Pressure Cooking Requires Liquid
Before we continue, we must mention the most important aspect of pressure cooking. It requires liquid. This is because the pressure is built by the steam accumulating inside the pot, which is produced from the liquid.
Whether youre cooking rice, chicken breasts, pot roast, carrots, stew or cheesecake, you will need at least a cup of liquid for the Instant Pot to do its job.
This is a total amount of liquid and can be in the form of water, stock, tomato sauce, juice, wine and liquids released from the food while cooking , or a combination of those. Amount of liquid required varies depending on the recipe and amount of food but as a rule of thumb, 1 cup is always a good starting point. Also, the food doesnt need to be completely covered or submerged in liquid to cook.
Using The Instant Pot Buttons May Seem A Little Intimidating At First Because There Are So Many But Really Its Easy
Before you know it youll be whipping up fabulous meals and desserts that will impress your friends and family. Have fun!
For step by step instructions, watch my how to use an Instant Pot multicooker video.
For more information on using your new Instant Pot, come join my Facebook community at .
***Many thanks to my friend Sigrid for alerting me to the updated information about the latest versions of the Instant Pot buttons.***
Instant Pot Rice Button
Instant Pot Rice Buttons pre-set setting uses Low Pressure Cooking Method, and the Pressure Cooking Time will automatically adjust according to the amount of rice and water in the pot.
*Note: you cannot use the Adjust, + or – Buttons with this program.
For best results, we use the Manual Button to control the cooking method and time according to the type of rice we cook.
Here Are Our Perfect Rice Recipes:
The Preset Slow Cook Program defaults to 4-hour slow cook time.
Press + or – Buttons to change the cooking time .
Press Adjust to change the Temperature Setting:
- Normal Setting Temperature: 194-205°F
- High Setting Temperature: 199-210°F
- Low Setting Temperature: 190-201°F
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Smart Program Pressure Cooking
If you choose to use one of the pre-set smart program options, the steps are even simpler. Please refer to our post on Smart Program Instant Pot Buttons Explained for how to adjust each setting.
Step 1. Start the Instant Pot. Insert the inner pot into the cooker base.
Step 2. Add ingredients and liquids to the inner pot. Stir if needed or leave layered.
Step 3. Secure and lock the lid. Make sure everything feels well sealed.
Step 4. Select one of the Smart Program buttons. Pre-set cooking time and pressure level will display. You can leave it as is or adjust things like the pressure level from HIGH to LOW. You can press the Smart Program button again to cycle through the Less, Normal and More time options or use the and + buttons to adjust the cooking time further. If you make any adjustments to the selected Smart Program, they will be remembered next time you use it.
Step 5. Preheating & pressurizing stage begins followed by cooking under pressure as per program settings. Once the Instant Pot beeps again and the timer has reached zero, the cooking process is done.
Step 6. You can do a quick release or allow the built-up pressure to release naturally , or do both depending on the food/recipe.
Step 10. Once pressure is released, open the lid and stir or remove the contents.
Want More Practice Bring It Back To Pressure
Try it again with the same hot water. This time, press Manual and then adjust the 30 minute default time by pressing the button, then press the + button to go up. Lets do 10 minutes.
You may notice how, if you press Manual and take too long before pressing the other buttons, the cooker will just beep on its own and proceed for 30 a minute pressure cooking time. If you need to re-start, just press Cancel/Keep Warm and start over.
Since the water is in your cooker is already almost boiling to begin with, the cooker will come to pressure a lot faster than it did the first timewithin a minute or so. Itll hiss, then the hissing will abruptly stop as the pressure indicator button goes up. If the hissing just keeps on going, its probably because you left the valve in the venting position instead of sealed. Just use your spoon handle to nudge it back.
What next? Same as before: the cooker beeps, the readout will say 10, and then it will switch to LO:00. You can do quick or natural release, whichever floats your boat.
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There Are So Many Recipes For Your Instant Pot
The internet has gone wild for the Instant Pot, with countless personal blogs, cooking websites and Facebook groups devoted to it. Together they also generate a copious and steady supply of recipes. From Instant Pot Turkey and Gravy to Instant Pot Elderberry Syrup, its all there for the taking and tasting!chances are someone has tried it.
Instant Pot Program Keys
The most important thing you should know about all those buttons and settings on your Instant Pot is that they are preset suggested cook times. That means that if you hit “poultry” on it, it won’t be able to tell if you used frozen chicken or be able to tell you if the chicken is completely cooked.
You will still have to use common sense and a meat thermometer to tell if your food is completely cooked.
