Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to cook Instant Pot Kabocha Squash, also known as Japanese Pumpkin. Cook the squash whole and then slice it easily and safely. Serve the squash puree in a variety of ways.

kabocha squash in an instant pot ready to be cooked

Recipe Highlights

  • Kabocha squash is one of the sweetest and most flavorful of the winter squashes. It rivals butternut squash as my personal favorite!
  • Like most squashes, Kabocha squash is incredibly high in nutrition. It is a member of the pumpkin family and can have either orange or green skin.
  • By cooking the squash whole in the pressure cooker, you don’t have to worry about chopping it, which can be quite dangerous.
orange kabocha squash

Recipe Steps

Step One

Place a whole, uncut kabocha squash into the steamer basket of the Instant Pot with one cup of water. Lock on the lid and set the time to 20 minutes at high pressure.

When the cooking time is up, let the pressure come down naturally for about 5-10 minutes. Then, use the quick release to get rid of any remaining pressure. Remove the lid and use tongs to remove the squash to a bowl or cutting board.

cooked kabocha squash in an instant pot

Step Two

After the cooked squash has cooled for a few minutes, cut the squash down the middle. Do your best to scoop out the seeds and discard them or save them for another recipe. You can also discard the cooked skin, although it is edible if you like.

Step Three

Lastly, add whatever you want to the squash. You can sprinkle on some salt and pepper and use a fork to gently mash it, or you can add butter, ghee, coconut butter, or your favorite toppings.

One of my favorite ways to use Kabocha squash puree is to put it in a blender with about 1/2 cup of coconut milk, 1/2 cup of broth, and a dash of cinnamon. Blend it and heat it as a super easy and satisfying soup!

kabocha squash cooked puree in a glass bowl

Top Tips

  • Pick a small to medium-sized Kabocha squash to make sure it will fit inside your pressure cooker pot. Ideally your squash will be less than 8-inches in diameter to fit inside a 6-quart Instant Pot.
  • Serve immediately or store the cooked squash in a bowl with an air-tight lid in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Mash in a few tablespoons of butter, ghee, or coconut butter, along with some salt and pepper, and serve it as a healthy side dish.
  • You can also blend it with broth to make soup, or freeze it into cubes and add it to a smoothie.

FAQs

Do I need to poke holes in the squash to keep it from exploding?

No, you do not need to poke holes in the squash.

Can I cook more than one kabocha squash at a time?

Yes, as long as both squashes fit in the pot below the “max” line.

What do you do with cooked squash puree?

One of my favorite ways to use Kabocha squash puree is to put it in a blender with about 1/2 cup of coconut milk, 1/2 cup of broth, and a dash of cinnamon. Blend it and heat it as a super easy and satisfying soup!

Other Easy Instant Pot Vegetable Recipes You May Like

Don’t miss my round-up of the best Instant Pot Vegan recipes. And, if you’re wondering which Instapot to buy, I recommend the 6-quart Duo.

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Instant Pot Kabocha Squash

kabocha squash in an instant pot

Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to cook Instant Pot Kabocha Squash, also known as Japanese Pumpkin. Cook the squash whole and then slice it easily and safely. Serve the squash puree in a variety of ways.

  • Author: Carrie Forrest, MPH in Nutrition
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Pressure cooker
  • Cuisine: Healthy
  • Diet: Vegan
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 whole Kabocha squash (less than 8 inches in diameter)

Instructions

  1. Place the trivet inside the base of a 6-quart or 8-quart pressure cooker. Pour in the water and then place the Kabocha squash on top of the trivet.
  2. Lock on the lid and make sure the valve is set to “sealing.” Set the time to 20 minutes on high pressure. 
  3. Once the cooking time is complete, let the pressure come down for about 5-10 minutes. Then, remove the lid and use tongs to carefully remove the squash from the pot to a cutting board.
  4. When the squash is cool enough to handle, use a sharp knife to cut the squash in half from top to bottom.
  5. Open the squash and use a spoon to scoop out and discard the seeds. Use your spoon to scoop out the squash to a serving bowl. 
  6. Serve immediately or store the cooked squash in an bowl with an air-tight lid in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

Notes

  1. Cooked Kabocha squash can be served in a variety of ways. My favorite way to use it is to mash in a few tablespoons of butter, ghee, or coconut butter, along with some salt and pepper, and serve it as a healthy side dish.
  2. You can also blend it with broth to make soup, or freeze it into cubes and add it to a smoothie.  
  3. One of my favorite ways to use Kabocha squash puree is to put it in a blender with about 1/2 cup of coconut milk, 1/2 cup of broth, and a dash of cinnamon. Blend it and heat it as a super easy and satisfying soup!

Keywords: how to cook kabocha squash, pressure cooker kabocha squash, instant pot whole kabocha squash recipe

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