Pressure cooker, Ramblings
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Instant Pot Frequently Asked Questions

Lineup of Instant Pots. 6-Quart Duo Plus, 8-Quart Duo Plus, 6-Quart Ultra on a kitchen island

Instant Pot FAQ

Because of my Instant Pot Duo pressure cooker recommendation, I get email with questions about how to use Instant Pot cookers. This post is to put them in one place, so I can refer everyone to it. So, here we go: Instant Pot Questions and Answers.
If you have a question I didn’t cover, leave a comment, and I’ll do my best to answer.

Q: All your recipes say “cook at high pressure for X minutes.” My Instant Pot does not have a high pressure button. How do I get high pressure on the Instant Pot?

A: Use the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button. On older Instant Pots, the “Manual” button means pressure cooking. On newer pots, there is an actual “Pressure Cook” button. (Hooray!)

The default for both of those buttons is High Pressure. Press the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button, and check to make sure the pressure level shows as “High” in the display. If it does not, press the Pressure Level button until it shows high. Then, use the plus and minus buttons to change the cooking time. Once the time is set, leave the cooker alone. After ten seconds of no buttons being pushed, the cooker will beep, and it will start cooking. (If you want to change something, press the cancel button to start again.)

Q: Okay, so, How do I get Low pressure on the Instant Pot?

A: It depends. Which Instant Pot do you own?

IP-DUO, IP-SMART, IP-DUO Plus: Use the “Pressure” or “Pressure level” button to adjust the pressure level. Push the Manual/Pressure Cook button, then the Pressure/Pressure Level button until the display says “Low”, then adjust the cooking time with the plus/minus buttons. Don’t forget to change it back when you’re done!

IP-LUX: The older IP-LUX model does not do low pressure – it’s high pressure or nothing. That said – I never use low pressure. I owned an IP-LUX for years and didn’t realize it was missing Low Pressure mode until someone asked about it for this FAQ.

Q: What about natural pressure release? When the Instant Pot finishes cooking, it switches to Keep Warm mode – is that OK with a natural pressure release? Or should I cancel it?

A: Keep Warm mode does not affect Natural Pressure Release [Updated 2016-01-18] I used to tell everyone to turn off warming mode to speed up natural pressure release, but…I was wrong. (See here for details of my testing.) Keep Warm mode does not slow down natural pressure release. It does not turn the heat back on until it reaches the warming range of 145°F to 172°F, which is well below the temperature where the pressure will release.

Q: When using the Saute button, can you adjust the heat setting? (Related: How do I bring recipes to a boil before locking the lid on the pot, as some recipes recommend?)

A: It depends on your model:

On the IP-DUO Plus: Keep pressing the Saute button to change the heat level.

On the IP-DUO or IP-LUX: Use the Saute button, then use the Adjust button to change the heat level.

The heat level of Saute mode is controlled by the “Adjust” button. From the Instant Pot website: “3 levels of temperature can be chosen with the “Adjust” key for best results:”

  • “Normal”: ~160°C (320°F) for regular browning,
  • “More”: ~170°C (338°F) for darker browning, and
  • “Less”: ~105°C (221°F) for light browning.

I tend to use “Saute – Normal” for most things, including browning. (Shame on me – I forget about the Adjust button.) For boiling, or if I’m in a hurry, I adjust to “Saute – More”.

Q: When I put my electric pressure cooker in slow cooker mode, what is the equivalent slow cooker temperature? Is it the same as a slow cooker on High, or on Low?

A: For an Instant Pot? It depends. Like Saute mode, the Slow Cook mode has multiple heat levels:

On the IP-DUO Plus or IP-Ultra: Keep pressing the Slow Cook button to change the heat level.

On the IP-DUO or IP-LUX: Use the Slow Cook button, then use the Adjust button to change the heat level.

Unfortunately, the heat levels don’t line up well with traditional slow cooker settings; Medium Slow Cook mode is what most crock-based slow cookers would call “Low”:

  • More (about 210°F) is about the same as Slow Cooker high
  • Medium (about 200°F) is Slow Cooker low setting
  • Low (about 190°F) is Slow Cooker “keep warm”.

