2018’s Best Electric Pressure Cookers
Electric pressure cookers or Instant Pots as it is more commonly known, are programmable electronic pressure cookers that come with different functions. Instant pots or Instapots for short, are very useful since most of us are very busy that we do not even find time to carry out some of the most basic tasks in our lives like cooking. Instapots help resolve this issue because it is a convenient way to cook. With the advent of new technologies, convenience and ease has become a priority. This is where Instapots shine. So if you are sold on this appliance and want to get one, here is a guide to help you. In this guide, we will discuss and compare this appliance, its benefits and how to choose the best Instapot for your needs. Stick around and by the end of this article, you will be able to find the right one for you.
What exactly does an Instapot do?
The Instant Pot is considered as the king of the kitchen because it is able to perform the jobs of seven different kitchen appliances. The instapot can serve as a rice-cooker, a steamer, a pressure cooker and a yogurt-maker too. If you simply look at it, it is just an elaborate electronic pressure, but it is very impressive at doing its job. Instapot is being sold in the USA, UK, and Canada. The reason for this is that the startup company that made this product only had a team of only 40 people during the launching. Although the product is currently being sold on online platforms like Amazon, they were able to sell 24,000 units on the first Prime day of Amazon. This is evidence of how great this product is.
It is worth keeping in mind that all the models and sizes that have been sold by the company are completely safe. In terms of functionality or safety, no one model is less than the other. They are all well-built and sturdy with stainless steel interiors. So basically, choosing a specific model ahead of another will rely mostly on your preference and needs. So without further ado, here are the best Instapots you can choose from.
- Instant Pot Lux Model
The Instant Pot Lux Model is the most budget friendly model of the series. If you are strapped for cash, but are looking for best quality at a lower price, then go for the Lux model. This 6-in-1 instapot does the pressure cooking, browning, sautéing, slow cooking, warming, and rice cooking well. The only downside is, the Lux model can’t make yogurt because of the incompatibility with the app for iPhone and Android devices. This instapot has a few features but it does the job well and will make lives easier for many people.
- Easy to use
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Can cook eggs, soups, rice, beans, and lentils
- Low pressure option not available
- Can’t make yogurt
- Instant Pot Duo 7 in 1
Consider the Duo model as an upgraded version of the Lux model because it has 7-in-1 functionality and best of all, it can also make yogurt. It is easier to handle and you can now comfortably hold it. It has 2 different settings and comes with diverse capacities including 3 Qt pot, 6 Qt pot and 8 Qt instapot. Just like the Lux, it is also incompatible with the iPhone or Android app.
Duo Plus instant pot is designed to save the previous timings and pressure settings that you’ve set. Plus, it has another great feature, the sterilize option, which can be used for cleaning feeders. This model comes with 13 predetermined temperatures and 14 nifty microprocessor accurate programs. It basically offers so much more than the traditional cookers. It can do pressure cooking, slow cooking, sautéing/browning, yogurt making, steamer and warmer.
- Easy-touch controls
- Consistent results
- Offers dual pressure for faster cooking
- Has several cooking options
- Can boil water
- Can be quite complicated during first use
- Instant Pot Ultra Model
If you are looking for a pressure cooker that can do it all, then the Ultra Model is what you should get. It literally has millions of functions. You can make yogurt, kefir, breads and ricotta cheese and even sync your smart instant pot cooker with the SmartApp on your iPhone, Android, Mac or PC via a Bluetooth connection. The app is free to download by the way. The Ultra Model will allow you to choose temperatures between 104 to 208 F and timings that can be set between 1 minute to 6 hours. This advanced model will also allow you to differentiate the temperature one degree at a time and will give you complete control over your cooking. It has all the same features as listed on the Duo model.
