Top 10Common Newbie Mistakes

01

Winging It

Not all pressure cookers are the same. The user manual is your guide and friend. It will provide everything you need to confidently cook with your Instant Pot—read it cover to cover!

02

Placing the cooker on a stovetop… and turning it on

Of course accidents happen, but some accidents are totally preventable! The Instant Pot is designed for countertop use only, so where you choose to position your cooker is important. To prevent damage to your cooker, keep it away from external heat sources such as heated ovens, stovetops and gas ranges.

03

Not checking the detachable power cord

Has your display ever gone dark?

You may be experiencing a loose connection! Check to see if the power cord on your Instant Pot is detachable. If it is, detach the power cord from the cooker base socket and then reattach it, ensuring the connection to the base is
snug.

04

Forgetting the sealing ring

The silicone sealing ring is a key player in pressure cooking. Forgetting the sealing ring may result in a ruined meal and a wet countertop, so it’s important to make sure it’s installed and well seated before cooking!

05

Expecting “instant” results

While pressure cooking is the fastest way to get delicious, nutrient rich food from fridge (or freezer) to table, the Instant Pot must go through 3 cooking stages: pre-heating, the cook cycle, and depressurization.

The biggest difference between traditional cooking and cooking Instant Pot style is that the automated cooker does not need your constant attention, and the quality of that time saved is immeasurable.

Go ahead and hang out with your kids, do some gardening—start that book you’ve been thinking about. You’ll find that dinner is ready sooner than you think!

06

Choosing the wrong cuts for pressure cooking

Pressure cookers operate at higher-than-boiling temperatures, quickly breaking down tough muscle fibers and intramuscular fats. To get the juiciest, most tender results, it’s important to choose the right cut.
Since the Instant Pot really flexes its muscle with tough cuts, try a flank, shank or chuck roast as your main ingredient. Craving chicken tenders or a T-bone steak? No problem—save tender, quick-cooking cuts for the Sauté Program.

07

Adding too much liquid

As there is minimal evaporation when pressure cooking, too much liquid in the cooker can turn your dish from scrumptious to soggy. We highly recommend following your recipe’s suggested liquid levels. As a general rule, using the minimum
amount required is the best way to get flavorful results.

08

Overcooking

Pressure cookers cook fast, so if you’re not used to the timing it’s easy to overdo it. If you don’t want to end up with hot mush, follow your recipe’s cooking instructions, or use our helpful Cooking Time Tables to establish a cook time based on the main ingredient in your dish.

09

Wrong pressure release method

Do I QR or NR?

Using the right venting method can have just as much impact on your meal as the cooking itself. Ideally you will be able to follow your recipe’s venting instructions, however as not all recipes are created equal, refer to this “How To” on venting methods.

10

Adding thickeners too early

With the colder months upon us, the aroma from hearty stews and rich chilies will soon be filling the air. Most stew recipes use thickening agents like flour or cornstarch to fill out the dish. Because thickeners are inclined to sink to the bottom of the inner pot, they tend to block heat dissipation and can even cause scorching. To get around this, add thickening agents after pressure cooking—if they need heat to incorporate, turn Sauté on for a few minutes!

114 replies
  1. Megan Behan
    Megan Behan says:

    my instant pot does not say hot when i am using sautee function and also everytime i have made something i use high pressure and have it sealed not venting, i put either 20 to 30 minutes on the times it just says on, 30+ minutes goes by and the time has not moved. i end up quick releasing it myself and waiting 10 minutes (hoping it is all depressurized before opening) before removing the lid. i inspected the seal and everything else seems to be fine. it doesn’t count down so i know when it is up to pressure and it never changes the timer i set for my recipes… am i doing something wrong?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Megan,

      The time will only switch over after it as completely come to pressure. The time it takes to pressurize depends on the coldness and the amount of food in the inner pot. If it shows “On” it is still preheating at has not reached cooking temperature; this time is not included in the recipe as it can vary.

      Sauteing will only display hot once it has reached the correct temperature. Once it displays “Hot” then you can add oil and the ingredients you wish to saute. Please note adding ingredients can drop the temperature and when that happens it can switch back to “on” as it continuously will try to reach and maintain temperature.

      Reply
  2. Jeff Miner
    Jeff Miner says:

    We purchased the Duo Mini 3 qt. Model and discovered it does not include the poultry or multigrain programs. Is there anyway to do a manual approximation of those programs?