Finally, use the plus/minus buttons to set the slow cooking time.

Also, the Instant Pot has some limitations as a slow cooker. For more info, see this post: Instant Pot as a Slow Cooker.

Q: What about the other buttons? Soup? Rice? Steam? Multigrain?

A: I don’t know – I never use them. I just use Manual mode for my pressure cooking. I don’t know what they’re doing in those other modes, so I’d rather use manual mode and control it myself.

Q: How do you adjust the cooking time in recipes designed for a traditional 15 psi stove top cooker?

A: I add 20% to the cooking time. The Instant Pot operates at 11.5 psi, so to make up for the difference, I add an extra 20% of time for electric pressure cooking. That means 10 minutes stove top is 12 minutes electric; 20 minutes stove top is 24 minutes electric; 30 minutes stove top is 36 minutes electric. (And so on).

The good thing about most pressure cooking recipes is they are not very precise – a little overcooking won’t hurt, and probably helps. If you’re cooking something that needs precise temperatures, you shouldn’t be cooking in a sealed pressure vessel.

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.

Q: What is the minimum liquid amount for the Instant Pot?

A: 2-3 cups, according to Instant Pot support About 1 cup, according to Instant Pot’s Facebook page.

[Updated 2015-08-06 with answer from Instant Pot’s Facebook Page]

1 cup is the minimum liquid amount, unless you’re cooking something that will absorb water. From a back and forth on Instant Pot’s Facebook page:

The short answer is “about a cup”.

The general point is to have enough liquid to reach and maintain pressure. When cooking absorbent foods, think rice, this will require enough for the food to absorb, plus some to bring the pot to pressure. When cooking moisture containing foods, say mushrooms which release moisture when cooked, this can be achieved with less added liquid. So, as is often the case in life, “it depends”. The Instant Pot is so well sealed that even a small amount of moisture can be sufficient, depending on the foods being cooked. [2015-08-06: Instant Pot Community Facebook Page]

I would NEVER suggest that you can go as low as 1/2 a cup of water, like I do all the time…um…I mean…nope, not me, not going to suggest it.

Q: Can I use the Instant Pot for pressure canning?

A: No. The Instant Pot, and all other electric pressure cookers, are not suitable for home canning, according to the USDA and the NCHFP (National Center for Home Food Preservation.) The NCHFP says that they don’t believe the processes recommended by the USDA are transferable to electric pressure cookers – you can’t trust them to hold high enough temperatures for the length of time needed to ensure safe canning. For more information, see this post on the NCHFP website: Can I Can in a Multi-Cooker?

Q: I forgot the pot liner, and poured stuff into the base. What do I do?

If it was water: Unplug it, dry it off, let it air dry for 72 hours.

If it was oil: That’s not good. It probably needs to be replaced. Call Instant Pot Support.

If it was dry goods: Shake ’em out. (Remove the vent cover on the bottom if necessary to get all the dry stuff out.) The pot is ready to use once everything is out of there.

More details in this article: What do I do if I dump liquid into my Instant Pot without the pot liner?

Q: How do you know all of this?

A: I read manuals. And contact support when I have questions. (Yes, I read manuals, all the way through. I can’t help myself.) Instant Pot makes this easy; their manuals are online. Go to InstantPot.com/benefits/specifications-and-manuals/, click on the link to your Instant Pot cooker type, then scroll to the bottom and pick the User Manual you want (in English, French, Chinese, or Spanish).

Also, Instant Pot support is good at responding if you have questions. Drop them a line if you have a burning pressure cooker question you need answered.

Q: Which Instant Pot should I buy?

A: The IP-DUO Plus 6 quart electric pressure cooker.

Why? See my post: Which Pressure Cooker Should I Buy?.

Q: What recipes should a beginner use in the instant pot?

A: Soup, Stew, Beans, Chili, and…Mac and Cheese?
https://www.dadcooksdinner.com/2009/10/pressure-cooker-chicken-stock.html/
https://www.dadcooksdinner.com/2014/01/pressure-cooker-basic-beef-stew.html/
https://www.dadcooksdinner.com/2010/10/pressure-cooker-black-bean-soup.html/
https://www.dadcooksdinner.com/2013/04/pressure-cooker-macaroni-and-cheese.html/

…from there, go to the Pressure Cooker recipe index on the bar at the top of the page, and look for recipes that catch your fancy.

