous. Cook the couscous for 2 minutes. This will give the couscous a nutty flavor and toast it just a little bit.
After 2 minutes, press cancel on the saute function. Add the chicken broth to the Instant Pot and the Italian seasoning.
Close the lid of the Instant Pot and make sure the knob on the lid is in the sealing position. Select pressure cook and set the cooking time to zero minutes on high pressure.
Once the Instant Pot comes up to pressure, quick release the pressure. Carefully open the lid and fluff the couscous with a fork. The couscous should be al dente when it's done. Serve immediately.
- Add in fresh vegetables! Sauté red bell peppers, zucchini, onions, and garlic before adding the couscous for a perfect side dish at dinnertime!
- Make it vegan! Instead of chicken broth, use hot water or vegetable stock for a simple side dish.
- Make it a main dish! Add ground beef to the electric pressure cooker and cook for 5 minutes until the beef is fully cooked. Add the couscous and liquid to the Instant Pot and close the lid.
How To Serve With Instant Pot Couscous
- Served under Instant Pot Hawaiian Chicken
- As a quick salad with chickpeas, feta cheese, pine nuts, mint, olive oil, salt, red pepper, and black pepper! Top with a squeeze of lemon juice, a teaspoon of lemon zest, and serve cold or at room temperature.
- In egg fried couscous with vegetables
Frequently Asked Questions
Couscous is not a grain, it's actually tiny grain-like pasta made from semolina wheat rolled with water to make tiny balls. It's closer to pasta than it is to rice or quinoa.
The first time I tried making couscous in my Instant Pot, I got the burn message. I had the cook time way too high and therefore the burn notice came up. To avoid that, we need to keep the cook time to zero and do not stir the couscous once you add the chicken broth. If you do get the burn notice, don't panic! Simply open the Instant Pot, check the couscous, and more than likely the couscous will be done.
Keep couscous in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. You can even freeze couscous in an airtight container for up to 3 months. When you are ready to defrost the couscous, place the couscous in the refrigerator until it defrosts.
Other Recipes To Try!
Did you love this Instant Pot Couscous Recipe? If you did, don't forget to tag me on social media on Instagram or Facebook and share this recipe on Pinterest! Thanks for sharing this journey with me and enjoy these delicious recipes!
Simple Instant Pot Couscous
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 3 ½ cups Broth Chicken Broth or vegetable broth
- 2 cups Couscous
- 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
- Press the saute button on your Instant Pot. Add the olive oil and the couscous. Cook the couscous for 2 minutes.
- After 2 minutes, press cancel on the saute function. Add the chicken broth to the Instant Pot and the Italian seasoning.
- Close the lid of the Instant Pot and make sure the knob on the lid is in the sealing position. Select pressure cook and set the cooking time to zero minutes on high pressure.
- Once the Instant Pot comes up to pressure, quick release the pressure. Carefully open the lid and fluff the couscous with a fork. The couscous should be al dente when it's done. Serve immediately.
- Using low sodium broth allows you to control the salt content in the couscous.
- The Instant Pot will take 5-10 minutes to come up to pressure and then will stop cooking since we set the time to zero minutes.