    Reply
  3. Cheryl
    Cheryl says:

    Hello,
    First time user ~
    6# bone-in, skin on Turkey breast. I am going by a recipe an Insta Pot Book. I want to know if the “Adjust” button is supposed to light up “Normal, Less Or More?” The pot is now release steam after 10 min, should that be. Gulp

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Cheryl,

      The adjust button will switch through “less, Normal, and More” if the selected program has a “Less, Normal and More” options.

      Is the steam release on venting? Has the unit pressurized? Steam will be building up while preheating and some may be release. If the unit is counting down and continuously releasing steam, please reach out to our Customer Care Team: https://support.instantpot.com/

      Reply
  4. John
    John says:

    i tried doing chile in my Insta pot and got the Burn message. the plastic gasket looked to be properly installed. I decided to remove the contents and cook in a pot on the stove. When i emptied the Insta pot i saw the bottom of the Insta pot did have burned ingredients on the bottom. I’ve seen recommendations regarding thickeners like tomato paste. Can you point me to a recipe that shows step by step how to add the chile ingredients to prevent the burn from happening? Thx.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi John,

      We recommend thickening after pressure cooking by adding thickeners or switching it to saute. If it is too thick at the beginning, the contents can burn before it pressurizes. If the unit senses conditions where burning happens, ie hot spots, a burning safety feature will activate; lowering the temperature to prevent further burning.

      Reply
  5. Gina Chapman
    Gina Chapman says:

    Do you recommend doing oats in the instant pot? I’ve tried it once, not sure I’d try it again. I kept getting the burn signal. I did what you said. The bottom didn’t seem to be gummed up so I started again. Finally after several tries, we ate it as it was. Never did pressure cook at all. Someone suggested oats not being stirred? I followed the recipe to the tee.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Gina,

      When cooking oats, we recommend following the recipes as it is a starchy food item. When making oats use a nonstick spray to ensure that it doesn’t stick the inner pot. Depending on the recipe, some do call for not stirring to ensure water is at the bottom to allow for the unit to create steam without burning. Due to the starch and end consistency of oatmeal, it has the tendency to burn,

      Reply
      • Paula
        Paula says:

        I disagree; I make steel cut oats all the time and it works perfectly! 1 cup SCO and 3 cups water at 5 min (manual/high) and allow natural release. It thickens even more as you keep it warm but it’s perfect to eat once the natural release is completed.Perhaps rolled oats are more finicky…?

        Reply
  6. Bill D
    Bill D says:

    Received my LUX 6 qt. pot for Christmas and absolutely love it. Have fixed eight recepies so far!!! Have a question regarding the saute function. After sauteeing, instructions call for deglazing the pot. Is there one implement that is more highly recommended to use to scrape the pot than another? What is the best way to deglaze?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Bill,

      Deglazing sounds technical but it isn’t. All you need to do is simply pour a thin liquid into the inner pot and using a spoon, I prefer using a wooden spoon, and scrape the little brown stuck on bits. When there remains no stuck on bits it is deglazed.

      It is easier to deglaze if the liquid is hot so I leave it on saute while deglazing.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Currently, we do not sell branded accessories for our 3-quart models. Any oven-safe, that will fit in the 3 Quart will work as an Instant Pot accessory.

      Reply
  7. Amy V
    Amy V says:

    I have a question my new pot came with a clear seal already in the lid, but In the box was a red seal as well should i change out the clear seal for the red one? Or is it just a xtra one?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Amy,

      Your unit comes with an extra sealing ring. You can use either one, we recommend using one for sweets or yogurt and the other for cooking foods; switching between the two depending on what you are cooking.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Linda,

      You only need to add water when using a pressure cooking program and slow cook.

      For sauteeing, turn on sautee setting it to the heat level you desire. When the display switches from “On” to “Hot” add the oil and begin sauteeing. When adding food the screen may switch back and forth between “On” and “Hot”, this is normal.