Q: I think my Instant Pot is broken. It’s not coming up to pressure/steam is escaping from the lid/nothing happens when I push a button…

A: I’m sorry to hear that! You should probably contact Instant Pot Support for help. Instant pot has a great support department. If you think your cooker is broken or malfunctioning, contact them at InstantPot.com/support

What do you think?

Other questions? Leave them in the comments section below.

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205 Comments

  1. Rich Moberly says

    Mike
    I have looked in the FAQ and searched some online, but can’t find an answer to this question. Is it safe to put meat in the pressure cooker in the morning for a delayed cook time just before arriving home from work? It will sit in the pressure cooker all day before starting and that bothers me. It is sealed of course, but still.
    Thanks in advance.

    • No, that won’t be safe. According to the USDA, for safety, meat should not sit at room temperature for more than 2 hours to be safe.

  2. PeterM says

    Hi Mike, are you sure all roasts can only be well done? hippressurecooking’s charts has roast beef settings for rare, medium & well done. To be honest her chart confused me. At the top of the meat section she has beef, roast – 75min… yet further down, she has roast beef – rare 6-8min, med – 8-10min, well done 10-12min. I asked there but never did get a satisfactory answer.

    • You can try, but I think you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. Rare, Medium-rare, Medium…those are all very narrow windows of temperature. There is too much variability – thickness of the meat, heat of the cooker, temperature of the meat when you start. I can only get those variables right in traditional cooking (roasting, grilling) using an instant read thermometer and pulling the meat at the exact temperature I want. In a sealed environment, like a pressure cooker? It’s not going to work. Besides, that’s not what the pressure cooker is good for – you want to use it to replace long cooking in a sealed, wet environment – essentially braising – not cooking a roast to perfect pink medium-rare.

  3. Megan gallup says

    I am buying an Instant pot. Amazon, (because Amazon is so good at this), wants me to also buy a glass lid for it. Why would I need that?

    • The glass lid is convenient if you want to use the Instant Pot as a slow cooker, or use the saute mode to simmer after you’re done pressure cooking. I have one, and am glad I do – I find myself using it a couple of times a month.

  4. Peter says

    How often should I clean the sealing ring?
    Right now I”ve been cleaning it after each use of the Instant pot.
    When I contacted the company they told me to clean it after
    every 20 uses.

  5. Amanda says

    I read your replies about cooking frozen meat – any thoughts about cooking frozen vegetables? Ideally, I’d love to do broccoli? Veggies aren’t as dense as meat. I used to do this in my rice cooker with mixed results. Sometimes perfect, sometimes still cold in center.

    Thanks much!

  6. Becky Saylors says

    I have a question. Are you suppose to remove the sticker on the lid before using? If the lid
    gets hot as stated won’t that sticker just melt onto the lid. Would appreciate your advice.
    Thanks

  7. grace says

    i have yet to use my new instapot. would love to try a beef stew. everyone says to cook the meat for a period of time before adding veggies. i read from a review that quick releasing ruins meat. what do you do in the case where you’re supposed to cook the meat for a bit before adding the veggies? do you let the pressure release naturally and then add the veggies and go through the pressure building again? or do you quick release and the meat turns out fine? would love your insight. thanks so much!

  8. Can you reheat leftovers, or something like refrigerated rotisserie chicken, in the Instant Pot?

    • No, I don’t think that’s a good idea. If it was a leftover stew or soup, you could dump it in the pot and use sauté mode, using it like a pot on the stove.

  9. Jarrod says

    Hi Mike, absolutely love your site!

    I used to love it when my father would cook full hams in a stove top PC. I’ve always wanted one but have been terrified of the things. I suffer from Macular Degeneration and the thoughts of using a stop top unit put me off for many years.

    It’s only recently that I’ve discovered they make electric units via an popular Infomercial.

    This led to Google where I found lots of info. Searching for “Best Rated” PC’s, I found the IP-DUO. Nearly 11,000 reviews on Amazon alone. Eventually it brought me to your site.

