My Review Of Instant Pot

It’s all the rage so guess what? I hit the streets to get the lowdown on 10 different models and their accessories! I hope you enjoy this review of Instant Pot.

My Review Of Instant Pot
Instant Pot

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I’m sure you’ve heard of Instant Pot. It’s That Thing that has everyone talking. That wondrous, marvelous, amazing, extraordinary, almost transcendent piece of kitchen equipment that the whole world is raving about. Since you’re here, reading this review, I assume that you’re considering buying and you’re looking to see if this is the brand for you.

The fact is that Instant Pot is the best-selling and most popular pressure cooker out there. It’s user-friendly and has many, many uses, from the obvious (pressure-cooking) to things you may not be aware of such as making yogurt, cooking eggs and even sterilization. The problem (at least for me) is that there are 10 different models available. T.E.N. Which one is the right one for you? I’m going to break it down for you here.

My review of Instant Pot.

Basic Instant Pot Features

 

There are certain features that all Instant Pots have in common so I’m going to cover those first:

  • High-Pressure Cooking Function that cooks food up to 70% faster.
  • Slow Cooker Function.
  • Steamer Option for cooking vegetables, seafood, and eggs. Steamer accessories are included with Instant Pot.
  • Saute Function for sauteing, browning and reducing.
  • Rice Cooker Option to cook rice in as little as 4 minutes.
  • Warm Setting for keeping food at the proper temperature when it’s finished cooking.
  • Stainless Steel Inner Port has a 3 ply bottom and is dishwasher safe.
  • Accessories included: stainless steel steam rack with handles, rice paddle, soup spoon, measuring cup and condensation collector.
  • Free Instant Pot App for iOS and Android devices that’s loaded with hundreds of recipes as well as an online community to provide support and guidance.
  • More than 10 built-in safety features, including Overheat Protection, Safety Lock and more to ensure safe pressure-cooking

 

All Instant Pots except the Lux 6 in 1 have these additional features:

  • Low-Pressure Cooking Function for cooking items such as hard or soft-cooked eggs as well as more delicate vegetables and fish.
  • Yogurt Making Function.

 Pot By Pot

Now that we know the basics, let’s get down to the brass tacks: the pot by pot comparison so you can choose the perfect Instant Pot for you! Ready? Let’s roll.

 

My Review of Instant Pot
Lux 6-in-1

Instant Pot Lux 6 in 1

This very basic and economical Instant Pot has 12 one-touch Smart Programs, fingerprint-resistant stainless steel lid and components and a 6-quart large capacity to cook for up to 6 people

Instant Pot Lux 6 in 1 also comes in an 8-quart size for larger households.

Instant Pot Lux Mini has all the features of the 6-quart but in a 3-quart size. It’s great for small households, making side dishes or for anywhere that space is limited.

 

Instant Pot Duo 60

My Review Of Instant Pot
Duo 60

This is the original model of Instant Pot. It’s basic, affordable and the best-selling model out there due to its ease of use.

It has 14 Smart Programs and 12 preset temperatures. The 6-quart size cooks for up to 6 people.

Instant Pot Duo 80 has all the features of the Duo 60 but in an 8-quart size.

Instant Pot Duo Mini has all the features of the Duo 60 but in a 3-quart size. It’s great for small households, making side dishes or for anywhere that space is limited.

 

Instant Pot Duo Nova 7 in 1

My Review Of Instant Pot
Duo Nova

Instant Pot Duo Nova is an updated Duo. It has 12 one-touch Smart Programs plus a new progress indicator to let you know when your Instant Pot is coming to pressure and when the cooking cycle begins.

The new easy seal lid automatically seals your Instant Pot to keep flavors, nutrients and aromas sealed inside.

Accessories included: an extra sealing ring, steam rack with handles, and a recipe booklet.

This smaller Instant Pot Duo Nova has all the features of the standard-sized Duo Nova but in a 3-quart size.

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Viva

Instant Pot Viva

This 6-quart pot is the first we’ve looked at that has some seriously awesome upgrades.

It has 15 one-touch Smart Programs which include a cake maker (get accessories here), sterilization feature and sous vide feature.

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Duo Nova Plus

Instant Pot Duo Plus 6 qt 9 in 1

Instant Pot Duo Plus is an updated Duo. Duo Plus upgrades include the easy seal lid to automatically seal when pressure-cooking and a cooking progress indicator, so you know when cooking begins. It has 15 one-touch Smart Programs and can prepare meals for up to 6 people.

