Determine How Much Liquid To Use In Your Instant Pot
Another big part of Instant Pot cooking that is not so important in other recipes is the amount of liquid you need to use. A good general rule of thumb when trying to convert recipes to Instant Pot cooking is to use at least 1 cup of water for your 6 qt pot, 1 1/2 for your 8 qt. Ive written an article about the differences between Instant Pot models and how to make sure your recipes always turn out, no matter what model you have.
There will be very little water lost when cooking with a pressure cooker so adjust this accordingly if you have a lot of wet vegetables or chicken in your recipe. Items that have a high water content already wont need the full amount of water or liquid to cook properly in the Instant Pot.
You Must Have Some Water Or Other Liquid
Pressure cookers require a certain amount of water or liquid in order to achieve pressuretypically at least 1 cup. Changing the amount of liquid may be necessary if your slow cooker recipe requires very little water, such as 1/4 cup. In this case, increase the amount to 1 cup.
The exception to this rule is if youre cooking foods that will produce liquid during cooking, in which case you can get away with a little less water in the beginning. But in general, aim for at least one cup of liquid.
Pressure cookers and slow cookers both have very little evaporation, so most liquid amounts will probably be similar from one appliance to other other, as long as you meet the minimum requirement of 1 cup.
Dont Overfill Your Pressure Cooker
Depending on the size of your pressure cooker, you may need to decrease the amount of liquid and food you place in it. The pressure cooker should never be filled more than 2/3 full.
If you are cooking foods that expand or create foam while cooking , you should not fill the pressure cooker more than 1/2 full.
It Sounds Too Good To Be True Are There Any Downsides To Using An Instant Pot
Im not going to lie, this statement in the Instant Pot manual is a downer, Be aware that certain foods, such as applesauce, cranberries, pearl barley, oatmeal or other cereals, split peas, noodles, macaroni, rhubarb, or spaghetti can foam, froth, and clog the pressure release device . These food should not be cooked in a pressure cooker. I was shocked. My sister-in-laws pressure cooker mac n cheese is AMAZING and nowhere in her manual does it say not to use macaroni. Im a little bit heartbrokenbut Im probably going to try a lot of these foods in my Instant Pot anywayshh!
The only other downside is that the sheer number of features might make you feel overwhelmed at first, but hopefully this post will help you get started. I recommend reading the owners manual and experimenting with a couple of recipes while you master your specific model.
How To Convert Slow Cooker Recipes To Pressure Cooker
You can absolutely convert your slow cooker recipes for pressure cooking.
Let me tell you how Keep these 9 tips in mind for easy conversion of your favorite Crock Pot recipes.
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How To Convert Crock Pot Into Pressure Cooker
A seal formed through a silicon ring and a locking hinge trap the steam inside. Trapping every bit of steam is necessary to form a pressurized environment within the pressure cooker. Pressure will increase with the temperature, and youll have an 8 to 10 hours long stew cooked within 40 to 50 minutes.
But what if you do not own a pressure cooker? What if the only cooking appliance you have is a slow cooker? Is it possible to convert the crockpot into a pressure cooker?
Is The Recipe A Good Candidate For Converting
Some Crock Pot recipes aren’t good candidates for pressure cooking. Here are a few guidelines to help you figure out if your recipe will convert well .
- Has Enough Liquid Pressure cookers require liquid to function properly. How much varies from unit to unit, though 1 to 2 cups of liquid is standard. So if your recipe already has liquid, great. If it doesn’t, make sure to add the minimum.
- Does Not Have a Fried, Crispy Coating The pressure cooker is all about steam, not a crispy finish. However, I’ve found that crumb toppings do pretty well.
- Isn’t A Super Tender Cut Of Meat The pressure cooker is amazing for everyday cuts of meat you know, the tougher ones. If you’ve got a succulent, expensive, tender cut of meat , don’t ruin it by pressure cooking it!
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Adjusting The Cooking Time
Foods cook much more quickly in the MultiPot than they would in a slow cooker, so you need to adjust the cooking time of recipes accordingly.
There are lots of time charts online for how long to cook different ingredients in a pressure cooker. We like Mealthys Cheat Sheet, since its really concise and includes a lot of foods we cook often.
A good rule of thumb is to determine the ingredient that takes the longest amount of cooking, and set the pressure cooker based on that. For our beef stew, the stew meat is the ingredient with the longest cooking time. We chose to set the cooking time for 30 minutes, resulting in meat thats fork-tender without being so soft that it falls apart completely.
