Whether you’re thinking about adding an Electric Pressure Cooker to your holiday wish list, preparing to score a deal on a new Instant Pot, or are just looking for a quick and easy way to make family meals, you truly cannot go wrong with an Instant Pot.
What Is An Instant Pot?
The term Instant Pot actually refers to the super popular Canadian brand of Pressure Cooker or Multicooker. An Instant Pot is an electric pressure cooker that creates heat inside the pot that is tightly sealed and won’t let steam out. The temperature is much hotter than the boiling point of water and uses the steam it creates to quickly cook the food inside the pot faster than in an oven or on a stovetop.
They’re available at great sale prices almost all year long but look for the very best deals during holidays. And while you’re at it, make sure to get your hands on some super handy Instant Pot accessories. They make cooking and baking with your Instant Pot even faster, easier, and more efficient.
And with so many different options out there to choose from, it’s important to determine What Size Instant Pot you need before you head to the store or push that ‘buy now’ button.
Why You’ll ♡ The Instant Pot
- Cooks sooooo much faster than recipes traditionally cooked in the oven or on the stove.
- Offer multiple functions and automatic programs for easier and more efficient cooking.
- Ideal for using to cook all meal categories, including breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, desserts, and beverages.
- They are available in various sizes and different models, so there’s truly something for everyone.
How Many Different Size Instant Pots Are There?
With such a variety of different brands and sizes, you’re likely asking yourself, what size Instant Pot do I need? You want to make sure you have an Instant Pot that fits your needs and your family’s needs.
Luckily, these tips and suggestions should answer those burning questions and you’ll feel confident knowing which Instant Pot size is right for you.
If you’re buying the Instant Pot Brand of Pressure Cooker, they offer these Instapot sizes:
Other brands of Electric Pressure Cookers may offer different sizes and features as well.
What Model Instant Pot Should I Get?
The Instant Pot Brand has a variety of options to choose from. Here are some of the most popular Instant Pot Models to choose from;
Lux: Available in 3 sizes with 6 different functions. A basic model that does the basic pressure cooker functions.
Duo: This was the most popular model for a while. And guys, if you’re looking for a great 7-in-1 pot that can steam, slow cook, cook rice, bake cakes, and more, this is a wonderful option.
Viva: This model took all the great features from the Duo and added a few more like an easy-seal lid and a sous vide feature to create an even more functional multicooker.
Ultra: Just like many of the other models, this is a great pot that still comes in a variety of sizes, has multiple cooking options still with both high and low pressure settings. It also has a great option for easy poultry cooking as well.
Smart Wi-fi: This option is perfect for those who would like to control their gadget with an app on their smartphone. You can cook, schedule, adjust, and monitor the progress of your meal with this model. You still get all the same great Instant Pot functions and abilities plus you get hundreds of preprogrammed recipes and functions to choose from.
Ninja Foodi: (Different Brand Than Instant Pot): 8 qt 9-in-1 Deluxe XL Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer is a great combination option. It’s not only an electric pressure cooker, but it’s an air fryer too. You can use it like you would any Instant Pot: to sauté, bake cakes, make yogurts, etc. but you can also get things nice golden, crispy and “fried” without all the deep fryer guilt. Plus, it uses a dial function which is great if you prefer more of a visual aid in your choices and what you’re selecting.
What Size Instant Pot Do I Need?
The type of dishes you’re planning to make and the number of servings you most often need will help determine what size Instant Pot you should get. Out of the four sizes listed above, the most popular size is the 6-quart. This is also the size most often referenced in various Instant Pot recipes.
Keep in mind the max fill capacity of each sized pot. Since pressure cooking requires room for expansion, so an 8-quart pot technically doesn’t really hold 8 quarts of food.
It’s always smarter to size up when buying these. You’ll never regret having a bigger one, but you will grumble if you opted for a smaller one and can’t make the recipe you are craving because you don’t have a big enough pot.
3 qt Instant Pot: It’s great for feeding 1-2 people and perfect for making smaller side dishes, small amounts of yogurts, oatmeal, and soups.
Pro Tip: What size Instant Pot for a family of 4? This is a common size to cook for, so you can go with a 6-qt or 8-qt Instant Pot.
Instant Pot 6qt vs 8qt
The bigger pots are great for so many things. Here are some reasons why you’re going to want either the 6qt or 8qt Instapot.
6-qt Instant Pot Pros and Cons:
- Pro: Most recipes are made for the 6 qt cooker, as this is the most popular size.
- Pro: Can cook most roasts and meats and doesn’t require as much storage space.
- Con: Not as large as you need it to be sometimes.
Pro Tip: you can cook recipes that are created for the 6-quart in an 8-quart Instant Pot, you may just need to adjust the time slightly or add a little more cooking liquid.
8-qt Instant Pot Pros and Cons:
- Pro: The 8qt is great for a larger family or someone who cooks with the pressure cooker quite frequently.
- Pro: This size is ideal for cooking for more than 4-6 people and great for feeding crowds and weekly meal prep.
- Con: The 8qt does require more storage space and can take slightly longer to come to pressure due to its size.
What Size Instant Pot For Each Recipe Type
Just like the amount of people you plan on feeding helps you decide what size Instant Pot you need, knowing what kind of recipes you want to make can help you solidify that decision as well.
Pro Tip: Looking to boil eggs fast? The 3-quart Instant Pot is the option for you.
Whole Poultry Birds: Want to make a whole turkey or whole chicken in the Instant Pot? Try a 6 or 8 quart pot. A 5-6 lb chicken will fit inside a 6-quart Instant Pot. If you want to cook a larger bird, or even 2 smaller turkeys, opt for the 8-qt. This is a good option for soups with large amounts of meat as well. Try this recipe: Instant Pot Cornish Hen
Large Quantity Recipes for Meal Prepping: I highly recommend the 8-quart size for meal prepping in big batches. A lot of my recipes, like beans, chili, rice, and more can be doubled or even tripled for meal prep and freezer meal options and they’re made easiest in the larger Instant Pot. Try this recipe: Instant Pot Spiced Pinto Beans.
Instant Pot Accessories
Now that you’ve figured out which Instant Pot is right for you and you’re ready to get cooking, you’re going to need some Instant Pot Accessories too. This 22-piece set is the one I always recommend. It’s chock full of everything you need to easily whip up all sorts of delicious Instant Pot recipes!
More Instant Pot Recipes
Here are a few more must-try dishes that you will love making in your Instant Pot:
Thank you for reading my What Size Instant Pot Do You Need post. And please come visit again as I continue to slice, dice and dream up affordable Air Fryer recipes, Instant Pot Recipes, Southern Recipes and more. Thanks for supporting Recipes from a Pantry, food blog.