Instant Pot Napoleon Dynamite Soup is a cheesy hashbrown ground beef soup that is topped with tater tots in the place of croutons. Addicting!
Instant Pot Napoleon Dynamite Soup
I don’t know about you but I am a huge fan of Napoleon Dynamite! If you haven’t seen it it’s a low budget movie from 2004 that has become a cult classic. According to Rotten Tomatoes, “In small-town Preston, Idaho, awkward teen Napoleon Dynamite (Jon Heder) has trouble fitting in. After his grandmother is injured in an accident, his life is made even worse when his strangely nostalgic uncle, Rico (Jon Gries), shows up to keep an eye on him. With no safe haven at home or at school, Napoleon befriends the new kid, Pedro (Efren Ramirez), a morose Hispanic boy who speaks little English. Together the two launch a campaign to run for class president.”
Because my mom grew up in Franklin, Idaho which is only a few miles from Preston, Idaho I have a lot of connections to the movie. Remember the scene at the chicken farm? (“That’s like a dollar an hour!”) That’s my extended family’s farm. There are a lot of comical truisms in this movie and it’s just the best.
I love that my kids now know and quote this movie. Skyler and his friends dressed up as Napoleon Dynamite characters a couple years ago for Halloween. 🤣
Greg’s favorite part of the movie is the scene where Napoleon is sitting in class and eating tater tots that were leftover from lunch out of his pants pocket. The bully next to him says, “Napoleon! Give me some of your tots!”
We can’t eat tater tots at our house without saying that line, “Give me some of your tots!!” It’s just the gift that keeps on giving.
And that takes us to today’s recipe. It’s a tater tot soup which I aptly named “napoleon dynamite soup.” This is such a fun recipe! You start by baking tater tots in the oven until crisp. These will serve as the croutons of the soup. While the tots are baking you’ll make the soup. Brown up some ground beef and then throw the rest of the ingredients into the pot and use the soup button to pressure cook for just 2 minutes. The tater tots and soup will get done at about the same time. You’ll finish the soup off by adding in some creamy half and half and cheese. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with a handful of crispy tots, a bit of bacon crumbles and some diced green onions. Kids and parents love this soup! It’s so fun with those tots on top. (Make sure to save some of the tots for later in your zip up cargo pants pocket 😆).
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A cheesy hashbrown ground beef soup that is topped with tater tots in the place of croutons.
- 1 (16 oz) bag frozen tater tots
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp dried basil
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 5 cups chicken broth
- 2–3 carrots, grated or sliced
- 4 cups frozen hashbrowns
- 1 cup half and half
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch
- 2 cup shredded cheddar
- For topping: bacon crumbles and green onions
- Prepare the tater tots according to package directions.
- While tater tots are cooking prepare the soup. Turn Instant Pot to saute setting. When the displays says HOT add in the ground beef and onions. Brown the ground beef for about 5 minutes. Drain off excess grease. Stir in the garlic powder, salt, basil, thyme and pepper.
- Pour in the broth and scrape bottom of pot so that nothing is sticking. Turn off Instant Pot. Add in the carrots and hashbrowns.
- Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the SOUP button to 2 minutes. When time is up let pot sit for 5 minutes and then move valve to venting.
- In a glass measuring cup whisk together the half and half and the cornstarch until smooth. Stir 1-2 cups of hot broth into mixture to temper. Pour the mixture into the Instant Pot. Turn Instant Pot to sauté setting. The soup will thicken up fairly quickly. Once it’s thickened turn off Instant Pot. Stir in the cheese and let melt.
- Ladle into bowls and top each both with a handful of tater tots, a tablespoon of bacon crumbles and a sprinkling of green onions.
- Category: Soup
- Method: Instant Pot
*Karen Petersen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.