Instant Pot Burn Food

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Check The Internal Temperature

What to Do When You Get the BURN NOTICE! Instant Pot Tips

When the cook time is up, do a quick pressure release. Test the internal temperature of the meat with an instant read meat thermometer. It should reach the temperatures below, depending on how you want it cooked.

  • Medium rare 130° F
  • Medium 140° F
  • Medium well -150° F

I cooked mine to 135° F, which produced a center that was between medium rare and medium. For me, that was perfect. I cooked it for 4 minutes to achieve this result.

Please be aware that every situation is different and you might not have the exact same results as me. This is why its both important to experiment once or twice to see how your Instant Pot reacts, and to check the internal temperature of the meat before taking it out. I always say to err under and cook it for 1 minute less than you want it to be. Then if its under, you can turn it back on for 1 more minute.

Dont worry that it might take a long time to build back up pressure. It will almost instantly turn back on because the water is already hot and theres not a lot of volume in the pot.

When youve reached the desired temperature, transfer the steak to a plate to rest for 5 minutes. Slice the steak against the grain and serve.

What Do I Do If My Instant Pot Says Burn

Your Instant Pot automatically turns off once it detects a burn in the inner pot, immediately taking care of the most pressing issue. Sometimes, your Instant Pot will cool down quickly and resume cooking on its own. But in most cases, it’s good to have a plan with damage control. And remember, there’s no reason to panic.

Food Or Liquid In Pot Is Too Thick

This is yet another common problem that often triggers the instant pot burn message.

Starchy foods like rice, oats, and pasta can become too thick when they come to a boil. This problem actually happens while using regular pots as well.

Likewise, Some thick sauces or tomato products may trigger a burn warning in the highly sensitive pressure cooking instant pot.

If the liquid is too thick, excessive heat ends up building at the bottom of the inner pot. Therefore, the cooker may not be able to generate enough steam, thus triggering the burn notice.


Make Sure There is Enough Thin Liquid in the Pot- Avoid adding thick cooking liquid or thick sauces especially when cooking high starch foods in this pressure cooker. If necessary, always add more thin liquid to the instant pot to avoid problematic thickness.

Layer Thick Sauces at the Top of Ingredients- Thick sauces and tomato products like tomato paste or tomato sauce tend to stick to the bottom of the instant pot. This obviously causes heat to build up at the bottom and your food may end up not cooking properly especially now that there isnt enough steam being generated. The general rule of thumb when using instant pot is to always layer sauces and tomato products above the rest of the ingredients. Do not mix these with the other ingredients whatsoever.

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How To Fix Burn On An Instant Pot

The first thing you should do when you see your instant pot giving you the burn warning is to press cancel and use the quick pressure release straight away which will release the steam.

If you see a lot of foam or liquid rising, it is advised to close the steam release valve again before waiting for a minute or two and doing it again if needed.

Then, carefully remove the lid of the pot and then take out the inner pot from its housing.

Have a look at your food inside of the pot, and if you see any burnt parts, take it off if you can.

If theres quite a bit of burning, then its best to remove all of the food and transfer it onto another plate so that you can clean the bottom of the pot from burnt food debris to prevent it from making the rest of the food taste burnt.

There may be a stray grain of rice or another food part that has broken off and somehow made its way between the instant pot and the housing so its good to check in between them as they can cause problems too.

However, if you have gotten the burn message and have checked your food for burning and scorching but cant find any, then there are some other things that you will need to check instead as it may be a sign that something is faulty.

The floating valve should be able to move freely and is nice and clean, and the steam-release switch should be in the right position.

How Does Overheat Protection Work

Instant Pot Burn Message

The thermal sensors in the Instant Pot automatically monitor and adjust the pressure cookers temperature inside, earning the Instant Pot its popular set it and forget it reputation. It also allows the appliance to recognise when anything is about to burn and turn off the heat before it does.

The inner pot can reach temperatures much beyond the boiling point of water when under pressure, so its critical that things dont become too hot. The goal of the Overheat Protection feature is to protect both your supper and the cooker itself. When the temperature sensor senses too hot temperature, it shuts down and Burn message appears. Once things cool down enough , the heating element will turn back on and try to complete the cooking cycle. If things get too hot again, Instant Pot will try 5 more times before shutting off for good.

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Instant Pot Flank Steak

» You may also like this Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Thighs and Instant Pot Rack of Lamb.

Flank steak is usually cooked on the grill, but thats not the only way to cook it. If you dont want to use the grill or stove top, or youre away from your kitchen and the Instant Pot is the only appliance you have, its just as easy to do.

