Instant Pot Frequently Asked Questions

Instant Pot is a fast growing brand that manufactures the Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cookers.

Here is a list of answers to Instant Pot Frequently Asked Questions. If you couldn’t find the answer to your question or if you have a great answer to a commonly asked question that’s not listed below, please give us a shout in the comments below!

We recommend the Instant Pot DUO60 or DUO Plus. Also check out Our Handpicked Best Instant Pot Accessories

*We will continue to update this page from time to time 🙂

Last Update: September 28, 2016

Before Purchasing Instant Pot

1. What is an Instant Pot? Is it the same as a pressure cooker?

Yes, Instant Pot is currently one of the most popular electric pressure cooker brands. It is a multi-functional cooker that has some extra functions compare to traditional stove-top pressure cookers.

2. Is it called an InstaPot or Instant Pot?

Many users call it InstaPot, IP, or IPPY. The correct name is Instant Pot, but call it whatever you like. In fact, some users even named their cookers – “Husband” 😉

3. Is it easy to cook with an Instant Pot?

There’s a learning curve to cook with pressure cookers. But no worries! Once you’re familiar with it, you will find the cooking relatively easy.

4. Does the Instant Pot really speed up the cooking process?

Cooking in any pressure cooker is almost always faster. It may not be noticeable for some quick to cook food such as broccoli or shrimps. However, tender and juicy pulled pork can be done in under 90 minutes, when it usually takes 2 – 4 hours to make in the oven.

5. Are there any disadvantages with cooking in the Instant Pot?

One disadvantage about cooking with any pressure cooker is you can’t inspect, taste, or adjust the food along the way. That’s why it’s essential to follow recipes with accurate cooking times.

6. Is Instant Pot safe to use?

Modern day electric pressure cookers such as the Instant Pot are quiet, very safe and easy to use. It has 10 UL Certified proven safety mechanisms to prevent most of the potential issues. Here are some safety tips.

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Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Safety

7. What is Instant Pot’s working pressure?

The working pressure is in the range of 10.15~11.6 psi.

8. Can Instant Pot be used for Pressure Canning?

This is a direct quote from Instant Pot’s official website: “Instant Pot has not been tested for food safety in pressure canning by USDA.  Due to the fact that programs in Instant Pot IP-CSG, IP-LUX and IP-DUO series are regulated by a pressure sensor instead of a thermometer, the elevation of your location may affect the actual cooking temperature.  For now, we wouldn’t recommend using Instant Pot for pressure canning purpose.

9. Can I use the Instant Pot for Pressure Frying?

Please don’t attempt to pressure fry in any electric pressure cookers. The splattering oil may melt the gasket. KFC uses a commercial pressure fryer (modern ones operate at 5 PSI) specially made to fry chickens. This Pressure Cooker Chicken is probably as close as it gets.

After Purchasing Instant Pot

10. What kind of Instant Pot accessories do you recommend?

Here’s our hand-picked list of the most popular accessories among fellow users: Best IP Accessories & Instant Pot Steamer Baskets

11. What kind of accessories or containers can I use in the Instant Pot?

You can use any oven-safe accessories and containers. Remember that different materials will conduct heat differently so cooking times may vary. We recommend using stainless steel containers as they conduct heat quickly.

12. I just got my Instant Pot. What should I do first?

Congratulations and welcome to the tribe! Before cooking up a storm with your new toy, first conduct an initial test run. See instructions below.

Instant Pot Initial Water Test

You can find the above instructions on P.14 (New) or P.17 (Old) in your Instant Pot User Manual.

13. How to do a Quick Release?

After the cooking cycle ends, carefully move the venting knob from sealing position to venting position. This rapidly releases the pressure in the pressure cooker. This usually takes a few minutes. Wait until the floating valve (metal pin) completely drops before opening the lid.

14. How to do a Natural Release?

After the cooking cycle ends, wait until the floating valve (metal pin) completely drops before opening the lid. Always turn the venting knob from sealing position to venting position. This ensures all the pressure is released before opening the lid. It usually takes 10 – 25 minutes.

In our recipes, you may see “15 mins Natural Release” – this means after the cooking cycle ends, wait 15 minutes before turning the venting knob to manually release the remaining pressure.

You can learn more about the Pressure Cooker Release Methods here

15. I did the water test. Do you have any newbie-friendly recipes?

Yes we do! We recommend cooking hard-boiled eggs or Easy BBQ ribs to kick start your exciting pressure cooking journey!! 🙂

16. I live in a high altitude city. Do I need to adjust the cooking times?

Yes! Our pressure cooker recipes are developed and tested at close to sea level. So, when you live in a high altitude city (over 3000 ft above sea level), use our Pressure Cooker High Altitude Cooking Time Adjustment Chart to adjust the cooking times in our recipes.

17. What is the PIP method?

PIP means Pot in Pot or Pan in Pot. It is an efficient way to cook multiple dishes (with similar cooking time) in the pressure cooker at the same time. Here’s an example 🙂

Instant Pot FAQ - These are the most frequently asked questions by Instant Pot users.

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