Today we’re going to be looking at what you should look for in the best digital pressure cooker.
What are the main features that are going to help you to use your pressure cooker in the easiest way to get the best results you can.
Is it just about a digital controls or is there more to it?
What to look for in a digital pressure cooker
Usually you start with your budget, the price can be the biggest deciding factor. The prices can range from around £50 for the cheaper pressure cookers to over £100 for an electric pressure cooker. If you’re planning on using it every day then you might be able to justify paying a higher price if the pressure cooker has lots of features that will benefit you. If the price is no object then size is usually the next important feature.
Most electric pressure cookers are 6 litres in size which is a good family size, you can get a smaller pressure cooker than that, a 3 litre or 5 litre size and the other way you can get an 8 litre size. A 6 litre pressure cooker can hold a chicken and a joint of meat or a large pot of stew or soup. It’s a pretty good all round size and you don’t have to fill it to use it, you can make smaller quantities but you can also make double the quantity you require and freeze it in portions for your own homemade ready meals.
Most people buying an electric pressure cooker are worried about the safety of the cooker, most makes have similar safety features including the locking lid which can’t be opened under pressure, the pressure release which should be easy to do without burning yourself. Most digital pressure cookers have a safety valve which will release if the pressure goes too high and a secondary safety feature of the spring loaded base under the inner pot which if presses down too low with the internal pressure will stop the heating process. Also most have an overheating sensor which will switch things off if the temperature gets higher than expected.
Cooking functions offered
If you just want a pressure cooker then you might not be too interested in whether it can slow cook, rice cook, saute and all the other things that these cookers can manage, but if you think you will use all the features of these multi cook types of pressure cooker or even some of them then it’s worth checking out what they can offer. Pressure cookers offer speed of cooking but if you have plenty of time you may want the flexibility of being able to use a slow cook function without having to buy a separate piece of equipment.
You will find that most electric pressure cookers offer some kind of digital control panel to make usage easier, or at least that is what the goal is. Sometimes no matter what buttons you have available it is still confusing to know how long to cook your meat and vegetables for.
It needs to be easy to choose what cooking function you want and how long you want to cook for, if you can set a delay timer that is a bonus especially if you work and would like your meal to be ready when you come in like in the Instant Pot Duo, although most pressure cookers have a keep warm function that can keep going for hours so that is a useful option too.
A lot of pressure cookers have press button pre-set times for different meats and fish and other foods which is helpful when you don’t know where to start, if you have a recipe to follow you also want manual controls. Knowing the correct cooking times for cooking specific foods is difficult as people like their foods cooked differently so sometimes it is a bit of a trial and error process to use the pre-set times and then deciding if it is to your liking and maybe tweaking the times a little if you want it cooked more or less.
Sage by Heston Blumenthal the Fast Slow Cooker Pro has a very intuitive control panel for the home user. The Fast Slow Pro is a pressure cooker which has been designed to the specifications of a chef to cook foods in the correct way. There are different pressure cooker psi levels and different pressure release methods based on the foods being cooked so that you get the results that you should.
The Sage is not the cheapest pressure cooker that is available, it does have the standard 6 litre non-stick inner pot and the standard safety features. It also has a hands free steam release button which means you can keep your hands well away from any steam released.
This digital pressure cooker can pressure cook, slow cook, steam, reduce, saute and sear. The easy to use control panel takes the thought out of using your pressure cooker, all you need to know is what you want to cook and how you want to cook it.
If you have a sage fast slow pro recipe book or any electric pressure cooking recipe book it will tell you exactly how to prepare your food, if you need to sear it first and which selections to use on the cooker. If you don’t have a recipe you can choose the cooking type that you want, if it is just pressure cooking then select that, it will then give you a list of foods that you can cook, from rice to a chicken you just select what food and it will cook it at the right pressure, the right time and it will release the steam in the right way to leave the food in the correct finished state. You will have another list of food suggestions on the slow cook function too. For ease of use and simple controls this Sage pressure cooker is hard to beat.