There are many factors to take into account when searching for cookware, such as pressure cookers, with quality being the most important. An appliance can come with all kinds of fancy features and be said to do amazing things but none of that matters if the materials are poor quality.
You should always look into what metals went into the making of the cookware you are scoping out. Usually the manufacturer will have the makeup of the item listed in clear view on the package or the actual item. Sometimes it will be typed on the papers that come with the appliance. It is important to always know what type of products you are using especially if said product is going to be preparing your meals.
Pressure Cookers & Metal Composition
When looking to buy a pressure cooker for your kitchen, you can’t go wrong with a good quality stainless steel. To be considered high quality the steel should be labeled as “18/10 Stainless Steel.”
What that means, is that the composition consists of approximately 18 percent chromium and 10 percent nickel. Both of these elements add several advantages to the product. The only way that stainless steel can officially be considered stainless is if it has a minimum of 10.5 percent chromium in its metal makeup.
The chromium makes the product resistant to stains and corrosion and when larger amounts are used it gives the benefit of added durability. Having nickel in the composition gives the product that shiny, new appearance while also helping the protective layer formed by the chromium. Stainless steel pressure cookers are among the most popular and preferred among consumers.
Important Features of Pressure Cookers
- Pressure Level Capability – Nowadays, the standard pressure cooker recipe requires a pressure cooker that has the capability of reaching 15 pounds per square inch. Before you buy a pressure cooker you should see what level it is capable of reaching. Another important feature to look for is an indicator that can accurately alert you once the cooker reaches the needed level. An example includes pop-up indicators and colored markers.
- Quick Release – You should also try to find a cooker with a quick release in the regulator. Newer model electric pressure cookers use this feature to decrease the pressure while maintaining the temperature. This allows for more ingredients to be added before increasing the pressure again, quickening the preparation time and allowing for easier use.
- Valve Stem – Newer pressure cookers also tend to come with safety features that old pressure cookers did not have. One of these features includes a valve stem that allows excess steam to get out which causes a hissing sound to be released.
Does Pressure Cooker Size Matter?
Once again, there are many factors to consider before you buy a pressure cooker. Including the size of the cooker, such as a 4 quart or 6 quart. Some of the things that should be considered are:
- How much food you tend to prepare.
- Where you plan on storing the cooker.
- What fits within your price range.
Vickie Smith, author of Miss Vickie’s Big Book of Pressure Cooker Recipes, believes that the minimum size to be bought is a 6 quart but she recommends a 7 or even 8 quart model if one is within your budget. It is very important to keep in mind that pressure cookers can only be filled two thirds of the way for most foods. For foods that foam or froth while being cooked you will fill it only halfway.
Buy a Pressure Cooker With a Warranty
It is unlikely that a pressure cooker won’t last a long while however you cannot be too cautious when it comes to making sure your appliances are covered. When buying a pressure cooker you should consider the quality of the company alongside the product. Parts such as gaskets are not covered in warranties so buying from a company that offers cooker replacement parts as well as accessories could prove to come in handy.
If looking to buy a pressure cooker, another aspect that can be important to look into is whether you want to buy non-stick. Non-stick probably isn’t the best investment as the surface doesn’t typically hold up for long, as well as many controversial health issues that may be linked to them. The only way to really decide on a cooker is to do your own research and decide what you believe to be best.
Buying a Pressure Cooker Online Versus In-Store
There are many pros and cons to shopping in store or online. Most larger department stores will probably have a couple different models of pressure cookers but shopping online can leave you open to many more options. Also, shopping online makes it easier to access reviews on each product and see what would work best for you. However, shopping in store means that you can take your product home with you and use it immediately if you so wish to without waiting for it to be shipped or mailed.
Read Our Pressure Cooker Reviews
When you decide you’re ready to buy a pressure cooker it can be very overwhelming at first. Luckily, you can check out the reviews of the top pressure cookers that other consumers have purchased to help you make a more informed decision. Pressure cooking can be very beneficial, you just want to make sure you buy the right pressure cooker for you.