You have all probably heard about Instant Pot or other types of electric pressure cookers. They skyrocketed in popularity over the past years, and there is a good reason for that. They are affordable, convenient, and quite easy to use. Also, making a recipe in the Instant Pot is quick, and usually at a fraction of the time compared to the traditional stovetop recipes.
In this post, we will explain what an Instant Pot is and what are its benefits. Also, we will provide 3 essential Instant Pot recipes that everyone should try, and some tips and tricks on how to best use it.
What is an Instant Pot?
Instant Pot is basically an electric pressure cooker that is multi-functional. You can cook pretty much everything in it, starting from rice, meats, yogurt, soups, puddings, and various desserts. It is an essential kitchen appliance that is mainly used to prepare meals at a fraction of the time.
Because the meals are cooked “under pressure”, the cooking time is drastically reduced when cooking this way. This makes it super convenient, especially for people who want a quick and easy meal in about 30 minutes or less.
Why should I get an Instant Pot?
There are many benefits of getting an Instant Pot. Some of them are listed below:
- Meals are easy to make using it, and most recipes are ready in about 30 minutes or less.
- Want to deviate from the traditional stovetop way of cooking.
- It is convenient to store and clean because it is only one pot.
- You can even cook frozen meat in it.
- Meats cooked in it are tender, juicy, and delicious.
- It has a steam function, which is perfect for steaming fresh or frozen veggies.
What is the difference between an instant pot and a crockpot?
The main difference between them is the cooking duration. With Slow Cooker or Crockpot, you usually dump the ingredients into it and let it cook for a very long time. Typically the cooking time is 4 to 10 hours, and the meals are cooked at a lower temperature.
On the other hand, with Instant Pot the meals are typically cooked at higher temperatures and under pressure. The dishes are usually cooked in 30 to 60 minutes. Both appliances can produce very similar recipes but they operate totally differently.
What to cook in the Instant Pot?
Now that you know the basics of Instant Pot, we will show some of our 3 most popular Instant Pot recipes you can easily make at home.
- Instant Pot Orange Chicken: One of our most favorite and delicious pressure cooker recipes. It is authentic, with a sweet and savory note to it that is guaranteed to beat any takeout. The recipe is ready in about 30 minutes and can be served over rice or noodles.
- Instant Pot Rice: If you want to cook rice the perfect way, then this recipe should be bookmarked in your recipe book. Once you make rice in the pressure cooker, you will never be making it any other way. It always turns out fluffy and perfectly cooked. Below you can also see the cooking time for various types of rice. It is important to note, that the water ratio for any type of rice always stays the same 1 cup of rice for 1 cup of water. The only thing that will change would be the cooking time, as you can see in the table below:
- Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken: Another addicting dish that would be a perfect dinner during any day of the week. If you are looking for something more garlicky and zesty, this recipe is it! You can also make it in advance, and store it for days to come.
Helpful tools to have when using an Instant Pot
If you decided to buy an Instant Pot, or already have one, there are some essential tools that you want to get along with it. They are not mandatory, but will definitely make your life easier, and the cooking experience so much better.
Steamer: It is handy if you want to steam vegetables or seafood.
Rice steamer: Cooking rice in the Instant Pot is probably the best way to cook it. It always comes fluffy, and perfectly cooked. But to cook rice in the Instant Pot, you will need to get a rice steamer first.
Instant Pot Tips
Instant Pot is a great addition of tools to have in your kitchen. In our opinion, this is quite essential for every chef, especially if you are looking for quick and easy meals. Below are some things to remember when using the Instant Pot:
- You might get the “burn notice”: This could happen from time to time, especially when browning the meat or sautéing something. To avoid this issue, ensure that there are no browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pan after sautéing food. In addition, it would be helpful to deglaze it with some liquid and gently scraping up the browned bits with a wooden spoon.
- Cooking frozen meat: You can easily cook frozen meats in the Instant Pot. However, you have to remember to adjust the timing, as it will take some extra time for the frozen meat to thaw. Usually, you will have to increase the cooking time by about 5-7 minutes, depending on each given recipe.
- Natural Pressure release: A natural pressure release is when you leave the pressure release switch in the sealed position after the cook time ends. This allows the pressure to slowly release, so you can safely open the lid.
Other Food Articles: