Instant Pot Golden Borscht with duck

Instant Pot golden borscht with duck

Several years ago now, I was intrigued by Olia Hercules’ recipe for Green Borscht that appeared in The Guardian. It was full of sorrel and beet greens but no beets.  But, the protein was duck.

I decided to make a duck-based borscht like Olia’s but with what I had on hand. If you have sorrel and beet greens, her recipe looks amazing.  This recipe uses yellow/golden beets and red chard and gets topped with some crispy duck skin.

Jump straight to the recipe

Season a duck leg with salt and pepper.  You could easily double the amount of duck and use two legs.

Duck leg seasoned with salt and pepper

Sear the duck leg first skin side down on Saute – Normal for 6 to 8 minutes.  When it’s done it should not be sticking anymore.  I don’t add oil here because the duck will render quite a bit of fat.

Seared duck leg in the Instant Pot


Flip and sear the other side for another 6 to 8 minutes.  Meanwhile get the vegetables ready for the stock: one whole onion, two carrots and 2 celery stalks with leaves.

Duck leg, carrots, celery, onion and bay leaf in the Instant Pot with water to make stock

Add a bay leaf to the stock and add water to fill up to the 2 quart mark inside the Instant Pot.  Pressure cook on Manual for 12 minutes on Low pressure.  In total, it will take 25 to 30 minutes to come to pressure, cook and 10-minute natural release.

Chopped garlic, carrot coins and cubed golden beet

While the stock is cooking, chop up the vegetables.  I’ve diced a yellow/golden beet and a medium potato.  I used a slicer to get even carrot slices of carrot and finely chopped 2 cloves of garlic.

Trimming the meat away from the duck leg boneWhen the stock has finished cooking, remove most of the meat but leaving some on the bones. Discard the vegetables and bay leaf from the stock.  As an optional step for a richer broth, you can return the bone to the Instant Pot and cook for 20 minutes on Less pressure with a 10 minute natural release.

Duck broth in an OXO fat strainer

At this point, you can chill the stock overnight to remove the fat (duck is very fatty).  Or use a fat strainer to return the stock to the Instant Pot.

Strips of duck skin on tin foil

Another optional step is to carefully peel the skin off of the separated meat.  Slice it into thin pieces and place on aluminum foil.  Cook at 450°F in an oven for about 5 to 10 minutes – until deep brown.  Flip halfway through. Set aside the duck skin for serving.

Crispy strips of duck skin

Add the diced golden beets, diced potatoes and sliced carrots into the broth along with the garlic.  This time, cook on Manual for 7 minutes on High Pressure.

Cooked vegetables in broth

It’s the golden beets and carrots that really make this a bright yellow soup.

Chopped duck meat

Cut up the duck meat into smaller pieces – making sure there are no smaller bones.  Add the duck meat to the soup mixture along with the chard.  Turn the power off on the Instant Pot.  The residual heat will be enough to cook the chard in 2 to 3 minutes.

Instant Pot golden borscht with duck topped with crispy duck skinTop with duck skin pieces and serve.

Instant Pot Golden Borscht with duck

This bright yellow duck-based borscht gets its colour from golden beets and carrots.
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 2 hrs
Course Soup
Cuisine Ukrainian-Canadian
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 duck leg
  • 1 small onion whole
  • 2 large carrots whole
  • 2 celery stalks whole
  • 3 large carrots sliced
  • 1 large yellow/golden beet diced
  • 1 medium potato diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 bunch of chard chopped


  • Season the duck leg with salt and pepper on both sides. On Saute Normal in the Instant Pot, sear the skin side first for 6 to 8 minutes. Flip and sear the other side for 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Add 4 to 6 cups of water to the Instant Pot and scrape any brown bits in the pot. Add the whole vegetables (onion, carrots, celery) along with a bay leaf. Set the Instant Pot to cook for 12 minutes on Low pressure using Manual. Wait 10 minutes to do a natural release.
  • Remove the duck leg. Separate the meat leaving some on the bone. Slice the meat into small pieces and set aside.
  • Optional: return the duck leg to the pot and cook again using the Broth setting for 20 minutes ("Less") on High Pressure. Wait 10 minutes to do a natural release.
  • Optional: remove the skin from the duck leg and slice into thin strips. Bake at 450°F for 5 to 10 minutes until dark brown, flipping at least once. Set aside.
  • Remove the duck bone and discard the vegetables and bay leaf. Chill the stock overnight to remove the fat or use a fat strainer.
  • Add the sliced carrots, diced golden beets, diced potatoes and minced garlic. Set the Instant Pot to Manual for High Pressure for 7 minutes. When the time is up, wait 10 minutes before releasing the pressure to do a Natural Release.
  • Turn off the Instant Pot and add the duck meat pieces and the chard. Cook for 2 to 5 minutes to cook the chard.
  • Serve in bowls and top with pieces of crispy duck skin. (Optional: top with sliced green onions, serve with sour cream)


Instant Pot golden borscht with duck

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