What Is Manual On Instant Pot

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Instant Pot Buttons Manual

Instant Pot Lesson 9: Using the Manual Setting to Make Pulled Pork

Note the buttons on the Instant Pot display can vary depending on the model . Dont worry there isnt a huge difference and we will cover all the buttons in both these models with instructions on how to use them.

The buttons on the Instant Pot can be categorized into two categories smart programs and program settings.

The smart cooking programs are a set of pre-programmed settings with set times that allows you to cook different foods within the Instant Pot at the touch of a button. Examples of smart programs found in DUO plus would be Soup/Broth, Meat/Stew, Bean/Chili, Cake, Egg, Slow Cook, Sauté, Rice, Multigrain, Porridge, Steam, Sterilize, Yogurt, Keep Warm, and Pressure Cook.

The program settings buttons allow you to adjust the smart programs. The examples would be Pressure Level, Keep Warm, + / keys adjust time, Delay Start and Cancel.

Lets review both the smart programs and program setting buttons in detail

Instant Pot Smart Programs All You Need To Know

Whats great about these smart programs is that once you select a program based on the food you are cooking, the Instant Pot will set the time for you automatically.

There are 3 preset time options for each program Less, Normal and More. The default is Normal. Pressing the smart program button once moves you to More and press it again to select Less.

Note The preset times are recommended cooking times but you can easily change them using the + and button to match the cooking time of the recipe you are following. The only exception would be the Rice program where the cooking time cannot be modified.

Lets go ahead and review all the buttons and functionalities in detail

Pressure Cook/Manual

Pressure Cook is likely the feature you use the most because, well, most recipes call for it. Pressure cook allows you to control the cooking time, pressure setting, and temperature, which is why a lot of folks like to use it.

To use, select Pressure cook and then set a time using the + and button. Set it to high or low pressure using the Pressure Level setting .

  • Low pressure: In this setting, the temperature ranges between 229°F to 233°F and the pressure would be 5.8 psi 7.2 psi.
  • High pressure: Temperature ranges between 239°F to 244°F and the pressure range is 10.2 11.6 psi.

Do this: Use the Pressure cook setting to run the water test in your Instant Pot.


Saute comes with 3 settings. Press the Saute button to move from one setting to the other


Dont Get Too Caught Up In What All The Buttons Mean

For the most part, the buttons on the control panel are there to help you decide on your cooking time. For example, if there is a fish button, pressing it will likely mean that your food will cook for a short time . The chicken button will be slightly longer . Some electric pressure cookers have a saute feature, which comes in handy to pre-caramelize your mirepoix, if youre making soup or stew . New models have a sterilize function , and most come with a slow cook option, which means exactly what you think it means: slow cooking without pressure. When it comes to frozen food, learn if you can cook frozen meat in an Instant Pot.

Psst: Heres why you should trade your slow cooker for an Instant Pot.

Also Check: How To Make Yogurt In Instant Pot Without Yogurt Button

Instant Pot Recipes Made Simple

Do you wish you could find one-pot meals that are simple and easy to make and your family will love?

Youre about to find out how simple it is to make healthy, one-pot meals with your Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker with my cookbook Instant Pot Recipes Made Simple. You can download it instantly to your phone, computer or e-reader, so its portable and can go with you anywhere!

With this book, youll get:

  • Tried-and-true recipes the whole family will love including pot roast, spaghetti, tacos, carnitas, soups, and easy breakfast meals
  • Instant Pot starter guide on how to use the buttons, tips and tricks, and more
  • Printable shopping lists for ingredients
  • Step-by-step video lesson on how to use your Instant Pot, pressure cooker safety, and some of my favorite tips and tricks
  • Two-week meal plan that you can put into action for no-stress weeknight dinners

Instant Pot Porridge Setting


The porridge setting on the Instant Pot can be used to cook oatmeal using old-fashioned oats and steel-cut oats, rice porridge and congee or porridge-like dishes that use a mixture of grains that expand in liquid. Ideally, you should use natural release when cooking high-starch foods that expand or a combination of 5-10 minutes natural release and quick release to follow. Below is how to use the Porridge setting on Instant Pot.

  • Turn the Instant Pot on, it will say OFF to indicate the Stand-By mode. Add the grains, liquid and spices or fat if you wish. Secure and lock the lid. Press the Porridge button. The default setting is pre-programmed to set the pot to cook at High pressure for 20 minutes. If you press the Porridge button again, you can adjust the mode from Normal to Less or More.
  • Less mode 5 minutes at High pressure this is suitable for cooking rolled oats and risotto-like porridge or rice porridge with slightly firmer to bite texture.
  • Normal mode 20 minutes at High pressure use for steel-cut oat porridge or rice porridge with a slightly softer texture and for making congee.
  • More mode 30 minutes at High pressure use for a porridge/congee that contains a mixture of beans or tougher grains.

