Pressure cookers are often intimidating to those who have never used them before, but these appliances are becoming increasingly popular for home use. Today, you can get both electric and stovetop models, and by cooking food under high pressure, these gadgets significantly reduce cook time while preserving the flavors of your meal.
Whether you’re in the market for your first-ever pressure cooker or shopping for a replacement, here are the best pressure cookers you can purchase today:
- Best Overall: Instant Pot DUO60 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker
- Honorable Mention: Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker
- Best Budget: Crock Pot 8-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker
- Best Stovetop: Fissler Vitaquick Pressure Cooker
- Best for Canning: Presto 23-Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker
- Best Smart: Instant Pot Smart Wi-Fi Multi-Use Electric Pressure Cooker
- Best Design: Breville Fast Slow Pro Multi-Function Cooker
- Best Air Fryer Combo: Ninja Pressure Cooker, Steamer & Air Fryer
What Pressure Cooker Is Right for Me?
When shopping for a pressure cooker, you have a number of key decisions to make. First of all, you’ll want to decide if you want a traditional stovetop pressure cooker, an electric pressure cooker, or a multi-cooker.
Stovetop models are the simple option—there are no extra features or settings to adjust. They can take a little longer to cook your food, as you’re waiting for water to boil inside them, but they don’t require any electricity. Electric pressure cookers are more customizable and a little more user-friendly, and they’re also portable—you can use them anywhere you have access to an electrical outlet. Finally, there are the popular multi-cookers, such as the Instant Pot. These gadgets not only serve as pressure cookers, but they also have a host of other settings, serving as a rice cooker, slow cooker, yogurt maker, and more.
In addition to the style of pressure cooker, you’ll want to think about the best size for your needs. If you’re cooking for two, a 4-quart pressure cooker will be an ideal size, but you’ll want to upgrade to a 6- or 8-quart model if you’re prepping food for a bigger family.
Finally, don’t forget about safety features. Because you’re dealing with hot steam and built-up pressure, it’s important to follow the instructions for your pressure cooker carefully. You’ll want a model with a locking lid and steam-release valve to prevent any kitchen mishaps.
All these factors were top-of-mind as we carefully selected the following list of pressure cookers. We read hundreds of user reviews and professional test results, compared features and prices, and took our own experiences into account to bring you this list of the best pressure cookers to buy today.
Best Overall: Instant Pot DUO60 6-Quart 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, $79 from Amazon
For most people, the best pressure cooker is the classic Instant Pot Duo. This 7-in-1 multi-cooker is a total workhorse in the kitchen, and it’s gained a cult following of users—seriously, it has more than 36,000 reviewers on Amazon and an average rating for 4.6 stars. Not to mention, it tops pretty much every list of the best pressure cookers.
This particular Instant Pot comes in 3-, 6-, and 8-quart models, as well as four fun colors. It has seven functions, including pressure cooking, slow cooking, steaming, sauteing, and making yogurt, as well as 14 built-in programs. Its pressure setting cooks food up to 70 percent faster than traditional methods, and it retains more nutrients, as well.
Related Reading: Yes, An Instant Pot Is Worth Getting
The Instant Pot Duo boasts 10 safety mechanisms, including a lid lock, anti-blockage vent, automatic temperature control, and more. Plus, many of its components are dishwasher-safe to make cleaning up just as quick as cooking. Reviewers can’t get enough of their Instant Pot Duo, writing things like, “I use this for everything! How did I live without this before?” Some of the most-touted features include its many functions, quick cook time, and ease of clean up.
Honorable Mention: Instant Pot Ultra 6-Quart 10-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, $149.95 from Amazon
The Instant Pot Duo is an ideal choice for most people, but if you’re a serious home cook, you may want to upgrade to the Instant Pot Ultra, a 10-in-1 multi-cooker that lets you do even more in the kitchen. This model comes in 3-, 6-, and 8-quart sizes, and you’ll be blown away by its microprocessor technology that includes 16 smart programs and a wide range of adjustable custom settings.
In addition to the usual Instant Pot functions, the Ultra adds three new options: cake making, egg cooking, and sterilizing. It cooks foods up to 70 percent faster than traditional methods, and the cooking progress indicator lets you monitor your meal as it cooks. The gadget even comes equipped with automatic altitude adjustment! This Instant Pot has 11 safety mechanisms to prevent any mishaps, and reviewers say the Ultra is extremely versatile and easy to use.
Related Reading: Quick and Easy Instant Pot Breakfast Recipes
If you’re hemming and hawing between the Duo and the Ultra, take the advice of this reviewer: “If you like cooking and know how to cook many items, then you are going to want the flexibility of the Ultra. It is worth every penny.”
