When Should I Use Keep Warm Function
The Instant Pot can be kept on Keep Warm after cooking most foods. In fact, its very handy if you are finished cooking before youre ready to serve food. Some foods like rice, quinoa, or anything that has soaked up a lot of liquid should be monitored or warmed in a more moist environment to prevent dryness or burning. You can select Keep Warm cycle before you start cooking or after.
How To Use An Instant Pot
What is an Instant Pot and how do you use it? Get answers to your IP questions and 10 of our most popular recipes in this introduction to the Instant Pot!
If you received an Instant Pot over the holidays but arent sure how to get started using it, weve got you covered! In this introduction to the Instant Pot, were teaching you about:
At the end, were sharing 10 of our popular meal plan recipes that, with the help of Cook Smarts Instant Pot enthusiasts, have been converted for use in the Instant Pot youll be amazed at how much flavor you can get in minimal time!
To get all of this helpful IP info for easy reference whenever you need it, check out our Instant Pot Cheat Bundle. It includes:
- The basics of how to use an Instant Pot
- 10 easy, delicious recipes that utilize the Instant Pot
- How to convert slow cooker, pasta, stovetop, and oven recipes
- Settings and cooking times for meats, legumes, grains, and veggies
Which Instant Pot Buttons To Use
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SO MANY BUTTONS! How to use Instant Pot is a top Google search. If you own an Instant Pot electric pressure cooker and want to know what each button does and when to use it, my complete guide will tell you everything you need to know about using the Instant Pot buttons for every model and version!
If youre just getting started with your Instant Pot, your first question might be How do I know which Instant Pot buttons to use? Heres a detailed explanation that will help.
The most important thing to know is the buttons are just preset, suggested cook times for specific items. If you use the Poultry button, your Instant Pot will not know how much meat is in the pot or whether its frozen or fresh. Your Instant Pot CANNOT sense what you are actuallycooking and CANNOT tell you when the food in your pot is cooked through.
So when youre cooking chicken soup, you can use the Soup button, the Poultry button, the Meat button, or the Manual button It really doesnt matter which button you use, just choose the button with the closest cook time to the time in the recipe youre using .
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How To Use An Instant Pot: What You Need To Know To Get Started With Instant Pot Cooking
There are a few basic things that you need to know when using an Instant Pot electric pressure cooker. Once you use yours a few times, these will be like second nature. Depending on which Instant Pot model you own, the buttons may be labeled slightly differently. Consult the manual that came with your Instant Pot.
Minimum Liquid Required: As a general rule, you want to use at least 1 cup of liquid in your Instant Pot every time you cook with it. The Instant Pot uses steam and pressure to cook food, and you need liquid to create the steam and pressure. Some recipes may call for more or less liquid. I recommend following recipes from a trusted source while you are learning to use your Instant Pot.
Fill Level: Inside the Instant Pot inner pot, you will see a 1/2 and a 2/3 line marked. Never fill the Instant Pot higher than the 2/3 line with food or liquid . If you are cooking food that will expand during the cook time such as rice, quinoa or beans, do not fill the Instant Pot higher than the 1/2 line.
Pressure Cook or Manual Button: Depending on which Instant Pot model you own, the Pressure Cook button is sometimes labeled Manual and sometimes Pressure Cook. This is the button that you will press to start a pressure cooking cycle. Its your basic pressure cooking button.
+/- Buttons: Use these buttons to adjust the cook time.
Keep Warm/Cancel Button: Use this button to end a cooking program or turn on/off the keep warm function.
Get To Know The Design
Electric pressure cookers come with an inner pot and an outer pot , as well as a lid that creates an airtight seal.
The airtight seal is what creates the pressure, which will eventually need to be released, and to do so safely, youll need to read the directions that come with your pot. But generally speaking, youll either use the quick-release method , or the natural-release method .
Test Kitchen tip: A cool, wet towel placed on the lid can help speed up the release process.
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Programmed Instant Pot Buttons
I am wondering why you didnt use the chili button? I also noticed everyone uses the Manual button for all recipes. What are these buttons actually for?
Great question! We actually get asked this question all the time!!
These 6 highlighted buttons below have the exact same cooking function as the Manual Button/Pressure Cook Button , but default at a cooking time pre-set by the manufacturer .
All they do is suggest a cooking time for the selected type of food. You can use the Adjust Button, + or –Pressure Button to make adjustments.
