The top pick, is the Instant Pot IP-DUO60, represents the very best bang for the buck. It’s the most cost effective Instant Pot that has two pressure-cooking levels (low and high), and it can keep warm for up to 99 hours. The Duo design even offers a big handle on top, additional slots in both side handles that old the lid, and a detachable cord (3- and 6-quart versions only), unlike Instant Pot’s earlier Lux-series model.
The display and control panel look complicated (and frankly, a little dated), but they’re easy to figure out as well as the instruction manual is apparent (we promise). The Instant Pot Duo series offers three sizes: 3, 6, and 8 quarts. In the event you don’t want to spend $100, wait for Prime Day or Black Friday, when Amazon has historically knocked $30 to $40 off of the regular price. For further about what we love regarding the Duo series, check out our full guide to electric pressure cookers. This upgraded Top 5 Instapot 2019 allows total power over temperature and time, including low-temperature sous vide-like cooking.
If you wish to spend an additional $50 or so for further features and control, get the Instant Pot Ultra, our upgrade pick. Compared with the Duo design, the Ultra model: features a bigger LCD screen that’s readable and displays a graph showing what’s happening within the pot (preheat, pressure cook, keep warm) enables you to make changes through the cooking process without canceling this system and starting over, features a streamlined user interface with a main dial to toggle between programs and settings (it’s much less intimidating compared to the cluster of buttons on the Duo), gives you precise temperature control (as opposed to simple low, medium, and high settings) for slow-cook, warm, and sauté programs, adjusts cooking time based on your elevation (you must set this, it isn’t automatic).
Such as the Instant Pot Duo series, the Ultra design has two pressure levels, a detachable cord (3- and 6-quart versions only), and three size options (3, 6, and 8 quarts). Again, if you’re still hungry for more details regarding the Ultra, we’ve covered it more extensively inside our electric pressure cooker guide.
Why aren’t the other Instant Pot models Wirecutter picks? The Instant Pot Lux is definitely the oldest model of the bunch. When we thought to test it, the Duo series was already available, with features the Lux model lacks. Mainly, the Lux offers just one single pressure-cooking level (high). And also the lid from the Lux has no handle, a reduced yet still irritating drawback.
The Duo Plus’ display, that has a similar array of function buttons as well as a more complex display readout. The Instant Pot Duo Plus is certainly a small upgrade through the regular Duo series we don’t think it’s really worth the extra cost. The Duo Plus is surely an “upgraded” version from the Duo series (our top pick), but its changes are really minor that people don’t think it warrants the $30 xmlkxo hike. The sole difference will be the LCD, which displays more information and contains a simple-on-the-eyes blue background. But compared with the Ultra design, the Duo Plus’s screen is smaller, and the control panel isn’t nearly as streamlined. The Duo Plus also lacks features that creates the Ultra special, namely altitude adjustment and customizable temperature control.
What size do i need to get? The three Instant Pot models over a counter, big to small. From left to right: 8-quart Instant Pot Duo, 6-quart Instant Pot Ultra, and three-quart Instant Pot Duo Mini. The 6-quart Instant Pot (in every series) is regarded as the popular size undoubtedly, and also the one we recommend for the majority of folks. It gives you a lot of capacity for weeknight dinners, soups and stews, a pot of beans, or possibly a whole chicken, yet doesn’t use up a crazy amount of counter space or shelf space.
Nevertheless the options are entirely up to you, and dependent on your cooking habits and storage space. The Instant Pot Duo and Ultra come in a 3-quart Mini size and an 8-quart size.