Instant Pot Review: What I Think After 6 Months

Saturday May 9 | BY |
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The second most important kitchen item that I use after my Vita-Mix: the Instant Pot.

What appealed to me about instant pot is it’s an automatic pressure cooker.

Traditional pressure cooking is a little faster but you have to watch it. With the Instant Pot, everything is programmable in advance. You plug it in and put in your ingredients, turn it on and then it will cook automatically. You can choose to release the pressure as soon as it’s done or let it release naturally. If you don’t want to bother being there to stop it from overcooking, just choose the cooking time accordingly.

What’s great about the Instant Pot is that you can also use it as a slow cooker, a rice cooker or grain cooker, an oatmeal maker, and you can even stir fry in it. It has a lot of different functions, but mainly I use it as a pressure cooker.

First of all, it makes the best beans. What do I do? If the beans are larger, I soak them. If they’re very small (like black beans), I just put them directly in the slow cooker after rinsing them and then I run the bean program, which I adjust according to the booklet instructions.

Over time, I’ve refined the times needed to make the best beans, which I will provide below. I just let it run, let the pressure release naturally, and then after cooking add salt to the water. This makes the best beans that are just the perfect texture. I will go through a pot of beans every two or three days in my Instant Pot.

  • For black beans, no soaking: 30 to 34 minutes
  • For black beans, soaked: 17 minutes
  • For chickpeas, soaked: 27 minutes
  • For red kidney beans, soaked: 27 minutes 

Other things that are great in the Instant Pot: soups.

You can make them very quickly in the instant pot, whether it’s an Indian Doll soup or a vegetable soup. What I love is that you just throw everything in there and set it for around ten minutes.

Next is cooking vegetables like potatoes, artichokes, sweet potatoes etc. Again, I steam them in the pot and use the steam function. I turn it on and either let the pressure release naturally or release it for a vegetable that shouldn’t cook for too long.

The Instant Pot comes with a recipe book, but essentially I think it’s best for cooking grains, soups, broth, vegetables, beans, and for those who want it, meat.

I always hate buying an appliance that you never use. Think of all the thousands of bread machines that are in kitchens all over the world, unused; the thousands of slow cookers, juicers and so on. So, please don’t buy an Instant Pot if you don’t think you have a use for it. If you like cooking I think it’s a great appliance and one that I use every day.

Frederic Patenaude

Frederic Patenaude has been an important influence in the raw food and natural health movement since he started writing and publishing in 1998, first by being the editor of Just Eat an Apple magazine. He is the author of over 20 books, including The Raw Secrets, the Sunfood Cuisine and Raw Food Controversies. Since 2013 he’s been the Editor-in-Chief of Renegade Health.

Frederic loves to relentlessly debunk nutritional myths. He advocates a low-fat, plant-based diet and has had over 10 years of experience with raw vegan diets. He lives in Montreal, Canada.

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