I have been using the Instant Pot for some time now, but I totally understand that this new appliance can be scary for someone starting. I have seen posts about people waiting and thinking about buying this complex pressure cooker and some who bought it, but have not used it yet. I have shared why I love the instant pot in the previous post, so if you are on the fence about buying one, do read it.
I suggest you take the dive and attain cooking nirvana with this great device. It is totally worth your time and counter-space.
Here are some tips for readers new to using the Instant Pot:
- Dry the steel insert or pot completely before inserting in the unit.
- Make sure the vent position is set at Sealing before you begin Pressure Cooking. Otherwise you might be wondering after many minutes, why the pressure has not built yet.
- Make sure the vent position is at Venting before you begin Slow Cooking.
- Clean the steel insert and the lid after each use. You may also want to clean the sealing ring frequently to avoid odors in the food. DO NOT immerse the base unit in water.
- Always add water or another liquid to pressure cook food. About a cup of liquid is usually enough.
- I suggest doing the hot water test before starting to use the instant pot.
- DO NOT obstruct or cover the pressure cooking vent. That is where the steam releases and covering it could damage the instant pot.
- DO NOT place the instant pot on a stove. I have read about many people damaging the instant pot by mistakenly starting the stove.
See the Instant Pot online manual here. Most of the above tips are buried in the details.
There are some popular acronyms used in the Instant Pot community which you might find useful:
- IP - Instant Pot
- PIP - Pot in Pot method
- QR - Quick pressure release
- NR or NPR - Natural pressure release
- 10 min NPR - Release pressure naturally for 10 minutes, and then manually release the remaining steam.
- Your Instant Pot can make popcorn.
- And it can make cheese cakes
- You can cook multiple items simultaneously, saving time to get a complete meal.