I’ve been using my Instant Pot for quite some time now. Many people ask me, “Was your Instant Pot worth the money? Like, REALLY worth it? Or is it just MORE kitchen gadget hype?”.
Here’s what I tell them AND the 10 things about my Instant Pot I wish I knew BEFORE buying it.
First off, the Instant Pot One Pot Pressure Cooker is a DREAM cooking appliance.
I cook just about everything in it – I even cook baked potatoes in my Instant Pot (here’s the recipe) It’s fast, it’s easy to use (once you’re past the learning curve), it’s super easy to clean, and for a busy mom like me, it is a HUGE time saver.
All that said…
Here’s what I wish I knew about the Instant Pot BEFORE I bought mine:
1. Learning to Use an Instant Pot
There is a learning curve to using an Instant Pot – it’s a simple as that and you need to be aware of this before buying.
You know, when you first buy a crock pot, for example, you can pretty much take it out of the box and use it without reading the manual or needing any instructions.
This is NOT so with an Instant Pot. You’ll want to read the manual that comes with it. Don’t skim or browse through it; READ it.
This is the Instant Pot I bought – the user manual is very helpful so read it.
Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, 6 Quart 1000W
- Duo, the number 1 selling multi-cooker, combines 7 kitchen appliances in 1, Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Marker and Warmer, prepares dishes up to 70% faster to support your busy lifestyle
- Features 14 Smart Programs - Soup, Meat/Stew, Bean/Chili, Poultry, Sauté/Simmer, Rice, Multigrain, Porridge, Steam, Slow Cook, Keep Warm, Yogurt, Manual, and Pressure Cook. Now, your favorite dishes are as easy as pressing a button
- Healthy, stainless steel (18/8) inner cooking pot made from food grade 304, no chemical coating, 3-ply bottom for even heat distribution, fully sealed environment traps the flavours, nutrients and aromas within the food
- Built with the latest 3rd generation technology, the microprocessor monitors pressure, temperature, keeps time, and adjusts heating intensity and duration to achieve your desired results every time
- UL and ULC certified with 10 safety mechanisms to provide you with added assurance, designed to eliminate many common errors
2. Instant Pot Temperatures
The Instant Pot manual is not very clear about what exact temperature each cooking setting is. This is pretty important when cooking, don’t you think?
For example, when you use the ‘saute’ function on your Instant Pot the “less” setting heats food to about 221 degrees, the “more” setting is up to 338 degrees, and the ‘normal’ settings will heat to 320 degrees.
After much trial and error, I just use the ‘normal’ heat setting. You’ll probably find that you do the same.
3. Instant Pot Pressure Cooking
When using the pressure cooker setting on an Instant Pot, you’ll probably find yourself using the “manual” cooking setting most often – and feel a bit bewildered as to why you’re not using all the other fancy settings.
Trust me on this: Don’t worry about it.
4. Instant Pot Recipe Times
Many Instant Pot recipes give a time to cook – this time is for AFTER your Instant Pot reaches full pressure. Always remember that. You’ll know your Instant Pot is at “full pressure” when your cooking timer starts counting down.
And be warned: The Instant Pot cooks food REALLY quickly – like speedy fast. For example, you can cook melt-in-your-mouth tender chicken in like 8 or 9 MINUTES. Yes, THAT kind of fast.
5. Instant Pot Steam
Yes, the Instant Pot puts off a good bit of steam… and it’s HOT. I was NOT expecting the amount of steam my Instant Pot put off, but it’s normal.
Instant Pot Tempered Glass lid – 9 in. (23 cm) - 6 Quart
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- Tempered glass lid with steam release vent and stainless steel rim and handle
- Transparent glass for clear viewing
- Designed for Instant Pot 5 or 6 Quart, Lux 6-in-1 (5 or 6 Quart), Duo 7-in-1 (6 Quart), Duo Plus 9-in-1 (6 Quart), Ultra 10-in-1 (6 Quart), Smart Bluetooth 7-in-1 (6 Quart)
- Dishwasher safe and durable
6. Instant Pot Cooking Options
I really thought my Instant Pot was mainly just a fancy pressure cooker. Boy was I wrong!
An Instant Pot makes soup, rice, baked potatoes, chili, it sautes, it steams and so much more. I wish I had thoroughly read my Instant Pot BEFORE cooking with it so I would have known all the functions it offered me AND started with easy Instant Pot recipes for my first attempts using each cooking function.
