You got an Instant Pot® for the holidays—now what?
They were one of the hottest holiday items of 2017. With the ability to slow cook AND pressure cook nearly any food imaginable, it’s no surprise these nifty kitchen gadgets have fascinated people. But if you don’t know what an Instant Pot® is, you aren’t alone either!
Even if you were gifted an Instant Pot®, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re automatically an expert at using it. With more buttons than a slow cooker and a pretty hefty manual, it can be pretty intimidating. But we’re here to tell you that with a little practice and the right recipes, pressure cooking can be a life and time saver for busy Texans!
Tip #1: Take time to learn how it works
Most Instant Pots have at least six functions—pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, sauté, steamer and warmer. They also come with built-in smart programs like soup/broth, meat/stew, rice and yogurt. It really does it all! But with all those buttons comes more responsibility.
When programming your Instant Pot® for the first time, the biggest step is familiarizing yourself with the options. The good thing is that some buttons will be used more than others, so it won’t take long to catch on. Click here for a cheat sheet on which buttons to use and when. Instant Pot® recommends a test run with water to make sure you know how your pot is running. They also has some helpful videos on getting started!
Tip #2: Check out Instant Pot® accessories
Instant Pots are already super useful, and accessories can help you do even more!
- Glass lids are ideal for “Keep Warm” mode and the sauté and slow cook functions, as well as oven cooking with the stainless steel inner cooking pot.
- Silicon covers are used to cover the inner cooking pot for refrigerator storage. Leftovers for the win!
- Steaming sets allow you to cook vegetables to perfection.
Tip #3: Beef is perfect for pressure cooking
Use the sauté function to brown cuts like Chuck, Stew Meat or Country Style Beef Ribs before braising or stewing. This creates a tasty, seasoned crust on the outside of the beef for great texture.
Cooking beef in an Instant Pot® is also a great opportunity for batch cooking. Just make a few pounds of shredded or ground beef, and you have meals to last all week long. If cooking healthier weeknight meals is your New Year’s resolution, try some of these recipes that are great for the Instant Pot®!