Pressure cooker, Things I love
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First Look at the 8-Quart Instant Pot IP-DUO80

First Look at the 8 Quart Instant Pot IP-DUO80

First Look at the 8 Quart Instant Pot IP-DUO80

My jumbo Instant Pot is here!

I’ve only had it since last Friday, but I want to share my excitement. The Instant Pot IP-DUO80 is the big brother of my favorite pressure cooker, the IP-DUO60. The main difference between the two cookers is size – they look almost exactly alike, but the 80 is scaled up. This is a good thing – the 80 has all of my favorite extras from the 60, including the one piece lid and silicone gasket holder, and the lid holder built into the handles. The only visible difference is the fancy red pressure valve, marked with lines so it is easier to tell when the cooker is pressurized. (With the 60, I had to use it a few times to know just by looking if the pressure valve was up or down.)

When you can see the lines, the pot is pressurized

When you can see the lines, the pot is pressurized


Instant Pot Duo Dimensions - 8 quart vs 6 Quart |

Instant Pot Duo Dimensions – 8 quart vs 6 Quart Plus

Size differences

8 quart dimensions: 15 inches wide x 14.5 tall x 13 deep
6 quart dimensions: 13.5 inches wide x 12.75 tall x 12.25 deep
(Width is from side handle to side handle. Height is from counter to top of top handle. Depth is from front of control panel to back of drain.)

8 quart inner pot: 7.25 inches high x 10.3125 diameter
6 quart inner pot: 6.25 inches high x 9.5 diameter
(Size includes lip)

Why is bigger such a big deal? The extra large pot makes my favorite cooker even easier to use. That extra width has already come in handy; I store used chicken carcasses in the freezer, after we’ve picked all the meat off of them; when I want to make chicken stock, I pull the zip-top bag out of the freezer, open it, and dump the frozen bones into the cooker. This is where the size comes in – a lot of times, the frozen bird is just a little too long for my pot – the chicken’s pygostyle 1 is poking up above the max-fill line. I have to break apart the frozen carcass to get it to fit. As a test, I grabbed my bag of frozen carcasses from the freezer and made stock. The bones fit well under the max fill line in the wider pot of the IP–80.

Instant Pot 8 Quart IP-DUO80 First Look-1000950

Instant Pot 8 Quart IP-DUO80 First Look-1580062

New Pot Width

New pot height

New pot height

The other advantage, of course, is I can fill the 8 quart cooker with more stuff when I’m cooking. That really helps when I’m making a big batch of broth, but…most of my other recipes fit just fine in a 6 quart cooker, even cooking for my family of five. If you already have the 6 quart cooker, and it’s working for you, don’t rush out and get the 8 quart. If you’ve been eyeing a second pressure cooker for side dishes, or you’re looking at your first cooker (and cook for bigger groups), get the 8 quart. I have multiple cookers, and in a couple days the 8 quart replaced my 6 quart as the “keep under the kitchen island for easy access” cooker. 2

One more difference I noticed: the IP-DUO80 remembers your last timer setting. For example, the first thing I did with the cooker was do a water test – 2 cups of water, set it to Manual, 5 minutes under pressure. Everything worked fine, so I took it apart, cleaned it, and put it in the dish drain to dry out. The next day, I wanted to make some beef broth. When I hit the Manual button, 5 minutes was back – not like the old DUO60, which always reset back to 30 minutes as the starting time. I think this will be a change for the better…but I’m not sure. If I cook in the same general range of temperatures this feature is a good thing – but if I jump around, cooking a 4 minute mac and cheese one day, then a 75 minute beef broth the next, this won’t be as useful. (Both options – remembering the last time set, or defaulting to 30 minutes, work better for me than some other pressure cookers that always start at zero and force you to count up. I make a lot of 30 to 60 minute recipes, so starting higher than zero means less button pressing.)

Instant Pot 8 Quart IP-DUO80 First Look-1000948

I have a new day-to-day pressure cooker.

I’ve used the IP-DUO80 every day since it arrived3, and I love it. I’ll keep using it, and report back if anything changes, but my old DUO60 has been rock solid, and I expect the same from this one. Highly, highly recommended.

[Update 2016-09-29…]

I still use my 6 quart IP-DUO60 day to day

I was excited about this cooker when it first came out, but over time, I drifted back to my 6 quart Instant Pot. Turns out, I don’t need the extra space (in my day to day cooking for a family of 5.) The 8 quart now lives on my pressure cooker shelf in the basement4, where I go get it if I need the extra space. I still recommend the 8 quart if you’re cooking for larger crowds on a regular basis. Or, if you want a second PC, then it’s great to have the flexibility of the larger size. (That’s what I use it for, primarily – when I want to pressure cook two things at once.) But, for most people, the 6 quart IP-DUO60 is a better fit.

