If you are looking for pressure cooker pros and cons, then this article is the one for you. Pressure cookers offers plenty of advantages and disadvantages. In fact, pressure cookers are considered to be the most preferred household kitchen appliance than that of conventional pots.
If you are a bachelor or have no time for cooking food and wait in kitchen until the food is prepared, then pressure cooker is the one that you need the most. If you already know, how does a pressure cooker works, the pressure cookers enable you to prepare almost of all food easily in no time.
Before we understand what are the pros and cons of pressure cooker, first let us understand what is a pressure cooker and how to choose the best pressure cooker?
A pressure cooker is a cooking utensil which is used to cook food in the kitchen. A pressure cooker is a sealed pot or chamber that traps the steam generated right inside the pot as the the contents inside it gets heated up.
As the steam keeps on building, the pressure keeps on increasing, while driving the boiling point of water right past 212°F. Since, the higher temperatures are attained with well designed pressure cookers, the food inside it gets cooked even faster efficiently and effectively.
How to Choose the Best Pressure Cooker?
Choosing a pressure cooker requires many factors consideration that decides which pressure cooker you should choose and what type of pressure cooker you must choose. A pressure cooker can be chosen based on the following considerations:
l Time saving
l Helps to retain more nutrients
l More energy efficient
l Environmental friendly
l Offers less cleanup process
l Helps to retain more flavor
l Safety of pressure cooker
l Family members
l Pressure cooker size
l Types of pressure cooker
Apart from this there are plenty of considerations that you must consider before you buy a pressure cooker. However, if you want to know more about it you can read our guide: how to choose pressure cooker.
How does a pressure cooker work?
In simple terms, the sealed pressure cooker works by the increase in pressure as the boiling point of water goes up. At standard atmospheric pressure, the boiling point of water is 212°F.
But in a standard American pressure cooker, the pressure reaches 1 atm or 15 psi (pounds per square inch) above standard atmospheric pressure*, or 2 atm, which is typically the maximum pressure limit on most cookers. At 30 psi, the boiling point of water is about 250°F.
This means that, in a sealed pressure cooker the higher cooking temperature means, faster food cooking without burning the food. Since the vessel is sealed off, it also limits the evaporation of critical volatile food flavors and aroma of ingredients in the food. This is how a pressure cooker works.
What are pros and cons of pressure cooker?
The best part of having pressure cookers is that, they cook food almost by 30% faster than that of any conventional methods such as boiling, steaming, and braising. Not only that, the pressure cookers also use almost 50 to 70% less energy because of shorter cooking times. This means that, the pressure cookers are energy-efficient devices that helps for saving more energy.
Since the pressure cookers have a closed lid, they help to retain more vitamins, minerals, and nutrients than that of foods you prepare by boiling method. This is because, the pressure cookers use very less water compared to boiling methods. This helps the nutrients to get dissolved easily providing a great taste of food. Not only that, the flavor of the food that is prepared in a pressure cooker is greatly maintained.
There are plenty of pros and cons of a pressure cooker. However, we have listed down few of the pros and cons of a pressure cooker here below, that helps you choose a best pressure cooker from the market.
Pressure cooker pros and cons:
Pros of pressure cooker:
1. You can save time
2. You can save energy
3. Pressure cookers can save you money
4. Easy to operate
5. Cool kitchen
6. Increased safety in the kitchen
7. You can cook whole meals in just a single pot
8. Closed system
9. Good pressure cookers are durable
10. Fewer nutrients are lost
11. Bacteria and microorganisms can be rendered harmless
12. Flavor conservation
Like we said earlier, there are plenty of advantages of pressure cooker, that makes them a perfect companion for your kitchen. Pressure cooker is a must have kitchen appliance for any kitchen and for anyone. Many people will have more than 2 to 3 pressure cookers in their homes. Let us go through the pros one by one.
1. You can save time:
One of the best advantage of having a pressure cooker is that, they help you save lots of time for cooking food than that of the traditional pressure cookers.
This is for the simple fact that, most of the energy that is generated inside the pressure cooker pot will stay inside the pressure cooker pot. Thanks to the tightly closed lid of pressure cooker, the steam generated stays inside the pot, helping it to generate more energy than usual allowing the pressure cooker to cook food faster.
Whereas in case of traditional and conventional pots, most of the energy or steam generated will get evaporated in the form vapors from the pot, making it difficult and more time consuming in cooking the food.
Thus, by using pressure cookers you can save a lot of time in preparing food for your family. The pressure cookers reduce the cooking time drastically compared to conventional pots. This is 100% true for those foods that requires longer cooking time, especially, such as for cooking chicken.
2. You can save energy:
In conventional pots, most of the energy generated will be lost in the form of steam getting vaporized. However, in case of pressure cookers, the most of energy generated is get trapped by the closed lid, the pressure cookers are considered to be more efficient compared to conventional pots.
For example, the foods such as chicken that takes long time to cook take more energy when cooked on conventional pots. But the same food when cooked in pressure cooker takes almost 30% to 50% less time, making the pressure cookers more energy efficient kitchen appliances.