How Do You Shred Pork
- Another important thing to note about shredding the meat.
- For it to shred easily, the internal temp of the pork should reach 205 degrees F.
- At a lower temperature, it may be fully cooked, but won’t shred easily and you will end up frustrated.
- So while it may seem counterintuitive, it’s important to cook this pork shoulder well in order to “pull” it.
- To do the work, you can use a couple of forks, meat shredder claws, or your stand mixer.
When To Do A Natural Pressure Release Vs Quick Release
You can let the pressure release from your MultiPot really fast by moving its release valve to the Venting position manually, or just let the pot cool down and depressurize on its own. In pressure cooker speak, these two methods are commonly referred to as quick release or natural release.
Its safe to do a quick release if the pot is less than half full, and doesnt include any foods that have a tendency to foam up or expand a lot. Its safer to let the pressure release naturally if youve got a really full pot, or if the recipe includes foods that tend to expand or foam up, like grains and beans.
In our recipe for Pressure Cooker Baked Beans , we let the pressure release naturally. The combination of the thick cooking liquid and beans is a double whammy, so you want to be extra careful and wait for the pot to release pressure on its own. This ensures that you wont end up with a spattered mess, and it helps the beans cook through very evenly, too!
The Instant Pot Requires Liquid
The pressure cooker needs at least a cup of liquid to get up to pressure.
Many meats will create juices as they cook, but you still should start with a cup of liquid in the bottom to be safe.
That may be an adjustment from a slow cooker recipe for things like roasts, whole chickens, or shredded chicken dishes, they often only require you to add 1/4 cup for slow cooking.
You can add water or broth to make it work for the pressure cooker. Very important safety note: cream of soups do NOT count as the liquid. Theyre too thick to properly make steam in a pressure cooker. More on that.
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Move The Dairy To The End Of A Recipe
This is a big one! So many slow cooker recipes are cheesy or creamy, but in a pressure cooker, dairy tends to curdle, scorch, or spurt out the pressure valve. When making creamy or cheesy recipes, wait until the pressure has fully released before stirring in dairy ingredients or melting cheese melt on top.
The one exception to this rule is pot-in-pot recipes, where youre actually cooking the food in a separate pan that rests on top of a steam rack inside the pot, with water underneath . The dairy never comes in contact with the bottom of the pot, so you dont have to worry about scorching. One example of this is our Pressure Cooker Cheesecake, which cooks inside the pressure cooker in a springform pan.
Tips On How To Make Slow Cooker Recipes In An Instant Pot
Tip #1: Adjust the Liquid Level
Every Instant Pot recipe must start with at least 1 cup of liquid. The liquid is required to prevent burn and to help the Instant Pot build pressure correctly.
Because the heating is so gradual in a slow cooker, the odds of something burning are slim BECAUSE enough juices from the food has been released by the time the slow cooker has reached its highest heating temperature.
Tip #2: The Instant Pot is designed to get really hot, really fast.
This means you have to START with liquid, otherwise your food will burn before its had a chance to release any juices.
- With that said, anytime you make a slow cooker recipe in an Instant Pot, you need to adjust the recipe so that youre starting with at least 1 cup of liquid. This might mean adding additional liquid in order to reach the minimum needed.
- This additional liquid can be water, stock or the same liquid that the slow cooker recipe calls for its your call. But make sure theres 1 cup of liquid at the bottom of your Instant Pot before you start cooking.
Tip #3: Natural Pressure Release vs. Quick Pressure Release
Anytime you make a recipe, the Instant Pot must build pressure, then cook your food, and then release the pressure. The pressure is typically released one of three ways:
The type of pressure release you choose for your slow cooker turned Instant Pot recipe matters, because anytime there is pressure inside the Instant Pot, your food is cooking.
Other Ingredients to beware of:
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Here Are Our Tips Conversions And Cautions For Making Any Crockpot Recipe Instant Pot Friendly
Basics for converting a crockpot recipe into instant pot
Here are some basic rules to help you know what should be changed for your recipe to work as a pressure cooker recipe. Plus some tips to help you make the most of your Instant Pot!
One-cup liquid rule
Take advantage of the saute function
Use the bowl-in-bowl method:
How long to pressure cook a slow cooker recipe
For many recipes, you actually do not need to change anything but figure out pressure cook time! This is the case for many soups, meat-only recipes such as roasts or chicken. In the beginning it takes some experimenting and practice because no two meals are exactly alike. Here are some basic guidelines that will get you going in the right direction!