    Read most, if not all, that you have posted pertaining to Instant Pot.

    I’ve been torn between purchasing the DUO60 vs. 80 as manyhave. Though I’m single, I’d like to be able to cook soups, stews and chili in bulk as well as full chicken and ham. From what I’ve read in various threads, “You can cook smaller amounts in a larger pot but not larger in a smaller one”. So this is leading me toward the DUO80.

    I’ve read your review(s) on both units along with questions and comments. Though you have an 80, I’ve read you still use your 60 more.

    At the moment there are loads of accessories for the DUO60 on Amazon and other places. Hopefully the same will be available for the 80 in time.

    Q: If it were you making a decision today, would you purchase a 60 over the 80 due to available accessories or just get an 80 anyway?

    As for pricing, here in Canada the 60 is currently on sale at
    $141 and the 80 is $200. I believe there is Free shipping available for both. Quite the difference from south of the border pricing!

    JAS

    • Get the 6 quart IP-DUO60, unless you’re cooking for a family larger than mine (I’m cooking for 5). I have them both, and still use the 6 quart model almost every time. The exceptions are large batches – huge pots of chili, say, or turkey stock. Then I pull out the 8 quart for the extra space.

  10. Jarrod says

    Thank you kindly. Been leaning toward the DUO60 but didn’t want to regret it later if a larger pot was required. I’ll probably invest the price difference a couple of accessories. Thanks again!

    JAS

  11. From the manual:

    “4. Select cooking time.

    You may use the “Adjust” key (except the “Manual” and Rice” functions) to adjust cooking duration. Press the “Adjust” key repeatedly to change between “Normal”, “Less” and “More” modes which will light up on the display.

    If necessary, change the cooking time with “+” and “-“. Press and hold the “+” or “-“ key for faster changes.”

    What is the difference between cooking duration and cooking time? It doesn’t make sense to me because I understand them both as same but yet they are separated settings.

    • I don’t know – I always use “Manual” and change the cooking time with the +/- buttons. Anyone else have an answer?

  12. steve says

    bought one of these units at Target last nite….but it did not include the Anti-block Shield IN THE BOX…. Picked up another one at a different location and the box did not include the shield as well…… Should the shield be included or have they changed the specifications, where as the shield is no longer needed ?

    • I’m sorry to hear that! You should probably contact Instant Pot Support for help. Instant pot has a great support department. If you think your cooker is missing pieces, contact them at InstantPot.com/support

    • They did change the lid (after using their own for over a year, my parents bought me a DUO60 last week, and when Dad saw the lid for mine, he said it looked like they had moved parts that are external – sticking out below the lid – on theirs to be internal in mine). But there’s still an anti-block shield. I wonder if maybe you’re not recognizing it.

      The anti-block shield on mine is about the size and shape of a 3-liter plastic soda bottle cap but is made of metal with slits all around it. It can be removed by pulling up. It’s rather tight and I have been using a butter knife to get under it to lift it off.

      Hope this helps.

      • Stephanie says

        Thank you, Joy, that helped tremendously, along with a Facebook thread that said pretty much the same thing! The manufacturers really should update the diagram in that manual, that was what confused me, and, from the looks of it, a lot of other people as well. Thanks again!

  13. Thanks for the helpful information on the Instant Pot! I am all set to buy one but I am wavering between the 6 qt and 8 qt– I really want to be able to cook a whole chicken (especially since I often forget to defrost and want to cook from frozen) and am worried that only a tiny one will fit in the 6 qt. But I don’t want to always have to cook a large amount of food either- help! We are a family of 4 but our kids eat adult-sized portions and I like to have leftovers for at least one night’s dinner. Thanks!

    • I can cook a 4 pound chicken in the 6 quart instant pot without any trouble – and it feels like I could fit a 6 pounder in there – but for a 6 pound chicken I’d want the 8 quart.

      That said, I’m cooking for a family of 5, and the 6 quart has been more than enough space for 90% to 95% of my usage. It’s only when I’m cooking for more that I pull out the 8 quart. I’d say go for the 6…but if you’re really worried about size, the 8 is a great choice as well.