      Reply
  8. jackie truman
    jackie truman says:

    I received 8 at instant pot for Christmas and feel intimidated, I watch videos and it looks so brainless but when I start preparing; I have too many second thoughts. I’m sure this will be the best appliance in my kitchen soon. I made shredded seasoned chicken for enchiladas from chicken breasts in 12 minutes on pressure cook. WOW! It was wonderful. Then I cooked beef brisket and I think it needed a few extra minutes but it was good. Thank you for such smart appliances

    Reply
  9. John Williams
    John Williams says:

    I rec eived the 8 qt instapot for Christmas. Can I do smaller amts in this pot ? I cannot get the less to come on. the recipe says use the adjust button, mine doess not have one. The cooking program buttons do not seem to accomplish this either.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi John,

      You can do lesser amounts in an 8 Quart either in the inner pot itself or look up pot-in-pot cooking(cooking in a heat resistant bowl and putting that in the inner pot). There is no need to adjust the setting to make up for the serving amount change. Less, Normal, and More refer to either heating level in nonpressure cooking programs or longer cooking time for pressure cooking programs for the desired doneness.

      Here is a brief description:
      https://instantpot.com/cooking-program-options/

      When cooking a smaller amount, except for meat, typically you will not need to adjust the cooking time as it will need the same time to cook but preheating will be faster when cooking less food.

      Our app allows you to alter the serving size and automatically converts instructions and ingredient amounts.

      Reply
  10. Chuck Dresel
    Chuck Dresel says:

    Hi,
    I cooked a 4.5 lb. pork top loin roast in my instant pot. I figured 15 min./lb so set the pot at 65 min on the meat/stew setting. Followed a recipe that had me brown it on all sides and then put it on the tivit with a cup of liquid (large size pot – 80). It came out rather tough when I was expecting it to be very tender. Did I cook it too long or too short?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Chuck,

      Typically, if the roast comes out though it wasn’t cooked long enough. Alternatively, you should natural pressure release for a minimum of 15 minutes to allow meat to rest. Quick releasing the pressure for meat can cause the meat to dry out.

      Reply
      • Tina
        Tina says:

        I cooked a 3 pound pork loin roast. Recipe called for 55 minutes high pressure, I used a meat thermometer when supposed to be ready was only at 111°. Ended up taking additional 20 minutes to get it up to 145°-160°.
        This was my first attempt. But I tell you what. It was the most juicy, tenderest, melt in your mouth pork roast.
        I’m hooked

        Reply
        • Instant Pot
          Instant Pot says:

          Hi Tina,

          We are happy to hear that you are loving the finished cooking results. Since the Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker cooks with wet heat and pressure, the meat’s moisture isn’t dried out by long dry heat of the oven.

          It is great to hear you use a meat thermometer. When cooking meats, the time may need to be adjusted if you are using a smaller or bigger cut than the recipe suggests.
          We have a great cooking time table to refer to if you are using a different size of meat than in the recipe: https://instantpot.com/instantpot-cooking-time/

          Reply
  11. Linda Stevenson
    Linda Stevenson says:

    I just purchased the 6 quart Duo Plus new from Amazon. Two questions. 1. One purchaser wrote that Instant Pot didn’t support products purchased from Amazon. Is that true? 2. I also purchased “The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook ” an IP authorized version. There are recipes for chicken yet my model doesn’t have the Poultry setting. How do I cook the chicken recipes in the Instant Pot? Thank you.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Linda,

      I can definitely answer both those questions:

      1. That is not true as we are a seller on Amazon under “Instant Pot” and support those sales. Unfortunately, Amazon allows for 3rd party sellers which can resell products. Our warranty covers purchases from an authorized seller only.

      2. Some units have different programs. If you encounter a recipe that uses a program not found on your unit, you can use the Pressure Cook (Manual) button set to the same time and pressure level they suggest.

      Reply
  12. Mary Taber
    Mary Taber says:

    I recently acquired my Instant Pot and I love it. However, I do have a question. When the display reads L0015 (just as an example) what does that mean? This happens after cooking is completed and I am waiting for it to cool enough to release the pressure. I assume the the L display has something to do with that? Please advise. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Mary,

      L, means “Lapsed Time” it is displayed after the cooking is finished and the unit has switched to automatic keep warm. It will count up to let you know how much time has past since it has been on keep warm.

      When natural releasing pressure, we recommend turning off automatic keep warm since it will prolong the time it takes to naturally release the pressure because the unit will still be maintaining a temperature of 150 F.

      Reply
  13. George Banning
    George Banning says:

    I have a plum pudding that has to be steamed. The instructions say 1.5 hours. My wife is concerned that this might be too long.
    Thank You, George

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi George,

      If it is a pressure cooker recipe, I would trust the time. If it is a recipe that is meant for another cooking style, you may have to adjust by reducing the cooking time.