A larger version of the Instant Pot Duo Plus 9 in 1 has all the features of the regular Duo Plus but in an 8-quart size.

Instant Pot Duo Plus Mini has a 3-quart capacity. It’s great for making side dishes or for anywhere that space is limited. It has 13 one-touch smart programs but does not have the cake or beans/grain option offered in the larger size.

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Ultra 60

Instant Pot Ultra 10 in 1

Instant Pot Ultra is the next generation in kitchen appliances.

A central dial with a simple turn and press provides added precision in program selection and adjustment. 16 one-touch Smart Programs include complete temperature customization and preset cooking times for up to 6 hours.

The automatic altitude adjustment takes the guesswork out of recipe conversion while the new self-closing pressure valve adds a higher safety rating.

My Review Of Instant Pot
Duo Evo

Instant Pot Duo EVO Plus 9 in 1

Instant Pot Duo Evo is a hybrid of the Duo Plus and the Ultra and has features you won’t find in other models. It has 10 one-touch Smart Programs and 48 customizable preset options, making it a must-have for cooking enthusiasts!

It has the biggest display of all the models we’ve looked at so far, big, bold and angled so it can be read from a distance while the new cooking progress indicator shows clearly where you are in the cooking cycle. The 1200W heating element reduces preheating time allowing you to make meals faster.

The easy seal lid automatically seals the pressure cooker while the improved steam-diffusing cover takes the fear out of the pressure release process. Pressure release time is shortened with the new QuickCool technology.

The cookware-grade inner pot made from 304 (18/8) stainless steel features non-slip, cool-to-the-touch silicone handles and a flat bottom that can be used on gas, electric and induction stovetop/cooktop.

Accessories include stainless steel steam rack with long handles and an extra sealing ring.

This pot also comes in an 8-quart size.

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Smart WiFi

Instant Pot Smart WiFi

This WiFi-enabled cooker lets you schedule, cook, adjust and monitor the progress of your meals on the go from your mobile device with the Instant Pot app. It’s also compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant. As if that’s not awesome enough, you’ll have access to thousands of pre-programmed recipes and 13 one-touch Smart Programs!

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Max

Instant Pot Max 9 in 1

The sustained 15psi pressure in this cooker not only cooks food faster while using less energy, it also enables you to do home pressure canning. It automatically releases pressure in the pot when the food is cooked. New Nutriboost technology creates a boiling motion during pressure-cooking to break down food, adding nutrition, flavor, and taste to soups and bone broth.

A new-brushed stainless steel exterior body, stainless steel interior cooker and inner pot are made from food-grade 304 stainless steel and accessories include 2 heat-resistant silicone mitts.

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Duo Crisp

Instant Pot Duo Crisp 11 in 1 Air Fryer

The Instant Pot Duo Crisp offers the best of all worlds with the simple flip of the lid!

The pressure cooker lid offers all the options of a regular Instant Pot while the air fryer lid offers 5 dry cooking functions: use it to quickly air fry, roast, bake, broil and dehydrate.

Accessories include a multi-level air fryer basket as well as a dehydrating and broiling tray designed to ensure optimal results time after time.

The Best Instant Pot Accessories

My Review Of Instant Pot
Replacement Cover

Instant Pot 9” Tempered Glass Lid for 6 Quart

My Review Of Instant Pot
Silicone Cover

Instant Pot Silicone Lid for 5 and 6 Quart

My Review Of Instant Pot
Loaf Pan

Silicone Springform Loaf Pan

My Review Of Instant Pot
Cake Pan

Silicone Springform Cake Pan

 

 

My Review Of Instant Pot
Mini Mitts

Instant Pot Mini Mitts

 

 

 

So…Is An Instant Pot Worth It?

A lot of people I know call their Instant Pot a game-changer. They’re absolutely hooked.

Much of their fondness comes from a place of convenience. There is a shorter cooking time for large, tough cuts of meat, wild rice, steel-cut oats and lentils plus its ability to cook meat from frozen.

As a one-pot meal creator, it will leave you with fewer dirty dishes, leading to a quicker cleanup time. You can’t hate that!

What about you? Which Instant Pot are you going to choose? If you already have one, tell me what you think about yours! I’d love to hear from you.

All my best,

Cynthia
cynthia@cynthiaeats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Cooking for One — How to Create a New You

Trying to start a new program of healthy cooking for one? Old habits die hard but here are a few tips to help get you back on track to start eating healthier!