If desired, use the / + buttons to further customize the time. The cooking time may be adjusted at any time during pressure cooking.

Here are some suggested water to rice/oats ratios for porridge and oatmeal dishes:

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Instant Pot Parts And Accessories

  • Base Unit this contains the heating element.
  • Stainless Steel Inner Pot fits into the base unit.
  • Lid the look of the lid varies between Instant Pot models.
  • Steam Release Valve this fits on the top of the lid and may already be attached.
  • Condensation Collector attach this to the back of your Instant Pot.
  • Trivet be sure to keep this, as you will use it often.
  • Power Cord removable in some Instant Pot models.
  • Measuring Cup & Utensils These come with the Instant Pot. I use my own measuring cups and utensils instead of these.
  • The first thing youll want to do is wash the parts of your Instant Pot. The Instant Pot lid, steam release valve and stainless steel inner pot are dishwasher safe however, I wash mine by hand. The base unit is not dishwasher safe never immerse the base unit in water.

    Cooking Time Is Not The Same As Total Time

    If you think you will have brown rice cooked in 22 minutes, its not the case. Cooking time is not the same as entire cooking cycle time. Once you add all ingredients and close the lid, Instant Pot will begin to boil the water, then build up pressure and only after countdown of actual cooking time will start. Usually pressure build up time is anywhere between 10-45 minutes and varies based on the type of ingredients, amount of liquid inside, fresh or frozen food and size of your Instant Pot. That is why soup takes the longest.Afterwards, food is done cooking, Instant Pot might need to bring pressure down using Natural Release more time.

    So, despite its name Instant Pot is not nearly as instant. However, it is convenient for throwing everything together and walking away. I would say not hovering over food waiting for it to boil, stir or turn off is the best feature of an electric pressure cooker. Completely hands off method is life changing.

    Also Check: Food Burn Instapot

    How To Use An Instant Pot

    • Before cooking always inspect your Instant Pot to make sure:
    • Cord is plugged in both in electric outlet and in the base unit .
    • Base unit under the inner stainless steel pot has no debris and is dry.
    • Sealing ring is in and fitted properly onto the lid .
    • Add water and ingredients.
    • Close the lid and set valve to Sealing position. This will ensure pressure will be sealed inside the pot when it comes to pressure.

    If you leave the valve on Venting, steam will keep shooting from it eventually running out of water, Instant Pot not pressurizing and causing Burn. Make a habit to turn it to Sealing right after closing the lid.

    • Start Instant Pot by selecting Pressure Cook or Manual button. Name of the button will depend on the model of your Instant Pot. Regardless the model, display should say On. Not the set time you selected for the recipe thats next step.
    • Water gets heated and pressure builds up. During this time it is OK to see some steam coming out of a steam release valve.
    • Instant Pot comes to pressure, seals itself and food is being cooked. You will see countdown from set cook time begin now.

    Float valve on Duo models is pink and protruding. On Lux model it is stainless steel color and is more set in.

    • Now you have to release the pressure. There are 2 ways to do so: Natural Release or Quick Release. Usually the recipe will indicate which one to use.
    • Dinner is ready!

    Functions Programs & Settings

    Instant Pot Duo Nova Beginner’s Guide and Manual

    The Instant Pot ULTRA multi cooker features the following cooking functions:

    • Pressure Cook at high or low pressure from 1 minute to six hours.
    • Steam at high, low or no pressure from 1 minute to four hours
    • Slow Cook at high, medium, low or custom temperature from 30 minutes to 20 hours
    • Saute at high , medium , low or custom temperatures from 1 to 30 minutes
    • Warm at high, low medium or custom temperature for 10 minutes to 99 hours
    • Sterilize at high, low or no pressure from 1 minute to 4 hours. There are no official guidelines on how to use an electric pressure cooker for sterilization. However, Instant Pot told me that this setting is mainly to be used to pasteurize milk and sterilize baby bottles. It cannot be used for pressure canning.
    • Yogurt There are no instructions on how to use this setting but we think the process will be similar to that used in previous models.
    • Ultra described in detail, above.

    Instant Pot Ultra also includes the following cooking programs, which are basically recommended pre-set times and pressures for cooking that particular food, with the ability to further customize and memorize the settings: Soup/Broth, Meat/Stew, Bean/Chili, Rice, Porridge, Multigrain, Cake, and Egg.