      We do not have a plum pudding recipe in our collection but there are a few found by googling “Plum Pudding Instant Pot”. They cook it a few different ways but around 50+ minutes seems average. Since I haven’t made Plum Pudding, I cannot suggest a recipe, you may be a better judge on which is a better Plum Pudding recipe than myself.

      Let me know how it turns out and which recipe you used.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Catherine,

      At this time there isn’t a multicooker cookbook yet.

      You can use any slow-cooker recipe. It also has the ability to roast and bake at a customizable temperature.

      Reply
    • Tamara
      Tamara says:

      I saw an Instant Pot Cookbook at Costco but don’t know if it was for any specific model or just for general Instant Pot recipes.

      Reply
      • Instant Pot
        Instant Pot says:

        Hi Tamara,

        Majority of Instant Pot cookbooks currently are written towards our Multi-Use Pressure Cookers as it was our flagship product.

        Reply
  14. Rosalie Gregerson
    Rosalie Gregerson says:

    The chart that came with my Instant Pot says 1:1 grain:water ratio for rice. I used 3 cups water and 3 cups rice and got undercooked dry rice. I used the rice button on the display.

    Reply
  15. Lin
    Lin says:

    Problem w/ + & – keys. I press + and it only goes up to 4 min,then reverts to 0. I can’t find anything in the instructions to help me. I need to set pot for 90 min to make bone broth. Help, please. Lin

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Lin,

      The maximum cooking time is 4 hours and is displayed 4:00 or 240 depending on your model. It sounds like yours displays 4:00 , which is 4 hours and not minutes. To set the time to 90 minutes you would adjust the time to display 1:30 , which would be an hour and thirty minutes.

      Reply
        • Instant Pot
          Instant Pot says:

          Hi Julianne,

          That is correct first two numbers are hours the last two are minutes. Some models only display in minutes.

          Reply
      • Hera
        Hera says:

        Hi

        I just bought my IP duo and did the water test. The instruction from IP says 05:00 (5minutes) but the max I could do was 04:00 (it went back to zero beyond this) so I set it to 04:00 and in 4 min the test was done. How to set it to 05:00 as instructed then?

        Reply
        • Instant Pot
          Instant Pot says:

          Hi Hera,

          The display reads, hours : minutes, for 5 minutes you would set the cooking time to 00:05. Your Duo wouldn’t have completed the water test as it takes 15 minutes in total when setting to a cooking time of 5 minutes.

          4:00 is the max pressure cooking time of 4 hours.

          Here is a video of the water test. It is similar to your unit.
          https://instantpot.com/initial-test-run/

          Reply
  16. Lynn Y
    Lynn Y says:

    I have a new Instant Pot Lux 6 quart. My question pertains to the anti-block shield. According to the manual, I should be able to remove it by “pushing the side of the anti-block shield towards the lid rim and lift up with some effort.” Both my husband and I have tried, but we have been unable to do so. Is there a trick to removing it? I don’t want to damage the pot before I even use it.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Victoria,

      Thank you for the great comment.

      Yes you are correct, always ensure the rim is clean. Even spices can get stuck on the rim and prevent the Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure cooker from creating a seal.

      Reply
  17. Asi
    Asi says:

    Hi,

    I bought my ipduo plus 6q yesterday. I made a meaty dish today , however it stayed on the preheating mode for about 30 mins, and then finally started cooking , for about 30 mins… Only to realize that it burnt all the water out and there was no soup left … Does this mean it was cooking in preheat mode ?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Asi,

      The food cooks a bit while preheating as the liquid is heated to produce steam to pressurize. Since it is pressure cooking evaporation should be minimal, if there was no water at the end of cooking the unit did not seal correctly and steam was escaping.

      The Instant Pot has a safety feature, where if there is issues preheating, it will start to countdown before it pressurizes to prevent burning. That is what you most likely experienced.

      Reply
  18. Edith Rodenhurst
    Edith Rodenhurst says:

    I’m a new IP owner of a LUX series. A lot of the recipes call for “PRESSURE COOK” option but mine do not have own. Are the pre-set options “PRESSURE COOK” mode?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Edith,

      If yours does not have a “pressure cook” button, use “Manual”. They are the same button, it was simply renamed to Pressure Cook on other models.

