Instant Pot vs Crock Pot – Which is right for you?

So what the heck is the difference between the Instant Pot and Crock Pot anyhow? Which kitchen appliance should you buy? Instant Pot vs Crock Pot … who won the “Rice and Bean Challenge”? This article will attempt to answer those questions and provide you with some guidance on whether the Instant Pot or the Crock Pot is the right kitchen appliance for you.

Depending on your needs, we recommend either the Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 (6qt) or the Crock-Pot Cook’ N Carry 6-Quart.

What’s the Differences Between the Instant Pot vs Crock Pot?

 Quick Answer – they cook food differently One cooks quickly and under pressure while the other cooks slowly using constant low-level heat.

positive negative instant pot vs crock pot

Honestly, both the Instant Pot and the Crock Pot are excellent choices for one simple reason; making a tasty, home-cooked meal is more nutritious than eating out. Besides, if you cook it, you know what’s in it! Regardless of whether you are cooking for yourself, meal-prepping or cooking for your entire family, research has shown that people who eat home-cooked meals tend to be happier and healthier than those who eat out and/or consume pre-packaged and processed foods. If that weren’t enough, home-cooked meals are usually cheaper and better for the environment!

Okay, back to the question at hand: Instant Pot vs Crock Pot!

The good old fashioned Crock Pot is also commonly referred to as a slow cooker… because this is what it does.  The Crock Pot cooks food slowly . The Crock Pot will generally have just a few heat settings, (i) low, (ii) medium, (ii) high, and (iv) keep warm (sometimes). But again, the Crock Pot cooks food slowly … even the high setting on a Crock Pot will take hours to finish.

Did you know that slow cookers were invented in the 1950s but didn’t really take off until the Crock Pot launched onto the scene in the 1970s?

The Instant Pot, however, heats food in a completely different way than the Crock Pot. The Instant Pot is what is known as an “electric pressure cooker”. It has been referred to as the “Crock Pot for the new generation”.  The Instant Pot cooks food quickly . It does this by cooking under pressure.

Did you know that the Instant Pot is also commonly called a multi cooker? Why is it a multi cooker you ask? A multi cooker can cook foods in multiple ways. For example, the Instant Pot can boil, simmer, bake, fry, deep fry, grill, roast, stew, steam and brown. The Instant Pot came on the market in the 2010s and has developed a cult-like following for sure!

The Good ol’ Rice & Beans Challenge – Time Trials

 Spoiler alert, the Instant Pot is way, way faster!  Although rice and beans are usually thought of as side dishes of Mexican meals, they can be combined and actually be an incredibly cheap, nutritious meal that you can easily make at home. You see when you combine rice and beans, they form a complete protein. The meal is also low fat and packed with complex carbohydrates and vitamins and minerals. By combining the two in your Instant Pot or Crock Pot, you can create a powerful, budget-friendly, and healthy combo.

Furthermore, the plant-based protein from this dish can be an excellent base for your “Meatless Mondays”.

rice and beans Instant Pot vs Crock Pot
Homemade Mexican Black Beans and Rice with Cilantro

Anyhow … let’s take a quick look at cooking times when making rice and beans in your Instant Pot or Crock Pot.

Canned, cooked beans and dry, uncooked rice.

Instant Pot vs Crock Pot Time
Crock Pot 3 hours 20 minutes
Instant Pot 20 minutes

Uncooked beans and uncooked rice.

Instant Pot vs Crock Pot Time
Crock Pot 6 – 8 hours
Instant Pot 25 minutes + 10 minutes to release pressure

Price Difference Between Instant Pot vs Crock Pot

How About Pricing?

 The Instant Pot costs more than the Crock Pot

Remember, these prices are for buying them new. Sometimes you can find a deal … on Craigslist, OfferUp, Let it Go or eBay, just to name a few. Oftentimes somebody might have received one as a gift or they have to move and don’t have room for it. Possibly, they just don’t use it and would rather have the cash. Either reason, you might want to take a look at these websites to see if you can find a deal on an Instant Pot or Crock Pot.

healthy meals in an Instant Pot or Crock Pot

Should I buy the Instant Pot or Crock Pot?