3. Pressure cookers can save you money:
More energy usage means, more money lost. Less energy usage means, less money lost. This means, the pressure cookers helps you save money on a longer lifespan of its usage compared to conventional pots that use more energy to cook food.
Since, the pressure cookers are considered to be energy efficient, they burn less fuel. Even though you may not see this on one day or two day, when you calculate over a month or year you can see the difference that the money you have saved over using fuel for the pressure cookers.
4. Easy to operate:
The best part of using pressure cookers is that, they are very easy to operate. However, it may take some time for you to get familiar with the usage of pressure cooker. But once you are aware, its just a piece of cake.
The pressure cookers are designed in such a way that a normal human being can understand its usage easily. You can easily learn how to use pressure cooker and can use it efficiently as the days progress. You don’t have to be a genius or a graduate degree to use a pressure cooker, you just need to understand how it works?
Whereas the conventional pots are difficult to operate and are also not very beneficial for usage. They provide many disadvantages and makes cooking difficult.
5. Cool kitchen:
Cooking food can really make your kitchen much hotter or warmer no matter whatever food it is. You might have noticed the same when you cook food, your kitchen gets hotter which could be even more annoying and exhausting during summer.
If your kitchen is small and has no proper vents then the kitchen might even get more hotter due to the heat generated when you cook food on conventional pots. Hence, one of the best ways to keep your kitchen cool is to make use of pressure cookers. No matter what food you are preparing, your kitchen will stay always cooler.
6. Increased safety in the kitchen:
The pressure cookers are considered to be one of the safest cooking pots in the kitchen when compared to normal pots or conventional pots. It is always a recommended to cook food on a pressure cooker rather than on a conventional pot.
Cooking food on a conventional pot may lead to situation where in you might get hurt or get injured yourself sooner or later. Since, the pressure cookers are designed to be in closed condition along with the safety regulator valve, it is always safe to cook food.
7. You can cook whole meals in just a single pot:
If you are cooking food on a conventional pot, then you might need extra conventional pots to cook your complete meal. But that is not the same case in pressure cookers. The good thing about pressure cookers is that you can cook your whole meal in just one single pressure cooker pot.
To give you an example, say if you are preparing veg pulao, then you might need two to three conventional pots when you cook normally. But if you prepare veg pulao in pressure cooker, you all have to do is to just drop in all the ingredients and vegetables in the pressure cooker and set the timer, you are done. Your whole meal is cooked in just few minutes.
This not only saves your time in cooking, but also makes your cleaning process much easier. Also you can able to get authentic taste of meal without loosing any nutrients, and vitamins. With pressure cookers the cooking process also becomes much faster than usual.
8. Closed system:
The best part of operating pressure cookers is that they are safe to operate. Thanks to the closed system technology with the help of lid, rubber gasket, and safety or pressure relief valve. Due to the closed condition of the pressure cookers, it helps you to save more energy making them the best energy efficient devices when compared to conventional pots.
9. Good pressure cookers are durable:
The pressure cookers are considered to be durable over conventional pots. If you buy the best pressure cooker that offers great features, then it can even last much longer than that of regular pressure cookers.
In general, a best pressure cooker can last at-least 5 to 10 years depending on the brand and quality of pressure cooker that you are going to purchase. So, it is always advisable to invest more at the beginning itself and buy the best pressure cooker which can last longer. And make sure that you avoid buying the cheap pressure cookers, as they can create many issues in just within 6 months or a year of usage.
10. Fewer nutrients are lost:
Pressure cookers are designed in such a way that they can retain almost of all nutrients and vitamins in the food that you are going to prepare (as much as possible). This is all made possible by the closed system design of pressure cooker, which helps to retain nutrients.
However, this is not the same case in conventional pots as they lose most of nutrients and vitamins when you cook food. In order to retain the nutrients, you need to cover it with a lid which can may help to retain some nutrients. But when you do so there is no guarantee that it is safe to cook as the pressure builds up there are chances of the lid getting thrown out in air making it unsafe for cooking.
11. Bacteria and microorganisms can be rendered harmless:
The pressure cookers operate at a very high temperatures through out the cooking cycle, which leaves no bacteria and microorganisms alive. This means that, if there are any bacteria and microorganisms in your food they will be rendered harmless.
12. Flavor conservation:
Most of the flavor that is present in the food or ingredients will be washed out away in the form of steam. This is especially true and can be seen in most of the conventional pots.
Since, lost of steam is generated while cooking on conventional pots, the flavor is lost. However, this is not the same in case of pressure cookers as less steam is generated and only a negligible amount of steam is goes out, keeping the flavor of intact. Also, the closed system of pressure cooker makes it possible to retain the original flavor of food and nutrients that offers a tasty food for your family.
