Best Pressure Cooker 2019 – Buyer’s Guide

Pressure cookers are a great device to have in your kitchen. They have come a long way since the days of huge, rattling stovetop models which were more hassle to use than they are worth.

The name is a great giveaway of how they work – by building up steam pressure to raise the temperature in the chamber above boiling point and force liquid into the food. This helps not only to cook the food quicker but also to keep it moist and tender.

There are three broad types, electrical, stovetop and microwave. There are few of the latter available, and the former two are much easier to use so they are what we would recommend. These are our top picks of the best pressure cookers for every need.

The Best Pressure Cookers – Our Top Picks

IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS
Ninja Foodi OP300UK
  • Capacity: 6L (3.6L with cook & crisp basket)
  • Weight (total): 11.8kg
  • Dimensions: 43cm x 36cm x 32cm
  • Dishwasher Safe: Yes
  • Power / Wattage: 1460W
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Pressure King Pro 12-in-1
  • Capacity: 5L
  • Programmes: 12
  • Features: Delay timer, keep warm, fast reheat
  • Dimensions: 31 x 32 x 29.5cm
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Kuhn Rikon Duromatic Inox Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker
  • Capacity: 8L
  • Dimensions: 35 x 35 x 28 cm
  • Weight: 3.6kg
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Best Electric Pressure Cookers

Ninja Foodi OP300UK

The Instant Pot and Pressure King’s were once the titans of the pressure cooker world. They couldn’t be topped, no matter how much brands tried.

When the Ninja Foodi was released, it got a lot of buzz. People were excited that there was a new kid on the block. They hoped it was just as good as the other two. The fact that it pretty much sold out instantly shows it was even better.

When we tested it, we loved everything about it. The instructions and guide made it so easy to get used to, and it was a breeze to handle as well. The sheer amount you can do with the Foodi is extraordinary, from boiling an egg to slow cooking a ragu and air frying potato wedges. We never thought we would see a pressure cooker and air fryer in one, but Ninja have come through with the goods.

You can read our dedicated in-depth Ninja Foodi Pressure Cooker Review in full for more details.

We like

  • All-In-One
  • Fabulous instructions, guide and recipe book
  • So easy to use

We dislike

  • Parts are hard to all store

Final Verdict

As our in-depth review shows, there is very little to fault with this kitchen appliance, and you will start to wonder how you ever did without it

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L (3.6L with cook & crisp basket)
  • Weight (total): 11.8kg
  • Dimensions: 43cm x 36cm x 32cm
  • Dishwasher Safe: Yes
  • Power / Wattage: 1460W

+ Downloads

NINJA FOODI™ TENDERCRISP™ PRESSURE COOKER INSTRUCTION MANUAL

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Instant Pot Duo V2 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker

An appliance which can happily do the job of several of your other devices, making it perfect for smaller kitchens or those who like to get adventurous in the kitchen.

The Instant Pot is the top-selling brand in America, so the fact they are now available in Europe has proved a very popular release indeed. There are 14 programmes, including porridge, yoghurt, rice and soup, so no matter what you fancy for your dinner you can make it from scratch.

Little effort is needed from you, either. Simply choose which function you’re after and leave it to work its magic, returning to it when your meal is ready. There is a 24 hour delayed timer option so you can plan well ahead and get the dinner ready for tomorrow night, and if you happen to be stuck in traffic on the way home, an automatic keep-warm can hold it all for up to ten hours until you’re ready to serve.

This is all done safely, too. There are ten safety functions, and no heat or steam is released, so the danger is kept at a minimum. It is silent, too, with hissing being a thing of the past. The function panel is a nice size to keep you in control, and everything is nicely labelled.

The ‘Instant’ name doesn’t mean it is any quicker than other pressure cookers, because it still needs to preheat and then release the pressure at the end of the process which adds time onto the cooking period. For instance, porridge oats can take over twice as long as they would in a jug in the microwave, but it is still a great option for anyone who doesn’t have the time to watch over it in the morning.

But there are some nice extras available, such as a clear lid for slow cooking and an additional inner pot if you need to cook something else without emptying and cleaning what you’ve just prepared.

Everything feels strong and robust, and we like how the handle on the lid is suitable for both right and left-handed users. You get a good recipe book and cooking time sheet with it too, which is perfect for both complete beginners and pros.