(More thoughts on this: Longer Term Testing Notes: Instant Pot IP-DUO60 vs IP-DUO80)

What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

Which Pressure Cooker Should I Buy?
Instant Pot FAQ
My pressure cooker recipe index


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Filed under: Pressure cooker, Things I love


Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.


  1. Barbara says

    My second instant pot is a duplicate IP duo50. It also remembers my previous setting on the timer. My first IP duo50 does not. Bought the first in Nov.and the second in Feb.

  2. I want, I want! I’ve had trouble with a “LoPr” message on my ip-duo60 when I overload it for chicken stock. I’m trying to determine if the 80 will fit in any of my cabinets. Can you tell me how tall it is with the pot inside but the lid off? If it’s less than 12″ then I think I can store it with the lid off – putting the lid beside it or behind it.

    I know it’s work for you to pull it out to measure for me but I’ve been unable to find out the minimum shelf height I need to store it.

    Thanks Mike.

    • With the lid off, it is 11″ high. With lid on: 15″ high by 16″ wide (handles are widest part) by 13.5″ deep. It just barely fits under my kitchen island – but my problem is the width – I have to turn it slightly sideways so the handles and the programmable display don’t keep the cabinet door from shutting.

      • Thanks, Mike! I guess some allowances must be made for awesomeness
        I think I can get it to fit

      • With the lid on, the entire 8 quart ip is 15 by 16 by 13.5. With the lid off, the entire up is 11 by 16 by 13.5.

      • As for which one to get, if you make large batches of broth and soup to freeze, get the 8 quart. I still use the 6 quart for almost everything, and only pull out the 8 quart for large batches of broth.

  3. Eric says

    I also love my DUO80. I have a large family (5 kids) so, I found myself fighting the size of the DUO60. As soon as I received my DUO80, I gave my DUO60 to my in-laws.

    Another new feature of the DUO80 is the increase cook time. It can now cook for 240 minutes.

  4. Jenn says

    Thank you for pictures of size comparisons. I’ve been searching for them. I have a family of six and the 5 quart IP. We are taking a month long road trip and an IP will be our main cooking device for dinners most nights. What size would you take on the trip? I’m willing to buy a bigger IP if it will make our trip easier.

    • Jenn, my 6 quart is enough for my family of five under most circumstances. It’s only when I’m trying to cook extra – like I want leftovers, or have a crowd showing up – that I really like having the extra 2 quarts. That said, if the option is 5 quart or 8 quart, I’d go with the eight. 5 just seems…small for 6 people.

      • Jenn says

        Thanks so much for your reply. I’m leaning toward taking the 5 quart on the trip but see an 8 qt in my future.

      • Hi Mike, thank you for this article! Vet useful! I also have a family of 5 (a small kid and twin toddlers) and am debating between 6 and 8qt. I like cooking meals that are for 2 days (cooking daily just takes too much time for me). Do you think 6 qt would fit the bill? I’m sort of leaning toward 8qt but can’t make up my mind… Thank you!

  5. Kim says

    Hi Mike. I’ve had the 6qt for a couple of weeks now and decided to buy an 8qt because I occasionally cook for a crowd and liked having the larger pot. I wish I had simply ordered the 8 to begin with since I assume it can do everything the 6qt can do, but can also do it in a larger quantity. Do you find the 8qt takes longer to come to pressure than the 6?

    • It takes about the same amount of time…if it is the same amount of food. Heating up 2 cups of water for my first pressure test took almost exactly the same amount of time in both the 6 and 8 quart.

      But, when I use the 8 quart pot, I’m using it for the extra space, andtakes longer to heat up the extra quart or two of liquid.

  6. Kenny Embry says

    Hey Mike, have you found any accessories for the 8 quart? I’ve got one coming and would like a glass lid to use it as a slow cooker.

    • I have not. I talked to Instant Pot support about a spare 8 quart inner pot, and they said “end of May, keep an eye on “. I don’t see anything there yet.

  7. Jennifer says

    Hello Mike, Thank you for your review. I am contemplating taking the leap and buying an IP after my co-worker has raved about hers, but am torn between the 6 and 8 quart. We are a family of 4, soon to be 3 and occasionally cook for larger crowds and like to cook extra for leftovers. My concern is cooking smaller amounts in the 8 quart. Could there be issues with cooking smaller quantities in a larger pot?