Cons of pressure cooker:
1. May need some practice at the beginning
2. Pressure cookers can be expensive
3. You can’t check if your food is ready while cooking
4. You can’t adjust the flavor during the cooking process
5. You can’t look inside
6. Only suitable for certain kinds of dishes
7. You can’t account for different cooking times of different foods
8. Overcooking might be a problem
9. You may have to renew the sealing ring
10. Cheap ones may not work properly
Like we said earlier, there are plenty of disadvantages of pressure cooker too, that makes them not a perfect companion for your kitchen. But, even though it has many disadvantages, the pressure cooker is a must have kitchen appliance for any kitchen and for anyone. Let us go through the cons one by one.
1. May need some practice at the beginning
The biggest disadvantage of pressure cooker is that, it needs some practice before you actually start using the pressure cooker. If you are just started to learn and know about pressure cookers it can be really difficult due to safety.
However, now the pressure cookers that are available in the market are so well designed that they offer the highest level of safety in its usage as well as in its operation. You may need some time to learn, but its not so difficult that it will take 1 to 3 months just to learn. Withing a matter of few minutes you can learn how to use pressure cooker.
2. Pressure cookers can be expensive:
Even though there are plenty of pressure cookers in the market that are cheap, to buy a good and best pressure cooker can be expensive. The best pressure cookers from best pressure cooker brands often costs more than usual.
Typically, a best pressure cooker can cost you somewhere around $100 to $300 or Rs.5000/- to Rs.8000/- depending on which brand you are going to buy. Buying a good pressure cooker not only lasts longer but also helps you save more energy in your kitchen. Even though you pay more for a best pressure cooker it is worth to pay when you know the features, durability, and energy efficiency that it offers.
3. You can’t check if your food is ready while cooking:
Another drawback of pressure cooker is that you can’t check whether your food is ready or not unlike that you can do it in case of conventional pots. You need to wait until you hear the vissel of pressure cooker depending on the type of food that you are going to prepare.
But, thanks to engineers, now a days, many pressure cookers offer set timings, and different pre-set food preparations that makes it easier for you to cook food as per cooking requirements. However, you still can’t see whether the food is cooked or not.
4. You can’t adjust the flavor during the cooking process:
Just imagine that you are cooking food on a conventional pot and you take out the lid to taste the food that is being prepared. You found that the taste of food is not so great. So, you might plan to add few more vegetable slices, masala, spices, and salt, etc. to adjust the taste of food. Well, this is easy.
But when it comes to pressure cooker you can’t able to adjust the taste of food while its in cooking condition. You need to wait until the food is completely prepared based on vissel sound, steam went out completely, and allowed it for cool down until you take out its lid and taste the food to add ingredients to adjust the taste of food.
5. You can’t look inside:
Some conventional pots that are available with transparent glass lid allows you to see inside. Or else you can take out the lid and can see inside and understand the cooking process. But in case of pressure cooker you can’t do so.
6. Only suitable for certain kinds of dishes:
Even though the pressure cooker is best for cooking food, you can’t able to cook all kinds of food. The pressure cookers offers only a limited and selected type of foods that you can prepare. Thus, pressure cookers are not suitable for all kinds of dishes that you want to prepare.
7. You can’t account for different cooking times of different foods:
Another drawback of pressure cookers is that, you can’t able to cook foods that have different cooking times in the same one pressure cooker pot. You might need additional pressure cookers.
Some foods require very less time and some food requires more time. If you cook both foods in a single pressure cooker pot, one food can be overcooked and the other food could be under cooked. Hence, pressure cooker with single pot are not an ideal partner for cooking foods with different timings.
8. Overcooking might be a problem:
Overcooking can be a nightmare. This happens most of the times especially you have just started using pressure cooker or have no experience with the pressure cooker. In such cases, there are always chances that your food may get overcooked.
9. You may have to renew the sealing ring:
Another drawback of pressure cookers is that you may need to keep changing the sealing ring or the so called rubber gasket. This is due to the reason that, the rubber gasket or the sealing ring may worn out overtime which may reduce the efficiency of pressure cooker.
The sealing ring is the one that helps to keep all the steam inside the pressure cooker. Not only that, it also ensures that the pressure cooker lid and the pressure cooker pot stays intact and won’t blow out even though so much of pressure that is built inside.
If you are not paying attention enough over the sealing ring and won’t maintain it properly in good condition, there are chances that you need to replace the sealing ring sooner or later.
10. Cheap ones may not work properly:
Do remember that the cheap pressure cookers are not the ideal pressure cookers. The cheap pressure cookers will cause or create lot of problems in future, may be in just two to three months of usage.
The cheap pressure cookers won’t offer durability and are not built to last longer. Also, the maintenance cost of cheap pressure cookers are higher than that of conventional pots. And over a period of time, the efficiency of the pressure cooker may also get reduced.
Hence, always avoid buying cheap pressure cookers and buy the pressure cookers that are good, especially branded ones that have already have a good name in the market and offers great services.
No matter who you are, if you want to cook food faster you need a pressure cooker. But knowing its working style and usefulness, it is not worth using it. Thanks to the pressure cooker pros and cons that we have covered in this article that makes it easier for you to understand a pressure cooker better.
One of the best advantage of pressure cooker is that, it cooks food faster. Along with that, it helps to retain most of nutrients and vitamins in the food, making the cooked food more healthy and tasty.