We like

  • Good choice of functions
  • Nice size for any kitchen
  • Great for both beginners and experts

We dislike

  • Some things may take longer than they would by more traditional means

Final Verdict

No wonder it is the best-seller in the US. Perfectly versatile without being OTT, a lovely size and easy to manoeuvre

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 5.5L
  • Programmes: 14
  • Features: Delayed start, auto keep warm
  • Dimensions: 33 x 32 x 31 cm
  • Weight: 5kg

Pressure King Pro 12-in-1

One of the most popular pressure cookers on the market, and we are not surprised given how easy and simple it is to set up. It is seen as the closest rival to the Instant Pot in terms of ability and quality, yet comes in at almost half the price for anyone who can’t justify spending over £100.

Simply press which function you are after, and the temperature, times and pressure levels are all automatically selected on your behalf. Choose from meat, rice, stew and fish amongst others, with everything cooked perfectly in the end.

There are the standard delay timer and keep warm functions which make life much easier, but there is also the addition of a third function. Fast reheat will boost the temperature of any food before you serve while maintaining flavours. No need to serve everything and then give it a quick go in the microwave if you like your food piping hot.

We have to say that even though it is pretty fab at everything it does, cooking meat is where it really excels. No matter whether it is a whole chicken or some gammon, it comes out moist and perfect, in around half the time it would have taken in the oven.

We were disappointed by the instruction leaflet, and the recipe booklet was also poor for an item of this quality. Even though the latter includes over 60 recipes, some are just completely illogical to make in a pressure cooker. It also takes a while to get to pressure. But to say these are the only negatives we have, we can safely say that we would highly recommend it.

We like

  • Cost
  • Fast to cook
  • Nice clear interface

We dislike

  • Not dishwasher safe

Final Verdict

One of the quickest at getting things ready, yet one of the most reliable when it comes to the end result. Brilliant for the price

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 5L
  • Programmes: 12
  • Features: Delay timer, keep warm, fast reheat
  • Dimensions: 31 x 32 x 29.5cm

Tefal All in One CY505E40 6 Litre Pressure Cooker

A generous 6-litre capacity and 25 pre-programmed settings make this a great cooker for small families or anyone who likes to batch cook for the week ahead.

There is a delayed start function up to 24 hours in advance so you can take your forward planning ahead to the next level.

It is a great size, and will likely take up less room than a slow cooker so is great if you want something which can do all the tasks you could possibly want yet doesn’t fill your kitchen. We like the DIY function, which puts control in your hands. This is perfect for anyone who is eyeing up a stovetop model for this reason but would actually prefer to stay away from their hob.

The lid is also hinged which makes things nice and easy to remove and pop back on. It is simple to add extra ingredients without faffing about, and you don’t have to plan ahead and get your benches ready to place the lid.

The instructions aren’t great. In fact, they’re very poor and basic with no mention of most of the extras. But if you are starting simple and building up to more adventurous cooking, then it is easy to get the hang of quickly. What is great is the little recipe book which comes with it. There are 30 options in there, from chilli con carne to curry, or even chocolate-vanilla marble cake. Risotto fans will love the fact a basic mushroom recipe can be ready in just six minutes.

Once you are done, the steam basket, trivet and spatula are all dishwasher safe for ease. Our only niggle is that the hinged lid can cause condensation to drip over your worktops when it is opened, but this is an issue commonly found with products of this type and is nothing which can’t be wiped away within seconds. It certainly wouldn’t put us off using it every night.

We like

  • Nice clear display
  • Hinged lid design
  • Good recipe book included

We dislike

  • Awful instruction manual

Final Verdict

A fabulous price for such a versatile appliance, which gives pretty perfect results time after time. Brilliant for families or anyone who usually neglects cooking healthy meals

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L
  • Programmes: 25
  • Features: Delayed start
  • Dimensions: 34 x 39.7 x 34cm
  • Weight: 6kg

Sage The Fast Slow Pro BPR700BSS

Sage is a name associated with clever, helpful and pretty game-changing appliances, and this pressure/slow cooker is no different.

The cleverness is mostly down to the dual sensors at the top and bottom of the bowl, which constantly monitor the food and adjust temperature and pressure accordingly. A hands-free steam release function automatically lets out any excess depending on the food too, so it is perfect each and every time in terms of moisture and cooking levels.

Thanks to the six functions, you can sear, sauté or reduce ingredients ready to cook. There are also 12 dedicated programmes to pick from, such as Bolognese, risottos or puddings. The twelfth is a custom option, so you can cater everything to your preferences if you know that the automatic settings don’t get it quite right for your tastes.

Once everything has been cooked and eaten, a lot of the inner components can be popped in the dishwasher if you’d rather put your feet up than wash them by hand. The removable pot makes it easier to clean too, which is ideal if you’ve made something very saucy.

It is nice and quick with a lot of foods. Potatoes are perfect in ten minutes, as is rice. Stews are done in an hour, and meats are incredibly tender despite being done quicker than they would in the oven. There is also the option to slow cook, so it is great as an all-in-one.

