Instant Pot Multi Cooker–There’s A Reason It’s #1

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Instant Pot Ultra“Disclaimer:  Some of the links on this post may be affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of these links, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.  All of my recommendations are unbiased and based on the quality of the product I’m reviewing.”

Everyone wants to have kitchen appliances and gadgets that make cooking faster and easier. So when the first Instant Pot multi cooker hit the market, it sold like wildfire (and I was one of the excited buyers!)

But what exactly is a multi cooker, and what can it do for you? Believe me, plenty! Check out the info below to see why every kitchen could use a multi cooker and the Instant Pot Ultra is my #1 recommendation!

 

What Is A Multi Cooker?

A multi cooker is just what the name suggests–a piece of equipment that cooks food with multiple methods in the same unit. The types of multi cookers coming out today have the ability to perform more cooking functions than ever before–they’re amazing!

Here are many of the cooking methods that one unit can now do:Wooden Spoons of Various Sizes

  • Pressure Cooking
  • Steaming
  • Saute/Browning
  • Baking
  • Yogurt Making
  • Rice Cooking
  • Slow Cooking
  • Warming Oven
  • Sanitizing

How many appliances could you put away if you had a multi cooker in your kitchen? Once I got my Instant Pot and realized just how many things it could do, it never left my counter!

What Can I Cook With My Multi Cooker?

As soon as I got my Instant Pot out of the box, I just had to know what I could cook with it! The first thing I wanted to try was making yogurt.

Now, I had been thinking about getting a yogurt maker because I love making it homemade, and I eat it every day. The method I had been using was to put my milk and cultures in pint jars, cover them, and keep them in the closed oven with the oven light on. It worked pretty good, but I hated having my oven tied up for almost 24 hours (I like it really tangy!)Bowl of yogurt with blueberries

So I poured a gallon of whole milk into my Instant Pot before I went to bed and started my first batch. When I got up in the morning, I had a gallon of creamy, delicious yogurt! I strained it to give it a nice thick consistency, and then tasted it, mmmmm–I admit it, I was in love with my Instant Pot!

With the amount of homemade yogurt my family eats, I would’ve loved my multi cooker even if that was the only thing it made. But I had just scratched the surface!

The next thing I wanted to try was one of my husband’s favorites–Iowa pork chops. They’re super thick, and I cook them slowly in the oven for 2 hours to get them flavorful and tender.

I used the saute function to brown 4 chops on each side, then put them all in the Instant Pot with some vegetable broth and set it for 15 minutes. Then I released the pressure and put quartered potatoes and carrots right on top and set the cooker on again for another 10 minutes.

Wow! Everything was nice and tender, and the veggies were not mushy. I took everything out of the pot and onto a serving tray, then used the saute function to boil down the liquid into a nice sauce. My husband and I absolutely loved our Iowa chops cooked in the Instant Pot!

Iowa Pork Chop Food StandNow I learned a couple of things that made it easier for the next time. I cooked 4 chops, but could only brown them one at a time, and that took some extra time. If I had only been making 2, it wouldn’t have been a big deal.

So the next time I made 4 of them, I browned them on the stove in one pan and then put them in my Instant Pot with the drippings. I had an extra pan to wash, but the whole cooking time was much faster and my oven wasn’t on for over 2 hours heating up the house in the middle of July–I was one happy camper!

I’ve used about every feature there is on my Instant Pot. In fact, no matter what I’m cooking, I find myself browsing the internet for ways to make it in this fantastic multi cooker!

It’s been easy to use, and the directions are simple to follow. My Instant Pot is a 6 quart version, but they are available in 3 quart and 8 quart sizes. For my husband and I (and my adorable grandson who stays with us frequently!), the 6 quart size is perfect. But if you’re cooking for more than 4 people, I definitely recommend the 8 quart multi cooker.

Accessories You’ll Love!

There are many accessories available, and the more you have, the more value you can get from your Instant Pot! Here are some that I definitely recommend:

~ Extra Inner Pot–The convenience of having an extra inner pot makes my life so much easier! There are so many times that I make yogurt overnight, swap out the inner pot to start soup or chili with the slow cooker function, and then head to work.

I also like to cook some meals ahead of time when I know it’s going to be a busy week. It’s soooo much easier when I can have one pot in my cooker and get another ready to go when after it’s done!

