The instant pot has quickly replaced the stovetop, oven, and even the microwave as my go-to for making perfect sweet potatoes! They come out fluffy, tender, and they're great on their own or ready to mash and use in a pie or other recipe.



DIRECTIONS:


1. Select evenly sized sweet potatoes! Poke holes all over with a fork.


2. Add one cup of water to your pressure cooker and insert the trivet to keep the potatoes elevated. Arrange the sweet potatoes on the trivet.


3. Set to manual, high pressure and use the following cook times:

  • 12 minutes for small potatoes (6-8 ounces)

  • 18 minutes for medium (8-12 ounces)

  • 25 minutes for large (12-16 ounces)

4. Let pressure naturally release for 10 minutes, then quick release and enjoy!


Just when you thought spaghetti night couldn't get any easier! Just use the sauté function to brown your meat, then add dry noodles and sauce to the pot. No colander needed and only one dish to wash!


INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pound 85% lean ground beef

  • 1 pound spaghetti noodles

  • 24 ounce jar spaghetti sauce

  • 4 cups water

  • 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • 1/2 tsp onion powder

  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning



DIRECTIONS:

1. Set the pressure cooker to sauté and add ground beef, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and Italian seasoning. Brown the meat, turn the instant pot off and drain any excess grease (if necessary)


2. Break spaghetti noodles in half. Make thin crisscrossed noodle layers on top of the ground beef in the pressure cooker- one layer up and down, one layer side to side (rotated 90 degrees relative to the first layer). I usually have around 8 layers from a 1 pound box of spaghetti. The layering is very important so they don't clump up!


3. Pour spaghetti sauce, water, and diced tomato on top


4. Seal the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes. Quick release and stir very well- it may take a minute for the noodles to absorb excess liquid



For many women, morning sickness is one of the first pregnancy symptoms to appear. The exact cause is unknown, but it's speculated that rising HCG levels cause smooth muscle which lines the digestive tract (and particularly the upper esophageal sphincter) to relax, inducing nausea. Symptoms in most women are limited to the first trimester and usually resolve around 14 weeks. Here are a few of my favorite tips to help manage nausea:

Ginger Chews

I first stumbled across these in a desperate search of the grocery store's medicine aisle- Dramamine (known for motion sickness medications) makes an all-natural ginger nausea relief. I found an off-brand on Amazon that I think work a little better, are tastier, and have a much better price tag. They're individually wrapped, perfect for stashing a couple in a purse, pocket, or glove box for whenever you may need one.


Seltzer Water

For many women, nausea makes it difficult to even THINK about eating. Mine was much worse with an empty stomach - it seemed like junk food and carbs were the only thing that would keep my nausea at bay! I could literally have eaten peanut butter crackers all day long. Concerns about a healthy amount of first trimester weight gain sent me searching for other options, and I landed on seltzer water! The carbonation really seemed to fill my stomach. The fluids likely helped as well, as pregnancy hormones are more concentrated in the bloodstream when we're dehydrated.


Pressure Point Wristbands

I ordered these after hearing strong recommendations and great reviews from my friends. I wore them for a few days, but honestly didn't notice any difference. I still believe they're a great thing to try- they help some people, there are no side effects if they don't work and they're fairly inexpensive.


Essential Oils

Several scents have been studied and perform better than placebo at reducing nausea and vomiting in pregnant women! Peppermint, Ginger, Lemon, and Lavender were my favorites. I loved diffusing them in my office, wearing a drop or two on a diffuser necklace, or smelling directly from the bottle when needed. I love Young Living and I'll send a necklace and other freebies your way if you order anything using my link!


One Day at a Time

Remember that you won't feel this way forever! It feels like a lifetime, but this stage of pregnancy will be over before you know it. I tried to distract myself from how miserable things felt- taking baths with fancy Epsom salts seemed to help!


If Natural Remedies Fail:

Please speak with your doctor! Avoid taking any leftover prescriptions of Zofran or Phenergan you may have in your medicine cabinet as these have been linked to birth defects, especially when taken in the first trimester. Most OB's will recommend Diclegis, a antihistamine (Unisom) and vitamin B6 combo that has helped many women and won't harm developing babies. If your symptoms are extremely severe or unable to be managed, ask your OB if you may have Hyperemesis Gravidarum.