Which one should you buy – an instant pot or air fryer? In the past few months, an instant pot vs air fryer debate has been the talk of the kitchen. While both kitchen appliances offer great cooking experience, they come with few fundamental differences.
As I said, both of them work great. But before making your buying decision you must ask yourself some questions.
Which one is the most reliable? What types of foods are you planning to cook? And which one is healthier and easy to use.
In the beginning, you’d want a product that is worth your money. Also, what that appliance can do for you matters a lot.
As a person who loves preparing different recipes, I’ve both appliances in our home. For instance, I use an instant pot to prepare soups. I like creating a fried green tomato recipe with my air fryer.
Both an instant pot and air fryer are smaller, so you don’t have to worry about the space. To settle the doubts once and for all, read this article of adoration, know their differences and choose the best.
If you’re in a hurry to purchase one, the difference between an air fryer and instant pot is the way they cook. Though you can cook the varieties of foods you desire, these appliances prepare dishes in truly different ways. They do it in their own manner.
The instant pot functions as a multi-cooker that features the pressure cooker smart technology to cook different foods quickly and efficiently. An air fryer, on the other hand, only uses heat energy and a minimal amount of oil to cook food crispy.
Considering the many important functions they offer it’s surprising why they aren’t expensive. For example, an instant pot replaces more than 7 kitchen appliances. It’s a multi-functional device that ensures quick and fast cooking.
To give you a clear picture, we’ll analyze each appliance considering functionality, pros and cons, price, and unsolicited personal opinions. In the end, you’ll be able to make the choice. Also, you may like options and decide to buy both.
What's An Instant Pot?
An instant pot is a versatile, upgraded pressure cooker that offers tons of cooking functions. It makes use of steam and pressure to cook food.
Being an electric cooker, this device from Instant Pot (AP) brand, is widely accepted by many for its capability to steam cook and slow cook among other technologies.
The unique part is that this multi-cooker can replace more than 5 appliances in your kitchen. It’s designed to fit in a wider array of cooking options. The foods that you can make in this pot are not limited.
What Does An Instant Pot Do?
Basic models can superbly function as a slow cooker, sauté pan, pressure cooker, yogurt maker, and rice cooker- all these functions in one appliance allow and expedite the cooking process.
Well, the popular pot is spectacular because of two solid reasons: saving space and saving time. The steam function allows you to prepare vegetables, eggs, and pasta.
What Are The Best Things To Cook In An Instant Pot?
- Chicken Noodle Soups
- Slow cook foods
While our list may seem to be short, there are varieties of foods within these categories. So, the list can be extensive. Think of any meals and you’ll find out that most fit in these categories. You can cook your desserts inside this appliance within the shortest time possible.
Whether you want to make slow cooks meat, prepare eggs, or make effortless casseroles, think no more than an instant pot.
Different models come with different functions to ensure you prepare the recipe you desire. You’ll find 6-in-1 or 7-in-1 or 10-in-1 functions and more. This shows how versatile an instant pot is.
Similar to other appliances, instant pots are being released in the market every now and then. The manufacturers continue to add more innovative features to stay in the competitive market.
5 Best Recommended Instant Pots.
- Instant pot LUX 6-in-1. Built with the modern 3rd generation technology to offer multiple functions. Cook fast, easy to clean, and healthier.
- Instant pot DUO60 7-in-1. Can serve a family of 6 people. It’s suitable for everyday meals, easy to clean and safe to use.
- Instant Pot Max 9-in-1. Easy to set time, pressure level, temperature, delay start, and warm by utilizing a programmable large touch screen.
- Instant Pot Smart WiFi. Compatible with Wi-Fi, easy to monitor the cooking progress, and simple to use.
One unique thing that most cooks love about an instant pot is the programmable feature. With a slow timer control, you can cook food automatically even when you’re yards away without worry. You just need to set the time.
Additionally, some models come with a recipe to eliminate guesswork and simplify the cooking process. Play with the button to create your best recipe.