You may not use these as often, but here are some other buttons that you might see on an Instant Pot, along with what happens if you press them. With every button, if you press more or less after you press the specific button you can adjust the cooking time up or down.
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Why Do Most Recipes Use Manual Settings Instead Of Smart Program Buttons
One size does not fit all in most scenarios. This is true of the smart one-touch buttons on the Instant Pot too. While some may come in handy down the line, you should learn more about specific recipes before you begin relying on them. Using Manual/Pressure Cook button and adjusting time and pressure level by yourself gives you more control. Having said that, you can also adjust time and pressure level once youve selected once of the Smart Program function.
Does The Instant Pot Saut As Well As A Pan On The Stove
In my experience, the Instant Pot does not sauté quite as well as a pan on the stove. But I still use the sauté function almost every time that I use my Instant Pot. Why? It works well enough, and it is extremely convenient.
You can expect that it will take a little longer to brown meats or stir fry vegetables in your Instant Pot, compared to cooking on the stove. Not having to wash a second pot and transfer food between pots makes this small inconvenience well worth it for me.
Do I Need To Adjust My Recipes At Higher Altitude
The short answer is yes. Some Instant Pot models e.g. Ultra and MAX will allow you to set your altitude and the cooking times will be automatically adjusted for you. Otherwise, cooking should be adjusted 5% for every 1,000 feet above 2,000 ft. above sea level. So, for example, at 3,000 ft., you will increase cooking time by 5% and at 4,000 ft., you will increase cooking time by 10% and so forth. One of our team members has lived at many varying high elevations and personally, I have never run into altitude-related issues with my Duo model.
Top Tips For Instant Pot Buttons
- My chili normally takes about 2-3 hours in the slow cooker, but with the Instant Pot its just 25 minutes. I use a NR for 5-10 minutes.
- Make a homemade bone broth WAY faster than the conventional slow cooker. Select the Soup button, set the pressure to low, and set the cooking time to 120 minutes. Once its done, let the bone broth NR for about an hour.
- When you sauté, make sure to wait until display says Hot to add ingredients to the pot. Use Normal for sautéing veggies, adjust to More for browning meats, adjust to Less to simmer.
- There is a bit of variety among each of the different models however, all of the Instant Pot buttons cook the same.
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The Practical Guide You’ve Always Wanted For Those Confusing Instant Pot Buttons And Settings
Your dreams have officially come true! You finally got that Instant Pot and its time to start whipping up a few delicious meals. Buthow, exactly, do you work this thing?
People rave about how easy and quick it is to use, but looking at all the Instant Pot buttons, it seems that only a genius could actually figure out what all of them mean. Which button do I choose for what? Whats the difference between the NormalMore and Less settings? And should I cook on Low Pressure or High Pressure?
These questions instantly come to mind, but dont sweat, we got you covered. Heres a full guide to all of your Instant Pots buttons. So make sure to bookmark this for later!
So How Do Instant Pot Settings Work
Each Instant Pot setting button is essentially a SMART PROGRAM option. Most smart programs, or buttons, simply set the pot to HIGH or LOW pressure for a specific period of time most closely aligned with the food it is meant to cook. For example, the default SOUP button sets the pressure cooker for 30 minutes at HIGH pressure, which you could use to cook any food that requires that much time and pressure.
If you press each SMART setting button more than once, it will toggle between Normal, Less or More options, which gives you more control of time, temperature or default pressure. For example, the RICE button can be set to Less or More depending on how soft or firm you like your rice or the type of rice you might be cooking.
Some buttons dont use the pressurizing function of the Instant Pot. For example, Slow Cook and Sauté settings use the heating element that sits underneath the inner pot. They are programmed for heat level and time.
To keep it super simple, it is possible to use the Instant Pot for all recipes using just a few important buttons. With the Pressure Cook or Manual buttons in addition to the Pressure Level and and buttons, you can control the time and pressure level which are otherwise preset for the rest of the buttons. This will work for any recipe that requires pressure. For non-pressure cooking, the Sauté, Slow Cook and Yogurt buttons help you accomplish a similarly custom cooking setting.