We like

  • Nice easy controls
  • Good range of functions
  • Cleans well

We dislike

  • Would like some more ‘normal’ options in the recipe booklet

Final Verdict

Another fab Sage kitchen appliance, which will make life so much easier and jazz up your kitchen too. Pricier than some alternatives, but a lot cleaner looking which could seal the deal

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L
  • Features: Keep warm
  • Dimensions: 32 x 30 x 37cm
  • Programmes: 12

Crockpot Express Pressure CSC051

Crockpot is a name mostly associated with slow cookers, but seeing as they are pretty much at the top of their game when it comes to those, we had high expectations for this item.

From the twelve settings available, eight of these are pressure cooker orientated. This will help you cook meats quicker but still keep them tender, and risottos and curries can be perfect in well under half an hour. There are also other functions which could come in handy when making stews and soups, such as sauteing for vegetables.

A delay timer will allow you to plan ahead and ensure your dinner is ready for when you get home, which is ideal if you are usually far too tired to start cooking when you get through the door. Cleaning up everything at the end is also nice and easy, as most components are dishwasher safe and the pot is removable so can be cleaned by hand.

All of the settings are clearly labelled on the control panel, so it couldn’t be easier to get things going. A handy countdown timer will let you know how long you have to wait, and you can fine tune the temperature and pressure levels if you like things a little more done than standard. The only other thing you need to do is switch the vent at the back between pressure and no pressure, and empty the condensation collection tub.

It is on the bulkier side if you’re going to be storing it, and it doesn’t cope well if you adapt your recipe for one or two people using smaller amounts. The keep warm and delay timer functions also only work for up to four hours, so may not be ideal for anyone who is a ‘prepare the night before’ kind of person – twelve hours is usually the standard.

But still, it is nice and easy to use and gives you pretty much all the options you could want. It comes in nicely under £100 too, which is good for the adaptability.

We like

  • Easy to adapt between pressure and slow cooking
  • Nice amount of flexibility and control
  • Only takes five minutes to preheat/release

We dislike

  • Pot isn’t durable enough for dishwasher use

Final Verdict

A solid option from a name who knows what they are doing. Perfect for batch cooking sauce-based meals

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 5.6L
  • Programmes: 12
  • Features: Delay timer
  • Dimensions: 34 x 30.8 x 34.4cm
  • Weight: 5.56kg

Tower T16005 6 Litre Pressure Cooker

Priced near the lower end of the scale, this is a pressure cooker for anybody who wants to keep things basic and use it only for the intended function.

There is a six-litre capacity which makes it great for families, and the 1100W of power makes things so much quicker than using the oven or microwave. The 12 functions include pasta, steam and yoghurt, and there is also a keep warm option if you aren’t quite ready to sit down and eat yet.

Three accessories – a measuring cup, rice spoon and steaming rack – allow both flexibility and ease, no matter what you are preparing. It is nice and easy to choose your option thanks to the large buttons, LED display and indicator lights. The keep warm option will hold for 24 hours which gives you plenty of scope to enjoy your meal if life is a little busy.

Tower has an Alexa Recipe Skill, so if you have an Echo, you can ask her for some inspiration, and she will let you know exactly what you have to do depending on your model of cooker. The power cable is rather short, so make sure you have the space to use it near a power socket. There is no time delay, but the 24 hour keep warm could replace this if you adjust everything accordingly.

All in all, for the price it is a fab product to have in the kitchen and make your dinner times run much smoother. It is a great entry appliance if you’ve never used a product of this type before, too.

We like

  • Price
  • Good capacity

We dislike

  • Lid is a little heavy and uncomfortable to use

Final Verdict

Nice and simple, yet gives you plenty of cooking options. It feels surprisingly sturdy for the money, too

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L
  • Programmes: 12
  • Features: Keep warm
  • Dimensions: 33 x 33.5 x 30.5cm
  • Weight: 5.25 Kg

Morphy Richards MyPot Pressure Cooker

Stews, curries, casseroles and puddings can all be made in this little pressure cooker, which is a nice design change from the usual stainless steel silver models.

Firstly, it is a joy to use. Touch control buttons allow you to change the functions and settings, whether you’re making a cake, pasta or a stew. The trivet is stainless steel, so it will not only withstand all the heat and ingredients you throw at it but will also transfer the heat well.

It is one of the smaller capacity models we have featured, which makes it ideal for smaller households or single portions.

To say it has a good range of functions, and both keep warm and delay timer, the price is surprisingly low. The rice cooking function was also a standout and produced grains which could rival those made by dedicated appliances – perfect if you’re wondering which to buy.

