Instant pot the new electric pressure cooker is one best way to cook food. But, here are few common Instant pot mistakes and solutions that new Instant pot owners make.
If you are speeding up for dinner to make that tempting chicken recipe ‘Instant Pot’ is your one-stop kitchen appliance. I have been making many Indian recipes in Instant pot and almost use it everyday.
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Though using an Instant Pot is a convenience that leads you to delicious Instant pot recipes, and very easy to use. But still believe me, these 10 common mistakes are what you need to avoid while using Instant Pot.
There is no denying that Instant Pot has made our life easier but being an appliance there are few things you need to watch out for while using the pot.
I have been using my Instant Pot for a while now. The more I use my Instant Pot the better I understand it. So, after a few overcooked recipes and a constant sign of “burn” indicator, I decided to share a few of my tips that will help you understand your Instant Pot better.
These basic tips are not only easy to remember but will always help you fix the common mistakes you have been doing for a while now.
Prior to reading on to the list, here is a piece of quick information on Instant Pot for the ones who are planning to buy this beauty.
What is an Instant Pot?
Instant Pot is a multi-functional appliance that does the job of a pressure-cooker, rice cooker, steamer, slow cooker, warming pot, yogurt maker and a pan. In simple words, you can dump the ingredients and make mouth-watering recipes. Saute' your veggies, have a bowl of warm soup or prepare a full-course meal, Instant Pot can do it all.
Among its various powers, the one that stands out the most is its ability to use the pressure-cooking function to cook food straight out of the freezer! Few of my favorite Instant Pot recipes are Coconut Rice, Veg Pulao, Kala Chana, and Veggie and Quinoa Soup.
Beginner or not, these tips will help you to be a step ahead while cooking recipes on Instant Pot. Here are ten mistakes you would want to avoid when using your Instant Pot.
1.) Always Add Liquid To Your Instant Pot
Cooking food on Instant Pot is different from other appliances like microwave cooking or stove cooking. Instant pot requires steam to build a high-pressure environment for faster cooking, so it needs little liquid to function. In case of no liquid, the pot won’t build the pressure and you would end up with the “burn error”.
The tip is to always add little liquid (usually water or stock) to bring the Instant Pot to pressure. Add water according to the recipe prep but in case you are confused, you can add ½ or 1 cup of water while cooking the recipe.
2.) Use Longer Cooking Time For Frozen Foods
I love Instant Pot for its amazing ability to cook food straight from the freezer be it meat or other poultry. It gets me excited every time when I don’t have to take out extra time to defrost the ingredients prior to cooking them. So, if you are anything like me who loves to buy extra food and store them in the fridge and cook them a week later than you need to pen this one down. While cooking food in Instant Pot always plan on a little extra time both for cooking the recipe and Instant Pot to reach its pressure point.
The tip is to always increase the recipe time by 50 percent while cooking a frozen recipe. So, if you are making a recipe that requires 10 mins of cooking then increase it by 5 more mins for a perfect recipe prep.
3.) Always Choose The Right Pressure Release.
If you have messed up the pressure release instructions while cooking the recipe, then you are not alone. Choosing the right pressure release option while cooking is really important. In an Instant Pot, there are two ways to release the pressure quick and natural release. If you choose the quick release option for recipes like soup then you will end up with liquid all around.
The tip is to choose natural release each time while cooking soup, rice, chicken and other foods that are liquid. And for recipes that contain eggs, vegetables or other ingredients choose natural release option.
4.) Placing The Instant Pot Right
You need to place your Instant Pot on the right side of your kitchen aisle. Since it releases pressure or steam while cooking it may soften the paint or damage the wood of your cabinet.
The tip is to keep the steam away from being in contact with your top shelves. So, you can either cook it in an open space or turn the pressure valve away from the cabinets.
5.) Avoid Overfilling The Pot
While cooking Instant pot recipes avoid overfilling the pot. If your pot is overfilled then it may result in clogging of the venting knob that will slow the cooking process and may result in overcooking of the recipe.
The tip is to never fill the pot to its brim. In case you did it then choose the natural release option. This way the food will settle down post cooking.
6.) Always Seal The Pressure Valve
Sealing the pressure valve may look like a pretty obvious thing to do but trust me, we all have been guilty of this slip-up. When the pressure valve of your Instant pot isn’t sealed then cooker will release steam rather than building it up. So, ultimately there will be no pressure and your food will end up taking forever to cook.
The tip is to always double-check the seal and always seal the valve prior to cooking.
7.) Never Forget To Replace The Inner Pot
While cleaning the Instant Pot it is obvious that you will take out the Inner Pot for cleaning. But, do remember to put it right back before cooking another recipe. Adding ingredients without adding the Inner pot will not only damage the electrical components inside but will create a mess as well.
The tip is to place the Inner pot right after cleaning and drying the pot.
8.) Using The Same Sealing Ring For Everything
You must have noticed a sealing ring underside of your Instant Pot. This sealing ring helps to create a tight seal that locks the lid and the pot. The catch is since this seal is usually made of silicon it absorbs food smells. So, if you make chicken soup and later a cake then chances are your cake may taste of the chicken soup.
The tip is to buy a few spare sealing rings so that you make sweet and salty flavored recipes accordingly.
9.) Hit Timer Button When Setting Cooking Time
Don’t confuse the timer button with cooking time. Timer button is actually used for delayed cooking and has a green color indication to it.
The tip is to check and recheck while cooking. If your timer button is green then press “keep warm or cancel button”, this way your Instant Pot will begin the cooking again.
10.) Never Keep The Pot On Stove
Often times when we don’t have enough space so we keep the Instant Pot on the Stove and start the recipe prep. Always avoid that because it may accidentally burn the inside of your pot.
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