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The Slow Cooker Setting On The Ip
Most electric pressure cookers have not only the slow cook function but and a whole suite of buttons on the interface. Were only going to dig into the slow cook button in this blog post. While this function is great, there are a few differences that will trip you up if youre not careful. With the Instant Pot, the slow cooker function has a set of temperatures ranging from low to high. These temperatures are NOT same as the ones which are on a typical slow cooker. Here are a couple of conversions to make a note of to ensure optimum cooking in an instant pot:
Slow Cooker WARM setting = Instant Pot Slow Cook LOW settingSlow Cooker LOW setting = Instant Pot Slow Cook NORMAL settingSlow Cooker HIGH setting = Instant Pot Slow Cook HIGH+
*The Instant Pot HIGH setting never gets as hot as the slow cooker HIGH heating setting. If you are using a slow cooker recipe which calls for HIGH heat in a slow cooker, put your Instant Pot slow cooker function onto high and then add an extra 15 minutesof cooking time for every hour of that the recipe calls for. The longer cooking time is needed to compensate for the difference in temperature between the two appliances and make sure your food is fully cooked all the way through.
How To Set Instant Pot Ultra And Max Models For Automatic Altitude Adjustment
Instant Pot Ultra and MAX Models have an altitude setting which allow you to enter your altitude and the Instant Pot will automatically adjust cooking times. You simply enter the cook time specified in the recipe and the Instant Pot Ultra or MAX will automatically adjust according to your elevation.
To Set your Instant Pot Ultra or MAX
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How To Adjust The Pressure On Instant Pot
In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question How to adjust the pressure on instant pot?. We will also discuss answers to other related questions like When to use high or low pressure on the instant pot and when to use natural and quick-release when cooking with your instant pot.
Whats The Big Deal With Instant Pots Anyway
Instant Pots are multifunction, programmable electric pressure cookers. Think of them as little cooking robots.
If youre not familiar with pressure cooking, the entire point of an Instant Pot can be confusing.
The big sell here is pressure cooking is up to 70 percent faster than other ways of cooking. Pressure cookers reach higher temperatures because their lids lock into place without steam escaping, which creates a pressurized environment inside the pot. In this environment, the cooker reaches 250°F .
With pressure cooking on a stove, you have to keep a close eye on the cooker because you regulate the heat source. If you let the burner get too hot, the pressure builds up too much and the cooker spews out angry jets of steam .
But with an electric Instant Pot, the cooker regulates its own heat via sensors. Thats the other win. No need to carefully monitor it as your food cooks. Program the Instant Pot and once its going, youre free to go for a walk, vacuum the living room, check your emailyou get the idea.
Instant Pots can do other things besides pressure cook, too. With the lid off, you can sauté ingredients before pressure cooking. You can also use it as a slow cooker or make yogurt in your Instant Pot. Were not going to worry about doing those things here, though. This guide is all about pressure cooking.
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Instant Pot Questions And Answers
Carefully open the lid and remove instant pot by using the sling. Open when all pressure is released stir and enjoy. Cook the short ribs in the instant pot on meat/stew setting then let instant pot depressurize naturally. let instant pot depressurize naturally. Attach lid, and close the vent. Add the chicken pieces and add another 4 cups of water. Uncover and remove the roast and allow it to rest for 5 minutes. When done, turn to off then let instant pot natural release for 25 minutes, then turn valve to venting to release any excess pressure. In most cases, your instant pot reduces the cooking time by 70%, and preserves more vitamins and minerals in the natural ingredients. Secure the lid of the instant pot making sure dial on top is set to sealing. It is a hearty meal that is made in a fraction of the time compared to the traditional version. Cook the short ribs in the instant pot on meat/stew setting then let instant pot depressurize naturally. Join the official instant pot community to connect with over 3 million instant pot fans, share recipes, ask questions, and much more!!
When the timer goes off, let the ip depressurize naturally or carefully perform a quick release. You may need to add more liquid to the pot at this point. Cook cheesecake on high pressure for 33 minutes. Immediately add the remaining garlic butter mix on top. Season every side of the pork tenderloin with salt and pepper.
What It All Boils Down To
Practically speaking, what all that science amounts to is this: In a sealed pressure cooker, the boiling point of water goes up as pressure increases.
At standard atmospheric pressure, the boiling point of water is 212°F. But in a standard American pressure cooker, the pressure reaches 1 atm or 15 psi above standard atmospheric pressure*, or 2 atm, which is typically the maximum pressure limit on most cookers. At 30 psi, the boiling point of water is about 250°F.
*The reading on the gauge for nearly every pressure cooker indicates the pressure above atmospheric pressure. At sea level, atmospheric pressure is about 1 atm, or 15 psi. If a dial reads 15 psi, then that means the pressure inside the sealed chamber is 15 psi above atmospheric 15 psi . This dial reading is technically referred to as gauge pressure.
The higher cooking temperature in a sealed pressure cooker means, in general, faster cooking without burning food. And, because the vessel is sealed, it also limits evaporation of critical volatile flavor and aroma compounds. An added plus: the contents of a pressure cooker go relatively undisturbed, since the liquid never effectively boils.
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