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How to Use a Pressure Cooker

How to Use a Pressure Cooker

Pressure cooking has gained a lot of popularity lately, and for some it’s an intimidating cooking method. The truth is it’s actually a very easy, simple, and convenient way of cooking once you try it a few times. Pressure cooking just means you’re cooking with pressure. When you increase the pressure in the pot, you increase the temperature of the liquid and steam—and higher pressure equals shorter cooking time. Pressure cookers today are so advanced that all dinner takes is a little prep work, pushing a button, and letting it cook.

Start by Getting Familiar With Your Pressure Cooker

The first time you use a pressure cooker, there’s a few things you want to do. First, get familiar with the settings. The Quick Cooker has 16 easy-to-use functions that will help you make fast, fresh meals.

Once you understand how those functions work, you’ll want to get to know the inner pot—it’s the removeable pot inside the pressure cooker where you cook your food. You can sear meat, cook veggies, and proof bread, and more in the inner pot, or use it as a base for a wire rack and cook hard-boiled eggs. It’s the ultimate tool for making one-pot meals. Plus, you can remove it after cooking and place it in the dishwasher for easy cleanup.

Finally, become familiar with how the steam release button works. When you’re pressure cooking, the recipe you’re following should tell you if you should manually release the steam, meaning you need to push the steam release button after the cook time is up. Or it will tell you to let the steam naturally release for a certain amount of time, meaning you should let the steam release on its own and only push the steam release button after the time is up to make sure the steam has been completely released. The steam is extremely hot, so make sure the valve is positioned away from your cabinets and body when you press the steam release button.

Steam Release Valve on a Quick Cooker

After you get familiar with the pressure cooker, the only thing left to do is cook. Here are three easy ways to get you comfortable with the pressure cooker.

Pressure Cooker Settings

Get to know the settings and try making beans without soaking. You can make a fresh pot of beans in the pressure cooker in no time. Beans can make a simple side dish or an element of a main meal. Just add the beans, water, and a dash of oil and pick the beans setting—it’s that easy.

Best Beans (Without Soaking):

  1. Add 1 cup (250 mL) of pinto, black, or navy beans to the inner pot of the Quick Cooker.
  2. Add 3 cups (750 mL) of water, and 1 tbsp (15 mL) of oil.
  3. Lock the lid, select the BEANS setting, and press START.
  4. When the timer is up, let the steam release naturally for 10 minutes, then press the steam-release button to release any remaining pressure. Press CANCEL.
  5. Season with salt to taste.

Pressure Cooker Cooking Times

Get familiar with cooking times. This handy cooking times guide is great to bookmark or pin and use as a resource to know exactly how long to cook your food, how much water to use, and how to time the steam release on all sorts of beans, grains, rice, vegetables, and meats.

Customized Cooking Times

Try customizing. Next, use the custom setting and make hard-boiled eggs. Pressure-cooked hard-boiled eggs come out perfect every time and are so easy to peel. They make a great breakfast, snack, or even salad topping. It will only take you a few steps to get perfect hard-boiled eggs. It’s important to note that when you use your pressure cooker you have to add liquid, so it can come up to pressure and cook the food properly.

Easy-to-Peel Hard-Boiled Eggs:

  1. Place the wire rack into the inner pot of the Quick Cooker.
  2. Add 1 cup (250 mL) of water to the inner pot and place 6 eggs on the wire rack.
  3. Lock the lid and press the CUSTOM button. Press the TIME button and use the (–) button to adjust the time to 12 minutes. Press START.
  4. When the timer is up, press CANCEL. Press the steam-release button to manually release the pressure.

Check out the video below to see how it’s done.

Make Dinner in Your Pressure Cooker

Make a quick dinner. If you’re looking to see how easy dinner can be with a pressure cooker, these Quick Cooker Salsa Chicken Lettuce Wraps are the perfect recipe for you try. With just three ingredients and 30 minutes, you can have dinner on the table. This recipe is simple and delicious, but the crazy thing is you can even start it with frozen chicken.

Simple Salsa Chicken:

  1. Season 2 lbs. (1 kg) of boneless, skinless chicken breasts with 2 tbsp (30 mL) of your favorite taco seasoning.
  2. Place the chicken in the inner pot of the Quick Cooker and cover with 1 cup (250 mL) of chunky salsa.
  3. Lock the lid, choose the CHICKEN/POULTRY setting, and press START.
  4. When the timer is up, press CANCEL. Press the steam-release button to manually release the pressure.
  5. Chop the chicken and serve in lettuce wraps or on tortillas with your favorite toppings.

Quick Cooker Salsa Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Quick Cooker Salsa Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Not convinced you need an electric pressure cooker? Here are five reasons you’ll want to buy one.

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