~ Stackable Insert Pans–These pans fit perfectly in your Instant Pot and can do a variety of things for you whenever you want to keep food separate. My favorite way to use them is to heat up leftovers! Recently, I used them to reheat some lasagna and meatloaf–was fast, easy, and tasted much better than using the microwave!

~ Glass Lid–If you have a glass lid that will fit your Instant Pot, great! It works perfect for any non-pressureAccessories cooking, and I especially love having it when using the saute function to hold in the heat and see the food cooking.

I also use my glass lid to cover my inner pot when putting it in the fridge or to keep food warm while cooking more with my second pot. If you don’t have a glass lid that fits, it’s definitely worth buying one!

~ Extra Sealing Ring–Your sealing ring will last a very long time, but it can pick up food odors with use over time. If you’re cooking primarily savory foods, you normally wouldn’t notice any smell from the previous food cooked.

But if you’re using your Instant Pot to also make sweet foods like cake or cheesecake, you don’t want to smell beef stew! So you’ll love having an extra ring that you can swap out when cooking different foods.

~ Springform Pan–Love cooking with a springform pan? You can also use it in your Instant Pot! Two of my daughters and I are cheesecake lovers, so I was doing my happy dance when I saw a springform pan made to fit in my cooker 🙂

~ Steamer Basket–You may already have a steamer basket that would fit in your Instant Pot, so no need to buy one if you don’t have to. You’ll find that there are so many ways you’ll use it!

~ Egg Steamer–If anyone in your family loves egg salad the way my husband does, you hard boil a lot of eggs. The egg steamer works great, and to my surprise, the shells come off easily every time!

You can use the egg steamer for anything that you want to steam that won’t fall through. I’ve also used it as a pot holder and cooling rack, so this is much more versatile than at first glance!

There are more accessories available, but the ones I listed are the most useful and must haves for me!

# 1 Recommended Multi Cooker–Instant Pot Ultra!

If you’re looking for your first multi cooker, you just can’t go wrong with the Instant Pot Ultra. There’s a reason it’s the bestseller on the market today!

The makers have updated and redesigned it to give you a cooker that performs 10 functions:Instant Pot Ultra

  • Pressure Cooker
  • Slow Cooker
  • Rice/Porridge Cooker
  • Yogurt Maker
  • Cake Maker
  • Egg Cooker
  • Saute/Searing
  • Steamer
  • Warmer
  • Sterilizer

I love the look of the new Instant Pot, which is important for anyone like me who keeps it handy on the countertop! The controls and display are easy to read, and it comes with a recipe book, soup spoon, serving spoon, and measuring cup.

One improvement that I love is the redesigned pressure relief valve. It’s easier to use and safer, and it’s a big plus in my book!

One criticism of the Instant Pot is that they still have the stainless steel pot when other brands have come out with non-stick Teflon pots. However, I’m happy with the stainless steel and glad they kept it.

I have used many Teflon pans and like the non-stick quality, but they scratch very easy and need to be replaced often with regular use. I use my Instant Pot way too much to have to baby the pot in order to keep it from scratches! Plus, you can purchase an inner pot that has a ceramic non-stick finish, so that could be your extra one!

Multi Cookers Are For Everyone

So do I have you excited about all the things an Instant Pot multi cooker can do for you? Anyone looking for a versatile unit that make their life easier will love one!

Have you used an Instant Pot before? I’d love to hear your experiences with it and any questions you might have in the comments below!

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24 Replies to “Instant Pot Multi Cooker–There’s A Reason It’s #1”

  1. Hi, Janelle. This is the type of cooker I like. Quick and easy to use and easy clean afterwards. I’m busy for most of my day and I don’t have as much time as I’d like for cooking. One of my favourite dishes is the one-post stew or broth. Everything into the pot; meat, vegetables, herbs and water, preferably with a bone and just leave the pot to do it’s stuff. So, I guess I’m a slow cooker type of guy, but may have to take a look at the Instant Pot to see what it can do! Great article!

    1. Slow cookers are wonderful!  I use my Instant Pot to slow cook at least once a week and love it. Sounds like you’re doing great, and if you ever want to get an appliance with a few more functions, I’d take a look at the Ultra 🙂

      Thank you for stopping by!

  2. Great review Janelle! This is what I looking for. What I especially like is its powerful design, it looks really awesome. My mother will like this too because I like to prepare boiled vegetables and this cooker is a perfect thing for it. I was surprised when I read that it can prepare yogurt, definitely worth buying.