With the Instant Pot, you can decide if you want to cook the flank steak quickly to achieve a medium to well-done temperature.

Instant Pot flank steak can be enjoyed as is with a side salad, but it can also be used in many other recipes. Slice the steak up and add it to tacos, fajitas, or classic steak sandwich. There are so many ways you can go with this recipe, so give it a try!

How To Avoid Burn Message On Instant Pot

To avoid the burn message on your Instant Pot, always make sure there is no food stuck at the bottom of the inner pot . The best example is my recipe for the Instant Pot Chicken Thighs. You need to saute the thighs first, then remove them onto a plate, deglaze the bottom of the pot by adding required liquid and scraping it with a wooden spoon, then placing a trivet inside and arranging the meat on top.

If you are making pasta dishes , always make sure you scrape any food bits from the bottom of your inner pot after sauteing onions and garlic. If adding tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes, add them last and in the center of the dish, avoiding it touching the sides of the inner pot. Do not stir the dish. Pressure cook according to the instructions in the recipe.

It is recommended by the Instant Pot brand to avoid thick cream sauces when pressure cooking, as it will prevent the IP from coming to pressure. Add cream cheese, heavy cream or thicken the sauce with cornstarch and half and half after your food is cooked. Use the saute mode to thicken the dish.

It seems that 8qt Instant Pots tend to get burn message more often, and my assumption is that while the 8 quart IP requires more liquid to come to pressure than the 6 quart IP, most recipes do not include the info to adjust that according to what IP you are using.

To learn more about the Instant Pot and how to use it almost daily, make delicious dishes and love it, check out my Instant Pot Guide for Beginners.

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What Is The Burn Message

If youve received a burn message on your Instant Pot, dont panic! The machine has a total of 13 safety mechanisms to keep you and your food safe. The Instant Pot burn message is there to warn you when the bottom of your pot is getting too hot. Keep in mind that the warning is just that, a cautionary message to let you know that things are heating up, not a declaration that your meal is ruined. Theres still time to fix it!

Not Enough Liquid In The Pot

10 WAYS to Avoid Instant Pot BURN | How to save “burning” food

This is perhaps the biggest cause of a burn message on instant pot.

A pressure cooker needs an adequate amount of liquid in order to generate enough steam and come to pressure.

When the amount of liquid in the pot is not enough, the pressure cooker is therefore unable to generate steam and thus causes the bottom temperature at the bottom of the instant pot to rise instantly.

When the bottom of the instant pot becomes too hot, the burn warning on the pot is instantly triggered.

Typically, Instant Pot requires a 1 cup of liquid. This is usually enough to generate enough steam for cooking various recipes. However, there are certain recipes or ingredients that may require more liquid- otherwise, a burn message is triggered.

For example, food recipes containing high amounts of starch can trigger the instant pot burn message. These may include rice and pasta. These foods typically absorb liquids fast and are generally sticky so youre bound to get the warning if your recipe contains these two ingredients.


I recommend using proven instant pot recipes to ensure that 1 cup is

Another problem is that most recipes are created using the most popular instant pot size- the 6-quart port. So if youre still going to add the same amount of liquid in a 6 quart port as you would an 8-quart port, you might end up getting the burn message.

Read Also: Can You Put Frozen Chicken In Instant Pot

Why Does Improper Use Of Your Cooker Cause Burnt Foods

As with any appliance, you should always follow the manufacturers recommendations.

Although pressure cookers are simple to use, there is still special guidance you should pay attention to.

Plus, it can be dangerous not to use appliances the way they were designed. Below are the most common reasons why foods burn at the bottom of pressure cookers.

You are overfilling the cooker. If you are in a rush to get food on the table or you have extra guests around for dinner, you may be tempted to overfill the cooker.

However, youll end up with too much food in the pot and therefore not enough room for the steam and pressure to build.

The result is more of the food remaining drier, and while touching the bottom of the inner pot, it will then more than likely burn.

You are not using enough liquid. The liquid will boil away very quickly if you dont add enough of it to the pot.

The pressure and temperature will both rise too high, too fast, causing the food to start burning before the recommended cooking times.

You are cooking with the heat too high. Pressure cooker users are often tempted to use very high heat when cooking.

The idea is to raise the temperature and pressure to ideal levels quickly. However, if not done carefully, you will end up overheating the cooker and burning your food.

You are cooking beyond the recommended cooking times. If youre accustomed to stovetop cooking, you may overestimate the time it will take to cook food in a pressure cooker.

