Summary – First, set the Instant Pot to the “Saute” function. Then, add your desired ingredients to the pot. If you’re using a recipe, follow the instructions for simmering time. Once the time is up, carefully release the pressure and remove the lid.
Simmering is a technique that every home cook should know how to do when it comes to cooking. It is a gentle way of cooking food in liquid at a low temperature, just below the boiling point. This method is often used for dishes requiring longer cooking time, like stew or braised meats.
While it may seem like a slow way of cooking, it actually results in more tender and flavorful food. However, If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to simmer food, then you should definitely consider using an Instant Pot.
This kitchen appliance is perfect for cooking food at a lower temperature, making it the ideal tool for simmering. Plus, it’s much faster than cooking on the stovetop, so you can get your food on the table in no time.
Here’s a quick guide on how to simmer in an Instant Pot:
What is the Difference Between Boiling and Simmering?
When we talk about boiling water, we refer to heating up the water until it reaches its boiling point. The water will start bubbling as soon as it hits this temperature.
Simmering is different from boiling because it doesn’t reach the boiling point. Instead, it heats the water slowly enough to keep it at a constant temperature(between 85 and 95 degrees Celsius)
The main difference between these two methods is the time they take to heat up the water. When you boil water, it takes around 5-10 minutes before it starts boiling. However, simmering only requires 2-3 minutes before reaching the desired temperature.
So what does this mean for us? Well, if you want to ensure that your food cooks evenly, you should always choose to simmer over boil.
Is It Safe to Use an Instant Pot To Simmer?
Yes! Using an instant pot to simmer is perfectly safe. In fact, it’s safer than other types of cooking appliances.
Because the instant pot regulates steam levels, it eliminates the risk of splattering hot liquids onto yourself. Also, the lid seals tightly, preventing any moisture from escaping.
If you are worried about safety, you can also opt for the “sealing” function, which allows you to seal the lid after adding ingredients.
Steps On How to Simmer Food in an Instant Pot
1. Add Ingredients
Before you begin, make sure all of your ingredients are ready. You don’t want to add them once the instant pot has already reached its maximum capacity.
2. Close the Lid
Once everything is prepared, close the lid. Make sure to leave some space between the lid and the rim of the pot.
3. Set Saute Cooking Mode
Press the Saute button located on the front panel of the InstantPot. This setting keeps the temperature low and will keep your cooking at a maximum of 96 degrees Celcius
4. Adjust the Time
Adjust the timer according to the recipe. For example, if you have added meat, vegetables, and broth, set the timer for 20 minutes.
5. Start Cooking
After pressing the “Start” button, wait for the indicator light to turn green. Once it turns green, the pressure cooker will be preheating.
6. Check the Instant pot
After 10 minutes, check the pressure cooker to see whether it has reached the target pressure level. You should see bubbles in your liquid. However, there should not be too much steam. If you notice steam, Open the lid and release the steam using the vent knob or the quick release handle.
Is it Better to Simmer with the Lid on or off?
There isn’t a right answer here. Some people prefer to use the lid, while others like to remove it. However, I recommend removing the lid when simmering. Why? Because the lid creates condensation inside the pot. Condensation means that the water vaporizes into droplets. These droplets can splash out of the pot and cause burns.
Also, the lid prevents the steam from escaping, which makes it harder to control the temperature.
What Happens if I put too Many Things in My Instant Pot?
This is one of the most common questions we get asked. The truth is, there is no exact number of items you can cook in an instant pot. It depends on how big your pot and your ingredients are. So, just follow the instructions carefully.
5 Benefits Of Simmering In An Instant Pot
Simmering in an instant pot is great because:
It Saves Time
You won’t need to spend hours in the kitchen waiting for your food to finish. Instead, you can simply press start and walk away.
It’s Easy to Clean Up
The instant pot comes with a nonstick surface. Plus, it’s dishwasher-safe. So, cleaning up is as simple as washing the pot.
The instant pot uses high temperatures to create steam. But, this heat doesn’t exceed 95 degrees Celsius. So, you don’t need to worry about burning yourself.
It Reduces Fat
When simmered, foods become tender without having to boil them. As such, they absorb less oil and grease.
They Make Cooking Fun
Simmering food in an instant pot allows you to experiment with flavors. You can add spices, herbs, and vegetables to your meals.
These ingredients give your dishes a unique flavor. Plus, you can control the amount of seasoning you add to each dish.
They Help You Eat Healthy Food
When you simmer food in an instant pot, you can eat healthier than ever before. With minimal effort, you can prepare delicious meals that contain fewer calories and less saturated fats.
For example, you can easily make vegetable soup in an instant pot. All you need is a bag of frozen mixed vegetables and broth. Then, you can add fresh herbs and spices to enhance the flavor of your soup.
They Improve Nutritional Value
Simmered food becomes more nutritious. This is because nutrients are retained during cooking due to the low heat.
As such, you can enjoy a meal that contains more vitamins and minerals. Also, you can reduce the risk of developing certain diseases by eating healthy food.
Frequently Asked Questions On How to simmer in an Instant Pot
Can you Simmer Water in the Instant Pot?
Yes, you can. However, you should be careful not to overcook the water. If you do so, the water will turn into steam instead of boiling.
What Button is Simmer on Instant pot?
To brown meats, sauté vegetables, and simmer ingredients, use the Sauté function. The Saute function helps you avoid burning or overcooking your food by keeping the temperature below 96 degrees Celsius.