10 Reasons You Should Buy An Instant Pot
I have been the proud owner of an Instant Pot for 2 years now. I had one before anyone I knew in person had one. I first heard of them from one of my favorite food bloggers and decided to ask for one for my birthday in 2015.
Best present ever.
I still use the “magic pot” several times a week! I feel like I should get a cut from the company because I have turned so many people into potheads. Instant Potheads that is. Wait, that sounds even worse.
Would you believe, I got about a quarter of this post written and then stopped to cook (why do they need to eat ALL the time??) and when I got back to my laptop a friend had written this on my Facebook timeline:
“Just want to say thank you! Met at a quiz tornament……friended online……then you started everydayfoodspirations…….and I learned about the Instant Pot. My life has changed forever in the best way possible!!!!” – Trisha Gerhard
(By the way, I have a group on Facebook called “Everyday Foodspirations” where people share recipes to inspire others to get creative in the kitchen! Give it a join if you want!)
Incredible timing, right?!
I decided it would be helpful to write a post like this instead of just typing them all out individually as a FB comment when I’m asked. I’m also planning on doing a round-up of my favorite Instant Pot recipes soon, so stay tuned!
I’m not going to be dramatic and say you NEED one. Obviously, you’ve lived (insert age) years without one, just like millions of other people. Humanity thrived, even before Instant Pots.
But I will say that owning an Instant Pot is definitely an advancement in kitchen technology.
To me, an Instant Pot is the smartphone of the kitchen.
Most of us would be able to live a normal life with a flip phone that only made calls, but why settle for a boring flip phone when you can have a smartphone that is capable of doing so much more?
OK, maybe that’s a bad example when a lot of us are trying to be less technologically dependent, but you know what I mean.
An Instant Pot will make your life easier.
Let me share a few reasons how.
You can cook meat from frozen.
- I am the QUEEN of forgetting to defrost the meat I’m cooking for dinner in time. I actually have gotten better lately, but 2 years ago? Oh man. I’d be so proud of myself on stir-fry night for having my broccoli, carrots, onions, and garlic all chopped and ready to go. Yeah! Dinner was going to be a breeze! Um…except for the tiny fact that my chicken would still be frozen solid hiding behind the waffles and ice cream. UGH! I’d then give myself a lecture on how I need to get my life together as we ate a meatless stir-fry.
Meatless stir-frys are no more thanks to the Instant Pot!
It’s fast. Freaky fast.
- Sorry, Jimmy John’s.
Tonight, for example, I made a 4-pound chuck roast in 70 minutes. The machine took 10 minutes to come to pressure, and 60 minutes to cook. I took the kids on a walk AND got a load of laundry completely through the wash cycle and into the dryer while a roast that would take 8 hours to get tender in a slow cooker cooked in an hour.
Food tastes better.
- I know some people are in love with their slow cookers. I used mine sometimes, but not often. Maybe I was doing something wrong, but the food all tasted kind of blah.
When food is pressure cooked it’s cooked a lot faster retaining more of the flavor. When it’s slow cooked it cooks much slower, losing a lot of the flavor.
If you’re a die-hard slow cooker fan please don’t hate me! I would encourage you to cook the same dish in both the slow cooker and the pressure cooker, and see which one is tastier! And guess what? You don’t have to choose one or the other because the Instant Pot is also a slow cooker! Which brings me to point number 4…
It can do anything.
- OK, so it can’t pack your lunches and fold your laundry, but it does have quite a lengthy resume. The Instant Pot is actually a multi-cooker.The model I have (IP DUO60 7-in-1) is a/an:1.) Electric pressure cooker
2.) Slow cooker
3.) Rice cooker
5.) Sautee/browning pan
6.) Yogurt maker
7.) Warming potIt makes amazing rice.
- To some people, this might not be worthy of its own bullet point, but to our family, it is. I grew up eating Nigerian food (a lot of rice) and my husband grew up in Japan where they eat a lot of rice. So rice is a several times a week staple. I used to have a slight obsession with my rice cooker. It’s a lot more fool-proof and hands off than cooking it in a pot on the stove, but they take forever! The model I have takes 15 min to get to the right temperature before the timer even starts counting down, so a pot of rice takes no less than 30 minutes. As long as I started it before my meal, it wouldn’t be a big deal, but I tend to forget important steps like that (see bullet point #1) and we were usually waiting for the rice long after the main dish was finished.
The IP (the widely-known nickname for the Instant Pot) cooks white rice much faster. Total time, including coming to pressure and the release of the pressure is 15 minutes. That’s HALF the time of a rice cooker! Do you see why this deserved its own bullet point?!