    • No issues cooking smaller amounts in the larger pot. It’s not that much wider – just a little – so smaller amounts fit fine.

  8. Mary says

    I love my 8 quart version, but I am still waiting for the accessories – I am a bit worried because I don’t have a spare sealing ring and the 6 quart sealing rings do not fit the 8 quart pot. Have you seen any 8 quart accessories/sealing rings yet?

    • Not yet. Email Instant Pot support – they said inner pots would be available around now.

  9. Mike says

    Debating between the 8qt and 6qt. The biggest things I would ever do in it are a whole chicken, pork picnic roast or a couple slabs of ribs. (Things that normally fit in a 4qt slow cooker – although sometimes have to move to a bigger one)

    The 8qt seems massive sitting next to the 6qt.

    • The 2 slabs of ribs would be a tight fit in the 6 quart – everything else would fit in the 6 easily. Hope this helps!

      • Mike says

        Thanks, is the minimum water requirement different between the 6 and the 8? I think the 6qt requires 1.5 cups?

        • Mike says

          I guess a more direct question is, can you make your beets recipe with the same measurements in the 8qt slow cooker or is it too little food and water. (6 beets and 1 cup of water)

          • I use the same measurements- 1/2 cup of water seems to be enough liquid for either the 6 or 8 quart cooker.

          • Mike says

            That is the answer I was looking for. 8qt it is. Maybe I’ll get into making my own stock instead of buying the canned stuff since it won’t be an all day ordeal to make it now.

  10. You kindly provided a photo of the two IPs 60 and 80 side by side to show the difference in size. I am curious to see what they both look like on a counter. I am single and live alone, and the only thing stopping me from buying the 80 is if it is so massive that it becomes a nuisance to leave out on the counter. I do plan to use it OFTEN… so I will for sure leave it out and ready-for-use. Any recommendations?

  11. Scott says

    I’ve heard the Duo80 has a removable power cord, can silence beeps, can cook for 240 minutes, and can turn off after cooking (vs. having to “keep warm.” Are these features true? Thanks!

    • Yes on “can cook for 240 minutes”. No on removable power cord – my cord is permanently attached. I think “no” on silencing the beeps and turn off after cooking – I don’t see any way to do either in the manual.

  12. Hi. Just found your site – love it! I have a family of 7 adults/teens (5 male/2 female) and am contemplating getting the Instant Pot. Just trying to decide between the 6 qt. and the 8 qt. I’m leaning toward the 8 qt. but wonder if there are reasons to stay with the 6 qt.

    • I’d go with the 8 quart for 7 people. The 6 quart is large enough for my family of 5 most of the time – but with the extra people, I would want the 8 quart.

  13. J Yuma says

    Hi, I’m curious about the float vale on the lid. It would seem to be a safety issue with it sticking up like that. Does it get hot from the steam and pressure?


    • All pressure cookers have some variation on that valve. It doesn’t get hot – the rest of the lid does, but the valve and plastic parts are safe to touch. That said, it is the pressure release valve – if you turn it while the cooker is under pressure, boiling hot steam will come pouring out.

  14. Katie says

    Just wondering if you could share your broth recipe. I have been making broth weekly on the stove. I just got the 8 quart Instapot thanks to your review. Now I just need to learn how to make broth in it. Thanks Mike!

  15. Almost the end of August. I just got the 8qt IP and am in love! Have made 2 large batches of ribs for cookout and dinner. But I want to make yogurt, without having my new fav toy tied up all day/night. Anyone know if/when/where to buy accessories (inner pot, glass lid, etc.) for the 8qt yet?

  16. Jarrod says

    Hi all!

    Been debating for several days between the 6 & 8qt DUO. I was going to grab a 6qt after talking with Mike. After re-reading his post regarding the DUO80, decided to go with it for two reasons: a) it’s only slightly larger than the 6qt and will be a little more versatile. (b) Given my poor vision, Mike’s comment regarding the safety valve being a different color etc. Had issues when the owner replaced an electric stove of the place I’m in. Had a “B” of a time trying to see the burner locations with its glass top.

    Thought about the 60 for the wide range of accessories but figured safety first!

    I sent an email to Instant Pot a few days back regarding accessories for the 8L and received a reply today, 8/23/16:

    Hi there,

    Unfortunately, the accessories for our 8-QT model is not yet available. We deeply apologize for the delay. Please check back in at the end of October.

