Instant Pot is multifunctional kitchen equipment that provides numerous cooking methods in a single unit. You can dazzle friends and family with culinary abilities that do not require the use of every pan in the kitchen, but you can also conserve space and keep your kitchen countertop clear of cooking tools.
Instant Pot, the first company to commercialize these multicookers in 2010, is most associated with them. However, several other manufacturers, such as Ninja, Sage (or Breville in the United States and Australia), and Crock-Pot, have followed suit.
A pressure cooker is a multi-cooker that uses steam to accelerate the cooking process, making the Instant Pot a pressure cooker. In addition, they can slow cook, steam, and sauté. Some types can even replace the best air fryers, albeit, in some situations, an additional lid is required.
The best Instant Pots and multi-cookers are available in many sizes, so regardless of whether you live in a one- or two-person household, want to cook in bulk, or feed many people, there is a model that will meet your needs.
Unsure of what to prepare in your Instant Pot? Instead of slaving over a hot stove, as you would with traditional cooking methods, slow cookers are ideal for transforming tougher, and often cheaper, pieces of meat into tender stews, curries, and chilis in less than an hour. However, they can also cook rice, cereal, vegetables, and even hard-boiled eggs.
Having one of the top Instant Pots is only half the battle; you must also know how to clean an Instant Pot to guarantee that it cooks as efficiently and quickly as possible.
Various Instant Pots and multi-cookers from competing companies may leave you feeling overwhelmed. To assist you in choosing the ideal Instant Pot, we have tested multiple models by cooking curry, chili, rice, and steaming veggies.
Best Instant Pot For Slow Cooking
What is slow cooking?
Slow cooking is a culinary technique used to simmer food over an extended period, in a rounded, covered pot on the stove or oven. Ideal for stews, soups, sauces, and more complex cuts of meat, this method gently infuses flavors into food while simmering over low heat. Slow cooking uniformly cooks food and preserves moisture, resulting in tender, flavorful fish. This method is also a straightforward way to prepare and serve hearty meals, requiring minimal preparation and attention.
Health Benefits of Slow Cooking
In addition to being a healthy alternative, slow cooking can save time and energy. Instant pots and slow cookers consume less energy than standard electric ovens. Below are the most essential advantages of slow cooking:
You have control over the nutrient profile of the food, just as you would with any home cooking method. For instance, you are adding more vegetables than the recipe calls for boosts the nutrients while making a meal that is more satisfying due to the fiber and bulk of the vegetables.
When tough cuts of meat are employed, the wet cooking method and longer cooking time result in fork-tender meats without the addition of fat or tenderizers. In addition, these tougher cuts are typically lower in fat, which helps to reduce the calorie and fat content of the meal.
Even though some nutrients, such as lycopene, become more accessible through processing, all cooking procedures make nutritional loss inevitable. The advantage of slow cooking over other methods is that the food is cooked for a longer time at a moderate temperature. This cooking method does not damage as many nutrients as boiling or steaming. When the resulting juices or sauces are served, the nutrients are recovered, which is another advantage of slow cooking.
Restriction of processed foods
Using an instant pot or slow cooker, you can consume fewer packaged foods. Reducing your use of processed foods reduces your fat, sodium, and calorie intake.
Using an instant pot, you can prepare foods that you may have purchased in the frozen or boxed department of the shop. For example, instant pot recipes for roasts, soups, casseroles, and baked sweets are available. Your only limitation is your imagination. Reducing these nutrients increases the meal’s ratio of calories to nutrients or its nutrient density.
Why Should You Use Instant Pot For Slow Cooking?
Instant pots are becoming increasingly popular among home cooks. They have become a staple appliance in many kitchens across the world. Their ability to cook multiple dishes at once can save time and energy while being easy to use.
We talk about some of the benefits of using instant pots, including:
- Saving time and energy
- Making tasty food that tastes great
- Easy to clean
Instant Pot is a multi-function cooker that combines a pressure cooker (which uses pressure to cook food more quickly), a slow cooker, steamer, and sauté machine.
Unlike a slow cooker, an Instant Pot can prepare your dinner significantly faster and with less effort. If you do not have enough time to let a dish simmer in a slow cooker all day, the Instant Pot may be better.
