MY INSTANT POT REVIEW
Note: this post is not sponsored. all opinions and reviews of this product are my own.
Hey guys! If you’ve been following along with me in Instagram, you’ll have seen me mention the Instant Pot quite a few times. My in-laws gifted all of us with one at Christmas and after a few hurdles (ie. being completely f***ing terrified to use it), I’ve grown to love this handy little pot. Being a busy work-at-home mama of two, it quickly found a permanent place in my heart and in my kitchen thanks to the fact that it can have a healthy meal on the time in a fraction of the time. Now that I’ve used it quite frequently for a good month, I wanted to review what I all thought about it!
First and foremost, let’s all get on the same page so you know which one I’m talking about. The specific Instant Pot model I own is the Instant Pot Duo 6 Quart. It’s described on the Instant Pot website as being a “7-in-1 multi-use programmable cooker… a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steam, saute/searing, yogurt maker & warmer”. There are tons of built in programs, for example, if you’re cooking soup or chilli etc. The Instant Pot has been welcomed with open arms into kitchens everywhere thanks to the fact that it can cook your food 2-6 times faster (again, according to their website) and is convenient because an entire meal can be cooked quickly and easily all in one pot. Amazing, right?
The first time I ever used the Instant Pot, I was bloody fricken terrified. I’ve seen some pretty nightmare-ish stuff online about Instant Pot mishaps (ummm not to mention people literally use pressure cookers as homemade bombs???) so needless to say I was a little hesitant. I was hellbent on reading the directions from start to finish but they ended up making me more nervous LOL. I’m not discouraging you to read them for yourself- there are just a ton of warnings and directions and I feel like they make you more overwhelmed with it then you need to be. I ended up calling my brother’s girlfriend because they had got one a bit before I did and had used theirs a couple of times already, so (thank God for her) she ended up walking me through how to use it instead.
After I had used it a couple of times I was comfortable with it. It doesn’t take long to get the hang of, you just have to make sure you follow the steps and be careful with it. I will say that when you have to turn the knob to let the pressure off (if you already own one, you’ll know what I mean), it freaks me out me every time even when I know it’s coming haha!! It’s just a lot of steam and can be fairly loud all at once but again - just take your time and follow the steps and you’ll be fine. They also come with a ton of safety features to try and make it as unlikely as possible for anything to go wrong. With that being said, user error can still occur and it’s just important to take your time and get comfortable with it so you know what you’re doing. A friend or family member that is familiar is a great place to start. As a tip, try to use it on your stovetop if you have an overhead fan or on open counter space, away from cabinets etc. You don’t want the bursts of steam overtime to strip your cabinets or ruin anything!
So let’s break this down as easily as I know how - a good ol’ pros and cons list.
-can be scary to use
-directions and warnings are a little overwhelming
-sometimes what you’ve cooked sticks to the pot, normally needs to soak after use
-odours can also hang around after use (ie; first time I used it, I made chicken fajitas and it took a couple more uses before the smell went away)
-obviously, what I like best about it is the very limited time it takes to have something ready
-there are tons of features so cleanup can stay limited to one pot; you can saute something first (meat, for example) and add ingredients in after for a full cook and voila! easy cleanup = sold.
-the options are pretty much unlimited as to what you can make in it; meat/potatoes, soup, chilli, sauce, pasta, casseroles, dips, stirfrys - you name it, this thing can make it
-troubleshooting is fairly simple, as there is a ton of information online (on YouTube and otherwise) to help figure out what’s going on
-there are a ton of Instant Pot recipes out there, on the internet and on Pinterest - so if you’re stuck, you’re sure to find something quick and easy you can prepare
-it comes with other accessories to use it for its many other features, like turning it into a slow cooker using this glass lid (see below!)
In the time I’ve used it so far, the pros have far outweighed the cons. It has been so convenient to use to whip things up quickly. It’s even handy for things you wouldn’t maybe think about. For example, when I forget to take meat out in the morning, I can’t dice or marinate it by the time I remember because it’s frozen. If I want diced chicken for stirfry, for example, I can take it right out of the freezer and throw it in the Instant Pot, let it cook for 10 minutes and it’ll be softened up enough for me to dice it and continue cooking. So easy!
I’ve loved using it on nights that we have to rush off to the arena right after supper, purely because it takes so little time to make and then even less time to clean up since it’s only one pot. I’m also really excited to use it during busy times on the farm - if I’ve had a really busy day, sometimes it ends up being a sub or pizza that I bring to the field during the spring and fall- not guarenteeing that won’t happen anymore ever, but whipping something up quickly is a lot easier now!
I imagine this being a game changer for any busy woman - moms rushing into the house after work needing to get supper on the table for her family in decent time, or moms who only have a short window in between feedings or nap time to make some supper, or really anyone who has a damn busy life and just needs dinner on the table in a hurry! This has also opened up a variety of opportunity for lunch time as well, because I would never normally consider cooking anything big at lunch time - but now that it can be so quick and easy, chicken fajitas or a quick chilli is easier than ever to whip up during the day as well.
Overall, I give the Instant Pot two thumbs up. It has made dinner time infinitely less stressful, especially on days where I leave deciding what we’re going to have to the very last minute. I would definitely recommend to anyone considering buying one (and they make a great gift as well!). A game changer forsure! So last but not least, here are some of my favourite recipes/hacks I’ve found for using an Instant Pot.
Spiced apple cider! HEART EYES.
Credit goes to Pinch of Yum for this one (and the beautiful photo that makes me want to run and make spiked, I mean spiced, apple cider right now!)
Hard Boiled Eggs!
Credit for this also goes to Pinch of Yum - follow that link for 14 other ways you can use your Instant Pot!