It‘s really hard to imagine Instant Pot being able to come out with a better line of electric pressure cookers after the Instant Pot IP-LUX series was introduced a few years back but fortunately for us they’ve done really well with the newer DUO line.
The newest line of the best electric pressure cookers on the market, the Instant Pot IP-DUO50 and the larger IP-DUO60, come with more features than the IP-LUX offers consumers, most notably multiple PSI settings and a yogurt making mode.
But why is the IP Duo-60 more expensive than the IP DUO-50 you ask?
Simple, it is larger at 6 quarts compared to 5 and it runs at 1000 watts instead of 900 watts.
There are more differences as well (which I will get to) but those are the main ones.
In this article, we will further dissect these two models in the Instant Pot IP-DUO line. What unique features do these two pots offer? What are the differences? Which is better?
Is the IP-DUO 50 Just Smaller or is it Different in Some Other Way?
This pot is the 3rd generation model in this line of the Instant Pot IP series and is made of a stainless steel composition. Since late 2015 all DUO electric pressure cookers even adopted the minor upgrades that first went into the DUO-ENW models.
Unlike the IP-LUX50 and IP-LUX60, this model has seven different functions.
- Pressure cooking
- Slow cooking
- Rice cooking
- Sauté and browning
- Yogurt making
Update – Instant Pot is releasing a new DUO model in the Spring of 2017. See my new IP-DUO Plus60 review here.
The design of the IP-DUO50 is similar to the IP-LUX pots wherein the control panel is located in the front of the pot. Unlike the latter though, this model now has 14 built-in programs made to prepare the following dishes; Soup, Meat/Stew, Bean/Chili, Poultry, Sauté, Steam, Rice, Porridge, Multigrain, Slow Cook, Keep-Warm, Yogurt, Pasteurize and Fermented Rice (Jiu Niang).
What makes this pot standout from other pots is its yogurt making feature in which users can heat milk and pasteurize it.
As with the IP-LUX models, the pot provides a delay cooking time feature of up to 24 hours, automatic keep-warm of up to 10 hours, manual keep-warm of up to 99 hours, and a 2 hour maximum cooking time. 10 safety mechanisms are also in place to ensure that no accidents or damage to the pot and the kitchen occur.
The downside of this model is that it is the model which holds the least amount of content at 5 quarts flat. Nonetheless, the quantity does not significantly differ from that of the IP-LUX50 which can hold 5.2 quarts worth of content.
Lastly, the IP-DUO50 comes with a rice paddle, soup spoon, measuring cup, steam rack, condensation water collector, user manual and recipe booklet.
Let’s Compare The IP-DUO60 to the Smaller IP-DUO50
Ranked as the #1 pressure cooker in Amazon, the IP-DUO60 is arguably the best instant pressure cooker out there on the market.
This installment of the IP-DUO series does not offer major differences from its smaller cousin. The pot’s material, design, and features all carry over to this version.
What differentiates it from the IP-DUO50 is that it has a much bigger capacity, pegged at 6 quarts, a full quart of content more than the previous model. Also, the pot is designed to be more energy-efficient compared to the IP-DUO50’s energy consumption.
Thus efficiency is only realized when cooking a full pot of food however. The smaller pressure cooker will cook less food using roughly the same amount of energy. This is why it’s more efficient to buy the largest pressure cooker you will regularly fill. With these Instant Pot models we are looking at 5, 6, and 8-quarts but there are stovetop models that go as low as 3 quarts or 2 quarts in size!
Click here to see all of the small pressure cookers found on this site.
In any event, the larger size allows the IP-DUO60 to become a more effective pressure cooker because it can cook more food with a similar amount of energy usage. The model is able to improve the cooking time over regular cooking by over 70% in some cases. This is one reason why the IP DUO 60 is featured as one of the best pressure cookers on the market here on the site.
Which is Better: The DUO 60 or DUO 50 Pressure Cooker?
Instant Pot definitely steps its pressure cooking game up with the release of its IP-DUO models. After seeing all the pros and cons of both IP-DUO models, I think it’s clear that one should definitely pick up the Instant Pot IP-DUO60 for the increased size and efficiency (and the 8-quart model too if you are cooking big enough batches) but the smaller size and cheaper price tag of the 5-quart model may be perfect for some kitchens.
You can also see my full review of Instant Pot pressure cookers here.