    1. Yogurt is something I make in it every week, easy and comes out perfect every time! After that, it’s beef and pork roasts with veggies. I love that I don’t have to warm up and run a big oven for hours, and I can still cook them even if I forgot to defrost one in the morning!

      I’ll bet your mom will love it too!

  3. I also have multi-cooker, first time when it use, we didn’t know make rice also, then we learn reading the manual. Actually, that item is more important for kitchens, because, more women are like to cook using cool gadgets without taking much more time and easily. this item is multi support for cooking instantly. This is better idea for women that instant cooking. Actually, I think this article provide every information regarding the Instant Pot multi cooker. As well as, it does not use more electricity. Important review regarding the Instant Pot multi cooker is better support for every women. Thanks

    1. You are right, using a pressure cooker is definitely a healthier way to cook than buying instant foods.  Anything that makes life easier without sacrificing quality is terrific in my book!  

      Thanks for stopping by!

  4. I absolutely LOVE my Instant Pot! I’m glad your yogurt turned out good. That’s one thing I haven’t tried yet. But you’re making me think it’s a good idea! It sounds like it was pretty easy? I am plant-based so I would have to use some different ingredients, but I bet I could still make it work! 

    My other two favorite things to make in it are rice and veggie broth. It’s SO easy. Do you ever feel like it’s not really cooking and you’re kind of cheating? lol

    1. Lol, sometimes!  So glad you’re loving your Instant Pot the as well.  I’d love it if you let me know if you find a plant based yogurt that can be made in your pot!

  5. I never thought that one cooker could do so much that is quite a list.  9 different things that this cooker can be used for.

    I would never have guessed that you could make yogurt in a cooker, but I never really thought about how yogurt was made before now.

    1. I first learned how to make yogurt a few years ago and love doing it.  I never wanted to invest in a yogurt maker before since I could use the oven.  But it always seemed like the oven was tied up whenever I wanted to use it!

      Once I heard how easy it was to make yogurt in the Instant Pot and that I could also use it for so many other things, that was what led me to buying my first one–and I love it!

  6. This is a bit more high-tech than the one I have at home. They are so easy to use, you can just put all of the ingredients in the pot, and let it cook throughout the day. For example if you have a joint of beef or lamb you can develop really rich flavours. They are very low maintenance too. I think I would have to get used to all of those dials on the front of that one you are recommending though! 😉

    1. Glad to hear that you are enjoying your Instant Pot!  There are several models of the Instant Pot available, including a Mini.  So if you ever need to replace your model, I’m sure you can find one that works for you 🙂

      Thank you for stopping by!

  7. This is a really cool device.  We use the slow cooker quite a bit.  With both my wife and myself working all day, its nice to put stuff in the slow cooker in the morning and its just about done when we get home.  This device looks like it would be very helpful with our busy lifestyles.

    The additional stuff that it can do is pretty amazing. I think I’ll have to look into getting one of these. All of the things that it can do and the ability to remove other devices off the counter would be very helpful.  From your review it seems like you are very happy with it. 

    1. I am very happy with mine and use it every week at least a couple of times.  If you’re ever interested in getting a multi cooker, I definitely recommend the Instant Pot Ultra!

      Thank you for stopping by!

  8. Hey, Janelle!

    I totally agree to the fact that a solid multi cooker helps freeing up some place in the kitchen. It’s especially awesome for people that have small kitchens. However, also ones that are more fortunate to have big ones – will surely benefit. I love the amount of many various cooking methods you have the possibility to do with this the kind of cooker. 🙂

    All in all I do believe that multi cookers represent an extremely awesome opportunity to in a way escape the routine kind of baking or boiling. Which is okay in terms of cooking in general, but a multi cooker provides a much broader list of options and so also variety of tastes. Furthermore, you can do stuff with it that a typical pan or a boiler won’t be able to do for you, like making yogurt (at least I’m completely not aware how it could be done by employing either of the two).

    I bet that using such a multi cooker can also help to just in general produce a more healthier and nutritious food as the cooking process seems to have smaller nutrient losses (the shape and form of the multi cooker). And also the stuff you mentioned in chapter on Accessories is to die for.

    As an example, I for a fact absolutely love that you can reheat your leftovers. In this sense up until this point I always chose to rather eat my leftovers cold and never use the microwave. What many people don’t know about them is that they essentially ruin your food from the nutrition point of view. Which is not what I seek at all.

    Thank you for the awesome review, I truly appreciate it!