We will say before you buy that the timer delay option is only available with the pressure cooker functions and not slow cook or soup. The slow cook also only lasts for six hours with a two hour keep warm option, which doesn’t make it the most ideal for anyone heading off for a full day at work.

Despite these few flaws, we still think it is one of the best options out there for anyone who wants something small, fuss-free and comfortable to use. They are also easy to work around in our opinion for the majority of people.

We like

  • Good size for smaller portions
  • Steams well
  • Easy to remove lid

We dislike

  • Limitations with slow cooker function

Final Verdict

We had a few issues with the flexibility in usability, but overall it is good for the price and great if you want something which is a little different

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 4L
  • Programmes: 15
  • Features: Delay timer, keep warm
  • Dimensions: 29 x 29 x 29cm
  • Weight: 4.25kg

Best Stove Top Pressure Cookers

Kuhn Rikon Duromatic Inox Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker

Able to cook meals in around a third of the time of conventional cooking, this Kuhn Rikon model also uses much less energy – without any loss in quality or taste.

First of all, the 8L capacity is brilliant for anyone who likes to cook a lot at any one time. Perhaps you need to prepare around ten portions for both dinners and lunches the next day, then freeze some too.

It is suitable for all heat sources, including induction hobs. The 18/10 stainless steel material transfers heat really well, and the solid aluminium Superthermic sandwich base allows this heat to spread over the entire base area, so you don’t have to worry too much about it being bang on the centre of the hob. It does this by expanding the area.

The Duromatic incorporates several steam release valves into the design, which is ideal for ensuring there is never too much pressure in the chamber automatically. We were pleasantly surprised at how quiet it was when working, especially compared to those of previous years we were used to hearing working away.

The overall feel of the cooker is sturdy and well-built, so it should last for a good few years without as much as a hint of wear and tear. The material is well-known to be chip and rust resistant.

Price-wise, it is almost twice as much as some of the top electrical ones. As seeing as you have to put in more work, this could well feel very imbalanced for some out there. But there is no denying that you get quality and an item which should last decades (and that is no exaggeration). There is a ten-year guarantee to put your mind at rest.

We like

  • Automatic locking system
  • Innovative heat transfer base
  • Pressure valve to eliminate guesswork

We dislike

  • Price

Final Verdict

Electric models will never replace the manual stovetop versions for some people, and if you are one of those people then you can’t treat yourself to a much better one than this

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 8L
  • Dimensions: 35 x 35 x 28 cm
  • Weight: 3.6kg

Prestige Smart+ Hard Anodised Pressure Cooker

Perfect for all of that day to day cooking which is usually nothing short of a real task in the evenings, this cooker is ideal for mealtimes thanks to a nice capacity which isn’t too overwhelming.

It is made from hard anodised aluminium, which is twice as hard as stainless steel, so it should easily be up to the task and survive in the most haphazard of kitchens. Two pressure settings, 8lb and 12lb, make it nice and flexible. There is a directional pressure indicator too, ensuring the steam is directed away from you once it is released.

The materials should mean it lasts for years, but there is a handy lifetime guarantee for those ‘just in case’ moments. We love the simple design, which makes it a solid choice for anyone who has never used a product of this type before. Even if you are a seasoned expert, it is still perfect – it really takes the hassle out of cooking. Just bear in mind that it isn’t for anyone with an induction hob, though.

Seeing when it has reached pressure is easy as a little red button popped out of the handle. Steaming results are also incredibly effective, with veg ready in just a few minutes.

Cleaning has to be done by hand as it isn’t dishwasher safe, and while this is generally an easy task thanks to the non-stick coating, a few foodstuffs such as thick stews and porridges did get a little stuck on. But cleaning is easy, and this is similar to what would happen in an ordinary pan really. The price is nice enough to give it a go, too.

We like

  • Feels sturdy
  • Comfortable to use
  • Nice instruction manual

We dislike

  • Can stick occasionally

Final Verdict

Comfortable to hold and simple to get the hang of. A simple yet effective appliance

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L
  • Dimensions: 22 x 43.5 x 25.5cm
  • Weight: 2.1kg

Tefal Secure 5 Neo Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker

A nice purse-friendly option, but that isn’t to say it is any less capable than the ones which retail for twice the price.

There are two cooking programmes depending on what you are preparing and the desired result, so you have a nice level of control without having to get overworked. The two are vegetable mode or the meat and fish mode, so you get the right amount of cooking and moisture locked in. A list of different ingredients and the best level of pressure is in the user guide.