How To Use Instant Pot To Slow Cook
Slow cooking in an Instant Pot is different from how a slow cooker works on its own. I will show you how to use your Instant Pot as a slow cooker here.
THINGS TO REMEMBER
I think slow-cooked food tastes better when done in a slow cooker instead of an Instant Pot. There are also a few other reasons for this:
- Most slow cooker pots are made of porcelain or ceramic. Stainless steel is used to make Instant Pot pots.
- Slow cookers heat food from the top, sides, and bottom. Only the bottom of the Instant Pot heats up.
Ready to use your Instant Pot to make a tasty, slow-cooked meal? With a few minor changes, the process is like using a traditional slow cooker.
- Place the ingredients in the inner pot, and then put the inner pot inside the housing of the Instant Pot.
- Close the lid and turn the steam release handle to the “venting” position. (You can also use a tempered glass lid for the Instant Pot.)
- Plug your Instant Pot in and press the “Slow Cook” button.
- Use the + and – keys to set the cooking time you want, anywhere between 30 minutes and 20 hours.
- Use the “Adjust” button to choose the cooking mode you want. (Some smaller Instant Pots do not have this button. To change the setting, press the “Slow Cook” button instead.) The Instant Pot has three settings for slow cooking: Less, Normal, and More. These settings are like Low, Medium, and High on a regular slow cooker.
- The Instant Pot will start cooking 10 seconds after you press the last button, and when the timer runs out, it will automatically switch to “Keep Warm.” Keep Warm and stay on for up to 10 hours.
That is all there is to it! Like a regular slow cooker, your Instant Pot will keep a low, steady temperature to cook your food over a few hours, so you can go about your day while your meal cooks itself.
Double-check your favorite recipes for doneness.
It is usually a clever idea to check the internal temperature of a slow-cooked dish to verify that the contents are evenly heated. Still, this step is especially crucial when using an Instant Pot.
There are significant distinctions between an Instant Pot and a conventional slow cooker. For starters, a classic slow cooker pot is often composed of thick porcelain, so all sides of the bowl heat up and cook the food. The thin metal pot does not get as hot as an Instant Pot, so the bottom of the food is cooked.
In addition, the Instant Pot’s temperature settings differ from those of a slow cooker. The following temperature ranges are listed for each set by the manufacturer:
- Less: 180-190°F
- Normal: 190-200°F
- More: 200-210°F
The low setting on a conventional slow cooker is typically around 190°F, while the high setting is roughly 300°F. As can be seen, the settings for the two appliances may not correspond exactly, so it may require some trial and error to duplicate your favorite recipes.
Due to these factors, slow cooker dishes often take a bit longer to prepare in an Instant Pot, and you will need to check the interior temperature of your food before serving to ensure it has reached a safe temperature.
Tips For Using Your Instant Pot As A Slow Cooker
- Always ensure that the recipe contains a minimum of 1 mug of liquid.
- Activate the Instant Pot’s Slow Cook function and press the change button to adjust the cooking time to “normal” or “high.”
- If you wish to cook a recipe on low in a slow cooker, set your slow cooker to “typical” on the slow-moving stove function and simmer for as long as the recipe calls for cooking on low.
- If you want to prepare a meal as you would on a slow-moving stove, set your slow cooker to “high” on the slow-moving stove setting and cook for the time specified in the recipe PLUS 15 minutes every hour.
Best Instant Pot For Slow Cooking Reviews
You are aware that electric pressure cookers from Instant Pot are multicookers. Their primary purposes are sautéing, pressure cooking, yogurt making, and slow cooking.
However, I know what you’re thinking: is the Instant Pot adequate for slow cooking? Good enough to replace a specialized slow cooker?
1. Best Overall: Instant Pot Duo Plus 9-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
2. Runner-up: Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
3. Best Combo - Instant Pot Duo Crisp XL 8Qt 11-in-1 Air Fryer & Electric Pressure Cooker
4. The Techie - Instant Pot Pro Plus Smart Multi Cooker
5. The Mastermind - Instant Pot Pro 10-in-1 Pressure Cooker
6. Instant Pot 6.5 Quart Duo Crisp Ultimate Lid
Instant Pot 6.5 Quart Duo Crisp Ultimate Lid, 13-in-1 Air Fryer and Pressure Cooker Combo, Sauté, Slow Cook, Bake, Steam, Warm, Roast, Dehydrate, Sous Vide, & Proof, Includes App with 1900 Recipes
The newest Instant Pot is the Duo Crisp with Ultimate Lid, the first model to feature an attached, multi-function lid and a fantastic dot matrix display that speaks words!