If a Crockpot recipe calls for 8 hours on low , it will probably be done perfectly in about 25 minutes in the Instant Pot. If it isnt done, just cook it for another 5 minutes on manual . And dont worry, the Instant Pot will come up to pressure much faster the second time because everything inside is still so hot.
The thicker the piece of meat, the longer it will need. Volume does not matter, but density does. So if you have a large, thick piece of meat it will need more time than the same amount of meat cut into smaller portions.
If you throw your meat in frozen, just add 5-10 minutes to the total pressure cooker time. If its a really huge block of lots of ground meat or something, maybe 10.
Liquid conversions for cooking beans and grains
Things To Keep In Mind:
There is no magic formula for converting recipes for the pressure cooker. I recommend having at least some experience with your pressure cooker first before trying your hand at converting recipes.
It can be hugely helpful to find a similar pressure cooker recipe online prior to making your conversion. This will give you a ballpark of cook times and any other adjustments that will need to be made.
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How To Convert Crockpot Recipes To The Instant Pot
I appreciated all of your comments and feedback on last months Instant Pot article. You made me want to write another article about the Instant Pot, so here it goes!
Did you know that you can easily convert most slow cooker recipes to the Instant Pot? Since I am still learning how to use my Instant Pot, I have mostly played it safe by making recipes that were specifically created for the Instant Pot/pressure cookers. However, I am beginning to learn how easy it is to convert many of my other favorite recipes to the Instant Pot too. Because I have many favorite recipes for the crockpot, I thought I would start there. Here are a few guidelines to help you convert crockpot recipes to the Instant Pot .
Slow Cooker To Instant Pot Conversion
At its basic, the slow cooker is easier to guess because the answer is alwaysa really long time. Instant Pot cooking times are super quickin many cases so quick that I wouldnt have guessed it correctly.
For instance, roast beef takes 15 minutes per pound in the Instant Pot and 8-10 hours on low in the slow cooker!
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Hold Off On Dairy Ingredients
Cooking dairy ingredients in the Instant Pot is a lot different than cooking them on the stove, in the oven, or in a slow cooker.
If a recipe calls for dairy ingredients make sure to add them once you have cooked and depressurized your Instant Pot. This is key when trying to convert recipes to Instant Pot cooking.
The high heat and pressure and cause dairy and milk ingredients to scorch and thats an easy way to ruin dinner.
When To Increase The Amount Of Liquid
Youll also need to add liquid to a slow cooker recipe if it doesnt have any to begin with! For a 6-quart pressure cooker, the general rule is to use at least a cup of liquid, though you can sometimes get away with a little less if youre using ingredients that you know will release a lot of liquid as they cook.
For instance, when converting Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork to Pressure Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork, we added 3/4 cup of pineapple juice. The pork releases enough additional liquid as it cooks to ensure proper cooking overall.
When youre converting a slow cooker recipe, also keep in mind ingredients that absorb lots of water or thicken the cooking liquid . Its important to include enough liquid in your recipe so it can properly come up to a rolling boil.
Tomato paste is a particularly big one to watch out for — since its concentrated, it thickens up liquids really quickly! For every tablespoon of tomato paste you use in a recipe, make sure theres at least 3/4 cup of liquid, such as water or broth
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Tips For Converting Slow Cooker Recipes To The Instant Pot
Vegetables. Most slow cooker recipes have you add the vegetables in with the meat. In a pressure cooker, this will give you very mushy vegetables. I like to do a quick release about 10 minutes before the end of the cooking time, add in my veggies and then reseal and add 10 more minutes of cooking time. When I am doing a stew or soup, and using small stew meat I will add the vegetables in with the meat in the beginning. But with a pot roast or larger piece of meat, I add them in later.
Avoid recipes with fried or crispy coating. The pressure cooker is all about steam so you dont get a crispy finish.
Dont waste expensive tender cuts of meat in the Instant Pot Save those for the grill or oven. Tougher, less expensive cuts of meat are perfect for the pressure cooker.
Dont flour meat. Many slow cooker recipes have you flour and saute the meat in another pan before adding it to the slow cooker.. You can saute your meat directly in the Instant Pot but dont use flour, it forms a layer on the bottom of the pan that prevents it from coming to pressure correctly.
Keep it Simple. Start with some basic meat or soup recipes. You can do all kinds of things in the Instant Pot but I suggest keeping it simple in the beginning. Get comfortable with how it works and then branch out into other things.
One of my post popular Instant Pot recipes is this Mexican Shredded Beef.
Check out the Instant Pot website for a chart of various cooking times.