    Thank you for your inquiry.

    Kind Regards,

    Diana K.

    Instant Pot Company,
    Tel: +1 800 828-7280 ext 2. Fax: +1 613 800-0726

    So it looks like we’re going to have to wait at least another month or two before anything comes along.


  17. Martha Mackay+Smith says

    What would you need to cook in an instant pot 6 quart for more than 2 hours? And what would you need to cook in an 8 quart for 3-4 hours?

  18. Camping Chick says

    This has been a very helpful site, thank you for all of the detailed information and the Q & A’s are great follow-ups. I, like many others, am debating on the 6 vs 8 and I’m a Texan and everything is bigger in Texas, so the 8 seems like a natural choice!! The one thing that is keeping me from buying the 8 now is that it does not have bluetooth just the 6 and will they come out with a 10qt? Thoughts? I enjoy cooking and my mom taught me how to use a MPC as a child, but this is dreamy! Once I finally make my purchase I am looking forward to making all the favorites and yogurt!

    • Don’t let the bluetooth make your decision. It’s not worth it. My experience with it is not good. It won’t stay connected to my phone if I leave the kitchen – and if I’m in the kitchen, why do I need an app? The cooker is right there.

      If you’re cooking for a large group, get the 8 quart IP-Duo. The 6 quart IP-Duo is good enough for 90% of my cooking for my family of five, and is the cooker I recommend for most people.

    • None yet. The last anyone’s heard about the spare pots is “check back at the end of October” – so maybe then? – but I’m not expecting the lids any time before that.

  19. I would not discourage people from buying the Instant Pot Smart, just because you had a bad experience with it. I am able to access my Smart from just about anywhere in my house (a one level ranch house, about 1500 ft.², built in the mid-1970’s). I am also able to store my favorite recipes in the IP Smart app, including ingredients list, cooking directions, and the programmed cooking times, as well as use it as a sous vide device, since I am able to set the temperature with the app. I have both a DUO60 and a Smart; I rarely use the DUO, but it does come in handy when I want to,cook two things at once.

    • Susan, I’m glad it is working for you, and thank you for the second opinion. But, I stand by my statement – it doesn’t work for me, so I can’t recommend it.

    • I have not seen a sale on the 8 quart Instant Pots. I think they’re too new. Earliest for a sale would be this Christmas, but my guess would be more like Black Friday 2017.

  20. SANHEDRIN says

    I am single, so I guess I will skip the pressure cooker…never used one to begin with..if I did buy it, it would be a high priced dust catcher

  21. Tara Kluth says

    I have recently been introduced to the IP world and am contemplating the 8 or 6. We have 6 people, soon to be 3 teen boys (yikes!). My 6 quart Crock Pot has always been more than adequate, even if I’m cooking for 8-10 (shredded meat sandwiches, soups etc). For a multiple-times-a-week user should I stick with the 6 or in the pressure cooking world would I need the extra space that I don’t use in the Crock? (In other words, I may fill the crock nearly full, do I need to worry about over filling in the IP?)

    • I think you should go with the 8, if you are filling a 6 quart crock pot right up to the rim. You need to leave room for pressure to build, so the useable space in a 6 quart pressure cooker is more like 4 quarts (and in an 8 quart pressure cooker is more like 6 quarts.)

  22. Laura worsham says

    Like the rest, I am contemplating between the 6 or 8 qt. I already have 3 six quart crockpots , and when I use them, they are full. I am preparing for a family of 5. I plan to use it for roast, chicken, soup, sauces, chili. I have also heard you can can garden veggies. When cooking these foods, I want leftovers. I do have a small regular pressure cooker as well. Which one would you recommend?

    • I’m cooking for a family of 5, and the 6 quart is large enough for most of my cooking – I only pull out the 8 quart when I’m making an extra-large batch of something. That said, if you are filling 6 quart slow cookers to the brim, then it sounds like you’re making large batches on a regular basis. I think you want the bigger, 8 quart pot. (For more thoughts on the difference:

      • Thanks Mike.
        What are your thoughts on getting a cheaper 6 quart to start with to see how much I will use it? Walmart has one that will be $40 ( regular $60) on Black Friday. Belk has one for $50. Instant pot is still rather expensive.

        • I don’t know anything for sure – but there have been major Black Friday sales on the Instant Pot on Amazon the last couple of years, with it selling for $79. I’d wait until Friday morning, and see if you can get an IP for cheap.