We’ve been using this brand-new pressure cooker and the air fryer for a couple of weeks, and we’ll tell you everything you need to know about it.
This model with the Ultimate Lid appears to be Instant Pot’s response to the Ninja Foodi with Smart Lid).
Like that model, the Ultimate Lid Duo Crisp’s non-removable lid can be used for pressure cooking and air frying. It also includes a 6.5-quart pot, like the Foodi Smart Lid, which is available in 6.5- and 8-quart capacities. The Ninja Foodi lid opens from the left, whereas the Ultimate Lid opens from the back.
The only multi-cooker with a large LCD display that provides easy-to-follow cooking instructions! It features advanced steam release technology for the quietest steam release and a steam release button on the Large LCD Panel that instructs the user that it is “safe to open the lid.”
- 6.5 Quart
- 13-in-1 FUNCTIONALITY
- Easy-to-read Instructions
- Stainless Steal Air Fryer Cover
- Whisper Quiet Steam Release
- Evencrisp Technology
- Includes App with 1900 Recipes
- Large LCD Screen
- Cleanup is easy
7. Best for Beginners - Instant Pot Duo Nova 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
8. Instant Pot Ultra 80 Ultra 8 Qt 10-in-1 Multi- Use Programmable Pressure Cooker
Instant Pot Ultra 80 Ultra 8 Qt 10-in-1 Multi- Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Yogurt Maker, Cake Maker, Egg Cooker, Sauté, and more, Stainless Steel/Black
When it arrived, I was impressed by the Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker’s weight and size. While I could understand why large families and meal planners would enjoy the concept of gallons of soup stock or double batches of chili, I wondered if it had any advantages for cooks with fewer servings to prepare. I thought of the Instant Pot’s functions and features after using it for a considerable time.
The lid with removable silicone seal, the stainless-steel inner cooking pot, and any of the included accessories (cooking trivet with handles, rice measuring cup, rice paddle, and spoon) should be washed before the initial use of the Instant Pot Ultra.
After reassembling the components, the manufacturer suggests conducting a water test to confirm that the pressure cooker is holding. This also allowed me to become acquainted with the controls’ operation.
This Instant Pot’s controls differ from earlier models due to a large display with a wealth of information. A knob below the show allows you to select the cooking function and its options, as indicated by the display’s buttons. Thanks to this method, I felt confident that I had successfully turned the warming function on or off.
This model’s placement of the cancel button to the left of the control knob and the start button to the right is an interesting design choice. The cancel button not only aborts the cooking process but also undoes the adjustments you were making. Earlier versions of the Instant Pot lacked a start button; you selected your settings and walked away. If you are familiar with older models, you may need to train yourself to press the start button. If this is your first Instant Pot, you may find the start button familiar, as many other appliances also feature start and stop buttons.
To hold the lid, the lid’s side handles can be inserted into the pot’s side handles (picture how a trash can opens on a hinge). I appreciated this design because it eliminated the need to find a place to set the lid while I worked.
When the lid is removed and replaced, the quick-release button automatically returns to the sealing mode, an interesting new design element. This is fantastic for those who forget to set the steam release correctly and return to find that they have been cooking without pressure.
Even though I didn’t anticipate needing the 8-quart capacity of the Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, it’s difficult not to fall in love with it. I enjoyed the user interface and the addition of the start button, which makes perfect sense. I would enthusiastically recommend this to anyone with space.