It’s super safe.
- My mom had a stovetop pressure cooker when I was growing up, and she used it for rice sometimes, but not very often.
I’m sure we all know someone whose grandma’s neighbor’s brother’s cousin had a pressure cooker explode in their mustard-colored floral wallpapered kitchen. While I’m sure even the stovetop ones have gotten safer over the years, the Instant Pot is even safer. There’s a ton of safety features on each pot that aren’t even possible with a stovetop one. I’ve never heard of an Instant Pot blowing up. For example: If there isn’t enough liquid in the pot, or if the silicone gasket isn’t inserted correctly, the machine won’t even get to pressure. The food will get hot, and possibly boil in the pot, but you don’t have to worry about the lid flying off and making your kitchen look like a minestrone murder scene on soup night.
It’s easy to clean.
- The inner pot is made of stainless steel and is super easy to clean. Tip: When browning something, wait until the pot says “Hot” and then add your cooking fat, wait a minute or 2 for it to heat up, and then add whatever you’re browning. You won’t have sticking that way. I’d also recommend that you keep a can of Bar Keeper’s Friend “around to make all of your stainless steel super shiny again!
It makes really REALLY good cheesecakes.
- Did you know you can make cheesecakes in the IP? Yes, they’re smaller (portion control) because a full-size cheesecake pan wouldn’t fit inside, but that not necessarily a bad thing. Have you ever made or bought a cheesecake for dinner guests and had so much left over that you sneak into the kitchen, grab a fork, and eat it out of the pan for the next 4 days?
OK, OK, I kind of miss that but you can make a smaller one and do the same thing! I’ll be honest, making cheesecakes in the IP isn’t much of a time-saver compared to making them in the oven, but they taste really really good! In fact, last holiday season I made IP cheesecakes to order as a fundraiser for our youth group. Several people told me the texture was the best they’d ever had! I had lots of repeat customers! I did get cheesecake burn-out by Christmas though!
It’s a space saver.
- For some people, that’s not important, but for me, someone who has always had a tiny kitchen, it means a lot. It does so much that if you’re brave enough, you could even get rid of some of your other kitchen gadgets. I gave away my slow-cooker before I moved. I kept it for over a year after getting my IP, and used it a total of zero times. I gave it to a friend who would actually use it as more than a dust collector like I was. I still use my rice cooker periodically because if my IP is busy working hard for me making the main dish, I don’t want to wait until it’s done, clean out the pot, and then make the rice. I wish I had TWO Instant Pots, but alas, I’m not there yet.
- Seriously, there have been so many recipes I’ve found and made that I probably wouldn’t have ever tried if it weren’t for the Instant Pot. From Tikka Masala to Tom kha kai, I’ve found so many staples in our kitchen that my whole family loves. You can pretty much find a recipe for anything online. There are so many groups on FB dedicated to specific Instant Pot recipes. You can easily find gluten-free, vegan, paleo, dairy-free, taste-free (haha), or whatever way of eating you choose!
- There is something that’s kind of annoying I should warn you about.
The silicone ring retains smells. There are ways to lighten the smell, but you don’t want to cook chili and then a cheesecake with the same ring. You might have meat and tomato flavored cheesecake. Luckily, the rings are pretty cheap either through the company’s website or Amazon. I’ll give you another tip. For some reason, cooking potatoes with a smelly ring really helps lessen the smell. It’s kind of amazing really. Unless you really like potatoes, it might be easier to just get an extra ring or two.
Are you convinced yet? If you’re ready to take the plunge (you won’t regret it,) check out all the different models and see which one works best for your family.
- IP-DUO60 6 QUART– This is the one I have. We have grown to a family of 4 since owning it and I can still cook enough for us to have leftovers.
- IP – LUX60 6 QUART – This one is similar to the above one except it does not have the yogurt making function.
- IP ULTRA 6 QUART – This is the one I’m going to get in the future. It has a lot of updated features that make me all googly-eyed. It’s the same size as my current one, but you definitely pay more for the updates.
- EXTRA SEALING RING – Your Instant Pot will automatically come with one sealing ring, but I would definitely recommend getting another one. I always have two on hand. One is for “savory” and one is for “sweet.” I keep the spare in a labeled gallon-size plastic bag in my cupboard.
If I can help answer any questions at all that you might have about the Instant Pot, please, don’t hesitate to ask me!
I honestly love my Instant Pot, and I know so many others who love theirs as well!
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