- Has 11 Safety features
- Added accessories
- Very convenient dial
- Display is easy to read
- Highly customizable
- Has a sterilizing feature
- Has a 1-touch button for perfectly cooking eggs
- Great customer support
- Complicated instructions
- Instant Pot Smart Model
If you are looking for an instapot that allows you to control your cooking through your smartphone, then the Instant Pot Smart Model is the best choice. It has all the cool features like making yogurt, kefir, breads and ricotta cheese and will also sync instapot with the SmartApp on your iPhone, Android, Mac or PC using a Bluetooth connection. It will take your cooking to a whole another level. Best of all, you can also get access to hundreds of cooking recipes. The Smart Model has 12 preset temperatures and 14 smart built-in programs that you can choose from. That should be more than enough for your cooking needs.
- Has 14 smart program features
- Can save up to 70% time and energy
- Has more temperature settings than any other model
- Allows you to sync the Instant Pot with your smartphone or tablet
- Complicated instructions
- Bluetooth can sometimes have issues
How to determine the size I need?
If you are new to the Instapot craze, what you need to remember is that size does matter. An 8-quart size is the recommended size for large families because you can easily cook meals for 4-6 people. It can even serve up to 8 people just in case guests are coming over. A 5-quart size on the other hand, is recommended if you are a college student or if you only need to cook food for 2 or 3 people max. This size is easier to handle and allows you to transfer the cooked food to serving ware a lot easier. As a general rule you can follow, 1 liter or 1 quart is equivalent to one person.
What do I get from using Instapot?
Instapot has multiple uses and has now become perhaps the most-used appliances in any kitchen. Here are the benefits you will get.
Stainless Steel Interior – Since the interior is made completely of stainless-steel, it will not contaminate your food, unlike appliances that are made of plastic. It also does not have any non-stick surfaces like Teflon, just pure and safe stainless steel.
Multi-Use – As we have kept mentioning, the instapot can potentially replace a rice cooker, a slow cooker, a sauté pan and even a steamer. So there is no need to keep using a different appliance for whatever you want to cook.
Time Saving – Saving time is considered as the main benefit of using the pot since it is able to cook a recipe that will usually take 6-8 hours in a slow cooker in just 1 hour. You can even prepare a roast for dinner as quick as 40 minutes. If you are a busy person, this appliance is your best friend.
Excellent Value for Money – Although it is expensive compared to a generic single-use appliance, it will become cost-effective if you use it as a replacement for other appliances. Instead of spending for a pressure cooker, a slow cooker, and a rice cooker separately, just get the instapot which is able to do all the work for these different appliances.
Programmable – The instapot has programmable features that will allow you to set it up 24-hours in advance to cook food at a set time. How cool is that? There are also other options pre-programmed into this pot that will make it easier to use.
Uses Energy Efficiently – The heating element of an Instapot is a built-in electronic one that will not require a separate gas/electric stove, which will save you money. It also makes it a more energy-efficient device which is good for the environment.
Very Easy to Clean – Since it is made completely of stainless steel, it is very easy to clean by hand and is dishwasher-safe too.
What are its disadvantages?
Up-Front Cost – Although the price is reasonable considering it can replace other kitchen appliances, it still retails at up to $200 which is quite high. It is a big up-front cost especially if you already have the other appliances in your kitchen that it can replace.
Requires time to learn – The instapot is a relatively new method of cooking which will require time for you to completely master. The good news though is that it is easier to use than other pressure-cookers. But still, we recommend reading the instruction manual before you use it.
To conclude this guide, the InstaPot will completely change the way you cook food. It will change your lifestyle for the better. The best thing about the instapot is if you are in a hurry, you can just choose the pressure cooking option to save time. if you do have time, you can just as easily choose the slow cooking option and get back to whatever you are doing and just check on what you are cooking later. The technological advancements and high-tech features of the instapot will always make you ready to cook. You will find that once you adapt how the Instant Pot works, you will never go back to the other ways of cooking. Think of it like how smartphones have changed our lives. With over 5,000 positive reviews on Amazon this can become the go-to wedding present for friends or relatives in the future. It definitely stands out from basic kitchen tools and appliances and is fast becoming one of the most-used tools in any kitchen. Hopefully, this guide will be able to help you out if you wish to purchase the wonder that is called the Instant Pot. Good luck and happy cooking.