7. Instant Pot Stains
Cleaning an Instant Pot is VERY easy – and many parts are dishwasher safe. BUT, after your first few times cooking with your Instant Pot, you might notice some stains and think you have ruined it.
This is normal as well.
8. Instant Pot Steamer Basket
The steamer option on an Instant Pot is wonderful – and it comes with a steamer basket… BUT, the the one that comes with it really isn’t that great.
It took me a long time to figure out that I could buy a BETTER steamer basket and suddenly steaming with my Instant Pot became SO much easier.
Secura 6-quart Electric Pressure Cooker Steam Rack Basket Set
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- Steam Rack Basket Set for Secura 6-quart Electric Pressure Cooker
9. Cooking Desserts with an Instant Pot
I found all these amazing-looking Instant Pot dessert recipes and none of them turned out quite right until I figured out that I needed this dessert insert pan set. Once I started using the insert pans, all my Instant Pot desserts turned out MUCH better.
ekovana Stackable Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker Steamer Insert Pans with lid
- VERSATILE - 2 tier stackable pans allowing for variety of foods to be cooked simultaneously. Great for steaming vegetables, meat or fish. Doubles as a dessert pan to make cheesecakes or use as a lasagna pan. Useful for pot-in-pot cooking. Perfect for reheating food without sacrificing taste and texture, also use as container for storing food. Patent pending.
- HEALTHY & CONVENIENT - Skip the microwave ovens and reheat leftover food or curry in your cooker to preserve the nutrients and vitamins. Reheat two dishes together and save time!
- DURABLE - Premium quality insert pans made from food-grade stainless steel. Secure-fitting stainless-steel lid traps in heat and moisture. Solid handle allows for safe and easy insertion and removal. Dishwasher safe for no-hassle cleanup.
- FITS 5, 6 & 8 QUART COOKER - This stainless steel cooker insert is a must have accessory for instant pot models IP-DUO50, IP-DUO60, IP-LUX60, IP-DUO80. Also fits other multi quart(6 quart and above) electric pressure cookers such as Kuhn Rikon, Power XL, Cuisinart, Fagor, Costaway, Faberware, T-fal, Elite, GoWise, Secura, Gourmia.
- 100% MONEY BACK | SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: It's a RISK FREE buy. We love our customers and are obsessed with your satisfaction! If you are not happy with the product for any reason, feel free to contact us for a full refund.
10. Instant Pot Cookbooks and Recipes
You’ll find a lot of Instant Pot recipes all over online, but at the end of the day, you’ll really want a GOOD recipe cookbook.
Hip Pressure Cooking: Fast, Fresh, and Flavorful
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- St Martin s Griffin
Instant Pot Baked Potatoes
Fast easy and DELICIOUS baked potatoes cooked in an Instant Pot
- 4 medium baking potatoes
- 1 cup cold water
- Clean the potatoes under running water.
- Poke holes throughout the potatoes with a fork.
- Place 1 cup of cold water and a trivet into the pressure cooker.
- Place the potatoes on top of the trivet.
- Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure for 12 minutes for medium potatoes. Adjust your time based on the size of your potatoes.
- Turn off the heat and Quick Release.
- Open the lid carefully.
✅ Worth the Money?
There is a LOT of hype surrounding the Instant Pot one pot pressure cooker – but are they really worth it? After using my Instant Pot for some time now, and figuring out the tips and tricks I just shared above, I say, YES! it is absolutely worth the money IF you know the 10 things above BEFORE you buy and use it.
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1 used from $ 19.65
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32 used from $ 5.25
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- 1. Learning to Use an Instant Pot
- Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, 6 Quart 1000W
- 2. Instant Pot Temperatures
- 3. Instant Pot Pressure Cooking
- 4. Instant Pot Recipe Times
- 5. Instant Pot Steam
- Instant Pot Tempered Glass lid – 9 in. (23 cm) - 6 Quart
- 6. Instant Pot Cooking Options
- 7. Instant Pot Stains
- 8. Instant Pot Steamer Basket
- Secura 6-quart Electric Pressure Cooker Steam Rack Basket Set
- 9. Cooking Desserts with an Instant Pot
- ekovana Stackable Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker Steamer Insert Pans with lid
- 10. Instant Pot Cookbooks and Recipes
- Hip Pressure Cooking: Fast, Fresh, and Flavorful
- Instant Pot Baked Potatoes
- ✅ Worth the Money?