Best Instant Pot 2023: A guide to the features of this year’s top cookers

by The Insights

Instant Pot (name):

1. The multicooker that can defrost a few frozen chicken breasts in less than three minutes, cut a six-hour slow cooker recipe down to 45 minutes, and replace a slew of dust-gathering appliances in your cabinet.

2. A star on Prime Day, Black Friday and holiday sales (if not for you, then as a gift for literally anyone)

3. Possibly the most significant technological advancement in recent history. The Mars Helicopter is a close second.

The Crock-Pot competitor turned cult classic has been a staple in gourmet kitchens since 2018.(opens in a new tab). The collection of three or four models has turned into an army of pressure cookers, toaster ovens, air fryers, blenders and coffee makers. Google automatically fills “Instant Pot” to “slow cooker” after typing “potato soup”. When you consider the time, effort, and counter space these powerhouses save, it all makes sense.

What does an Instant Pot do?

Yeah, why can’t you get a regular slow cooker? Basically, Instant Pots are electric pressure cookers. The exclusive locking lid creates a seal that heats the water inside well beyond its boiling point, turning it into steam. When this steam has nowhere to go, it builds pressure – cooking food 2-10 times faster than an oven or slow cooker could.


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What a Retailer’s Instant Pot Descriptions Won’t Tell You

The “manual” button on some entry-level models is the source of SO a lot of confusion. Most people only know this from watching tutorials or bumping into people on Instant Pot Reddit: The Manual Button East the pressure cook button. (Why it’s not labeled as such, we can’t be sure.) Think of it as manually enter how long you want something to cook under pressure. This is the setting to use if you want to defrost something quickly, and most foods don’t take more than a few minutes at this setting.

Even if your recipe only calls for a minute of cooking time, you’re not about to go from frozen chicken breasts to a perfect roast with a well-done center. Sealing and pressurizing feels like it takes forever (actually 5-10 minutes), and yes, it’s fine if your Instant Pot is blowing steam in the process. It will automatically switch to pressure cooking when pressurizing is complete and will automatically switch to reheating when the timer is complete.

And, if you get an older model that doesn’t have the new automatic sealing lid and steam release button, we suggest wearing an oven mitt or using a wooden spoon to activate the release. pressure and avoid a fear of jumps.

There are also some general rules of categorization to keep in mind during your quest:

  • The number in the title of each Instant Pot, for example “6-in-1”, describes the number of kitchen appliances it claims to replace.

  • In addition to appliance replacement functions, each model has built-in smart programs that become more specific: these 12 programs are bean/chili, meat/stew, soup/broth, stir-fry, poultry, steam, congee, multigrain, rice, pressure. cook, reheat and cook slowly. Some models have more, but every model has at least. These are the things listed on the buttons.

  • The 6-quart is the most popular size and is ideal for families of five or fewer, and every model is available in this size. The 3-quart is obviously best for small families, couples, or roommates and smaller dishes like appetizers and soups. The 8-quart is ideal for roasts or for preparing a few days of meals for large families. Instant Pots sometimes come in a 10-quart size, which is probably overkill unless you frequently cook for groups or are remodeling your kitchen and won’t have access to your major appliances for months.

All prices listed will be the lowest prices for each model, probably the smallest size. As the pint size increases, the prices of each model will also increase. Here’s how to compare the Instant Pot models available in 2023:

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