      Reply
  19. Michelle
    Michelle says:

    Another mistake people make is forgetting to check that their liner pan is in before adding water/ingredients! Always check for your liner pot!

    Reply
  20. MaryAnn Alderfer
    MaryAnn Alderfer says:

    Hello! My new 8qut duo has failed the test run with the three cups of water. Pressure fails to build and the valve never pops up. Eventually a burn message appears on the screen. I checked the sealing ring and watched a bunch of YouTube videos to see if I am missing something. Can’t find anything I’m doing wrong. I filled out a help desk ticket through your website last Wednesday but I haven’t heard back from anyone. When can I expect to get some help?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi MaryAnn,

      We are sorry to hear that your unit is having difficulties with the water test. Last week our Customer Care Team was enjoying their holidays. They are currently catching up on the tickets they received.

      Thank you in advance for your patience .

      Reply
  21. Sherry Rivera
    Sherry Rivera says:

    I followed a recipe for linguine an shrimp… Is said noodles first then shrimp and broccoli then 2c of cream an 2c of chicken broth…cook on high for 4 mins… It didnt get to pressure before it said burn… So i stirred it an scraped the burnt noodles off bottom of pan..added more broth an reset it… About half of the noodles were stuck together an not done… Big section burnt on bottom… What should i have done to not have this happen next time

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Sherry,

      I would leave the cream to be stirred in after you finish pressure cooking. With pasta dishes you want to layer them, and ensure you have enough liquid to cover them. With starchy dishes they tend to be harder to fix, once they start to burn because they release their starches which increases the potential to burn once more.

      Reply
  22. Moe
    Moe says:

    I just cooked baby potatoes in my Instant Pot for the first time. After 11 minutes, the potatoes could have used a little more cooking (I made 2 pounds). Next time, do I just go through the start up again and cook for just a few additional minutes?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Moe,

      If a food item needs more cooking time, cancel and restart the chosen program. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, as it will cook while reaching back up to pressure, which adds 5 -15 minutes more.

      Reply
  23. Cindy
    Cindy says:

    I just got a Pioneer Woman Instapot Lux 6-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker for Christmas but noticed no where in the instructions nor in the recipe book does it talk about using frozen meat. How am I to know how to cook using frozen chicken or beef if there or no instructions or recipes? I don’t keep thawed meat in my refrigerator so I was really hoping this was going to show me what to do with frozen meats really quick.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Cindy,

      Frozen meat cooks differently than thawed meat and you may have to alter the recipe cooking time. When following a recipe, if it doesn’t state frozen, it was developed using thawed meat. If the frozen meat is sitting in the liquid it will take longer to come to pressure and cooking times don’t have to be alter too much. If frozen meat is sitting above the liquid you may have to increase the time up to 50% more.

      When cooking from frozen always check the temperature of meat at the end of cooking to ensure it reached a safe internal temperature.

      Reply
  24. misty olguin
    misty olguin says:

    I have a question. i finally took it out of the box and made chicken posole. i set the timer at 20 mins but i never seen a countdown. all it said was on. luckily i used the stove timer to help. can you please tell me what i did wrong? i have the ipduo60 7 quart.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Misty,

      You didn’t do anything wrong that is normal. Your Instant Pot Duo 60 will display “On” while pressurizing (preheating). Once the unit comes to pressure, then it will display the cooking time and begin to countdown. Preheating can take up to 40 minutes depending on the amount of food in the inner pot.

      Reply
    • Amanda L
      Amanda L says:

      It displays “on” while it’s heating and coming to full pressure. This may be several minutes. After it’s fully pressurized it will bring to count down from the time you set. Hope this helps. I’m new too!

      Reply
    • Sherry
      Sherry says:

      The IP will change to the timer once the pressure builds up. I am a newbie and it took me a couple of times to get the hang of this!

      Reply
  25. Cheryl
    Cheryl says:

    I just received my Instant Pot Duo 6 as a gift. I’m confused about two things:
    1. In the User Manual, it says always add at least 18 fluid oz. of liquid in order to generate enough steam to cook under pressure. But many of the recipes in the recipe booklet included call for much less liquid?
    2. Almost all the cooking instructions in that same recipe booklet say to select Pressure or Manual and set time to begin cooking, instead of using the presets, even the rice cooking instructions. Then what are the presets for?
    I have used a stove-top pressure cooker for 40 years and am looking forward to using the Instant Pot.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Cheryl,

      1. The recommended amount of water is to ensure it properly pressurizes if you are not following a recipe. Recipes may call for less because the listed ingredients may release some liquid which makes up for using less liquid than the manual recommends.