  23. Vivian Maddox says

    So far I have searched to see if I could find the 8 quart IP on sale and I cannot find one.

    I just unpacked a 6 quart IP and it does not seem like it is large enough to cook an entire chicken without having to dismember the parts. It does look like it would be more than adequate for making beans, chili, stew, soups and rice in it. I’m also looking forward to making yogurt in it.

    At this point since I haven’t used it, I could send it back and exchange it for the 8 quart from Amazon. I would just have to pay the difference.

    Could you steer me in the right direction for a sale price for the 8 quart?

    Thank you.

    Mrs. Maddox

  24. I just got my 8 qt and I have a 6 qt. I was doing the water test. I put 2 cups of water in for 2 mins. Coming to pressure and had it on sealing. Steam really came out of the spout on top.. I thought it would stop when getting to pressure but didn’t. Tried it twice. Same thing. Can you please help me? I was excited to get this by surprise from my husband and wanting to use it. So disappointed. Do you think I have a problem? I need to know to send it back or not. Was wondering if this would happened with food in it. Thanks Mike!

    • I’m sorry, but I think you have a problem. Get in touch with Instant Pot support to see if they can get you fixed. (I’ve had good experiences with them, so I think they will take care of you. )

  25. Linda Bates says

    I have read through the questions and didn’t find the answer to mine (unless I skimmed past it). I have a 6qt and recently bought an 8 qt. My question is: Is there any time difference in cooking in the 8qt, what with it being 1200 watts and the 6qt being 1000 watts?
    Thanks, Linda B

  26. Mike Lemoine says

    Hi Mike,
    Noticed on your second photo of the SS pot and it looks like the highest fill mark says only 6 qrts, but its states it is a photo of the “new pot height”, can you confirm, please.
    Thank you,


    • That’s correct- you cannot fill a pressure cooker all the way to the top. It needs head space to build up pressure. So, the 8 quart pot’s max fill line is about 6 quarts. (The 6 quart can hold about 4 quarts).

      • Mike Lemoine says

        Thanks Mike, I already have a 6 qrt slow cooker so this pressure/slow cooker (DUO80) will not be any bigger size in terms of capacity with what I already have? 🙁

        A bit misleading no? It does state it can hold 8 qrts but that is not entirely true.

        • It can hold 8 quarts as a slow cooker – just not as a pressure cooker. Pressure cookers need the headroom.

  27. Arlene Dizon says

    What is the diameter of the liner pot on 8 quarts? I found a steamer basket in my kitchen and it’s 9.5″ wide. I hope it fits. My 8 quart IP shd be coming this week. Thank you!

  28. I just got the 8 quart today. I ordered it partly because the 6 quart was showing as shipping in one to two months on Amazon and I didn’t want to wait that long. I haven’t done anything with it yet but take it out of the box.

    I’d kind of like to keep it since returning it would be a pain and maybe it’s good to have the extra space? It is big though.

    I probably am only going to have one of these things. Is there a real downside to having my only one be an 8 quart?

    • There’s no real downside to the 8 quart – my only complaint about it is it is a little bigger, which makes it hard to fit in the cabinet under my island. Keep the 8 quart – you’ll love it!

  29. Can you cook smaller amounts in the 8qt pot. Only want to buy one and would vary cooking for 4 to 10 people. Would I need to adjust times if I cook a smaller portion in the 8qt.

  30. Great site. Am smiling seeing the posts because I am also stuck deciding between the 6 and 8 qt models. We have 3-4 in the house, but I do like leftovers and freezing batches, so am leaning toward the 8 qt….

    What do you recommend for accessories for the newbie? I see a tempered glass top and an innerpot for the 8 qt model. I don’t want to break the bank, but I’ve also heard that a steamer is a must-have. ??

    I’m going to use your link to purchase my IP so you get credit. Thanks!

    • Sounds like you want the 8 quart. I use the lid and the inner pot all the time, so I recommend getting them. I use my collapsible steamer basket occasionally – it’s the same one I’ve used for years – so you can put that off until you need it. You’ll love it!

  31. Daniel Goldberg says

    So I know this must be a beginners question, but having just received the 8qt for my birthday, am I crazy in wondering why the internal pot only goes up to 6 litres?

    • Just added this to my Instant Pot FAQ:

      Q: Why does my pressure cooker come with a max fill line? I can only use 2/3rds of the 6 quarts?

