Table of Contents
- 1 What is a Programmable Pressure Cooker?
- 1.1 Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Guide for Buyers
- 1.2 Choosing the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers
- 1.3 Things to Look for When Buying the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers
- 1.4 Common Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Generation and Settings
- 1.5 Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Brands
- 1.6 5 of the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Reviews
What is a Programmable Pressure Cooker?
Let’s start with the definition of a Pressure Cooker. Pressure cookers are considered the cheetahs of the cooking world because of how fast they process food. Pressure cookers are great for quickly cooking food while retaining the vitamins and minerals that can be lost when food is cooked using other methods. Though there are still learning curves that you need to know and get used to, so if you’re using a pressure cooker for the first time, it’s important to know how to get started safely. As a consumer, knowing the basic mechanisms of pressure cooking to be able to recognize an unsafe system will make all the difference when you start using your pressure cooker.
Ways on how to cook on your pressure cooker is really not that complicated. When you turn on the pressure cooker, there will be heat which produces steam that cooks food faster by raising the boiling point. There are two types of pressure cookers, first is the old style pressure cooker which has a “jiggle top” or weighted pressure regulator that sits on top of the vent pipe on the lid. The second type is the newer style that uses spring valves and a closed system.
After the stove-top pressure cookers, in 1991 came what they called “third generation” which is the electric pressure cooker. These include an electric heat source that is automatically regulated to maintain the operating pressure. They also include a spring-loaded valve. This pressure cooker type cannot be opened with a cold water quick-release method and should be operated with caution when releasing vapour through the valve, especially while cooking foamy foods and liquids.
Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Guide for Buyers
Choosing the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers
When choosing the best programmable pressure cooker, you should understand first the tool or your pressure cooker.
1. You should know what a pressure cooker does. When it’s turned on, the heat produces steam that cooks food faster. The first is the old style pressure cooker which has a “jiggle top” or weighted pressure regulator that sits on top of the vent pipe on the lid. The second type is the newer style that uses spring valves and a closed system.
2. Check to make sure there are no dents or cracks in your pressure cooker before using it. Also check that the pressure cooker is clear of leftover food. Pressure cookers that have cracked can be dangerous as they release hot steam and might burn you. There must always be some sort of liquid in your pressure cooker before you cook anything in it. Then the cooker should never be more than ⅔ full of liquid as there needs to be room for the steam to accumulate.
3. You should understand the steamer basket and trivet. Pressure cookers come with a steamer basket that vegetables, seafood, and fruit are generally cooked on in the pressure cooker. The trivet is the basket’s stand. The trivet is placed in the bottom of the pressure cooker and the basket is placed on top of it. So in the end, whether you choose the old or newer style of pressure cooker you should consider the pros and cons and what are the main features because in the end it’s you who will experience the convenience of cooking.
Things to Look for When Buying the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers
Well obviously, one of the things that you need to look for when buying a pressure cooker is the parts and design. Portable pressure cookers consist of all or most of these basic component parts, depending on the manufacturer and model of pressure cooker. Pressure cookers are typically made of aluminum or stainless steel. Aluminum pressure cookers may be stamped, polished, or anodized, but all are unsuitable for the dishwasher. Aluminium is reactive to acidic foods, whose flavors are changed in the reactions, and less durable than stainless steel pressure cookers.
Higher-quality stainless steel pressure cookers are made with heavy, three-layer, or copper-clad bottoms (heat spreader) for uniform heating because stainless steel has lower thermal conductivity. Most modern stainless steel cookers are dishwasher-safe, although some manufacturers may recommend washing by hand. Some pressure cookers have a non-stick interior. A gasket or sealing ring, made from either rubber or silicone then forms a gas-tight seal that does not allow air or steam to escape between the lid and pan. Normally, the only way steam can escape is through a regulator on the lid while the cooker is pressurized. If the regulator becomes blocked, a safety valve provides a backup escape route for steam.