      2. The recipes tend to use Pressure Cook / Manual to ensure the recipe can be used across all our Multi-Use Pressure Cookers. The presets work similar to the Pressure Cook Program but have been fine-tuned for the correct cooking time for the stated food-type. Please note the rice program is automated based on the amount of rice inside the inner pot and is only meant for parboiled or white rice.

      Reply
  26. Pappy
    Pappy says:

    I just received my new IP DUO80 8Qt cooker.

    The User Manual refers to an “Anti-Block” Shield. All that I can see on the underside of the top is the pressure release float valve and, next to it, a small, metal cover with some holes. The UM states that the shield can be removed by pushing it to the side and lifting. That seems to suggest that the shield is plastic. Am I missing this part?

    Is the cord removable?

    Some of the youtube recipes show a manual button that can be used to set the time. There is no manual button on this model. Will the “steam” button work as a manual button? Is there another way to set the time?

    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Pappy,

      The Anti-Block Shield is a metal piece. It is the piece you described as “metal cover with some holes”. The cord is hardwired and not removable on our 8 Quart models. For manually inputting the desired time and pressure level use the Pressure Cook program. Steam is meant to only steam and requires the use of a steam rack as it’s heating intensity is 100% and food may burn if it is in direct contact to the bottom of the inner pot.

      Reply
      • Valorie Skidmore
        Valorie Skidmore says:

        I also have a question about the anti-block shield. What is its purpose? Is it supposed to be removed before cooking certain dishes? I’m a newbie. I just unpacked mine this morning. I haven’t seen any other info about this yet. Thanks, Valorie

        Reply
        • Instant Pot
          Instant Pot says:

          Hi Valorie,

          The anti-block shield is to be on while cooking. It is an important part that prevents food from blocking the steam release valve pipe.

          Reply
          • Alison Kyler
            Alison Kyler says:

            It doesn’t look like it will be removed that easily? Am I supposed to remove it to clean it after each use? Thanks!

          • Instant Pot
            Instant Pot says:

            Hi Alison,

            It gets easier to remove overtime. To remove push on the side, it should push in, without releasing push up and it should come off.

  27. Russell
    Russell says:

    Why would a recipe, such as the one on page 117 in the “I love my insant pot recipe book” instruct u to dust the chicken with flour prior to sauteing. With no warning of the “burn” factor. I got the display of “burn”. Had no idea what this was. Had to spend time researching, meanwhile the meal is still cooking messing up the cooking times and delaying dinner. I think it would help if either a recipe warns u of.this. or if it is outlined in the users manual. It was very frustrating.

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Russel,

      I cannot specify on the exacts of the recipe as it was created by the Author of I love my instant pot recipe book, but after sauteeing ensure to deglaze the bottom of the inner pot to ensure there is no food stuck/browned. If there are stuck of food bits on the bottom of the inner pot it will cause heating discrepancy and the unit will display burn and turn down heat intensity to prevent your food from burning.

      “Burn” error is highlighted in the troubleshooting section of the manual and on our website.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Nichelle,

      By default, the Smart Cooking Programs switch to automatic keep warm after cooking is complete.

      If your unit doesnt automatically switch to keep warm, it may have been shut off in the past, since Instant Pots programs are smart and remembers your last input for that program. Depending on the model of your Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker there are different ways to turn on/off automatic keep warm. If you have a button interface like the DUo or Duo Plus simply press the desire smart cooking program twice and you will see the keep warm led indicator turn on for automatic keep warm and off for no automatic keep warm.

      Reply
  28. Lynn Neal
    Lynn Neal says:

    first time using my instant pot – running it thru initial test and C6L code displays. I can’t do anything. trouble shooting says possible low pressure sensor – do i need to return it? I am ready to make a meal tonight and tomorrow night and can’t. totally bummed

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Lynn,

      We are sorry to hear that your Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker displayed a C6L Error during the initial test. The C6L indicates your unit is experiencing an issue with its low-pressure sensor. Please reach out to our Customer Care Team.