Not sure whether you’ll use a pressure cooker? Then you might want to start with an entry-level model like this multi-cooker from Crock Pot. The 6-quart electric pressure cooker has four ways to cook—slow cook, pressure cook, saute, or steam—as well as eight pre-set functions for specific foods.
The inner pot of this pressure cooker is nonstick and dishwasher safe, and the gadget has an airtight locking lid that won’t release until the pressure is at a safe level. While it’s not quite as versatile as an Instant Pot, this budget-friendly alternative is still a hit among reviewers who say it’s the “best kitchen appliance they’ve ever bought.” Some even note that it comes to pressure more quickly than an Instant Pot.
Some people still prefer stovetop pressure cookers, and the Fissler Vitaquick is the leader in this category. This pressure cooker comes in several sizes and is made from stainless steel, and it has a variety of features that make it safe and easy to use. It’s compatible with all stovetops, including induction, and the superthermic base delivers unbeatable heat absorption and retention.
The Vitaquick Pressure Cooker has a positioning aid that makes it hassle-free to close the lid, and the locking indicator turns green when the cover is safely closed and ready to go on the stove. There’s a steam release function on the side of the handle to help you regulate the inner pressure, and the indicator on the top lets you alternate between the gentle and speed cooking settings. The Fissler pressure cooker is completely silent and steam-free while cooking, and reviewers say it’s a high-quality item that will serve you well for years to come.
Want an appliance that will look stunning on display? Then your best choice is the Breville Fast Slow Pro Pressure Cooker, which is a beautifully designed gadget. It includes 11 pressure cooking settings, as well as the option to create custom settings, and its brushed stainless steel housing ensures it won’t be an eyesore in your kitchen.
This 6-quart multi-cooker can be used as a pressure cooker or a slow cooker—the slow cook setting can be programmed for up to 12 hours. The cooking bowl is nonstick and dishwasher-safe, and the pressure cooker features a customizable, hands-free steam release. The product includes a steamer basket and trivet, and it’s equipped with a three-way safety system to prevent any accidents. While this pressure cooker is more pricey than other options, happy buyers write that it’s elegant, easy to use, and incredibly versatile.
Best for Canning: Presto 23-Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker, $70.99 on Amazon
If you want to be able to make cans of jam, preserved fruit, or salsa in your pressure cooker, you’ll need a model like the Presto Pressure Canner and Cooker. This gadget has an impressive 23-quart capacity that can hold up to 20 pint-sized Mason jars at a time.
This stovetop model doubles as a boiling-water canner, and it can also be used to pressure cook large dishes. It’s made of heavy-gauge aluminum that will resist warping, and the pot can be used on regular or smooth-top ranges. It includes a deluxe pressure dial gauge, as well as a canning rack and recipe book. The lid locks down while cooking, and there’s an overpressure plug that will let off steam if the pressure gets too high. According to reviewers, this pressure cooker is ideal for making canned goods—just follow the directions to ensure you stay safe.
Pretty much every kitchen appliance is available in a “smart” form today, and that includes the Instant Pot. If you want to be able to control your pressure cooker right from your phone, this Instant Pot model is both Wi-Fi and Alexa-enabled, allowing you to schedule and monitor the cooking process and receive alerts when your meal is ready.
Related Reading: Instant Pot Cookbooks to Inspire You & Save You Time in the Kitchen
This 6-quart model has 10 functions and 13 smart programs, allowing you to cook soup, cake, rice, yogurt, and more with the touch of a button. There are more than 11 built-in safety features, such as overheat protection and a safety lid lock, and it comes with a number of accessories, including a stainless steel steam rack, rice paddle, and measuring cup.
Best Air Fryer Combo: Ninja Pressure Cooker, Steamer & Air Fryer, $189.99 from Amazon
Want an appliance that can do even more? The Ninja Pressure Cooker can not only turn out fast, delicious meals, but it also works as an air fryer, creating crunchy fried dishes with less oil. This appliance has pressure cooking, air frying, and steam settings, and you can use the various functions in conjunction, cooking your meals with pressure then giving them a crisp finish with the air frying option.
Related Reading: The Best Air Fryer Recipes You Didn’t Know You Can Make
This pressure-cooker-air-fryer-combo comes with a 4-quart cook-and-crisp basket and a 6.5-quart ceramic-coated pot for pressure cooking. There are 14 levels of safety to prevent kitchen accidents, and users say it “really does do everything,” from cooking meat, steaming vegetables, frying french fries, and everything in between. Some reviewers even go so far as to say this appliance has made them a better cook.
Header image courtesy of Amazon