      (More thoughts on 6 vs 8: https://www.dadcooksdinner.com/2016/09/longer-term-testing-notes-instant-pot-duo60-vs-duo80.html/

  14. Great compendium of info here, Mike!

    I recently bought an instant pot and I’m having issues with the slow cooker function. If I set the time & heat then let it get started, then subsequently fiddle around with the settings the instant pot shuts down. But it never indicates “off” and the timer continues.

    What is the proper process for adjusting settings in mid-stream?

    Thanks!

    • I just got an IP Duo Plus 60. So far made yogurt, stew, and bone broth with great success. According to the instructions, I should be able to turn off or adjust “Keep Warm” any time during the cooking cycle. But the instructions don’t sat HOW. I’ve tried everything I can think of,but I’m not seeing any changes. The Duo Plus does not have the “ Adjust” button, so there must be some other way.
      Thanks for your helpful blog.

  15. Stephen Hearon, Sr. says

    I cook all my rice and oatmeal using the pot-in-pot method (I’m a bachelor). My biggest problem was not to burn myself removing the inner-inner pot. I have bought two Billy-pots that fit perfectly in the Instant Pot and they have handles. I got them both on Amazon and they are:
    Olicamp Stainless Steel Kettle (1-Quart)
    Sold by: Amazon.com LLC
    Return eligible through Jan 31, 2017
    $19.75
    Condition: New
    Buy it Again

    Open Country 2 Quart Non-Stick Covered Kettle
    Sold by: Amazon.com LLC
    Return eligible through Jan 31, 2017
    $19.83

    After cooking I eat my oatmeal straight out of the 1 quart and my rice stays in the 2 qt. and then into the fridge.

  16. Christine says

    I have an 8 qt IP. It does not brown food at all. No matter how long I let it heat up on Sauté High, and the screen reads “Hot” it never sears meat, just kind of braises/steams it. When I place my hand above the pot, I don’t feel much heat radiating. The IP works well in all their respects. Am I doing something wrong or do I have a defective unit?

    • That does sound like a defective unit. “Hot” means the heat cut out because it thinks the pot is overheating.

  17. Clarice Victor says

    What’s the DIFFERENCE between the regular slow cooker and “slow cooker” option in IP? What’s the point of high pressure (LUX model) in slow cooking? I think Duo model does it at low pressure. I want true slow cooking. Could the Instant Pot do that? It is nearly impossible to cook things mushy or lose the flavor with a regular slow cooker. Any advice is appreciated. Also, what is the low pressure (in DUO model) used for?

    • The slow cooker mode in the Instant Pot is a true “slow cooker”, just like in a crock pot. No pressure is involved. The low pressure mode is there because, occasionally, you will find a recipe that asks for it. Low pressure recipes are very few and far between; like I said up above, I’ve never actually used the low pressure mode in the years I’ve owned my IP.

      • Clarice Victor says

        Is low pressure cooking similar or close to slow-cooking? For example, could I cook tomato sauce with low pressure (with the typical 8 hour time) instead of slow cook mode?

  18. I just got my Ip and glass lid
    I read that you can use the glass lid when slow cooking, browning, and also for making yogurt.
    What about cheesecakes and other sweet recipes, can I also use the glass lid or have to be the lid that comes with the pot?

    I would like to avoid smell transfer as much possible so I know which lid to use. I don’t want my dessert to smell like chili.

    Thanks

    • If it is a pressure cooker recipe – and all the cheesecake recipes for the IP are pressure cooker recipes – then you have to use the pressure lid. Just throw the silicone sealing ring in the dishwasher and it will take care of the smells.

  19. Diane johnston says

    For some reason I cannot get the manual method to work. It doesn’t seem to time out properly to the time that I set it. Seems to convert minutes to hrs????

  20. Brenda says

    I just got the Instant Pot DUO-60, and have never cooked with this kind of pot. It came with a condensation cup, and it shows how to install it, but it doesn’t state what it’s for or if it should ALWAYS be in the pot. Can you tell me, please? Thanks! Just found your site, and am looking forward to the recipes and information!!

    • Yes, always on the pot. It catches any liquid that escapes from the pot, especially if you use the lid holder built into the pot handles.

