“For a two-job working family, a pressure cooker gets a meal on the table in seven to 15 minutes, start to finish.”
Steven Gundry, Author
Advantages & Disadvantages of Pressure Cookers
Pressure cooking has become increasingly popular over the past decades.
Since they are quite easy to operate and can save you plenty of energy and money in the long run, pressure cookers have many advantages compared to conventional pots.
However, using pressure cookers also implies some problems.
In this blog post, the pros and cons of pressure cookers are examined.
Advantages of Pressure Cookers
- You can save time
- You can save energy
- Pressure cookers can save you money
- Easy to operate
- Cool kitchen
- Increased safety in the kitchen
- You can cook whole meals in just a single pot
- Closed system
- Good pressure cookers are durable
- Fewer nutrients are lost
- Bacteria and microorganisms can be rendered harmless
- Flavor conservation
You can save time
An important advantage of pressure cookers is that you can save plenty of time compared to using a conventional pot.
In pressure cookers, most of the energy that is put inside will stay inside since the pot is entirely closed and the steam is trapped inside the pot.
In contrast, with conventional pots, plenty of energy is lost since large amounts of steam will leave the pot.
Therefore, by using pressure cookers, you can significantly reduce the cooking time for your food.
This is especially true for foods that have to be cooked for longer periods of time until they are ready for consumption.
You can save energy
Since pressure cookers use heat in a much more efficient manner compared to conventional pots, you can also save plenty of energy.
This is quite important since in order to slow down global warming, we also have to reduce our energy consumption significantly.
Thus, by using a pressure cooker, you can vastly improve your ecological footprint since you will be able to save plenty of energy in the long run.
Pressure cookers can save you money
Since you can save significant amounts of energy through the use of pressure cookers, you can also save plenty of money over the course of your life.
Through the energy transition from fossil to renewable energies, energy will likely become much more expensive.
Hence, pressure cookers are a great way to adjust to those increasing energy prices since you can save plenty of energy and therefore also plenty of money in the long run.
Easy to operate
Another upside of pressure cookers is that they are quite easy to operate.
Yes, it may take a little bit of time until you get familiar with pressure cooking.
Yet, pressure cooking is not extremely difficult and you will learn quite quickly how long to cook your meals.
Therefore, you do not need to be a genius to use pressure cookers in an efficient manner and also people that are rather new to cooking will manage to use those pressure cookers properly.
You might have noticed that your kitchen will become significantly warmer while you are cooking. This can be quite annoying and also exhausting, especially on hot summer days.
One measure to keep your kitchen cooler is to use pressure cookers since less steam will be released out of the pot compared to conventional pots.
Hence, if you are a big fan of cool kitchens, going for pressure cookers may be a good idea in summer.
Increased safety in the kitchen
Compared to the use of normal pots, pressure cookers may also be considered to be much safer.
For instance, if you cook something in a normal pot and you are rather unskilled, you may scald yourself sooner or later.
However, this is not possible with pressure cookers since they are entirely closed.
Therefore, pressure cookers may also protect you from all sorts of unpleasant surprises that can come along with cooking.
You can cook whole meals in just a single pot
Another benefit of pressure cookers is that they can also be quite convenient since you can cook whole meals in just a single pot.
For instance, if you cook a stew, you can just put all the ingredients in your pressure cooker without having to use any other devices.
This is not only quite easy for cooking purposes, it also makes the cleanup process much easier since you will have far fewer cooking devices to clean.
In general, since pressure cookers are closed systems, they can use all the energy that will be put inside through the cooktop in the most efficient manner.
Using our natural resources in the most efficient manner is crucial to avoid resource depletion and to make our lifestyles more sustainable.
Good pressure cookers are durable
If you buy a good pressure cooker, you will be able to use it for a quite long time.
For instance, I have a pressure cooker which I used for several years now without experiencing any problems.
However, I also heard issues of people with cheap pressure cookers.
Thus, in my opinion, you should invest a little bit more money for a good model so that you can use it for many years or even for a lifetime without having any issues with it.
Fewer nutrients are lost
By using pressure cooking, you can also assure that a maximum of precious nutrients and vitamins will be contained in your meals and that fewer nutrients are lost compared to using a conventional pot.
This is due to the fact that due to the closed system of pressure cookers, fewer nutrients will escape the pot and more will stay in your dishes.
Bacteria and microorganisms can be rendered harmless
Since pressure cooking implies cooking your foods for an extensive amount of time at consistently high temperatures, all kinds of microorganisms and bacteria can be rendered harmless and you can be sure that your dishes not be contaminated with harmful bacteria, at least if you used fresh products.
Since less steam can leave pressure cookers compared to conventional pots, also more flavors can be conserved inside and your dishes may taste better on average.
Hence, not only will your dishes be healthier since more nutrients and vitamins will be sustained, they may also taste better through the use of pressure cookers.
