An Instant Pot is a brand of multicooker that has become increasingly popular in households around the world. It can function as a rice cooker, pressure cooker, steamer, slow cooker, egg cooker, yogurt maker, and it can even sterilize baby bottles. It helps save time and space in the kitchen because it can take the place of several kitchen appliances.
You cannot use an Instant Pot without a sealing ring because the sealing ring’s function is to regulate pressure by not letting steam escape. Without pressure, an Instant Pot will not be able to cook your food properly. Replace the sealing ring at once if it is damaged or missing.
We will talk about what sealing rings are for, what you should do if something goes wrong with yours, and how to keep it in top shape. Then we will discuss the common mistakes people make when using an Instant Pot and some additional helpful features of this handy kitchen partner. Let’s get started!
What Are Sealing Rings?
Sealing rings ensure that steam won’t escape from the Instant Pot, ensuring that food is cooked properly. This handy kitchen appliance relies on extreme pressure to cook food. Liquid from inside the pot reacts to heat, which then turns the liquid into steam that creates pressure inside the pot.
Check the Sealing Ring for Damage and Replace As Needed
An Instant Pot won’t be able to cook food without a fully functioning sealing ring.
You should check for a damaged sealing ring if you hear air escaping from the pot, which usually manifests in a soft hissing sound. Stop the cooking process, set the ring to its sealing position, and restart the cooking process.
If your sealing ring is missing, get a new one so you can start using your Instant Pot again.
Clean the Sealing Ring Regularly
Make it a habit to clean the sealing ring after each use. The ring may absorb food particles and odors while cooking, which may affect its ability to retain pressure within the pot.
After cooking, remove the sealing ring from the lid and wash it with warm water and soap. Let it dry before putting it back in your Instant Pot.
Other Common Mistakes When Using an Instant Pot
An Instant Pot may seem pretty simple to use, but there are still a lot of things that may be overlooked when using this practical kitchen tool. Not using your Instant Pot properly may result in overcooked, undercooked, or raw food. It could be one of your best kitchen investments yet when used correctly.
Here are some of the most common mistakes people make when using their Instant Pot:
- Throwing everything in at once. Different kinds of food require different cooking times. For instance, cooking soft vegetables takes a minute or so, while cooking chicken takes about 6 minutes. If you throw in your greens at the same time as the chicken, you will end up with soggy, overcooked vegetables.
- Not putting enough liquid in. Since an Instant Pot uses pressure to cook, it needs some amount of liquid to function correctly. When heated, liquid produces steam, which is what an Instant Pot uses to cook your food. You may use water, wine, beer, broth, juice, or any thin sauce. Thick sauces may not be able to produce enough steam to cook your food.
- Overfilling. Make sure your Instant Pot is never more than two-thirds full. Putting too much food or liquid in the pot may result in messy spills and undercooked food. Keep in mind that certain kinds of food – like rice, pasta, and beans – expand while cooking.
If your instant pot stops working properly, you might be inclined to assume there is a problem with the sealing ring. However, it is important to make sure that you are not making any of these common mistakes before jumping to conclusions.
Features of an Instant Pot
This multi-functional machine can do many things. Its ability to seal completely makes it possible to cook rice, steam vegetables, sterilize baby feeding bottles, tenderize meat, and even cook a healthy soup quickly! However, there are some additional features that some people might overlook when using their Instant Pot.
Here are some features of the Instant Pot that may come in handy:
- Self-regulates. Instant pots come with sensors to help regulate temperature and pressure. You can leave your instant pot running without worrying about overcooking your food. This feature comes in handy on busy days when you have a lot on your plate.
- Cooks practically anything. An Instant Pot can cook just about anything. Vegetables, big chunks of meat, pancakes, soups, and even pasta will be a breeze. As long as it fits inside, the Instant Pot can cook it.
- Wireless connectivity. Some Instant Pots already come with a Bluetooth function. This lets you monitor your cooking via your phone. Hook your Instant Pot to your phone, and you can cook from just about anywhere inside your home.
Remember, an instant pot is an extremely handy kitchen tool, but many of its helpful features are rendered useless without a properly functioning sealing ring.