      Reply
  29. Sally
    Sally says:

    It never seems to get hot enough. I tried to slow cook chicken parts for bone broth for 40 hrs on “more”….but it never simmered. Tried to pressure cook carcass with “soup” setting. Valve never seemed to go up. Should their be any indication if pressure cook is working correctly?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Sally,

      If there was a lot of liquid it will take a bit to pressurize. If you are ever in doubt that it is not pressurizing correctly, do the water test to troubleshoot. If it doesn’t pressurize with the water test please reach out to our customer care team.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Emma,

      Typically the cooking time is not altered by an increase or decrease to the amount inside the inner pot. The difference would be the time it takes to come to pressure, less amount will pressurize faster than a large amount in the inner pot. The only time that you will need to adjust the cooking time is with thicker or thinner cuts of meat or vegetables than a recipe states. This is because the thickness alters the cooking time.

      Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Karen,

      All models are able to cook poultry, even if they do not have a specific poultry button. There are some models that have a specific poultry program that makes cooking poultry easy with a push of a button.

      Chris W,

      Reply
  30. Rich McKay
    Rich McKay says:

    I am curious as to why in the recipe booklet instructions some meats list a cooking time of minutes / pound (eg. Pork Loin Roast, 20 min/lb) while others simply list a time range (eg. Pork Ribs, 15-20 minutes). Don’t quantities or weight matter with these items?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Rich,

      That is a great question.

      Pressure cooking times for meats are based on the cut and thickness rather than the weight. Ribs only minimally vary in thickness that is why it is a range 15 -20, while roast vary greatly in thickness based on their size and is why it is 20 mins per pound.

      Reply
  31. Clara
    Clara says:

    Why can’t I program my new Viva to 4 minutes for the rice? It only give me choices 8, 10 & 12 minutes. I tried to put it on 8 minutes but it went to AUTO instead and automatically changed to 12 minutes after it reached pressure. What am I doing wrong?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Kathy,

      Yes, you can cook frozen meat in an Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker. We have all at one time forgotten to defrost the meat the night before, now, that is an issue of the past. The only difference is you will have to increase the cooking time up to 50% more and it will take longer to pressurize due to the cold ingredients.

      Reply
  32. caren
    caren says:

    I’m confused w reading the display. four spaces left to right…number 4 on the far right doesn’t light up. the three position seems to be the minute 1-9. two position being the 10 etc. why doesn’t the space to the far right work,? Seemsfor ten minutes it should read xx10. mine reads x10x. Is thus correct?

    Reply
    • Instant Pot
      Instant Pot says:

      Hi Karen,

      It depends on the model of your Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker. From your description that would be correct for either a Duo or Lux models, the cooking timer appears in the middle. The all should light up when it goes into automatic keep warm at the end of a cooking cycle.

      If the LED doesn’t light up at all even when on automatic keep warm, please reach out to our Customer Care Team.
      https://support.instantpot.com/

      Reply
  33. Carla Thomas
    Carla Thomas says:

    Hi,
    I’m trying to help my elderly neighbor to learn how to use her instapot. She said she has used it once or twice before but it just kept saying “burn”. I noticed there is a black plastic piece on the outside bottom of the inner pot that looks partially melted. What is this piece? How is it supposed to work? Can I buy a new one?
    Thanks

    Reply
    • Chris Wrinn
      Chris Wrinn says:

      Hi Rob,

      Instant Pot Pressure Multicookers are designed with Overheat (Burn) Protection.

      – Overheating may occur if:
      • After Sautéing, inner pot has not been deglazed— food is stuck to the bottom
      • The pressure cooker is being operated without sufficient cooking liquid
      • The inner pot is not making full contact with the heating element
      • The inner pot encounters a heat distribution issue, such as when starch accumulates on the bottom of the inner pot.

      When the Overheat (Burn) Protection engages, the cooker will reduce the risk of burning food by lowering the heat output.

      To correct the burn error, turn the cooker OFF, release pressure according to the recipe, and inspect the bottom of the inner pot. If the error persists reach out to our Customer Care Team.
      https://support.instantpot.com/scp/tickets.php

      Check out our troubleshooting section
      https://instantpot.com/troubleshooting/#toggle-id-5
      Join our community as well to get answers to any Instant Pot question from users of all skill levels.
      https://www.facebook.com/groups/InstantPotCommunity/

      Chris W,

      Reply

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