- 8 Quarts
- 10-in-1 Multi- Use Programmable Pressure Cooker
- Developed with the latest 3rd generation technology with an embedded microprocessor
- Cooking Progress Indicator
- Quick Release Button
- Stainless Steel Cooking Pot, Steam Rack & Lid
- Alexa Skill
- UL certified with 11 safety features
- An adjustment for high-altitude cooking
- Cooking progress indicator shows cooking stages
- Adjustable temperature for sous vide cooking
- Large size needs more storage space
- Quick-release button not intuitive
- Start button must be pressed (different than other models)
9. Instant Pot 6-Quart 1500W Electric Round Dutch Oven
Instant Pot, 6-Quart 1500W Electric Round Dutch Oven, 5-in-1: Braise, Slow Cook, Sear/Sauté, Cooking Pan, Food Warmer, Enameled Cast Iron, Free App With 50 Recipes, Perfect Wedding Gift, Red
The Precision Dutch Oven controls braising, searing/sautéing, and slow cooking, resulting in gourmet meals. The heavy-duty cooking pot and lid are cast iron and have a durable enamel coating for longevity and aesthetic appeal. The cooking pot is detachable from the cooker base so that it can be used on the stovetop or in the oven, and it looks beautiful on the table when it’s time to serve. Get professional results with ease using the Precision Dutch Oven.
Other key features include a user-friendly control panel on the cooker base (similar in design to other Instant Pot products), with a touchscreen and dial that make it simple to adjust the temperature and cook time. In addition, the enameled cast-iron pot has a beautiful nonstick coating, making it extremely simple to clean with dish soap and warm water.
The Manual function allows you to manually adjust the temperature and cooking time, cooking various recipes with the precision and even cooking offered by the Instant Precision Dutch Oven. Manual Mode provides two options: one with lower temperatures and longer cook times for slow cooking, sous vide, or dough proofing, and the other with higher temperatures and shorter cook times.
We attempted to prepare Stovetop Bread in the base of the cooker. It ultimately worked, and the bread was cooked without burning on the bottom, but it wasn’t easy to achieve, and the bread was not nearly as tasty as when baked in a conventional oven.
In conclusion, we recommend proofing bread dough on one of the Manual settings, and we found the Dutch oven pot ideal for baking in the oven. However, we do not recommend baking directly in the electric cooker base.
- 6 Quarts
- 5-in-1 Functionality
- Electric Dutch Oven
- Precision Cooking
- Versatile Elegance
- Tender Results
- Quick, Easy Cleanup
- Super easy to use
- Easy to clean with pot removable.
10. Instant Pot Zest Plus 20 Cup Cooked rice
Instant Pot Zest Plus 20 Cup Cooked rice, 5Litre Rice Cooker,Steamer, Slow Cooker,13 One Touch Programs, No Pressure Cooking Functionality
With precise heat, non-pressure cooking, and one-touch simplicity, the Instant Zest Plus Rice and Grain Cooker from the inventors of the Instant Pot makes preparing delicious rice and perfectly cooked grains for your family as simple as pressing a button.
In addition to the Smart Program presets, you may cook any variety of rice or grain to fluffy perfection quickly, including millet, farro, freekeh, polenta, barley, rice pudding, and more. Even hearty grains such as spelled wheat berries require a lengthy boiling period.
The Instant Zest Plus automatically changes cooking time based on the added ingredients. With the push of a button, you can steam vegetables, fish, dumplings, tamales, cabbages, and wontons in a flash. You may also steam fish or vegetables while the rice cooks at the bottom. The display and status indicators are vivid and lucid, allowing you to know exactly where your food is in the cooking process. Delay Start and Keep Warm. Ensure that rice, grains, and other foods are ready when you are.
- 20 Cup
- 9 Smart Programs
- Automatically adjusts cooking time
- Extra thick inner pot with non-stick ceramic coating
- Stainless steel 18/8 lid interior
- Safe and easy to use
- Large capacity
- Sautee function.
- Slow cook function.
- Perfect rice every time.
- Larger footprint.
- Can't put the lid in the dishwasher like you can with an Instant Pot.
- Cheap steamer rack.
Factors To Consider When Choosing The Best Instant Pot For Slow Cooking
When it comes to Instant Pots and multi-cookers, there is such a vast selection of models available that it can be challenging to select the best one.
The size of your instant pot will determine how much food you can cook at once. If you have a small-sized instant pot, you can only make about 4-5 cups of food at once. If you want to make enough food to last you throughout the week, you need to get a larger-sized instant pot.
