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There are a lot of kitchen tools out there that promise to do wonders but in reality, the majority of those gadgets end up gathering dust for a year or two before you finally don’t feel bad and donate it.
Helping people find easy ways to cook that fit in their life while not making them a slave to the kitchen is a huge part of my job. This is why I am always on the lookout for new tools that can save my clients time and not just collect dust and end up in the donate pile.
The one tool that I always recommend as a good investment is an Instant Pot.
Now, to be totally up front, you might be wondering why I would recommend such a big machine. Counter space is gold in any kitchen but while this machine seems kind of bulky it can change up your whole dinner game.
Here are 5 reasons why you want to have an Instant Pot.
Slow Cooker On Steroids
The slow cooker is pretty awesome but a huge downside for me is the fact you have to think ahead. The tricky part is you have to make sure and take out whatever you going to make in the morning and sometimes the night before if it needs to be defrosted. This works great when you remember but sucks when you forget.
An Instant Pot gives you the flexibility of not having to think ahead. It’s awesome to think ahead, but let’s be real, sleeping in for 15 more minutes or corralling your children for school can take priority.
I find most Instant Pot recipes take about 10-15 minutes to assemble if that. This makes these recipes pretty easy to throw together when you get home from work or after picking up your kids.
Now, there is a caveat to cooking in the Instant Pot. There is time that needs to be added for coming to pressure, cooking, and then releasing pressure. But this doesn’t add significant time.
One Pot Wonders
You know when slow cooker recipes would tell you to saute something or brown food and you really just wanted a recipe that only required you dirty one dish. Ya, that bugged me too. One of the cool features about an Instant Pot is the fact it can saute food as well!
The Instant pot also has another trick up its sleeve with something called the pot-in-pot method. This is a technique where you can cook two different dishes at the same time! I mean, how cool is that?
To be completely up front I have yet to try this pot-in-pot method so I can’t speak to the success rate but it looks fairly easy. The hardest part might just be finding an oven-safe pot that would fit inside. Detoxinista has so many good instant pot recipes that use this method.
Would you believe me if I said that you can make boneless, skinless chicken thighs in the Instant Pot in just 8 minutes? Believe it!
Cooking meat has to be one of the best things about using the Instant Pot. Usually, cooking meat is the longest part about making dinner so when someone tells me that I can cook up meat with little to no effort I am sold.
One of my favorite meats to make is chicken. I’ll do a rotisserie style chicken in the Instant Pot and then have some for dinner and then shred the leftover meat for lunches or burritos.
I hate dishes. Am I the only one that feels bad for all the people who have to wash the dishes after a competition on the Food Network?
The beautiful thing about the Instant Pot is there will only be one dirty dish.
Do I need to say more?
Just like the slow cooker, the Instant Pot doesn’t require you to stir anything or hover over it to make sure things don’t burn. You set it the timer then go take a shower or go out for a walk and have dinner ready for you when you are done.
To be honest, I did hover over the Instant Pot the first time I used it. It is a pressure cooker after all and I remember my grandma and mom telling me horror stories of how the lid would fly off. So understandably I was nervous with my first go around. But, this is not the pressure cooker that your grandmother used and is a lot safer and easier to handle.
There can be a learning curve to figure out the settings (I usually just use manual) and what the nobs mean but you watch this Youtube video to get the basics. Once you have this down you are ready to go!
Amanda is a pizza loving registered dietitian nutritionist specializing in mindfulness and gut health. She quickly realized that gut health goes beyond the gut; it is also about honoring our gut feelings. She is the creator of The Mindful Gut™ which uses science and strategy to help people improve their gut health.