But we like to use the Manual Button for more precise control of the cooking method and cooking time, depending on factors such as the cut of meat, the size of the food, or the container it is being cooked in.
For Newer Models:
- Egg Button Normal Setting High Pressure 4 mins More Setting High Pressure 5 mins Less Setting High Pressure 3 mins
*Note: we still think Low Pressure is still the best way to cook Pressure Cooker Eggs in the Instant Pot.
- Cake Button Normal Setting High Pressure 40 mins More Setting High Pressure 50 mins Less Setting High Pressure 25 mins
*Note: for cheesecake, try our beloved Instant Pot New York Cheesecake #17 Recipe
How To Use The Instant Pot Buttons
Confused by all the buttons on the Instant Pot? Check out this easy tutorial to learn how to use those Instant Pot buttons for the best pressure cooker recipes.
Are you new to cooking with the Instant Pot? Or maybe youve had your Instant Pot for a while, but dont know how to use all the buttons?
Dont sweat it. I started from scratch just like you and figured out how to use the buttons on the Instant Pot. I mean, yeah, you do have your manual but its SO much easier just to look it up here or on Google right?
So there are 7 functions but the unit has 14 buttons . So what does it all mean? Lets get down to the nitty gritty and break it down. Im going to focus on the IP-DUO60 Instant Pot model. This it the 7-in-1 version that seems to be the most popular.
This particular Instant Pot has 7 programmable features, including:
Ill explain how to use each button below.
If youre just getting started with the Instant Pot, check out my quick start guide Top 10 Instant Pot Tips and Tricks You Need to Know and How to Clean Your Instant Pot.
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Instant Pot Safety 101
Are pressure cookers safe to use? The answer is yes, but there are a few safety considerations youll want to be mindful of always.
The release instructions are really important and they exist for a reason. Any recipe that is thick or oily can form little bubbles that get trapped and do not immediately rise to the surface, and when you open they can rise to the surface and erupt, says Rachel.
Here are Rachels suggested safety guidelines:
- Never fill the insert more than half full with any bean or grain recipe or 2/3rds full for other recipes.
- No thickening agents before pressure cooking these should be added after and they include flour, cornstarch and condensed soups.
- No hard alcohol in the pressure cooker.
- Always follow release instructions. And know release guidelines. Any recipe that is thick or oily, or uses a fatty cut of meat should have at the very least, a 10 minute natural release before opening. Generally big cuts of meat require a full natural release.
- Do not add more than 1/4th cup of fat.
- Never force the lid off.
- And as a precaution when cooking the foods that qualify as thick or oily, give the Instant Pot a little shake after pressure is released or tap on the counter to help any air bubbles erupt while the cover is still on.
- Lastly, if you see others using the Instant Pot incorrectly, say something.
Pressure Cooker Essential Tips
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What Is The Instant Pot
Instant Pot is a pressure cooker — and then some. It also sautés, slow cooks, makes rice and steams veggies and poultry. It’s an all-in-one device, so you can, for instance, brown a chicken and cook it all in the same pot. In most cases, Instant Pot meals are ready to serve in less than an hour.
Its quick cook times are thanks to its pressure-cooking function, which locks steam created by liquid , building pressure and pushing steam back into the food.
But don’t confuse it with a stovetop pressure cooker. Unlike your grandparents’ pressure cooker, this Instant Pot eliminates safety concerns with a lid that locks, and stays locked, until the pressure is released.
Yes, you can cook a whole chicken in the Instant Pot.
Why Did You Not Use The Poultry Button To Make Chicken Why Did You Not Use The Rice Button To Make Rice Why Do Many People Just Use The Manual/pressure Cook Button For All Recipes
The Poultry, Rice, Bean/Chili, etc modes are mainly preset modes. What that means is that you can do the same cooking using the manual button, adjusting the pressure level and cooking time. You can still cook the same way even without using the preset buttons.
We do tend to lean towards using the Manual/Pressure Cook button more often, as that gives the best control to cook.
Now you have gone through and reviewed all the buttons on the Instant Pot. Pin this page for future reference.
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How To Quickly Release The Pressure
If a recipe calls for a quick release, that means youll need to move the steam release valve from the Sealing position to the Venting position as soon as the Instant Pot beeps, signaling that the cooking cycle is complete.
Make sure that you dont place your hand directly over the vent, as steam will shoot out the top of the steam release valve. Instead, keep your hand to the side of the valve or use a spoon to turn the vent, if youre on the extra-cautious side. I always use my hand and have never had an issue.
