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A bowl of Provencal pesto soup in front of an Instant Pot and a jar of spices

Instant Pot Soupe au Pistou (Provencal Pesto Soup)

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5 from 2 reviews

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Yield: 10 cups of soup 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Instant Pot Soupe au Pistou. Pressure cooked Provencal pesto soup, with white beans and summer vegetables.



Soaking the beans

  • 8 ounces dried navy beans (or Alubia Blanca beans), sorted and rinsed
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt

Pesto Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme (or fresh thyme leaves)
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 large carrots (about 8 ounces), peeled and cut into ½-inch rounds
  • 8 ounces green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 14- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes and juice (or 1 cup diced fresh Roma tomatoes)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 cup ditalini dried pasta (or other small shape like tubetini, shells, or elbows)
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into ½-inch rounds
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 6- to 8-ounce jar of basil pesto - 1 tablespoon per bowl of soup


  1. Sort and rinse the beans: Sort the beans, discarding any stones, dirt, or broken beans. Rinse the beans, then do an overnight or a quick soak.
  2. Overnight soak: Stir the beans, water, and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl. Leave the beans on the counter to soak at least 8 hours, or overnight. Drain and discard the soaking liquid, and rinse the beans.
  3. OR: Pressure Quick Soak for 1 minute with a 30 minute rest: Put the beans and 6 cups of water in an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker. Pressure cook at high pressure for 1 minute (“Manual” or “Pressure Cook” mode in an Instant Pot for 1 minute), then let the beans sit in the pressure cooker for 30 minutes. Drain and discard the soaking liquid, rinse the beans, and wipe out the pressure cooker pot.
  4. Sauté the aromatics: Heat the olive oil in an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker set to sauté mode (medium heat for a stovetop PC) until the oil starts shimmering. Add the onion and garlic, and sprinkle with ½ teaspoon salt and the thyme. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onions soften, about 5 minutes.
  5. Everything in the pot: Add the drained and rinsed white beans to the pressure cooker, then pour in the 6 cups of water. Stir in the carrots, green beans, tomatoes, and 1 ½ teaspoons of salt.
  6. Pressure cook for 15 minutes with a quick release: Lock the lid and pressure cook at high pressure for 18 minutes in an Instant Pot or other electric PC (Use “manual” or “pressure cook” mode in an Instant Pot), or for 15 minutes in a stovetop PC. Quick release the pressure.
  7. Cook the pasta and zucchini, season, and serve: Open the pressure cooker lid, tilting it away from you to avoid the hot steam. Set the Instant Pot to sauté mode adjusted to high (use medium-high heat in a stovetop PC). Add the pasta and zucchini, bring to a boil, and boil for the time on your pasta package’s directions (my ditalini took 10 minutes). Stir in the fresh ground black pepper, then ladle into bowls, and stir a tablespoon of pesto into each bowl. (Eyeball this - it doesn’t have to be a precisely measured tablespoon.) Serve, passing extra pesto at the table in case anyone wants to add more. Enjoy!


Want to add a little smoky pork to this vegetarian recipe? Add a hunk of salt pork or a smoked ham hock to the soup bowl.

Have other summer vegetables you want to add? If they’re harder vegetables, add them with the carrots and green beans so they are pressure cooked. If they are tender vegetables, add them with the zucchini, so they are only simmered at the end.


6 quart or larger pressure cooker (I love my Instant Pot electric pressure cooker)

Fine Mesh Strainer

  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Sunday Dinner
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Provencal