      A: Pressure cookers need headspace to build pressure – don’t fill them past 2/3rds full. Pressure cookers are measured by total volume of the pot – how much it can hold if you fill it to the brim. But you can only use 2/3rds of that.
      Why can you only use 2/3rds? Because pressure cookers need headspace to come up to pressure. The cooker needs space for the steam to build up, which is what pressurizes the pot. Also, this is a safety feature – if the bubbling ingredients in the pot get into the pressure valve, it can clog, and that’s when your pressure cooker can get into trouble with over-pressurizing.
      Why don’t they measure the pressure cooker as 2/3rds of the pot volume? I don’t know, but every pressure cooker I’ve seen measures their size this way. I know it can be frustrating to find out your brand new 6 quart cooker can only cook 4 quarts of food. I’ve got the angry comments to prove it. If anything, I think the Instant Pot, and other modern, electric multi-cookers have a better argument for using the total volume – if they can also work as a slow cooker or a normal, electric powered pot, then you actually can use the entire pot.

  32. Kristen says

    Just received the Instapot for Christmas! Looking at it and I see it is the 8 quart. I’ve been wondering whether or not to use the 8 qt and see how it goes, or whether it might be too big. It seems that you and another reviewer have both said that the 6 qt one is adequate for a family of 5. We have huge eaters that are almost teens, so I’m hesitant to downsize only to have to upgrade again in a few years. Feeling confused in Canada.

    • That advice is for someone who does not have a cooker already. If you have the 8 quart, keep it! They work the same, and with a family of 5, it doesn’t hurt to have the extra space.

  33. Hi there. I just got an 8 qt Instant Pot for Christmas. I’ve been using a 6 qt for a year now. All the recipes I have are for 6 qt size. Can I use them in the 8 qt? Do I have to make adjustments?
    I decided to get the larger size to use it mostly as a slow cooker.
    Thanks for the information.

  34. Jennifer K says

    This is my first visit to your site – can’t wait to look around. I’m a new 8 qt user and love the IP so far. My only complaint is the amount of time it takes to depressurize on natural release. (Frankly, even quick release takes a long time…30-45 min.) This has led to a lot of late meals for my family of 6 as I learn to anticipate the full cooking time. I’ve read that the 6 qt takes less time to depressurize. Since you have both sizes, have you noticed a difference? My family is not so impressed with the Instant Pot when dinner is 60-90 minutes later than I anticipated, no matter how delicious the end result is!

    • 30 to 45 minutes for quick pressure release is way too long. I haven’t timed it, but…five minutes sounds right to me?

      The timing on a Natural pressure release depends on the amount of liquid in the pot, not the size of the cooker. If you cook the same size recipe in a 6 quart and an 8 quart, they’ll take about the same time. But, if you’re filling the 8-quart up to the max fill line, it will take longer, because there’s more thermal mass to cool down.

  35. Love, love, love your website and comments. I left the store empty handed yesterday because I too cannot decide between the 6 and 8 qt. I cook for my husband and me but like cooking in volume for left overs and to freeze. I typically buy 3 – 4 lb. roasts and cook 6 to 8 chicken breasts at a time. I’m afraid if I buy the 6 qt. I will need more room. Thoughts?

    • Those sizes will fit in the 6-quart, but if you’re really worried, go with the 8-quart. It doesn’t hurt to have the extra space.

  36. Mike,
    Love your site. I’ve had my 6qt for a while and got the 8qt last year. I use both regularly so neither one has been relegated to the basement cabinet. I’m late to the party, but here’s my imput:
    I like the 8qt for pot-in-pot cooking. I got the stainless steel two-tiered steamer pans with the rack and while they do fit the 6qt, they have to be placed just so-not an issue with the 8qt. The wider inner pot allows me to use more of my existing bakeware for PIP, especially springform for cakes.
    Chicken stock is easier in the 8qt as you mentioned, but I don’t worry if the bones stick up past the max fill line-that’s just for liquid. For me, the bones always settle into the broth once everything thaws but I can see being cautious, especially when advising new users.
    Ham stock requires an 8qt, at least with the bones I have, as well at a turkey carcass.
    Large whole squash is a given in the 8qt, same for giant cauliflower.
    Oh, and I like the extra headspace for a controlled quick release for pasta. I can release the pressure faster without the starchy liquid reaching the valve.
    And don’t forget stacked/combo meals. I did a whole spaghetti squash and baked potatoes together in 12 minutes (at pressure).
    Even though I only cook for two, both sizes have become indispensable. Then again, I’m one of those where-have-you-been-all-my-life users.
    Thanks for your recipes and thoughtful reviews and advice.

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