Things You Need to Know about Instant Pot: Guide for Users

Last Updated on September 21, 2021 by Amanda P. Brown

If you ask someone what an instant pot is, you might hear- it’s primarily an electric pressure cooker. But in my opinion, I would instead like to call it your best kitchen buddy.  

Instant pot is a multi-cooker introduced by Canada. These multi-cookers are operated electronically, and they are a combination of pressure cookers and slow cookers. The Instant Pot is a 6-in-1 or more appliance designed to fasten the cooking and preparing food to one pot. That results in a lot fewer efforts. If you are interested to know about every detail about this fantastic gadget. You are in the right place. Because today I am going to share all the essential things you need to know about instant pot.

Why Instant Pot?

When asked why Instant Pot, I tend to say- show me why not Instant Pot? Immediately after launch, this product got the most attention and became the most popular electric pressure cooker ever. It is evident because it is your

  1. Pressure cooker
  2. Slow cooker
  3. Oven
  4. Steamer
  5. Rice Cooker
  6. Yogurt Maker
  7. Sauté pan 
  8. Brownie Pan
  9. Food Warmer

It’s all in one! 

Unlike other multi-tasking products, it is very convenient, user-friendly, time savior, and, most importantly, budget-friendly. Only after having one Instant Pot will you discover how many items you can cook with a bit of effort and in such a short time. Besides, it also decreases your dishwashing hazards as it is one pot cooking solution. If you’re still confused about buying one, then continue reading. All your doubts will undoubtedly be clear. 

User Manual: Things You Need to Know about Instant Pot

Instant Pot

Instructions about Placing the Instant Pot

  • Place the Instant Pot on a solid table or sturdy countertop.
  • Ensure the presence of a power socket near the table you chose.
  • Ensure that there is enough space over the instant pot to eject the pressure.
  • Ensure wearing hand gloves to avoid burning sensation.

Instant Pot Plugin Instructions

  • Ensure that the inner pot is inside the cooker base and is neat.
  • After plugin in the Instant Pot, it will switch on and of which is standby mode.
  • The status symbol will always appear on the screen for your best understanding.
  • Choose your cooking method from the features provided.

Well Known Features of Instant Pot

The instant pot comes with many features, and you will always find yourself discovering new features and techniques about it as much as you use.

The features you will see on the instant pot screen are:

Soup, Meat/Stew, Bean/Chili, Poultry, Slow Cooker, Pressure, adjust, Yogurt, steam, porridge, multigrain, rice, Low pressure, high pressure, less, normal, more, sauté, manual, timer, keep warm. 

And there are a lot more features underneath these features. 

How Sauté Works on Instant Pot

According to most of the users, the sauté feature of the Instant Pot is the most fantastic option. It helps you make many flavorful dishes just in one single pot. The concept of making meats, sautéing vegetables, and thickening sauce in one pot might sound unbelievable, but that’s the magic only Instant Pot can do.

Let’s Sauté

  • Press the Sauté button on your Instant Pot. You can see the default 30 minutes on the pot screen. You don’t need to worry about time as you can press the cancel button and stop the sauté anytime.
  • Add oil to the pot as per your recipe.
  • Wait until the pot screen displays “Hot.”
  • Add your vegetables, meat, etc., to the pot and sauté as per your recipe.
  • Press the cancel button to stop Sauté.

And there you go! Enjoy your meal.

Some Tricks for the Instant Pot

  • You might have discovered that your Instant Pot makes sound while using it. If you don’t like that music, just press the minus (-) button for 3 sec and the sound will be off.
  • You will be shocked after seeing that how perfectly your Instant Pot can proof bread doughs. Click on the YOGURT button on the screen. Set the time 24 minutes which is half the regular time, and see the magic.
  • Stand the lid on the base on either side. Just remember, do not use it as a lever; otherwise, it’ll break.
  • You can use it as a double boiler. Put a bowl over the lid of the pot and steam! You can melt chocolates, frozen fruits, and juices.
  • You can use the “keep warm” button to keep your food hot for hours. You can use it in a buffet and keep your food hot during the whole party time.

Instant Pot Cook Times

FoodRequired Time
Beef Stew20 minutes
Beef  Ribs20-25 minutes
Beef Pieces20 minutes
Chicken Whole Chicken8 minutes
Chicken Bone Stock6-8 minutes
Chicken Thighs10 minutes
Chicken Wings10 minutes
Chicken Ham10-12 minutes
Potatoes Whole (large)9-12 minutes
Potatoes Whole (small)6-8 minutes
Potatoes Cubed2-3 minutes
Rice White4 -12 minutes
Rice Brown18-20 minutes
Beans Kidney (Red)6-7 minutes
Beans Kidney (White)5-7 minutes
Beans Green1-2 minutes
Beans Black5-7 minutes
FoodRequired Time
Asparagus1-2 minutes
Barley18 -20 minutes
Broccoli Florets1-2 minutes
Brussel Sprouts2-3 minutes
Black Eyes Peas3-4 minutes
Crab2-3 minutes
Cabbage2-3 minutes
Carrots5-7 minutes
Chickpeas7-12 minutes
Corn on the Cob2-4 minutes
Cauliflower Florets2-3 minutes
Cubed Butternut Squash3-5 minutes
Eggplant3-4 minutes
Fish(fillet)2-3 minutes
Hard-Boiled Eggs5-12 minutes
Jasmine Rice4-12 minutes
Lentils (Yellow)1 minutes
Mussels1-2 minutes
Millet8-10 minutes
Oatmeal2-3 minutes
Pinto Beans5-7 minutes
Quinoa1 – 12 minutes
Soy Bean13-15 minutes
Spinach1-2 minutes

Tips for Using Instant Pot

Instant Pot Recipes

Tips 1: When you’re running late, this hack can be your life savior. Add 1 cup of liquid with your food ingredients in the pot. It will bring the food to boil a lot faster. Another hacking method is Sauté or ‘preheat.’ Try this and add wheels to your cooking.

