Electric pressure cookers can make cooking really easy and enjoyable, as long as you have the right one. Plus, they make food that tastes better than almost any other appliance on the market, if you have the right one. Electric pressure cookers are also very easy to use, if you have the right one.
But what is the right electric pressure cooker? Well, the best electric pressure cookers in the UK are listed below. However, before we get to the best, let’s find out all about electric pressure cookers!
About Electric Pressure Cookers
What is an electric pressure cooker?
An electric pressure cooker uses steam and pressure to cook food much faster than other, more conventional, methods of cooking. Pressure cookers are also very easy to use! All you have to do is throw everything into the inner cooking pot, set the temperature and pressure controls and let the pressure cooker do the rest.
A pressure cooker is similar to a slow cooker, but has a much shorter cooking time with very similar results. Because a pressure cooking builds up pressure, the liquid inside it needs to get to a higher temperature before boiling. Of course, as the temperature builds up, the liquid is cooking the food, so this results in food being cooked quickly.
Most electric pressure cookers nowadays have a lot of different cooking profiles, including simmering, boiling, steaming, braising, slow cooking, warming and stewing, for example. This provides the users with a lot of control, far more control than you’d get with a slow cooker.
Electric pressure cooker vs. slow cooker
Slow cookers use moist heat to cook food over a long period of time. This can be anywhere from 4 to 10 hours. You place the food in the pot that is surrounded by a heating unit, cover it with a lid and leave it to its thing.
Depending on the recipe, you may need to stir it or add more liquid occasionally, but for the most part, a slow cooker is a hands-off cooking tool. Typically, a slow cooker will have two heat settings, high or low, this can restrict your cooking options with a slow cooker, but they are still fairly versatile.
Electric pressure cookers are not as simple as slow cookers, but when you get the hang of them, they are a pleasure to use. The food and liquid are sealed inside the pot. As the liquid heats up, it forms stem and pressure inside the cooking pot.
As this steam builds the pressure, it raises the boiling point of the liquid, and this causes the food to cook faster. The increase in pressure also forces the liquid into the food, once again, speeding up the cooking time and making everything a little more tender.
The rising temperature in a pressure cooker means that you can cook food at about two to three times the normal rate. So, a pressure cooker is vastly faster than a slow cooker. Plus, you can cook just about anything in a pressure cooker. You can even cook boiled eggs and rice extremely quickly!
Which should you choose?
The debate between slow cookers and electric pressure cookers is slightly pointless as they provide two very different ways of cooking. Think of a pressure cooker as a fast cooker and a slow cooker as what it is, a slow cooker. So, rather than these appliances going head to head, there is a strong argument for owning both!
However, a pressure cooker does have a few benefits that may sway the argument in its favour. For example, they are even more energy efficient than slow cookers; they don’t require as much water and the flavour extracted from food is better in a pressure cooker (in most people’s opinions). Plus, most pressure cookers nowadays come with a slow cooker function.
So, although there is an argument for owning both a slow cooker and an electric pressure cooker, you could, in fact, only own a pressure cooker and be very happy with what it brings to your household.
If you’re interested in buying a slow cooker, see our roundup of the best slow cookers with a timer.
What to look for in an electric pressure cooker
Here are a few things to look for in an electric pressure cooker:
Stainless steel: A pressure cooker should be made of stainless steel rather than aluminium. Aluminium can change the taste of acidic foods like tomatoes, for example, plus, stainless steel will last longer than aluminium, generally speaking.
Float valve: This is simply a value that makes your pressure cooker nice and quiet and a little bit safer. The older pressure cookers sounded as though there was a steam engine on your stove, so we would strongly recommend getting a pressure cooker with a float valve or something similar, unless you like steam engines in your home!
Two pressure settings: Your pressure cooker should have at least two pressure settings. A high-pressure setting can be used for meats and any other dense foods. While the lower setting can be used for fish, veg and pasta. The pressure settings are set differently depending on the pressure cooker you buy, but all will do the same thing.
So, now you know what to look for when buying a pressure cooker and what one does and how it differs from a slow cooker. We’re sure you want to know which pressure cookers are the best? Well, you’re in luck, below are the best electric pressure cookers available right now in the UK.
Best Electric Pressure Cookers in the UK – Reviews of the Top 5 Models
1. Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
This pressure cooker offers you so much more than just pressure cooking. It can be used in 7 different ways. It is a steamer, slow cooker, rice cooker, warmer, yoghurt maker, pressure cooker and more. This is such a versatile kitchen tool, and it keeps on getting better. It has 14 programmes and three temperature settings so you can use it for pretty much anything you can think of.
This Instant Pot electric pressure cooker takes the versatility of a pressure cooker and really raises the bar. With the addition of all the other functions on this model, you can save loads of money on other kitchen gadgets and just use this one for everything.
