11 Instant Pot Secrets You Won’t Find in the Owner’s Manual

That's right! We asked Taste of Home Community Cooks who love their Instant Pots to share their best tips from Instant Pot hard-boiled egg tricks to which rice to substitute for Instant Pot recipes.

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instant pot
Taste of Home

Those handles double as lid holders.

The newer models’ lid handles do double duty, holding the Instant Pot open with the lid out of the way. Besides being great for the buffet line, you can store your Instant Pot this way to ensure the inside fully dries. Try this trick the next time you make one of our Instant Pot potluck recipes.

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gravy food
Taste of Home

Cooking a dish with gravy? You might need more thickener.

Because there’s no evaporation like with traditional cooking methods, your braised recipes may end up with more liquid in the Instant Pot. Try bumping up the cornstarch or flour when adapting recipes.

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Organic Hard Boiled Eggs Ready to Eat; Shutterstock ID 179891711
Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Use this seriously simple trick for “hard boiled” eggs.

Making one of our favorite egg salad recipes? Cook no-peel hard boiled eggs in a matter of minutes. Crack a few eggs into a baking dish, then pour a cup of water into your Instant Pot. Set the bowl on the steamer rack inside the Instant Pot and pressure cook on high for 5 minutes. When ready, chop the “egg loaf” up for an awesome head start on brown-bag lunches!

Get the full recipe here.

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Taste of Home

There’s an easy way to figure out a pasta’s cook time.

Start with half the time called for on the package for stovetop boiling until al dente, says a home cook. Or cook this proven rigatoni with sausage & peas tonight.

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Fremont, California / United States - March 28th. 2019: Instant Pot in a kitchen; Shutterstock ID 1352784278; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): Taste of Home
Brian Lam/Facebook

Turn on the saute function while you prep.

As with any other type of cooking, pointed out one of our expert cooks, preheating the pressure cooker saves you valuable time. Turn on the saute function while you slice and dice, and your Instant Pot will be ready to pressure cook when you’re finished.

Don’t make these mistakes everyone makes with their Instant Pot.

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Instapot; Instant Pot; Pressure Cooker
Taste of Home

Purchase extra sealing rings.

Use one for your curries, tacos and other spicy dishes and save the other for cheesecakes and other delicate flavors, a Community Cook told us. This color-coded set includes a savory and a sweet gasket.

Find more must-have Instant Pot accessories.

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Minestrone Soup made in Instant Pot Pressure Cooker; Shutterstock ID 774916357

This is the easiest Instant Pot recipe, ever.

All you need is a pound of pasta, 24-ounce jar of pasta sauce, and a jarful of water (or enough to cover the pasta). Add any seasonings you like and cook on high until done (about 9 minutes for farfalle). Voila. Easiest. Dinner. Ever.

Try more easy Instant Pot recipes.

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Organic Brown Rice in the bowl on the wooden table; Shutterstock ID 280020284

Substitute brown rice into any recipe.

To substitute brown rice for regular white long-grain, increase the cooking liquid by 1/4 cup and the cook time by 5 minutes, suggests one of our Community Cooks.

Here’s how to cook perfectly fluffy brown rice the old-fashioned way.

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Modern electric multi cooker and food on kitchen countertop. Space for text; Shutterstock ID 1304469877; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): Taste of Home
New Africa/Shutterstock

Put the Instant Pot to work in a kitchen remodel.

Living without a regular kitchen is a lot less painful with an Instant Pot. The appliance does a lot of work that you’d rely on from a traditional range, (think: saute, slow cook, make rice, along with many other functions). And it saves you time.

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Deli-Style Potato Salad
Taste of Home

Make potato salad in a pinch.

One Community Cook cooks eggs with cubed potatoes for an even faster potato salad prep. Try ’em in Momma’s Warm Potato Salad.

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Active family play soccer in their leisure time; Shutterstock ID 1013869084; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): Taste of Home
Robert Kneschke/Shutterstock

The Instant Pot always saves active time.

Not every dish is faster with the Instant Pot, our Community Cooks acknowledged. What the appliance will always save you is active time, so instead of supervising dinner you can be playing outside with the kids while dinner cooks.

Now that you know the Instant Pot’s secrets, it’s time to learn how to clean it properly.

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Christine Rukavena
Christine loves to read, curate, sample and develop new recipes as a senior book editor at Taste of Home. A CIA alumna with honors, she creates cookbooks and food-related content. A favorite part of the job is taste-testing dishes. Previous positions include pastry chef at a AAA Five Diamond property. Christine moonlights at a boutique wine shop, where she edits marketing pieces and samples wine far higher than her pay grade.