Healthy Cooking for One
Healthy Cooking for One

We’ve all seen him. That guy in the checkout line at the grocery store, the one we know is single and lives alone. 4 frozen dinners, 1 deli sandwich, 6-pack of beer and an economy-sized bag of Cheetos.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Just because we’re single, it doesn’t mean we’re doomed to a future of breakfast cereal, frozen pizza for one and Ramon noodles.

Nor must we choose drive-thrus or gas station hot dogs.  I often who came up with THAT idea. Like, was someone pumping their gas and suddenly thought, “Well, this makes me want to eat a smoked sausage!”? (Yes, I’m kidding.  Here’s why gas stations started selling food).

We have a choice. I’d like to share a few things that I’ve picked up along the way to make cooking for one a bit easier and, hopefully, a little more fun.

Healthy Ways Start to Your Day

Healthy Ways Start to Your Day
Healthy Ways Start to Your Day

Running late this morning? Always keep some bananas, frozen strawberries and yogurt on hand to make a smoothie. It just takes a minute and you can drink it on your way to work!

Overnight oats are convenient and the flavor combos are endless so you’ll never get bored. They can be stored for up to 5 days in the fridge so go ahead and throw together a few one evening for a week of quick breakfasts.

Everybody loves Sunday morning breakfast! Make a crustless quiche to enjoy with a leisurely cup of coffee and the newspaper. Store a few pieces in the fridge for up to 5 days for a healthy lunch and put the rest in the freezer for another time!

Play It Again, Sam

Play it again Sam
Play It Again, Sam

No big plans for your day off? Make a big pot of spaghetti sauce and freeze it in portions for use another day. Might as well freeze up a batch of meatballs to go with it, too!

A dozen mini pork pies make a great grab-and-go lunch (or, rather 12!).

Make a dinner recipe that serves two and take the leftovers for lunch. Or make a recipe that serves three or four and have some left for an easy meal later in the week.

Try this Szechuan-style shrimp or garlic chicken with caramelized mushrooms. They’re easy to put together and any leftovers you don’t use can be put in the freezer for a future meal!

Make connected meals. For example, when making potatoes for garlic chicken, do a few extra and use the leftovers to go with Korean beef (instead of cooking rice).

Or save some potato cubes unmashed to make potato salad. While you’re boiling the eggs for the potato salad, throw in a few extra for egg salad.

And always, always, make extra rice to package up in single serving sizes and store in the freezer!

Strategic Contingency Planning

Strategic Contingency Planning
Strategic Contingency Planning

It happens. You get stuck working late, encounter a major traffic jam on the way home or get caught up in a lengthy conversation with a friend. Then it’s too late to cook that dinner you had planned or you’re just too tired.

Make sure you’ve stocked up on a few items that have a decent shelf life and are quick and easy to throw together.

Eggs, cheese, peanut butter and pasta are excellent choices, as are crackers, rice and bread (store this double wrapped in the freezer if you need to!). Frozen fruits and vegetables require no prep at all so they can easily be used in a pinch.

Think of Ways To Be Creative!

Be Creative!
Be Creative!

Decide to go to the farmers market, choose something you haven’t had before then go home and create a meal.

No, honestly, I “wing” a lot of my recipes and it always turns out fine.

Ok, almost always as there was the “Fennel Incident”. Fennel, as it turns out, tastes like black licorice. Gross. Who knew?

Dress up your go-to meals. Grilled cheese? Mix it up with a two cheese combo, mustard and a couple of pickle slices. Add a splash of cream and some croutons to your tomato soup. Swap out the ketchup on your burger for some thousand island dressing.

Presto Chango! Leftovers don’t have to be the same thing that they were when they were originally left over. (Say THAT 5 times fast!) Pair the grilled chicken and roasted carrots you had last night with chopped onion, soy sauce, leftover rice and – BOOM! – a delicious (and definitely not leftover) stir-fry.

Riddle Me This

Riddle Me This
Riddle Me This

Who do you have to answer to anyway? Cooking for just you allows you to eat what you want, when you want, using whatever ingredients you want and as spicy (or not) as you want.

Who’s gonna even know? So what if that tuna and spaghetti thing didn’t measure up to your expectations? I’m not gonna tell and you don’t have to either!

No one’s watching, right? Pour a glass of wine, turn up the 80’s pop music and have a dance party in your pajamas while cooking pasta for the 3rd day in a row. Because you can.

Life is what you make it so make it good. Be brave, be bold, be empowered. And above all, have fun.

What are your thoughts on cooking for one? What are your favorite recipes and strategies? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Cynthia

Cynthia@cynthiaeats.com

 

 

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