Even the best pressure cooker might have seemed a little dated a few years ago, but they have come back in style in a big way. For the health conscious, they’re an easy way to prepare healthy home-cooked meals. They literally take the pressure out of cooking.
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If it’s a case of time management or you really don’t know your spatula from your ladle, a pressure cooker will do all the hard work for you. These handy gadgets can shave off up to a third of cooking time and minimise mess and effort by containing everything in one pot. Simply add water and wait. The pressure will trap all the goodness inside for a more flavoursome and nutritious meal.
How to choose the best pressure cooker for you
You can get stove top, electric or even microwave pressure cookers; all of which do exactly the same thing with some taking longer for certain recipes.
Whichever one you choose, it will always be a faster, healthy alternative to other methods of cooking.
If you hate slaving over a hot stove then an electric option allows you to leave it to its own devices whereas a stove top may require some supervision.
For those who really are clueless in the kitchen, microwave compatible options are available for a foolproof way to get your 5 a-day.
Our pick of the best pressure cookers to buy today
Sunday lunch with the inlaws will never be the same again. Forget rushing around with a million and one different pots and pans, because the Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker is a multi-functional must-have for all kitchens.
This pressure cooker can also be used as a rice cooker, slow cooker, yoghurt maker, steamer and much more. We know how hectic being the head of a big household can be, so investing in this pressure cooker will give you one less thing to worry about.
If you’re prepared to splash out a sizeable wedge and fancy something that goes beyond just pressure cooking, consider this large and extremely well-built 6-litre model.
In typical Sage fashion, it comes with a host of pre-programmed one-touch settings for a variety of ingredients – vegetables, rice, risotto, soup, beans, poultry, etc – and provides the option to either pressure cook, slow cook or keep warm. It will also whip up the odd dessert if required. The hands-free steam release button is an especially handy touch since it should theoretically alleviate the need for any visits to the A&E department.
Want to give healthy eating a go but don’t know where to start? The Tower Sure Touch Pressure Cooker is a great first time buy with its low price and simple design.
This is one of the best pressure cookers for stove tops and it is compatible with all hob types. It looks and feels like your average pot and is as simple as boiling something in a pan. This difference is you’ll have a pressure indicator and 30 minute timer which makes for a quick and easy cooking experience; even for complete beginners. You’ll even get a recipe book and clear instructions to get you started.
Okay, it’s super pricey but it's a small price to pay for your own personal chef. This pressure cooker has an interactive interface that connects to your iPad and works alongside a recipe app to tell you exactly what you need and when you need it.
It will switch itself on to cook for the correct amount of time and requires no further attention from you. This really is the future of cooking. You’ll also be pleased to hear that it’s dishwasher safe for stress-free cooking.
If more often than not you find yourself picking up a microwave ready-meal from Tesco Express on the way home, then now’s the time to kick that habit. This Prestige Microwave Pressure Cooker produces a healthy alternative to ready meals so you can enjoy guilt-free fast food every night of the week.
This is an entry-level pressure cooker that won’t break the bank, so if you’re not convinced by the fancier options, this is a great one to start out with. It even comes with 23 recipes if you’re stuck for inspiration.
If you’re a keen cook who’s always trying out different recipes but don’t want to splurge on millions of different kitchen gadgets (who has a kitchen that big!?) then the Pressure King Pro 5 is the best value for money pressure cooker on the market that you just have to experiment with.
It’s 12-in-1 functionality means you can use it as a steamer, slow cooker and warmer as well as use it for sautéing and browning off ingredients for a professional finish even Gordon Ramsey would approve of.
If the idea of some huge machine intimidates you, then this appliance won’t invade your kitchen by sitting on the worktop. This stove-top pressure cooker is suitable for all hob types – including induction – and the pan and lid are oven safe up to 180C; perfect for keeping things warm before serving.
The Lakeland will cook tender meats, stews and curries for up to three people, so if you’ve got a small family and a small kitchen, then this is the model for you.
Do you want to see what all the fuss is about but don’t think you’re ready for a pressure cooker as fancy as the Tefal Cook4Me Connect? Then this trusty Morphy Richards Pressure Cooker is a great place to start.
Being a reliable brand, we recommend this pressure cooker as a first time buy that will stand the test of time. It has a medium capacity which is perfect for couples or smaller families and is compatible with all hob types, including induction. It may not have all the mod-cons of some of the more techy products, but it does the job nicely.