An auto-lock lid closes with an audible noise too, so you know when it is safe to start. Ideal if your kitchen is usually the hub of the entertainment and household. Both handles are nice and easy to hold and control the pot.

The material is stainless steel, which should remain pretty intact throughout the years. Internally, this helps with the non-stick properties. All hobs are compatible, including induction, which is good for anyone struggling to find a suitable option for a good affordable price. A nice thick base helps hold the heat and prevents your food from burning as it can regulate the heat nicely, too.

It is nice and quiet in operation, so if the huge monster sitting on the hob when you were growing up put you off owning a pressure cooker yourself, then think again. They are much more modern, friendly and usable now, and this one will make a real impact on your kitchen.

Before you use for the first time, it may be best looking online for some user tips, however – the instructions seem a bit more tailored towards those who are familiar with the products of this type as opposed to newbies.

We like

  • Price
  • Comfortable to hold

We dislike

  • Would like the user manual to be more first-time friendly and maybe a timesheet

Final Verdict

Purse, user and food-friendly. We expected no less from Tefal, and it was nice to see it lived up to our high hopes

+ Specifications

  • Capacity: 6L
  • Dimensions: 45 x 29 x 24.9 cm
  • Weight: 3kg

Help and Resources

Pressure Cooker Buying Guide

Types Of Pressure Cooker

  • Electric: Work similarly to slow cookers in the sense that you can pick a setting and it can do all the work, being left until ready
  • Stove Top: Similar to a saucepan but creates more of a sealed chamber. You need to be able to properly choose the temperature and watch over everything

Electric Pressure Cookers

  • Pros: Can set it and leave to its own devices, often multi-functional, easy to access and change settings
  • Cons: Can be quite large and bulky, more expensive than alternatives and often not able to reach as high temperatures or pressure levels as stovetop models

Stove Top Cookers

  • Pros: Usually cheaper, can have more control over temperature and pressure levels, can often larger capacity
  • Cons: Need to be manually monitored and adjusted just like a saucepan, usually can’t be used for any other function (such as yoghurt making)

Size

This differs both in terms of capacity and dimensions. A small capacity can be around 1.5L, and they can reach up to 12L, and the dimensions usually adapt to this. Consider how many portions you usually cook at once, as well as what you will be cooking – a whole chicken is going to need more room than a stew.

1.5L is usually perfect for 1-2 people, 3L for 3-4, 5L for 5-7 and 7L for 7-10 portions.

Think about how much worktop space you have for when you’re using the device too, as well as where you will be storing it (cupboard or leaving out).

Materials

Good-quality pressure cookers are usually made from stainless steel, rather than aluminium. This can make them stronger and sturdier, as well as better at transferring heat. There are a few really solid aluminium models out there, however, but just be aware that they may not be as non-stick or induction-friendly.

FAQ’s

Which Pressure Cooker Is Best For Me?

Think about what you will be using it for. Basic tasks, such as cooking meat joints or steaming vegetables, can be carried out by the majority of cookers and therefore you have pretty free reign with choice.

However, there are a few models which can best be described as kitchen wizards. They are often 12-in-1, able to make yoghurts, puddings, soups and chips too at the touch of a button. This could help you cut down on the number of small appliances in your kitchen.

Look out for names such as the Ninja Foodi, Instant Pot and Pressure King.

Big names such as Tefal, Tower, Cookworks and Prestige are also solid choices for the more basic tasks.

Will A Stove Top Pressure Cooker Work On My Hob?

Most stove-top models will work with any type of electric or gas hob, although if you have an induction model, you will have a little less choice.

Induction cooking works by heating the base of the pan as opposed to relying on indirect radiation, convection, or thermal conduction.

Materials which work need to be largely made of ferrous metals such as cast iron. Some stainless steels will work too if they are magnetic grade. You will need to ensure they are induction compatible before you buy.

What Are Some Common Things I Can Make In A Pressure Cooker?

Basically put, they are designed to make short work of slow cook dishes. They can halve the time it takes to get things ready as well as lock moisture in.

Any legumes and beans or lentils are perfect (and ideal as they’re hard to get right manually). They are also great at stews, tough cuts of meat, whole chickens, soups, boiling vegetables and preparing mashed potatoes, or homemade stocks.

Try not to add too many widely different ingredients at any one time, as they won’t be evenly cooked. For example, perhaps try to pre-cook meat a little before adding with vegetables.

Can A Pressure Cooker Prepare Rice?

Pressure cookers can cook a wide variety of foods. Many have a steaming function which works well with rice, vegetables or pasta so yes. You can also prepare meats, stews, casseroles and puddings in many – think of a slow cooker, rice cooker and oven all in one, but which gets things ready in half the time.