What Should You Not Cook In An Instant Pot?
There are some foods that you should not cook in your instant pot. These include:
- Fried chicken
- Creamy sauces
Are Instant Pots Dangerous?
Not at all. This gadget is more safe than other pressure cookers with more than 10 safety mechanisms. No need to worry. It won’t explode, burn you and mess your food anytime soon. Not to mention, most accidents occur due to user error something that you can avoid.
Main Features And Benefits Of An Instant Pot
Multi-cooker (replaces 7 appliances)
This new electric pressure cooker can act as a multi-cooker. Most instant models work as a slow cooker, pressure cooker, steamer, sauté pan, yogurt maker, rice cooker, and food warmer all in one appliance. So, it gives an array of options in the kitchen and to the user.
One feature that makes this device valuable than other cookware is the pre-programmed options. You can set it for up to 24 hours by utilizing and choosing these options. This enables consistency in your prepared recipes. ‘Set it and go’.
Stainless steel interior
The cookware has a strong interior that is made of quality stainless steel. With this, you’re assured of nonstick coatings. The surface is safe and healthy to cook in. Plus, it’s considered non-toxic, unlike Teflon. Along with that, the material will last longer.
Models come with varying capacities to choose from. If you want a small capacity or big capacity, this appliance fits your needs. For example, an 3-quart is perfect for a family of 1- 3 people while an 8-quart and above is suitable for a large family. Whatsoever, it doesn’t take much of the space.
To boost the performance, an instant pot is packed with plenty of accessories that are readily available. These may include steamer baskets, egg rack, steam rack, and more depending on the model you pick.
Easy to clean
The stainless steel material is painless to clean. You don’t need any formula to spark the appliance clean. No complicated process.
What's An Air Fryer?
The air fryer works almost the same as a convection oven. They cook dishes with hot air and utilize minimal oil to heat food. It allows you to crave your favorite fried dish. Because of minimal oil, the fried food results in a crispy texture.
Most significant, it’s an unbeatable alternative appliance that is healthier to fry your foods. Most people are mistaken to believe that air fryers are mean for deep frying only, but it’s versatile just like an instant pot.
An air fryer comes with a special basket where you dump your food into. Along with that, you can grill, roast, and bake with the air fryer.
What Can I Cook In An Air Fryer?
An air fryer isn’t limited to frying only. You can prepare plenty of food in it. These include:
- Potato chips
- French fries
- Chicken wings
- Roasted nuts
- Eggs rolls
- Cooked pumpkin seeds
If what you’re considering to cook falls under these groups, then this appliance is the best choice for you. With some accessories included, it’s easy to expand and promote your cooking options.
What Can You Not Cook In An Air Fryer?
Chefs and experts suggest using this gadget when cooking bacon, preparing frozen food, and making cooking. Here are things you should not cook in an air fryer.
- Whole chickens
- Large roasts
- Foods with wet batters
- Medium-rare burgers
- Fresh greens
Main Features and Benefits Of An Air Fryer
Air fryers come with vast features to its name. And every feature has a benefit.
The cookware is a blessing in your kitchen. Not limited to frying, it has an ability to roast, bake, grill, and fry. The many options to choose from add the cooking experience.
An air fryer is miles better than traditional fryers. Air-fried foods are healthier when compared to deep-fried dishes in some ways. The foods are lower in calories, fat, and contain no harmful compounds. Therefore, this model is a healthier option.
Uses less oil
The device uses hot air to cook food and uses only less oil. This ensures a healthy cooking practice.
A Closer Look At Instant Pot Vs Air Fryer
After understanding the main features as well as the capabilities of each kitchenware, it’s now easy to compare and contrast them. The road to cooking the best meal will be determined by your choice. Let’s look at their similarities and differences.
- Both appliances are versatile
- Instant pot and air fryer are portable and save space
- They add cooking experience
- Both models come with different capacity
- Process of cleaning in both is easy
- They save time
Portability and size
Both equipment are portable. However, air fryers are more portable as compared to instant pots. You can it with you with ease in your long road trips and travel vacations. There are some big pots that are tedious to carry in your adventure especially if there’s no enough storage.