Disadvantages of Pressure Cooking
- May need some practice at the beginning
- Pressure cookers can be expensive
- You can’t check if your food is ready while cooking
- You can’t adjust the flavor during the cooking process
- You can’t look inside
- Only suitable for certain kinds of dishes
- You can’t account for different cooking times of different foods
- Overcooking might be a problem
- You may have to renew the sealing ring
- Cheap ones may not work properly
May need some practice at the beginning
Even though pressure cookers have many benefits, there are also some issues related to them.
One problem with pressure cookers is that it might take some time in the beginning to learn how to cook with them properly.
The overall cooking experience is different and it is also more difficult to cook food on time.
However, if you like cooking, you will quickly figure out how to operate your pressure cooker properly and you should not worry too much. It is not that difficult! 😉
Pressure cookers can be expensive
A good pressure cooker can be expensive. It can cost several hundreds of dollars to get a really good one.
However, buying a good one often pays off in the long run since you can avoid many issues and you might even use one single pressure cooker for a whole lifetime.
Moreover, you can also save plenty of energy and money and the savings compared to using a conventional pot may outweigh the costs over the course of your life.
You can’t check if your food is ready while cooking
Another downside of pressure cookers is that you will not be able to check whether your food is ready or not while cooking since you have to contain the steam inside the pressure cooker so that it can work properly.
Therefore, you have to get some experience of how long different dishes will take to be ready since you can’t check it during cooking.
You can’t adjust the flavor during the cooking process
It is also not possible to add additional flavors during the cooking process since your pot has to remain closed to contain the steam.
Therefore, you either have to make sure that you added all necessary ingredients at the beginning or you have to season your food after cooking instead.
You can’t look inside
Another downside of pressure cookers is that you will not be able to have a look at your food while you are cooking.
If you love cooking, you will often take a look at how your dishes develop and you will also get plenty of joy out of the flavors that come along with it.
However, by using pressure cookers, this will not be possible since the pot will remain closed.
Only suitable for certain kinds of dishes
Pressure cookers are also not suitable for all kinds of dishes.
While they are perfect if you want to cook stews, they are not suitable to cook steaks or other dishes that need to be roasted at high temperatures.
Thus, there is just a rather limited number of dishes for which a pressure cooker can be used and you have to decide for yourself if you will use your pressure cooker often enough so that the initial investment will be worth it.
You can’t account for different cooking times of different foods
Another issue of pressure cookers is that you can’t cook foods that have different cooking times in just one pot.
While some foods will be ready after just a few minutes, others may take much longer and if you cook all of them in just one single pressure cooker, some food will be overcooked while others will be on point.
Therefore, for foods that have significantly different cooking times, pressure cookers may not be the right way to go.
Overcooking might be a problem
Especially if you haven’t got that much experience with pressure cookers yet, chances are that you will overcook your food since you are used to the cooking times of conventional foods and the cooking times in pressure cookers are usually much shorter.
Thus, in the beginning, you might have to eat plenty of overcooked food.
However, with increasing experience, you will be able to cook your food on point on a consistent basis.
You may have to renew the sealing ring
Even though good pressure cookers will not need too much maintenance, you may still have to change the sealing ring sooner or later.
The sealing ring is meant to keep all the steam inside the cooker so it can work most efficiently.
However, over time, the sealing ring will not work properly anymore and will have to be replaced, which can cost a little bit of extra money.
Cheap ones may not work properly
As we have seen from the previous analysis, good pressure cookers just need quite low levels of maintenance and can last for many years or even for a lifetime.
However, cheap models will often not work properly anymore after a certain period of time and those cheap models may also be less energy-efficient.
Thus, it is crucial that you invest in a good pressure cooker so that you will not have to worry about potential issues in the near future.
Top 10 Pressure Cooking Pros & Cons – Summary List
|Pressure Cooking Pros||Pressure Cooking Cons|
|Pressure cookers can save you time||Some practice is needed at the beginning|
|Energy savings||Pressure cookers can be costly|
|You can save money||You cannot add flavors while cooking|
|Keeps your kitchen cool||You can’t see your food during cooking|
|Relatively easy to operate||You can’t check if your food is ready|
|Good pressure cookers are durable||Not suitable for all kinds of dishes|
|Preserves nutrients and vitamins||Not suitable for different cooking times|
|Conservation of flavors||Significant differences in quality|
|Easy to clean up||You may have to change the sealing ring|
Should You Use Pressure Cookers
From the previous discussion, we have seen that there are many pros and cons related to the use of pressure cookers.
Whether pressure cookers are the right way to go for you depends on your individual preferences and on the dishes you like to cook.
I would suggest that you check out pressure cookers of your family and friends so you can get a better impression of them before you actually buy one yourself.
In case this is not possible, at least make sure to read some reviews before making a buying decision.
If you come to the conclusion that pressure cooking is a great way to cook your dishes, I recommend getting a high-quality pressure cooker that will last for many years or even a lifetime.
Even though it might cost a little bit more, it will definitely pay off in the long run.
About the author
My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people of all ages about our environmental problems and how everyone can make a contribution to mitigate these issues.
As I went to university and got my Master’s degree in Economics, I did plenty of research in the field of Development Economics.
After finishing university, I traveled around the world. From this time on, I wanted to make a contribution to ensure a livable future for the next generations in every part of our beautiful planet.
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