Every Instant Pot Button Explained
Soup/Broth. This button cooks at High Pressure for 30 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 40 minutes. Adjusted to less cooks for 20 minutes.
Meat/Stew. This button cooks at High Pressure for 35 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 45 minutes. Adjusted to less cooks for 20 minutes.
Bean/Chili. This button cooks at High Pressure for 30 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 40 minutes. Adjusted to less cooks for 25 minutes.
Poultry. This button cooks at High Pressure for 15 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 30 minutes. Adjusted to less cooks for 5 minutes.
Rice. This button cooks at Low Pressure and is the only fully automatic program. It is for cooking white rice and will adjust the cooking time depending on the amount of water and rice in the cooking pot.
Multigrain. This button cooks at High Pressure for 40 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 45 minutes of warm water soaking time and 60 minutes pressure cooking time. Adjusted to less cooks for 20 minutes.
Porridge. This button cooks at High Pressure for 20 minutes. Adjusted to more cooks for 30 minutes. Adjusted to less cooks for 15 minutes.
Less | Normal | More. Adjust between the Less | Normal | More settings by pressing the same cooking function button repeatedly until you get to the desired setting.
and Buttons. Adjust the cook time up or down .
Slow Cook. Adjust to slow cook on low , normal , or high . Use and to increase or decrease the cook time.
Cancel. End a cooking program at any time.
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Instant Pot Soup Setting
The default Instant Pot soup setting is pre-programmed to set the pot to cook at HIGH pressure for 30 minutes. The soup program brings contents of the pot to a slow simmer and results in a clear broth due to lack of boiling motion. Below is how to use the Soup/Broth setting on Instant Pot.
- Turn the Instant Pot on, it will say OFF to indicate the Stand-By mode. Add all ingredients, seasonings and liquids to the pot and stir. Secure the lid on top. Press the Soup button. It will say Normal, 30 minutes at High Pressure. If you press the Soup button again, you can adjust the mode from Normal to Less or More .
- Normal mode 30 minutes at High pressure recommended for soups with meat.
- Less mode 20 minutes at High pressure recommended for soups without meat.
- More mode 4 hours at High pressure recommended for soups that require longer cook times such as rich bone broths. Release the pressure naturally.
Use the / + buttons to further customize the time. The cooking time may be adjusted at any time during pressure cooking.
INSTANT POT SOUP COOKING TIPS
We find that most vegetables, including potatoes, dont need the full 20 minutes at High pressure and will often overcook and get too soft, so for most vegetable-based soups, 5 to 10 minutes at High pressure is usually enough.
The Three Most Important Instant Pot Buttons
There are really only three buttons you need to know when you are just starting out with pressure cooking:
Manual/Pressure Cook. This button is where the magic happensif a recipe says to cook at High Pressure, this is the button you need. Just press it, then use the and buttons to change the cook time. After a brief pause, the Instant Pot will beep to tell you its beginning the pressure cooking process. Some Instant Pots, such a the Duo Evo Plus have a start button that youll need to press to start the cooking process.
Sauté. Press the Sauté button to brown meats, sauté vegetables, and simmer ingredients in the pressure cooking pot. Adjust Sauté to less for simmer, normal to sauté and more for browning.
Keep Warm/Cancel. Use this button to cancel a function or to turn off your Instant Pot.
Honestly, thats it! I recommend beginning with some easy, tried-and-true recipes before branching out into converting your old favorites. Since I write my recipes so they can be made in any electric pressure cooker, I rarely use the preset Instant Pot buttons.
Read Also: How To Clean The Instant Pot Lid
Lets Try The Quick Release
Back to our pot of water: Activate the steam release valve to the venting position. Keep your face and fingers away from the top of the knob where the steam vents.
The steam will come shooting up and be a little noisy.
Releasing all of the steam can take a minute or more. The more liquid in the cooker, the longer the release will take.
Instant Pot Slow Cook Setting
The Slow Cook is a non-pressure cooking setting that is compatible for use with any common slow cooker/Crockpot recipe. The pot is heated but is not pressurized and the Less, Normal and More modes correspond to Low, Medium and High slow cooker settings but you will need to adjust the time manually.
You might want to use this setting for making dishes ahead of time while youre away from home or overnight. There are times when slow-cooking might work better for certain recipes than quicker pressure cooking. Below are the steps for how to use the Slow Cook setting on Instant Pot.
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