  21. Ludmilla says

    I am trying to make Farmers Cheese. I used the Yogurt function to make Yogurt and now I need to simmer the Yogurt to get the whey to separate from the cheese. I can’t quite figure out what setting to use. The temperature can’t be too high because the cheese will become rubbery. I am aiming for about 145F. Do you have any suggestions?

  22. Does this pressure cooker make noise while cooking like the newer stove top models.

    This is my first try and it steamed, the button came up, then silence.

    • That is how it is supposed to work – steaming until it builds enough pressure to lift the float valve, and then silence during cooking.

  23. HI! I am having trouble using the crock pot function on the instant pot. I tried a recipe that indicated I should use a slow cooker on high for 2 hours and then 3 hours on low but it was not even remotely cooked. I want to try another recipe for a slow cooker that indicates 2 hours on low – is there an adjustment that I need to make for the instant pot to mimic these recipes? I feel like I must be missing something. Thank you.

    • Yes. The rule of thumb is: For every 1000 ft above 2000 ft elevation, increase cooking time by 5%. In other words, at 3000 feet increase by 5%, at 4000 feet increase by 10%, at 5000 feet increase by 15%, and so on.

  24. Annette says

    I own a older model Instant Pot. It doesn’t have a “saute” function button. Is there another function button I can use to sauté the meat?

  25. Herbert Bullard says

    What am I doing wrong?
    I made a pot of gumbo. Nothing in the recipe required a cook time over 5 minutes. Pot was about 3/4 full. I set the program to manual for 8 minutes. My understanding was that the pot would reach pressure and the timer would start. When the timer reached “0” there was no pressure and the gumbo was simply “cold.” I fiddled with it for a while and finally I set it to “saute” to get it hot. I finally did. I switched back to manual and it wouldn’t hold the pressure. By switching back and forth between “saute” and “manual” I finally gave up. By that time my gumbo was cooked anyway. Delicious. However, I guess I don’t know about this Instant Pot. I have the LUX-60. Someone enlighten me!

    • Herbert, it sounds like you may have a problem with your Instant Pot Lux. Manual mode should come up to pressure before it starts the countdown timer. Try running manual mode with nothing in the pot other than 2 cups of water, to see if it comes up to pressure. If it is still having issues, contact instant pot support at InstantPot.com/support

  26. I am going to purchase my first pressure cooker, and I am trying to decide if I should purchase the 6 quart or 8 quart Instant Pot. I normally cook for 4 adults, and will also use it for “batch” cooking of soups, etc. I purchased a 4 quart in the past and sent it right back without using it because it was so small. Thanks for your assistance!

  27. Thanks for your helpful post about all things Instant Pot! I have a rather silly question- when you are using manual mode and set the timer for say, 30 min, can I assume that the timer should start AFTER the pot comes up to pressure? What seems to be happening for me is that the timer starts right away, even before the pot is up to pressure. From the posts I’ve read, even with hot liquid and non frozen ingredients, it should still take your instant pot a few minutes to come up to pressure?

    • You’re right – when you use manual mode, it should not start counting down until it comes up to pressure. If it’s starting right away, I think there is something wrong. Contact Instant Pot Support to get it checked – InstantPot.com/Support. Good luck!

  28. Mary R Colache says

    I would like to saute or steam fresh green peppers. I am so new at this. Received the Instant Pot pressure cooker for my birthday but am timid about using it.

  29. Barb says

    If you use the instant pot as a slow cooker, can you take the lid of when you want to, to check your food?

  30. Cary Hill says

    Mike, you have done it again; what a great job of answering a broad range of basic issues/questions. I just finished your beef curry recipe and although I initially thought there was too much liquid, it turned out great. I did however choose a poor choice of beef cut but the flavor was great. Thanks again for having one of the best blogs out there. Would definitely love to cook with you some time.
    Cary

  31. mandakini nayak says

    I do not have a manual mode in my Instant pot IP DUO.
    Most recepies use that mode. What can i substitute that with. What is slow cooking? The time doesnot seem to be in secs and mins there.

  32. Hi Mike
    New instant pot owner. Newbie question: is the time indicator in minutes or seconds? What does the reading 3:00 mean?
    Thanks for all the great info you provide!