Bottom line: When it comes to flexibility and portability an air fryer is the best.
While an air fryer will take 15 up to 30 minutes to fry cook most foods, the instant pot will take a longer time than that. An air fryer is a great investment for people with limited time in the kitchen. However, an instant pot can handle tough ingredients including cereals in only 25 up to 30 minutes.
Bottom line: Thumb up to an air fryer.
There’s no doubt that an instant pot can replace several appliances in your kitchen collection. Simply, it can function as a steamer, slow cooker, warmer, yogurt maker, and pasta maker. However, it can’t fry food. On the other hand, air fryer will only fry food.
Bottom line: In terms of versatility, an instant pot is a winner.
Air fryers are new products in the market, most users have appreciated its add-on features but they seem to complain about certain issues such as overheating, melting, smoking, and plastic odors.
As manufacturers continue to innovate new models, we expect improvement. Instant pots have existed for some years now, so there have been improvements like different safety mechanisms.
Bottom line: In this case, an instant pot takes the day.
Ease of use
We argued that instant pots come with a learning curve. For you to use this device appropriately you need to learn the pre-programmable settings. That is, how to set pressure, temperature, and time.
Once you digest everything, you’ll be an expert. Most air fryers feature either one or two dials. They are easier to use. Best for first-time cooks and beginners
Bottom line: An air fryer beats an instant hand down.
The newest version of an instant pot outsmarts an air fryer when it comes to guidance of cooking recipes. You’ll find hundreds of recipes in these pots. Some even come with an app that can help you get started. Fryers have recipes though not as plenty as for these modern pressure cookers.
Bottom line: An instant pot tends to be unbeatable when it comes to cooking guides.
Frequently Asked Questions To The Instant Pot Vs Air Fryer
People come with many questions when trying to differentiate an instant pot vs air fryer.
Which one should You buy?
If you’re a good reader, up to now you should have a hint on which one to choose. The foods you want to prepare will affect your choice. As much as I’ve highlighted the features of each, here are bonus points you need to know
An instant pot is suitable if…
- You love cooking new dishes, steaming and slow cooking
- You need a versatile appliance that will support you in tying types of cooking
- You want cookware that can cook without much attention and supervision
- You like rice. It can cook rice just like a rice cooker
- In need of a device that can replace a number of appliances you may be having to save the space
An air fryer is suitable if…
- You’re a fan of fried foods and you want a reliable and healthier version
- Your family is small or medium
- You want a countertop space-saving appliance
Which Air Fryer Is Best?
After 30+ hours of lengthy research and deliberations, and noting down the user’s reviews, we concluded that GoWISE USA GW22621 is the best air fryer. It’s healthier and ensures no coating. It guarantees delicious fried foods.
Which Is The Best Instant Pot To Buy?
We conducted intensive research on every instant pot in the market and found out that Instant Pot Duo models are the best. As much as they are versatile, they can be used to prepare foods for your large family.
And with programmable settings, it will get the job done even when you are away.
An Instant Pot Vs Air Fryer-Final Verdict
The enormous instant pot vs air fryer debate is now clear to you. If you’re stuck on which one to invest in, it’s time to settle down the doubts. Both appliances show the difference between a person who wants to prepare dinner faster versus a person who prepares their dishes perfectly well beforehand.
An instant pot could be a fantastic entry for someone who is looking for a versatile option. While an air fryer is perhaps a nerve for easier cooking and healthy eating. Both are worth buying in their own ways.
Even better, owning the two is a plus. While you may want to change your recipe, these appliances will play a big part. One night you may fancy fried foods. That’s where an air fryer will come in. The next day you may want to prepare yogurt and an instant pot will suffice in this.
All in all, cooking can easily bring you back to the earth if you think you’ve arrived. Therefore, making a wise decision is substantial.