What To Do When You Get The Burn Notice

The Instant Pot will automatically stop cooking. Sometimes it might cool down and then restart cooking once its cooled, but its always a good idea to heed the warning right away and make sure there arent any issues with your pressure cooker, before you continue cooking. After all, a little bit of caution will prevent any issues.

Follow these steps to ensure safety when your Instant Pot shows the burn alert:

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How To Fix Food Burn Message Without Removing The Food

Depending on what you are cooking, you might not have to go through the hassle of removing food, cleaning the pot and restarting the cooking cycle. This is not official solution but I found it works for me like a charm, so I am sharing it with you.

Usually Burn shows up when Instant Pot is almost or at pressure. Means the pressure pin is up. Great! Logically, if it is not a 45 minute pork carnitas or Instant Pot frozen chicken , there is enough pressure built up to finish cooking your meal because it already started cooking while Instant Pot was coming to pressure.

Here is what to do:

  • Make sure the float valve is up.
  • If pressure pin is not up, press on the lid and it more likely will pop up.
  • Ignore Burn for a few minutes and then press Cancel.
  • Time cooking time as it says on the recipe and then do Quick Release or Natural Release as per the recipe.
  • Your food should be cooked. Ta-dah!
  • This trick will work with many quick cooking recipes, roughly with under 15 minutes cook time like pasta, eggs, chicken pieces, veggies and canned beans. Examples are Instant Pot white chicken chili, Instant Pot potato salad, Instant Pot goulash, Instant Pot turkey chili and Instant Pot butter chicken.

    How To Avoid A Burn Message

    What To Do When Your Instant Pot Says BURN + Video

    Every time you prepare to use your Instant Pot, ensure that all components are clean and in working order. Double-check that the pressure valve is in sealing position before pressure cooking, or all of the liquid will boil off and scorch the bottom of the pot.

    “Always ensure that you have sufficient liquid,” says Lai. Use at least one cup of liquid unless you are cooking extremely juicy ingredients that will release their liquid quickly. Well-tested, reliable recipes will take this into account, and should successfully avoid the burn notice.

    She also recommends deglazing every time you sauté and scraping the bottom well to ensure no food is stuck on before pressure cooking. Finally, avoid thick sauces and sticky ingredients, which have a tendency to burn.

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    How To Prevent A Burn Message In The Future

    There are a few simple steps you can take to make sure you never have this issue again. First, make sure there is enough liquid in the pot. Instant Pots rely on water-based liquid to pressurize properly and if the food is too dry it will begin to overheat. Next, make sure the steam release is sealed. The machine will not be able to reach proper pressure if the release isnt sealed. Another helpful step is to layer the ingredients within the pot. Make sure liquids are on the bottom, then layer in the restwithout mixing. This will help to prevent scorching. Finally, make sure that the sealing ring and float valve are working properly.

    The more familiar you get with your Instant Pot, the more confident youll become cooking with it.

    What Should I Do When I Get The Burn Notice On My Instant Pot

    Collect yourself! Theres nothing wrong with your Instant Pot. Now that you know what causes an Instant Pot to display the burn message and how to avoid it, you will surely get it less frequently. With that said, if you were to get it again this is how you should handle it.

    • 1#Start by releasing the pressure . Do so carefully and make sure that no part of your body is close to the release hole as pressure will escape in the form of super hot steam.Never try to open the lid without releasing pressure first.
    • 2# When the Instant Pot has depressurized, open the lid to check if theres food stuck to the bottom. Open the lid carefully, especially if youve got thick sauces in there as they may splash.
    • 3#If theres burnt food at the base of the cooker, you need to remove it. There are two ways to do so, which technique is most effective depends on the degree of the burn. Small stains can often be removed by scraping the bottom of the cooker with a wooden spoon or spatula but badly burned food and blackened stains may require that you remove the content of the cooker and soak the inner pot in a mixture of warm water and soap.
    • 4# If theres no burnt food at the base of the cooker but theres no liquid left, add more liquid, stir thoroughly, and resume the cooking cycle.

    If you opened the cooker only to find that no food has burned to the bottom and that theres still sufficient liquid in the cooker, proceed to:

    • 6# Resume the cooking process.

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    How To Clean A Burnt Instant Pot

    If you were too late and your dish ended up scorching in the pot, remove any food that isn’t stuck-on and fill the inner pot with warm, soapy water.

    Let it soak, then scrub. If any stains remain, Lai recommends using a non-abrasive cloth or scrubber dampened with baking soda and vinegar. Bar Keepers Friend or a similar product also work well.

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