    • The time indicator is in minutes; 3 minutes would read “3”, and 3:00 would be three hours…but I think that means you’re in slow cooker mode. In pressure cooker mode, I only see two digits on the front of the Instant Pot, and they’re showing minutes. (And they stay in minutes if I go over an hour; for example, an hour and five minutes shows as 65 in pressure cooker mode.)

  33. Aha so now half a cup of liquid is sufficient which I didn’t get from you, had no idea either about the saute temp adjust. Good man! I don’t like watery sauces and without knowing all the water content of any food on the planet this is a good guide. Cheers mate!

  34. Joanne says

    Actually I have a question. If you have the 8 qt Instant Pot, how do you adjust the recipes
    that are written for the 6 qt IP?

  35. I didn’t know what was so big deal about this pot till my sister told me about it so i went and bought one WOW thats all we cook out of now the flavor in food is so much better

  36. I’m still trying to figure out how to adjust/turn off the “keep warm” on my new Duo Plus 9-in-1. It’s not the same SA the 7-in-1Duo.

  37. I’m a new user of my Instant Pot 7 in 1 Duo and so far I’m very pleased.
    I’m not sure what setting I should use to simmer. The recipe calls for
    a slow simmer. Thanks for any help

  38. ANDREA says

    HELP!!!! UGH ! I was in a hurry and read my instructions wrong. I set my “thing” to VENT instead of SEAL (dir. said 10 min HIGH pressure) ??? It was on like 30 min. before I realized it. I just hit cancel and it’s finally calming down….UGH !!! It is chicken (b/s) breasts with brown rice and veggies. Now what ?

  39. Lisa Northcut says

    When I push the adjust button to adjust the pressure nothing happens. The less, normal, and more options don’t light up.

    • The thickness of each piece of meat determines the cooking time.
      If the pieces of meat are all cut to the same size, then it cooks in the same time.
      If it is one big piece (say, doubling a 3-pound roast to 6 pounds), then it will take more than double.

  40. Christian M Russell says

    can you safely delay cooking for any length of time without Bacteria growth? Say I want to fill my instapot with Chicken and delay it’s cook time to my return home 9 hours later. That chicken just sits at room temperature all day. What is the guideline so I don’t make my family sick?

    • The FDA says:
      > “Stick to the “two-hour rule” for leaving items needing refrigeration out at room temperature. Never allow meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, or produce or other foods that require refrigeration to sit at room temperature for more than two hours—one hour if the air temperature is above 90° F.”

      My personal guideline? I don’t do it…but if I did, I’d go for 1 hour or less.

      The

  41. Elizabeth says

    Hello, I’m using the slow cook today on my Instant Pot. First time for slow cook. Question: Is the “keep warm” function suppose to be on while the slow cook is in the process.?
    Thank you,

  42. Christopher White says

    We are new to the IP. I have searched and search online to the answer to this question re natural release:
    Do I have to wait until the silver button is completely retracted or just until it starts to go down? If I wait until it goes down it takes over an hour, but the recipes all seem to say it should take 15-25 minutes.

    • It sounds like it is sticking. The silver button (aka the float valve) shouldn’t “start to go down” – it should drop suddenly when the pressure is low enough to unlock the pot. (The valve is controlled by gravity – when the pressure drops enough, gravity takes over and the float valve drops.)

      I think you need to clean the float valve.

      To clean it, pull the silicone cap off the bottom float valve (from the inside of the lid), and then turn the lid over – the float valve pin will drop out.
      (See this video on how to remove the float valve and put it back in: https://youtu.be/SJW4QNwTmn0?t=1m25s It’s from an older LUX model cooker, but the pin is the same)

      Scrub the pin and the valve, and clean out the hole in the lid where the valve goes. Let everything air dry, then put the float pin back in from the top and re-attach the silicone seal from under the lid.

      Then, put 1 cup of water in the pot, lock the lid, and set the instant pot to cook at high pressure for 1 minute. After the pot comes up to pressure and the 1 minute of “cooking” time is done, the float valve should drop after ten to 15 minutes…20 minutes at the absolute max.

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