This fun and colorful red, white, and blue bundt cake is “baked” in the Instant Pot, for a patriotic 4th of July dessert treat!
You’ll love how easy it is to make this Instant Pot patriotic bundt cake, thanks to a doctored up cake mix and your pressure cooker!
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One of the best things about bundt cakes is that they are a no-fuss, super easy dessert.
There’s no need to try to make perfectly even layers of cake to stack on top of each other, and no need to get the frosting spread out or piped just right.
Instead, you end up with a pretty cake in the shape of your bundt pan, which you can then top with a simple drizzle of icing or glaze. Talk about easy!
Making a Cake in the Instant Pot
My first Instant Pot cake was this Instant Pot red velvet cake. I was hooked from then on, which prompted me to make this Instant Pot lemon bundt cake and Instant Pot carrot cake, an Instant Pot pumpkin spice bundt cake, an easy apple butter bundt cake, and this Instant Pot eggnog bundt cake.
Or everyone’s favorite marriage of flavors, with this Instant Pot peanut butter and chocolate bundt cake?
But once I made a super fun Instant Pot rainbow cake, I knew I had to experiment with different color combinations for special occasions.
That’s where this Instant Pot patriotic bundt cake comes in!!
I mean, seriously, look at those pretty swirls of red, white, and blue! Plus the cream cheese glaze really takes it up a notch.
My kids adore this cake, and I can’t argue with that!
Can You Really Bake in an Instant Pot?
I know you’re probably wondering, “Can you really bake in an Instant Pot?”
The answer is both “yes” and “no.”
You can “bake” some things, but in some cases, it’s a little different from baking in an oven.
The reason is that the Instant Pot is a moist cooking environment, thanks to the steam required for pressure cooking, whereas the oven is a dry environment.
But for recipes where you want a browned crispy crust similar to what you’d get in the oven, you’re better off just baking the food in the oven.
But since we don’t need a crust on a bundt cake, this is a fabulous option!
It’s important to note that Instant Pot bundt cakes are a little smaller than a full-size cake, but you can still easily get 8-10 small servings out of one cake.
And while making a cake in the Instant Pot doesn’t save a lot of time, it does result in a perfectly moist cake that releases beautifully from the pan–and you don’t have to keep an eye on it like you do when baking in the oven!
What Size Cake Pan Fits in an Instant Pot?
The size of your pan will depend on the size of your Instant Pot.
I use a 6-quart Instant Pot, and I love this Nordic Ware Bundt Pan. It works great and conducts heat quickly since it’s made out of coated aluminum. It has a volume of 6 cups, and the size is ideal for my Instant Pot.
How to Make A Patriotic Bundt Cake in the Instant Pot
The process of making this red, white, and blue bundt cake is so simple!
Ingredients You’ll Need:
How You’ll Make It:
Make the batter. You’ll start by mixing your batter, using a cake mix. Because the 6-cup bundt pan is smaller than a standard bundt pan, I only use half of the box of mix.
I use a white cake mix, because that allows the colors to be more vivid. If you use a yellow cake mix, that will tint the colors slightly.
Make the colors. After you’ve mixed up the batter, divide it evenly into 3 separate bowls.
I love using these little bowls, which certainly aren’t necessary for the recipe, but they are just so cute! And if you have kids, they’re PERFECT for packing snacks and lunches because they come with lids.
Now, I will say that it will take A LOT of red food coloring to get a really vibrant, true red color. My red ended up being a tinge pink, because I didn’t want to use a ton of the food coloring.
I used about 20 drops of each color. I didn’t mind the slightly pink hue at all, but if you are looking for a deep red color, you’ll want to add more.
Layer the colors. Grease your bundt pan with some cooking spray, then drop batter by spoonfuls into the pan, alternating colors. Don’t stir–just layer the colors.
Pressure cook. Cover the pan with aluminum foil, then pour 1 1/2 cups of water into the insert pot of the Instant Pot. Lower the pan onto the trivet.
Cook at high pressure for 25 minutes, followed by a 10 minute natural release of pressure. You can then release any remaining pressure with a quick release.
Note: If you’re using a dark nonstick bundt pan, you will likely need to increase the cook time by 3-5 minutes.
Top with icing. Remove the cake and invert onto a plate. While the cake cools, prepare your icing. Once the cake is completely cool, drizzle the cream cheese glaze on top, add some patriotic sprinkles, and serve!
More Delicious Bundt Cake Recipes:
Notes and Adaptations:
- I used liquid food coloring. While I haven’t personally tested gel food coloring, I don’t see why it wouldn’t work just fine!
- I just add the various colors in “blobs”, because that’s easiest, but you could totally make a pretty design if you want! You can layer however you want. If you want more of a “rainbow arc,” you can simply layer more evenly.
- If you prefer a full-size cake, simply double the recipe (using the full box of cake mix) and bake in a full-size bundt pan in the oven, according to the time and temperature instructions on the box.
- For the Cake:
- 1/2 of a white cake mix (about 1 3/4 cups of dry mix)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 3 Tbsp sour cream
- Liquid Food coloring in red and blue
- For the Cream Cheese Glaze:
- 2 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1 Tbsp butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 3 Tbsp milk (or more for desired consistency)
To Prepare the Cake:
- Use cooking spray to grease a 6-cup bundt pan well.
- Combine all ingredients for the cake (except for food coloring) in a mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer to beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes.
- Divide batter evenly into 3 bowls.
- Add about 20 drops of red food coloring to one bowl (more if you want a more vibrant, deep red color), 20 drops of blue food coloring to another bowl, and leave one bowl plain white. Stir well to combine the food coloring into the batter.
- Spoon batter into the prepared pan, alternating colors.
- Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil.
- Pour 1 1/2 cups of water into the insert pot of an Instant Pot and place the trivet in the insert pot. Carefully lower the bundt pan onto the trivet (you may want to use a foil sling).
- Close the lid and set the vent to the sealed position. Using the
Manual/Pressure Cook button, select a cook time of 25 minutes at high pressure.
- When the cook time is complete, allow a 10 minute natural release of pressure, followed by a quick release of remaining pressure (you can also do a full natural release if preferred).
- Once the pressure has released and the valve has dropped, carefully remove the lid and lift out the bundt pan. Allow the cake to cool for a few minutes before inverting it onto a plate. While the cake cools, prepare the glaze.
- Once the cake is completely cool, drizzle with the glaze.
To Prepare the Glaze:
- In a small mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to combine cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar.
- Add in milk, continuing to mix until the glaze is smooth. You want a glaze that is thin enough to drizzle but thick enough to stay on the cake. You can use more or less milk to adjust consistency, if desired.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 183Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 64mgSodium: 83mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 0gSugar: 9gProtein: 3g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated and is not guaranteed for accuracy.