Parts of the pressure cooker include the Pan which is made of metal. Pan handles, usually one each on opposite ends, for carrying the cooker with both hands. Then there’s the lid. Lid handle, usually with a locking device button or slider which “clicks” shut and prevents removal while cooking. The accessories; which includes the steamer basket, Trivet for keeping the steamer basket above liquid and metal divider for separating different foods in the steamer basket.
Common Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Generation and Settings
For the best pressure cookers, its generation and settings is the key to its success when it comes to processing food. Its pressure and non-standard pressure settings should be taken into consideration. As per research, most pressure cookers have a cooking pressure setting between 0.8 – 1 bar 11.6 – 15 psi. The standard cooking pressure of 15 psi was determined by the United States Department of Agriculture in 1917. At this pressure, water boils at 121 °C or 250 °F.
The higher temperature causes food to cook faster; cooking times can typically be reduced to one-third of the time for conventional cooking methods. The actual cooking time also depends on the pressure release method used after timing and the thickness and density of the food, since thicker and denser foods take longer to cook. Frozen foods need extra cooking time to allow for thawing
When pressure cooking at 1 bar/15 psi, approximate cooking times are one minute for shredded cabbage, seven minutes for boiled potatoes (if cut small, not diced) and three minutes for fresh green beans. If the pressure is released naturally after timing (see Pressure release methods for details), cooking times are even shorter. Food cooks more quickly when cut into smaller pieces.
For the 1st generation with mechanical timer, there is no delayed cooking capability. While for the 2nd generation with digital controller, delayed cooking becomes possible and the controller shows a count-down timer when working pressure is reached. And for the 3rd generation with smart programming, Smart Programming includes pre-set cook times and settings, based on heating intensity, temperature, pressure and duration. Programmable electric pressure cookers, has become as intuitive to use as the microwave.
Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Brands
As most of the pressure cookers that are sold on the market, there are a few specific brands that have made themselves in the face of the competition and have managed to create a dedicated line of customers. While there are many models from other brands that are not well known, not everything depends on the brand, the following are three of the top pressure cookers brands manufacturers on the markets:
Instant Pot definitely made its name and is now the highest rating on Amazon. The Instant Pot is a 7-in-1 Multi-Functional Cooker: Pressure cooker, slow cooker, Rice Cooker/Porridge Maker, Steamer, Sauté/Browning, Yogurt Maker and Warmer. It has 3 Adjustable Modes for most functions; 3 Sauté temperatures and 3 Slow Cook temperatures. It also has Dual pressure settings for fast and flexible cooking: Cooking with the high pressure reduces cooking time by up to 70% and the low pressure avoids overcooking delicate food.
Bella cookers are the next highest ranking on Amazon. With 4.6 star rating, Bella made its name and make the customer trust their product. This slow cooker is like no other. You can first brown or sear your meats on the stove top, then finish cooking in the slow cooker itself for optimal and juicy results. This BELLA slow cooker is also lighter and easier to carry. Notable features include a digital countdown timer, 8 preset options, and a large 6.5QT capacity.
Secura also made its name for being the third highest rank on Amazon. It is a 6-quart multifunction electric cooker replaces your pressure cooker, slow cooker, food steamer, rice cooker, browning/sauté pan, soup maker. Automatic keep warm. It also has 18/10 stainless steel dishwasher-safe cooking pot; Cool-touch handles; Stainless steel lid with cool-touch finish, safe and energy efficient.
5 of the Best Programmable Pressure Cookers Reviews
- Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker, 6Qt/1000W, Stainless Steel Cooking Pot and Exterior, Latest 3rd Generation Technology
- Instant Pot IP-DUO50 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker with Stainless Steel Cooking Pot and Exterior, 5Qt/900W, Latest 3rd Generation Technology
- BELLA 14124 Programmable Slow Cooker with Searing Pot, 6.5-Quart, Stainless Steel
- Secura 6-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker 6qt, 18/10 Stainless Steel Cooking Pot, Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Steamer, Rice Cooker, Browning/Sauté, Soup Maker
- GoWISE USA® GW22620 Latest 4th-Generation Programmable Pressure Cooker. 8-in-1 multi-function, 6Qt/1000W, Stainless Steel Cooking Pot, steam and egg rack