Well, that totally depends on your lifestyle. Again, I don’t think you could go wrong either way. If you are making a healthy home-cooked meal, you are on the right path!

Quick and Easy – For the people who love tech and gadgets and have very little time on their hands, I would suggest buying the Instant Pot. The Instant Pot was the clear winner when it came to cooking time in the rice and beans test. Also, if you are trying to live a more minimalist lifestyle and trim down on the number of kitchen tools you have, the Instant Pot would probably be the better choice.

Slow and Low (and also easy) – For the people who love the simplicity and have more free time, I would suggest that they buy a Crock Pot. Even though the Crock pot lost with respect to time in the rice and beans test, it will still come out wonderful.

‘Mo Money’ is NOT ‘Mo Problems’ – For those of you who have won the rat race, just do it (you know you want to) … stop agonizing over Instant Pot vs Crock Pot and just buy both 😉

You Can’t Go Wrong, Either Way

Either way, you can’t go wrong … in both the Instant Pot and the Crock Pot, you take a bunch of ingredients, throw them all together in one pot, and hit start. Set it and Forget it! Simplicity is the name of the game with both the Instant Pot and the Crock Pot.

Which Products I Recommend …

crock pot cook and carry slow cooker, Instant Pot vs Crock PotIf you decide to buy a Crock Pot, I recommend the Crock-Pot Cook’ N Carry 6-Quart Oval Manual Portable Slow Cooker (model SCCPVL600S).

It comes in stainless steel, red, and black.

What have people said, “This is a very nice crock pot. This replaces a 6-quart slow cooker we used for years and it worked really well. I am also still using a smaller crock pot we received as a wedding gift 30-something years ago and use that for smaller dishes.”

–> Check out reviews on Amazon

 

instant pot duo 7 - 1, Instant Pot vs Crock PotIf you decide to buy an Instant Pot, I highly recommend the Classic Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 (6qt). This Instant Pot is a best seller and for good reason.

The Instant Pot can boil, simmer, bake, fry, deep fry, grill, roast, stew, steam and brown.

What have people said, “I use this for everything! How did I live without this before???”

–> Check out reviews on Amazon

Highlights of The Instant Pot vs Crock Pot

  • Best Selling Model: America’s most loved multi cooker, built with the latest 3rd generation technology, the microprocessor monitors pressure, temperature, keeps time, and adjusts heating intensity and duration to achieve desired results every time
  • Cooks Fast and Saves Time: The Instant Pot Duo multi-cooker combines 7 appliances in one: pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, sauté pan, yogurt maker and warmer – and cooks up to 70% faster
  • Consistently Delicious: 14 one-touch Smart Programs put cooking ribs, soups, beans, rice, poultry, yogurt, desserts and more on autopilot – with tasty results
  • Easy to Clean: Fingerprint-resistant stainless steel lid and components and accessories are dishwasher safe
  • Plenty of Recipes: Free Instant Pot app on iOS and Android devices is, loaded with hundreds of recipes for any cuisine to get you started on your culinary adventure. Millions of users provide support and guidance in the many Instant Pot online communities
  • Advanced Safety Protection: The 10+ built-in safety features, including Overheat Protection, Safety Lock and more to ensure safe pressure cooking
  • Most Popular Size Capacity: 6-quart large capacity cooks for up to 6 people – perfect for families, and also great for meal prepping and batch cooking for singles and smaller households
  • Stainless Steel Inner Pot: The Instant Pot stainless steel inner pot is made with a 3-ply bottom for durability and is healthy and dishwasher-safe
Sale
Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, Sterilizer, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Saute, Yogurt Maker, and Warmer, 6 Quart, 14 One-Touch Programs
  • Best selling model: America’s most loved multi cooker, built with the latest 3rd generation technology, the microprocessor monitors pressure, temperature, keeps time, and adjusts heating intensity and duration to achieve desired results every time
  • Cooks fast and saves time: The Instant Pot Duo multi-cooker combines 7 appliances in one: Pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, saute pan, yogurt maker and warmer – and cooks up to 70% faster

Which one did you buy? Do you have any questions? Leave a comment below to let me know … Thanks for reading!

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