If you know your pressure cookers, or frequent this site, it’s probably safe to say that you are familiar with the Instant Pot DUO series of pressure cookers. They are a reliable group that offer all the necessary options common among pressure cookers at a reasonable price.
We frequently compare different pressure cookers to the Instant Pot because it is a quality product and one of the more popular pressure cookers on the market.
This article will be presenting another challenger that seeks to unseat the Instant Pot DUO as the favorite jack of all trades pressure cooker. This time I’ll be comparing the Instant Pot DUO series with the Power Pressure Cooker XL. As usual we’ll first look at what both contenders have to offer, weigh the pros and cons, and then see which one comes out on top.
Overview of the Instant Pot DUO
- IP-DUO50 – 5 Quart
- IP-DUO60 – 6 Quart
- IP-DUO80 – 8 Quart
It is a multicooker and can take the place of several different appliances. It is a pressure cooker, slow cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, warmer, and can be used for sautéing.
It is equipped with a stainless-steal inner pot, and comes with a rice scooper, measuring cup and steam rack. The Instant Pot DUO has an option to cook on either high pressure or low pressure and has a 24-hour delay timer.
Two things that set the Instant Pot Duo series apart from other pressure cookers are its microprocessor and ten built-in safeguards to prevent pressure related malfunctions. The microprocessor controls and monitors the cooking process, including the preset cooking options. If necessary, it can adjust pressure and temperature while cooking to ensure that your results are consistent every time.
Any of the pressure cookers from the Instant Pot DUO series are a great choice for first time users and offer the versatility and ease of use that experienced pressure cookers want.
Overview of the Power Pressure Cooker XL
The Power Pressure Cooker XL also comes in three sizes;
- Power Pressure Cooker XL 6 Quart
- Power Pressure Cooker XL 8 Quart
- Power Pressure Cooker XL 10 Quart
This pressure cooker aims to make pressure cooking easy mainly through one-touch presets. It has a small simple display screen, and lights to indicate which setting you are using.
It has a large durable handle and lid and comes with a non-stick Teflon coated inner pot. The housing is brushed stainless steel to minimize fingerprints. The Power Pressure Cooker XL offers some of the same multi-cooker functionality of the Instant Pot DUO, including slow cooker, steamer and rice maker.
One feature this pressure cooker is advertised with, that you don’t usually see with pressure cookers, and rightfully so, is a canning feature. Although it has a canning and preserving preset, electric pressure cookers should not be used for pressure canning.
The agencies that develop safe canning methods, the FDA and National Center for Home Food Preservation, only produce and test methods for stove-top pressure canners, not electric pressure cookers. Electric pressure cookers have not been tested by the FDA for safety as canners, and improper canning can lead to serious health risks. Improper canning procedures do not kill lethal pathogens like botulinum, which can cause paralysis and death.
If you do decide to go ahead and use this device for canning, the manufacturer’s manual does state that it cannot be used for canning at altitudes greater than 2,000 feet above sea level.
Pros and Cons of the Instant Pot DUO.
- Microprocessor feature ensures food cooks to the same level each time.
- Ten built-in safeguards against pressure related malfunctions.
- Replaces several other small kitchen appliances.
- The IP-DUO series has a yogurt making function.
- Programming can be difficult at first and the manual is not detailed.
Pros and Cons of the Power Pressure Cooker XL.
- One-touch presets make operating simple.
- Comes in a large capacity 10-quart size.
- Sturdy lid and handle make the most used parts durable.
- Should not be used for canning despite advertisement and labeled preset.
- The non-stick Teflon coat peels easily, especially when being scrubbed clean.
- The inner-bottom surface of the pot is webbed not smooth, making cleaning off stuck-on foods difficult.
- The recipes in the included cookbook can be difficult to follow for people who don’t have experience with pressure cooking.
Which is the better pressure cooker?
The Instant Pot DUO series offers tried and true pressure cookers. It offers everything you would need in a small appliance, and then some with the added option of making yogurt. The added focus of safety in the construction of this pressure cooker is a bonus as well. Aside from the extra effort it may take in the beginning to learn the ins and outs of programming the DUO, the Instant Pot DUO series leaves little more to be desired in a pressure cooker.
While the Power Pressure Cooker XL attempts to include additional features to appeal to consumers, it fails to surpass the Instant Pot DUO in both form and function. It lacks the extent of safety features seen with Instant Pot, and doesn’t include one of the simplest safety measures, an automatic steam release.
The one feature that it claims to offer that the Instant Pot doesn’t, is the canning feature. However, both the FDA and NCHFP advise against using this type of device for safely pressure canning food.
In addition to these downfalls, the Power Pressure Cooker XL is also outpaced by the Instant Pot DUO in the quality of the cook pot. While the IP-DUO offers a stainless still pot, the Power Pressure Cooker XL includes a non-stick coated pot that is prone to peeling and sticking to food.
The bottom line is there is no other reason to choose the Power Pressure Cooker XL over the Instant Pot DUO unless the optional 10-quart size is an absolute necessity. Or if you plan on using it for canning, which again is not recommended. the Instant Pot DUO series offers safe quality pressure cookers that can meet all your cooking needs, with almost no drawbacks.