So, you finally want to buy an Instant Pot. You have heard so much about these unique pressure cooking ovens that you are ready to jump on the Instapot Band Wagon. For good reason too. This mighty little marvel does the work of 7 or more other kitchen toys and takes up less space than a crock pot. It also cooks really good food.
Which Instant Pot is Right For Me?
Instant Pot IP DUO 60
The Instant Pot 6 quart Duo 60 is by far the most popular in the Instant Pot lineup for good reason. This 7 in 1 counter top appliance is a multi functional cooker that can replace numerous kitchen appliances and as a result takes up a lot less space. It is a rice cooker, yogurt maker, warmer, steamer, saute and browning machine. It also, like the other models, has a built in microprocessor that has 14 programs that range from making soup, poultry and more. The Duo 60’s smart little brain keeps a close eye on your meal as it cooks through the programmable settings.
This particular model of Instant Pot allows for both low and high pressure cooking settings which you can speed up or slow down your cook time depending on your Instant Pot recipe. This allows you to cook more delicate food items at a slower pace in order to keep things happy within in its stainless steal medical food grade pot. It also has 3 unique temperature settings depending on what you need it for such as warming or slow saute cooking.
Instant Pot IP DUO Plus 60
A step above the Instant Pot Duo is the upgraded version. The DUO Plus 60 which was released earlier in 2017 is a touch more expensive but with added benefits and features. With the same features as the regular DUO as well as additions such as cake making abilities, egg cooker and sterilize features this would be perfect for those who love to make moist and delicious cakes from scratch. The egg hard boil feature is pretty nice as well. The eggs come out perfect every time. The blue LCD control display has also been upgraded with clever icons that display your selection and cooking variables. The stainless steel inner container also includes better visuals for knowing where to fill your Instant Pot. A more intuitive design that allows a few more features then the original DUO Instant Pot.
Instant Pot IP DUO 80
The DUO 80 is essentially the same as the DUO 60 and 50 but allows you to make bigger meals in its 8 quart basin. If size is a consideration then this might be the Instant Pot for you. Perfect for larger families who don’t want to spend tons of time in the kitchen. A little more expensive up front but being able to cook larger amounts of food in one go will save you money in the long run.
Instant Pot IP ULTRA
Instant Pot’s Ultra is a newer addition to the Instant Pot family. It boast many of the same features as the other smart pressure cookers but also allows you to use custom cooking schedules, temps, pressure settings with the addition of the cake making function, eggs, sterilization similar to that of the DUO and DUO plus. The kicker and the thing that is great is this model has incorporated an altitude adjustment setting which is perfect for me as I live in the Rocky Mountain state where cooking takes on a different form all together. No more second guessing my temps and cook times for me!
The Ultra also includes an intuitive LCD screen that gives you insights into your cooking phases along with an easy release valve for easy steam release.
Instant Pot IP Smart Bluetooth
Seems like everything is going toward Bluetooth for easy smart hone control. The Instant Pot Smart allows you to connect over Bluetooth to incorporate into your smart home. This allows you to focus more on your family or if you are far away from the kitchen you can still monitor your favorite recipes while they cook.
The IP Smart has all the features of its siblings with the add on of smart features for monitoring your food from a distance.
Instant Pot IP LUX60 V3
The Instant Pot LUX incorporates cake making and egg functions but strips down the settings a bit. Missing is the Chili, Poultry and sadly the Yogurt settings, however at a better price point if you aren’t into making Greek yogurt for example. It also strips away the low pressure cooking setting, only allowing for high pressure cooking recipes which may limit what you can do with this version.
Side by Side Comparisons of the Instant Pot Models
|Instant Pot Lux||Instant Pot Duo||Instant Pot Duo Plus||Instant Pot Ultra||Instant Pot Smart|
|Pressure Cooker||ONLY ON HIGH||LOW/HIGH||LOW/HIGH||LOW/HIGH||LOW/HIGH|
|Saute and Browning||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Egg Cooker/Hard Boils||NO||NO||YES||YES||NO|
|Capacity||6,8 Quart||3,6,8 Quart||6 Quart||6 Quart||6 Quart|
|Custom Settings Option||NO||NO||YES||YES||Yes|
|Altitude Adjustment Setting||NO||NO||NO||YES||NO|
|Price||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price|
The choice of Instant Pot for me comes down to the size of my family, and the things I like to cook. A bigger family means a bigger cooking capacity. I would recommend at least a 6 quart model for a family of four.
I would also take into consideration the types of food you enjoy eating and cooking. If you don’t like making cakes then a model with this feature is not a make or break situation.