This refers to the amount of food you can put into your instant pot. A large capacity means that you can fit a lot of food into your pot. However, this comes with having a smaller cooking surface area. You may find yourself struggling to use your pot’s entire cooking surface area.
As stated previously, the Instant Pot offers significantly more than a conventional pressure cooker. Nevertheless, some Instant Pot models offer more settings than others. Regardless of the model, you will be able to sauté, pressure cook, slow cook, steam, prepare rice, etc. Consider how many kitchen appliances you can replace with a single Instant Pot. That is excellent news for those of us with limited storage capacity!
You may notice that many models include preprogrammed buttons such as “egg” and “porridge.” These are merely suggested cooking temperatures and times for a particular food type. You can cook your food just as quickly using the “manual” and “adjust” buttons with a bit of knowledge.
You should consider the accessories that come with your instant pot before purchasing it. Some pots come with lids while others do not. Lids are great because they allow you to store leftovers without getting cold. They also help keep moisture inside the pot.
You anticipated this outcome! Various Instant Pot models range in price from $60 to $200 online. Consider your budget when deciding which option is best. If you’re a keen shopper like us, keep an eye out for in-store and online discounts and act when the price is perfect.
Editor’s Tip: If you purchase a used Instant Pot, ensure that you buy the most recent model.
Best Instant Pot For Slow Cooking- FAQs
Technically, an Instant Pot can replace a slow cooker.
The cooking times will not change when utilizing the Instant Pot’s “Normal” setting for slow cooking; the cooking times will not change. However, 15 minutes must be added to each hour when utilizing the “More” setting. For instance, a dish that usually requires four hours in a slow cooker requires five hours in an Instant Pot.
The Instant-Pot can cook food significantly faster than a Crock-Pot and conventional cooking methods; according to the Instant Pot’s manufacturer; it can cook a meal up to six times faster than a traditional stove-top cooking time.
Long, low-temperature cooking is excellent for adding moisture and breaking down fat, making slow cookers superior for preparing root vegetables and challenging pieces of meat. It is not advised to prepare leaner meats in a slow cooker, but they can be made without difficulty in a pressure cooker.
The Instant Pot is a versatile pressure cooker, while the Crock-Pot is a slow cooker. Although the Instant Pot has numerous features and functions, its primary purpose is as a pressure cooker.
The slow cooker function of the Instant Pot also offers three settings. They consist of Less, Normal, and More. Many chefs following slow cooker recipes may observe that “low” is called for and set their Instant Pot to “less.” However, eight hours later, when you return to your Instant Pot, you will discover the food completely undercooked, which would be an unpleasant experience.
Yes, you can use a pressure cooker similarly to a slow cooker. Nevertheless, the food cooks differently than it would in a slow cooker. Because a pressure cooker cooks food by trapping steam inside, it does not provide even heat distribution.
Heat-sensitive nutrients (e.g., vitamin C, folate), bioactive phytonutrients, such as beta-carotene, glycosylates (beneficial substances found in cruciferous vegetables), and omega-3 fatty acids, can be destroyed by pressure cooking.
There is no need to completely seal the Instant Pot while using the slow cooker feature. When cooking slowly in the Instant Cooker, you may use either the tempered glass lid or the standard Instant Pot lid to cover the pot.
Yes, you can use your Instant Pot as a slow cooker, and here is how! Instant Pots contain many capabilities, including (obviously) pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, sterilizer, yogurt maker, soup maker, sauté pan, and slow cooker!
You can either cook on high or low; there is no other option. So, what is the most acceptable option for delectable, slow-cooked meals? According to the adage, less is more. Using the slow cooker’s high setting can destroy a dish.
The Instant Pot is a multi-cooker; it has settings for pressure cooking, slow cooking, sautéing, and yogurt manufacturing, and it may also be able to do your taxes. It is an excellent appliance, but I do not feel it is as effective at slow cooking as conventional slow cookers.
This is because the cover seals and locks in the space, as it must for pressure cooking, allowing even less heat loss than ordinary slow cookers.
The pressure release valve is open when the stove is set to the slowest setting, allowing some vapor to escape. However, in my experience, it does not let as much moisture loss as a slow cooker cover.
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