    Cheers and have a Great One!Matiss

    1. I love that you’ve brought up the nutrition aspect, and you’re totally right!  The more I started cooking with my Instant Pot, the less I found myself using the microwave, which is much better for keeping the nutrition value of your food up,

      I also use my oven so much less, and not only is it wonderful for keeping the heat out of the house in the warm months, but is much more economical for us as well!  

      Thank you so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment!

  9. wow, this is amazing!! I have actually never heard of a multi cooker before!  I have a crockpot, which I love, but I’ve been wanting to get a rice cooker because they’re extremely handy to cook rice in.  With this fun little gadget, I could cook pretty much everything!! Side note, I had no idea that you make yogurt in cooker!  Can you suggest any good yogurt recipes?  

    1. The yogurt that I make just uses 1 gallon whole milk and a starter, which is just a cup of yogurt from the previous batch or plain yogurt from the store.  Just be sure that if you buy yogurt to start, check to make sure that it uses live cultures.

      I pour all but about a cup of the milk into my Instant Pot.  Then combine the reserved milk and the yogurt starter together and stir until smooth.  Add this to the milk in the pot and select the Yogurt button.  Mine automatically sets it to 8 hours, but if I want extra tangy yogurt, I change it to 12 hours.  After it’s done I strain it in 2 straining bags by hanging them from the knob on an upper kitchen cabinet over a bowl.  After about an hour or so, I put the strained yogurt in a plastic tub, stir till smooth, and refrigerate.  I take the whey that’s drained off and use it in my breadmaking.  It’s pretty easy and my family loves it!  

      Just a quick note, if you use raw or unpasteurized milk, you need to heat it up to 180° and then let it cool down to about 115° to make your yogurt.  This will kill wild cultures and bacteria.  If you use pasteurized milk from the store like I do, that step is not necessary.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  10. Hi Janelle 🙂

    This is perfect timing! My wife is looking for something exactly like this for Christmas!We had a crock pot but that’s so old and doesn’t work like it used to.

    I love everything about the Instant Pot Multi Cooker.The design is awesome and it appears that there isn’t anything this cooker can’t do!

    She is going love this because she’s been complaining about getting something new and better than what she’s had for all these years.I can’t believe that it can perform so many different cooking activities!How expensive is it and what is the warranty on it?

    1. This would be a terrific Christmas present for your wife, and I think she’ll love it!  The Instant Pot Ultra is running about $127.99 on Amazon right now, and there are several other versions that run from $79 up to $129.  They have a 1 year warranty.  Thank you for stopping by!

  11. Hi, wow! this is my favorite cooker. It is my right and my left hand 🙂 I make there everything. But it is the first time I read that it is possible to make yogurt, I will try. Also I have been looking for an extra inner pot, but never find where to buy it. Is it possible to buy the lid with the valve? I have one cooker with the valve broken. I bookmarked your post 😉

  12. Well, maybe I will keep the instant pot that I bought recently that is still sitting in the box.   I was debating taking it back to the store tomorrow since I have not used it.    As it is, I already have a slow cooker that I love.  I also have a pressure cooker that seemed like a cool idea to buy since my mom used to cook in one a lot.   I keep hearing about Instant Pot multi-cooker and have seen a number of cookbooks specially designed for one.   Yet, I have not gotten around to actually cooking in it.  I think the one I purchased is the 8 quart model.  I got it because it looked like I could fit a whole chicken in it if I wanted.  

    I never thought about yogurt being something that you could make at home.    Since I am planning to start drinking more smoothies, it might be nice if I could make my own yogurt.  

    Have you baked much in yours?   Are the results similar to what you would get in the oven?   

    I didn’t realize that you could purchase extra inner pots and other accessories.   Those could be helpful.    I may end up keeping mine after all.   Thanks for sharing your insight.    

    1. I have definitely used my Instant Pot a great deal, at least 2 times a week or more.  Keep in mind that the results you get with a pressure cooker are not the same you’d get by baking in the oven.  You’re cooking with steam pressure, so it will not crisp your food.

      If you bake something in the oven that’s covered, the results will be similar.  For instance, one of my husband’s favorite dinners is a beef roast with potatoes, carrots, and onions.  I put the roast in the oven with the vegetables around it, sprinkle 2 packages of onion soup mix on top, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and bake at 325° for a couple of hours.  I can do this in the Instant Pot in less than half that time altogether, and it turns out great!

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