As soon as you bring an Instant Pot home, chances are you’ll want to cook all of your meals with the trendy pressure cooker. That means converting the dishes you used to make with your stove, oven, or slow cooker to fit the new appliance. You can find plenty of recipes for Instant Pot meals with instructions laid out for you, but there are still important things to keep in mind no matter what you're whipping up. For instance, you don’t want to add milk or other dairy products to the pot while it’s pressurizing — that can lead to scorching the bottom and getting the frustrating “burn” notification.
Even with all of the tips we’ve been able to gather from experts, you will likely still find yourself learning by trial and error before perfecting your Instant Pot cooking methods. The most important thing to remember is to be safe while using the product. All of that pressure used to make your meals in a flash can also cause some painful injuries, so always be careful. Keep scrolling to learn more tips you should keep in mind while converting recipes for an Instant Pot!
- You may need to adjust the amount of ingredients: You don't want to fill the pot up to the brim. An Instant Pot should only ever be two-thirds of the way full, otherwise it won’t be able to effectively pressurize.
- Cut your main ingredient into bite-sized pieces: This will help them cook much faster. For instance, a whole chicken breast will take longer than one that’s been chopped into smaller bits.
- The sauté feature is your friend: Unlike other kitchen appliances, the Instant Pot has several features that allow you to plow through your whole recipe in one spot. You can also use the adjust button to simmer soups on low or sear meat on high.
- Use less liquid when cooking soup: It might sound counterproductive for sippable soups, but you could water down the flavor you’re actually trying to get.
- Use natural release pressure for meat: It will make the meat extra tender. You should also use this method when cooking grains or dry beans to keep foam from clogging up the vent.
- Use manual or quick release pressure when cooking veggies: This will help make sure they don’t end up mushy. Just be careful when manually releasing — you don’t want to scorch your hand!
- Get sneaky with a similar recipe: Even if they don't have the exact same ingredients, you can get a good idea for your recipe with one that's similar.