 Tips 2: Sanitize the silicone seals when you need to deodorize. Use 1 part vinegar, 1 part water, and 1-drop of liquid soap. Submerge seals by folding or twisting them. To keep seals submerged, use a frying trivet. Cover the pot with a lid, Sauté till it comes to boil, then turn off the power. Let it sit for half an hour.

Tips 3: If you haven’t tried cooking rice in your Instant Pot, then do it today! You will never repeat cooking rice in your rice cooker again because your Instant Pot makes the perfect rice ever.

Tips 4: If you have trouble placing the lid, you can put it on the notches on both sides of your Instant Pot. And while releasing pressure, you can take out the instant pot on an open surface that’ll help you prevent the spread of food smell in the house. That’s only if the smell of food makes you or the others uncomfortable.

Tips 5: To clean the outer black rim, you can use a small paintbrush. Use a foamy soap liquid, then dip the brush in the liquid soap and clean the rim. It is the easiest and most convenient way of cleaning.

25 Recipes You Must Try With Your Instant Pot

  • Instant Pot 2 minutes taco soup 
  • Instant Pot apple sauce
  • Instant Pot baby back Ribs
  • Instant Pot Barbacoa
  • Instant Pot butternut squash soup
  • Instant Pot Chicken Pho
  • Instant Pot Chicken Spaghetti
  • Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala
  • Instant Pot Corn Chowder
  • Instant Pot Corned beef and Cabbage
  • Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce 
  • Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
  • Instant Pot Roasted Garlic
  • Instant Pot Risotto with Seared Scallops
  • Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash
  • Instant Pot Steel-Cut Oatmeal with Apples
  • Instant Pot Yogurt
  • Instant Pot Asian Chicken Thighs
  • Instant Pot Beef Stew
  • Instant Pot Cabernet-Braised Beef Short Ribs
  • Instant Pot Hoppin’ John
  • Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Bacon
  • Instant Pot Magic Melting Potatoes
  • Instant Pot Mexican Chicken Stew
  • Instant Pot Sunday sauce and meatballs

Cautions for Using Instant Pot

  • Do not fill the pot up to the neck during pressure cooking because many pressure cooking recipes include ingredients that expand, such as rice, beans, pasta, oatmeal, cornmeal, and so on.
  • Do not use your Instant Pot for deep frying. Though instant pot certainly can do incredible things, it is an electric pressure cooker, and electric pressure cookers are not designed for deep frying. If you try this, then it might be dangerous for both you and your pot.
  • Maintain a distance from the steam. While opening the lid, make sure the smoke doesn’t get direct contact with your skin. The smell might be excellent and tempting, but this might cause a burning sensation in your skin. For extra safety, you can always use gloves before a quick release. 
  • Keep an eye on the sealing ring. It is said to be the most vulnerable part of the Instant Pot. So keep checking for cracks and damages. It’s better to replace the sealing ring once or twice a year. (Mostly depends on your usage)
  • While cooking for better and faster results, maintain 1 cup of liquid. This 1 cup liquid helps the pot preheat, steam, and cook faster, and the food comes to a juicy consistency.

Safety Features in Your Instant Pot

The instant pot has been expertly built to reduce and prevent the majority of possible problems resulting in food contamination or damage. Safety Features of the UL Logo Instant Pot is the world’s most popular electric pressure cooker, with over 10 million devices in use globally. The safety features used in Instant Pot are so many that you might get struck counting.

  • It has a steam release built-in process that releases excess pressure through the steam release valve.
  • It comes with a safety lid. That’ll lock itself when the cooker is pressurized to avoid opening the cooker. Also, the instant pot will not start cooking until the cover is in a safe position that allows pressure cooking.
  • It has automatic temperature control that prevents overheating and regulates the heat to keep the inner pot safe.
  • The thermal and electrical fuse are default programs that cut off power if the internal heat and current exceed the safety level.

By all of this, you can understand that if something is more important to the makers of instant pot, that is your safety. 

Things to Keep in Mind

Instant pot is purely designed thinking of your safety on top of everything else. But there is always a possibility for improvement when the concern is your security.

You should not start using your Instant Pot without reading the user manual. It’s better not to pressurize the pot without liquid. Please do not place your hand over the vent, and do not forget to seal and set the timer. Do not overfill your pot. Most importantly, keep it out of children’s reach.

Time Difference between Slow Cooker vs. Instant Pot

FoodSlow Cooker TimeInstant Pot (on High Pressure)
Beef Roast10h on low/ 5h on high30 mints
Beef Stew8h on low/ 4h on high28 mints
Ground Beef & Meatballs6h on low/ 3h on high18 mints
Chicken Breasts & Chicken thighs4h on low/ 2h on high12 mints

Time Difference between Oven/Stove vs. Instant Pot

Food Oven/StoveInstant Pot (on High Pressure)
Fish Fillet2 hours40 mints
White Rice1½ hours30 mints
Barley, Oatmeal & Millet1 hour20 mints
Whole Potato30 mints10 mints

Final Verdict

In this fast world, time is the most precious thing. So if there’s something that saves your time and helps to get your work done with half effort and with fewer troubles, then why saying no to it? 

If you’re a working woman or a college student or a bachelor or even home alone because others are on vacation, this Instant Pot will be all that you need to fulfill your hunger and craving. You will be amazed after knowing that how you can make hundreds of dishes in this one pot. And above the article, we have discussed which things you need to know about instant pot. So grab your instant pot today.

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