Slow Cooker Vs Pressure Cooker: What’s The Difference Between Them?

Slow cooker vs Pressure cooker

Pressure Cooker

A pressure cooker, a sealed pot, is an airtight cooking device that cooks food quickly. It is very popular to the users as it takes a few moments to cook different kinds of foods. It builds high pressure inside of it. The steam makes the food moist which is why this device is perfect for meat stews.

How does it work?

A pressure cooker is just a pot with a semi-sealed lockable lid and a valve that controls the pressure inside. It works by capturing the steam that increases the pressure in the vessel. The pressure increase raises the boiling point of water, which normally limits the cooking temperature of wet foods to 100 °C. Because the effective cooking temperature is higher in the pressure cooker — as high as 120 °C / 250 °F — the cooking time can drop substantially.

Pros of the Pressure cooker:

  1. Foods retain most of their nutrients and are tastier.
  2. Saves energy.
  3. Saves time in preparing meals.
  4. The kitchen is cooler.
  5. Less cleaning is required.
  6. Pressure cookers can also be used to preserve food.
  7. The cooker does not need to exert much energy to heat up.
  8. requires significantly less liquid than traditional cooking methods, so it boils faster.
  9. Pressure cookers cook food quickly, deeply and evenly, and may allow foods to retain up to 90% of those water-soluble vitamins.

Cons of the Pressure Cooker:

  1. can’t throw different food items into a pressure cooker and expect them to cook for the same amount of time. can’t be monitored for doneness during the cooking process
  2. can’t add or adjust seasoning of the food throughout the cooking process
  3. not able to adjust midway, so when it’s done, it’s done.
  4. If you live in a higher altitude you will have to use longer cooking times
  5. The sealing ring/gasket needs maintenance
  6. You can’t check on food or tweak the taste throughout the process

What can you cook in a pressure cooker?

We can use a pressure cooker to brown, boil, steam, poach, steam roast, braise, stew, or roast food. Nowadays, we can even bake in our pressure cooker! Many people who are using electric pressure cookers like Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1 Pressure Cooker are even making cheesecakes and homemade yogurt.

Slow Cooker: 

Slow Cooker

A slow cooker, also known as a crock-pot is a countertop electrical cooking appliance used to simmer at a lower temperature than other cooking methods, such as baking, boiling, and frying. This facilitates unattended cooking for many hours of dishes that would otherwise be boiled pot roast, soups, stews, and other dishes (including beverages, desserts, and dips). A wide variety of dishes can be prepared in slow cookers, including ones typically made quickly, such as cocoa and bread.

How does it work?

Cooking in a slow cooker is very similar to how one cooks in a Dutch oven. With a Dutch oven, you place it on a stovetop and the pot is heated from the bottom. As the heat rises up the sides of the pot, the food within is heated. A slow cooker works similarly in that the base of the slow cooker transfers heat up to the bottom of the crock. This heat then spreads to the sides of the crock and cooks the food inside. 

Pros of the slow cooker:

  1. Automated
  2. Controlled heat
  3. Can be left unattended
  4. Relatively cheap to run
  5. Tenderizes tough cuts of meat
  6. Less cleaning (Even easier with Slow Cooker Liners
  7. Very hard to burn food (If on low)

Cons of the slow cooker:

  1. Searing meat will need to be done out of the slow cooker (On most models)
  2. Increased Risks if you’re cooking from frozen
  3. Long power outages can spoil the food without you knowing.

What can you cook in a slow cooker?

Slow cookers are great for cooking cheaper cuts like beef brisket, pork shoulder, lamb shoulder, and chicken thighs. You can also use less meat; as slow cooking really extracts a meaty flavor that permeates the whole dish. Bulk up with vegetables instead.

Slow cooker vs pressure cooker comparison:

  1. A pressure cooker uses a cooking method with pressurized steam. It has an airtight seal on the top of the cooker which traps the vapor of the boiling liquid inside the cooker. The pressure accumulating inside the pressure cooker from the vapor raises the pressure and temperature for cooking more evenly. On the other hand, a slow cooker is much similar to cooking on a stovetop. The slow cooker traps heat at the base, which flows up the sides of the cooker to heat and cooks the food inside. It generally comes with a temperature setting which allows you to set a fixed temperature for cooking.
  2. A pressure cooker saves time in preparing meals. On the other hand, a slow cooker takes a lot of time to prepare meals.
  3. One can’t add or adjust seasoning of the food throughout the cooking process. But it can be done in a slow cooker.
  4. Pressure cookers can also be used to preserve food. But a slow cooker cannot be used to preserve food.

Slow cooker vs Pressure cooker taste difference:

For overall taste, the pressure cooker was the hands-down winner. Beef, carrots, and potatoes all retained their rich flavors. After 8 hours in the slow cooker, they emerged blandly and seemed to need salt. However, the gravy from the slow cooker was much richer and tastier than that the gravy from the pressure cooker.

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