- 3-ply stainless steel
- Extremely quick to cook with
- Genuinely fantastic product
- Very simple to use, perfect for someone who has never used a pressure cooker before
- Pressure build-up time can be up to 20 minutes
- It is large so can make a small kitchen feel very small!
Honestly, what can we say about this pressure cooker that others haven’t? If you’ve read the glowing reviews of this pressure cooker, we can confirm that they are true and you should get one!
2. Pressure King Pro 12-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
The Pressure King Pro 12-in-1 says that it is 90% faster than other more traditional cooking methods and this certainly seems to be true! Its super-heated steam traps in the flavour and nutrients of all the food you put in it and delivers some stunning dishes very quickly. Plus, you get so many other functions with this pressure cooker too! You have functions for meat, rice, fish, veg, steaming, warming, slow cooking; you name it, this pressure cooker has it!
The 12-in-1 from Pressure King has a capacity of 5 litres which is plenty for a family-sized meal. It also comes with a recipe book packed full of recipe that will help you discover how to use this pressure cooker effectively.
- Very quick and simple to use
- Easy to clean
- Makes very tasty food in a very short time, it is lovely!
- Touch sensitive buttons are very sensitive!
This is a great tool for the kitchen if you want fast and delicious food!
3. Pressure King Pro 8-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
This 8-in-1 pressure cooker from Pressure King is much the same as the 12-in1 above only it has a three-litre capacity rather than a 5-litre capacity. This makes it perfect for smaller families and couples who will never use the amount of space that a 5-litres provides.
All of the functions on this pressure cooker are very easy to find thanks to the touch-sensitive buttons and you have every function you need to make a stunning meal quickly.
This is a wonderful pressure cooker that is basically the baby brother of the one above. It works perfectly, delivers beautiful food and it is so simple to use too. One of our favourite features on this pressure cooker is the delay timer, just set it to the time you want it to start and go off to work; when you get back you’ll have a perfectly cooked meal!
- Very quiet, easy to use and clean
- Makes far tastier food than normal cooking
- All the best features of pro pressure cookers, but easier to use
- Some people have found this pressure cooker to be strikingly different to their older ones and this has caused some issues in the beginning
If you’re just starting out in your pressure cooking adventures this is the perfect first choice, it is simple, easy and provides excellent food! What more could you ask for?
4. Sage Fast Slow Pro
The Sage pressure cooker is certainly one of the more advanced on this list, and so it may be a bit too much for someone trying a pressure cooker for the first time. However, for those of you who have used a pressure cooker before, this is certainly an excellent replacement for your old one.
This pressure cooker has eight pressure levels, dual sensors (top and bottom) to monitor cooking process and loads of ways to adjust and set timings and cooking controls. It has a 6-litre capacity so it is also one of the largest pressure cookers on this list and everything else you can think of including a slow cooker function.
- A lot of thought has been put into the cooking requirements of this pressure cooker
- Excellent programmes and automatic timing controls
- Easy to set up and use (if you’ve had a pressure cooker before)
- Excellent build quality
- Lack of recipes included
- Some people say it is too expensive
This pressure cooker would work just as great in a professional kitchen as it does in a home kitchen. It is truly an excellent piece of kit, perfect for the most passionate of home chefs.
5. Bella Multi-Function Electric 6 Litre Pressure and Slow Cooker
The pressure cooker is probably the most professional looking on this list, but it is so easy to use thanks to the layout of the controls. It has a load of pre-programmed settings and functions making cooking pretty much anything really easy. Plus, it has a slow cooker function, keep warm function and delay timer to make using it and going about your daily business really simple.
Although this Bella pressure cooker stats that it has a 6-litre capacity, users have said that it can barely fit four portions in it. So, if you have a large family, you may want to consider another pressure cooker. However, apart from the space issue, this pressure cooker is exceptional, it is very simple to use, easy to clean and makes preparing most meals very quick and easy.
- So good you’ll want to use it every day
- Easy to clean, simple to set up, makes lovely food
- Excellent consistency
- Some say this takes longer to cook than they were expecting, but this might just be that they are not used to a pressure cooker needing to build up pressure.
We love this pressure cooker and we are sure you and your family will too!
We hope this look at pressure cookers and their many uses has been helpful in your quest for a pressure cooker. If we had to pick just one to recommend it would be the Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1. It’s a very versatile pressure cooker and is one of the most popular models in the UK right now, so you can’t really go wrong with it.
To find out more about other kitchen gadgets, please explore our website further. We have everything on here you need to create a kitchen that is truly the heart of your home.
Scott is a writer and a passionate home chef. His passion for cooking began when he was 10 years old. Scott has been writing professionally for over five years now and loves to combine his passion for cooking with his day job.