    Recommended Reading: How To Make Beef Stew In An Instant Pot

    Ultracool Ultrafast Ultraconvenient Ultra

    The new function of the Instant Pot ULTRA is a setting on the control panel that is similar to custom and manual mode, except now you, can do more than just choose the cooking time and pressure you can choose the cooking temperature, too! Here are all of the settings under this function.

    Choose the Time

    When you first select Ultra, you spin and punch our way through the menu to first choose the cooking time .

    Choose the Pressure & Temp

    Then, once the cooking time is confirmed, there is the option to choose the cooking pressure: High Pressure , Low Pressure or No Pressure at all.

    The no pressure feature is neat because from there you can either choose a pre-set temperature or choose the specific temperature, one degree at a time, from 104-208°F. BTW, if you want to use this for Sous Vide cooking be aware that the temperature is accurate +/- 5°F and it can vary from the base to the top without the addition of a circulator .

    Delay Timer & Keep Warm

    This is one of my favorite features because it gets dinner going while Im out of the house. The Ultra lets you choose to delay cooking anywhere from 10 minutes to 24 hours dont know when the latter would come in use but its an option. Also, this panel lets you choose whether you want keep warm to kick-in at the end of cooking or not.

    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!

    Read Also: Instant Pot C6l Error Fix

    Instant Pot Yogurt Setting

    The Yogurt button is a non-pressure cooking Smart Program made for easily fermented dairy and non-dairy recipes. The setting modes Less, Normal and More are used for different times of fermentation or for boiling the milk. Below are some basic steps and setting options for making yogurt using the Yogurt setting button.


    • Add milk to the inner pot. A minimum of 4 cups of milk is recommended for a 6-quart Instant Pot . Secure and close the lid. Make sure to press the quick-release button down until it clicks and locks into the Vent position. On Duo Classic, turn the steam release hand to point to Venting. Do this before you select the settings and make any adjustments.
    • Select Yogurt setting. The default mode is Normal. Press Yogurt again to cycle to the More option. The display indicates boiL. After 10 seconds the cooker begins heating. This setting mode can be used to pasteurize the milk but is also there for heating the milk before adding in the starter culture. When pasteurization/heating completes, the display indicates End.



    Inspecting Your Instant Pot Before Each Use

    Duo SV

    1. Remove the stainless steel inner pot and look inside the instant pot base. You will see the heating element. The heating element should always be free of debris and dry before you use you the Instant Pot. After washing, I always dry my stainless steel inner pot thoroughly before returning it to the base unit.

    2. Check that the silicone sealing ring is fitted properly onto the lid and is clean and free of tears.

    3. Remove the steam release valve from the Instant Pot lid by gently pulling it straight up. Make sure it is clean and free of debris. Some foods, such as applesauce, pasta and oatmeal may froth and foam when you cook them and can clog the steam release valve. Check the steam release valve each time you use your Instant Pot. If it is dirty clean it under running water and then put it back on the Instant Pot lid.

    4. Check the float valve to ensure it is clean and free of debris. Clean it with warm water as needed. You may place the lid under running water as needed to wash it.

    Making sure that all parts of your Instant Pot are clean and in good working condition can help you to have the best success with pressure cooking. My post about the Instant Pot burn message tells you both how to prevent getting this warning and what to do if you do get a burn message.

    Recommended Reading: How To Cook Frozen Beef In Instant Pot

    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

    Stainless Steel Inner Pot

    This inner pot is what you will use for cooking. Wash the inner pot before first use. Dry it completely before use. Place this into the base unit of the instant pot.

    Tip: I like to have an extra inner pot, so I can quickly cook multiple things one after the other. There is also a non-stick ceramic inner pot if that is of interest to you.

    Also Check: Pressure Cooker Frozen Ground Beef

    What Is The Soup Setting On Instant Pot Answered

    • Save

    As you may already know, there arent many limits when you use an Instant Pot. It is a handy little device and can be used for a number of different things. For example, baking, boiling, pressure cooking, and more. It is initially a mixture of a pressure cooker and a slow cooker, meaning that it has more than a few applications and is a good tool to have in the kitchen. All this variety and effectiveness is one of the main reasons why Instant Pots are so famous, and it could also be the reason why you may own one.

    Instant Pots are also pretty simple and easy to use, although this is only true if you know what youre doing. For example, someone thats using the device for the first time in their life will obviously struggle to operate it properly. On the other hand, someone thats experienced and has been using Instant Pots for long will be able to navigate their way and cook whatever it is that they want using it. There are many different options that people will have to learn more about in order to get familiar with the device. One of these options is enabled using the soup button.

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