9 of the best pressure cookers in 2021
What is a pressure cooker?
When you visualise a pressure cooker your mind may cast back to those screaming metal pots that shook dangerously on the hob. But they have come a long way since then, and have since secured a place as one of the most helpful kitchen devices money can buy. Pressure cookers work by creating a sealed chamber that traps steam that heats up the food inside, shortening cooking time and extracting more flavour from the food in record time.
What are the benefits of pressure cooking?
If you’ve never dabbled in pressure cooking before, you may be wary that this is just another kitchen appliance that is going to take up space on your kitchen counter that you hardly ever use – but this is not the case.
Pressure cookers provide a range of benefits, first off that they help you eat healthier.
When you pressure cook food, you seal in the water-soluble nutrients that can be lost when you steam or boil food. Because pressure cookers cook food so evenly, it helps to retain up to 90% of these nutrients.
Another major benefit is how quick they are to use. Usually, making a (healthy) home-cooked meal can be an effort, but with pressure cookers, you can just pop all your ingredients into the device and allow it to work its magic.
Another major benefit of pressure cookers is the depth of flavours they allow for. When you seal food into the chamber it stops oxygen diminishing the flavour, resulting in truly tasty food.
Types of pressure cooker
There are two main kinds of pressure cookers, electric and stovetop, with each able to deliver similar results through different methods.
Electric pressure cooker
Electric pressure cookers are kitchen appliances that appear similar to air fryers or slow cookers.
They are usually more expensive than stovetop pressure cookers, but they save you time with their ‘set it and forget it’ capabilities, as well as their built-in timer.
Some of the modern ones even come with built-in recipe books, so you can get experimental in the kitchen.
Stovetop pressure cooker
Stovetop pressure cookers are more similar to the pressure cookers of yesteryear – although the technology has advanced they work in the same way.
They are best suited to those who are happy to take a hands-on approach to their cooking, as you do need to keep an eye on it as it’s working.
These options have the added benefits of usually being quicker and with larger-capacity options available.
What size pressure cooker should I get?
Pressure cookers come in a wide array of sizes to suit a wide array of households.
If you’re living alone or with a partner, a 2-litre pressure cooker will do the job.
If you live with a couple of housemates and need something bigger, you should be looking at the 3 to the 4-litre range.
And if you are part of a big family that needs to be able to make multiple servings of meals, you should limit your search to cookers 6-litres and above.
Are pressure cookers safe?
Modern pressure cookers come built with safety features that limit the chances of any unfortunate kitchen mishaps.
The main concern people have when it comes to pressure cookers is that they’ll accidentally open the lid while the pressures hot, or it will spring open on its own, resulting in burns or a food explosion.
But as long as you’re following the instructions on the cooker and not overfilling it or not setting up correctly, they should all have the necessary safety features to be able to be used in the home without worrying.
If you’re interested in equipping your kitchen with one of these time-saving, tasty food creating devices, keep scrolling through to see the 12 best options on the market.
The most popular pressure cooker
Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
4.7 stars from 9,180 ratings
This best selling pressure cooker is popular for a reason – it’s convenient, customisable, and offers consistent cooking results.
The Instant Pot cooks food up to 70 percent faster than other methods and can remember the way you like your food cooked so you can just put the food in, click a button, and let it work its magic – perfect for those busy weeknights when you just want something tasty and nutritious made quickly.
Size (L x W x H): 31 x 34 x 31.7cm | Weight: 5kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Electric – 1000W | Accessories: None | Capacity: 5.7L
The best multi-use pressure cooker
Ninja Foodi Electric Multi-Cooker
4.8 stars from 6,230 ratings
Not only is this device a pressure cooker, but it can also be used to air fry, slow cook, steam, saute, bake, roast, and grill – pretty much everything you need to cook your favourite foods.
If you love the flavour of pressure cooker food but prefer your food to be crispy, this one’s for you. The Ninja Foodi Electric Multi-Cooker pressure cooks to lock in the juices and flavour, and then crisps it to an ideal level.
Size (L x W x H): 43 x 36 x 32cm | Weight: 11kg | Dishwasher safe: Yes | Material: Plastic | Power: Electric – 1460W | Accessories: Recipe guide and crisp basket | Capacity: 6L
The best pressure cooker for home chefs
Breville BPR700BSSUSC BPR700BSS The Fast Slow Pro
4.4 stars from 677 ratings
This pressure cooker is an investment, that’s why we recommend it for those who take their home cooking seriously and are willing to pay premium prices for devices that will help them take their food to the next level.
The Breville Fast Slow Pro has 11 pressure cooking settings so you can customise it to best suit your favourite recipes, ensuring that everything comes out cooked to perfection.
If you’re having a busy day and want to come home to a warm meal, you’ll come to love the warm settings on this device that ensure your food is ready to serve when you are.
Size (L x W x H): 31.8 x 34.3 x 35.6cm | Weight: 6kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Electric – 1100W | Accessories: None | Capacity: 6L
The best pressure cooker for steaming
Tower T80245 Pressure Cooker with Steamer Basket
4.5 stars from 1,521 ratings
Health-conscious individuals who are looking to lock in more vitamins and minerals into their meals while still being able to cook quickly will get a lot of use out of this pressure cooker.
This device lets you brown, boil, steam, and roast vegetables, meats, and grains so you can make wholesome, healthy meals that aren’t just healthy – they taste good too.
Size (L x W x H): 18 x 43 x 23 | Weight: 1.71kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Stove-top | Accessories: Pot, trivet, steamer basket, sealing casket, and lid | Capacity: 3L
The easiest to use pressure cooker
Prestige Quick and Easy Pressure Cooker
4.3 stars from 980 ratings
This stovetop pressure cooker makes cooking quick, healthy meals in large quantities easier than ever. Perfect for family meals or entertaining guests, you’ll never spend an evening slaving over the oven again once you’ve got a taste for how simple it can be with this pressure cooker.
Size (L x W x H): 25 x 41.5 x 23cm | Weight: 2.35kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Aluminium | Power: Stovetop | Accessories: Separator, divider, and wire trivet | Capacity: 6L
The best cheap pressure cooker
Amazon Basics Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker
4.4 stars from 5,079 ratings
With two cooking levels, fast and gentle, you can switch up your cooking methods on those rushed nights you just need food on the table as soon as possible.
The four-litre size of the device means you can cook quite a bit of food in one go, but it won’t take up as much space as some of the bigger options on the market.
Size (L x W x H): 25.2 x 44 x 16.5cm | Weight: 2.5kg | Dishwasher safe: Yes | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Stovetop | Accessories: None | Capacity: 4L
The quickest pressure cooker
Crock-Pot Express Pressure Cooker
4.7 stars from 1,550 ratings
One of the top benefits of pressure cooking is the speed, and this pressure is at the top of its game in that regard.
The Crock-Pot Express cooker creates healthy meals up to 70 percent faster than traditional methods – you can cook a whole chicken in just half an hour.
When you’re not in the mood for pressure cooking you can use one of the devices three other options – slow cook, steam, or saute – to switch things up.
Size (L x W x H): 34.4 x 30.8 x 34cm | Weight: 5.8kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Electric – 1000W | Accessories: None | Capacity: 5.6L
The best pressure cooker for big families
Tefal P2530738 Secure 5 Neo Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker
This large stainless steel pressure cooker is ideal for large families and entertaining due to its large capacity and auto-lock safety system that means it locks automatically when you close it so you won’t have to worry about boiling water spilling out onto the floor.
4.6 stars from 1,532 ratings
Size (L x W x H): 25 x 29 x 45cm | Weight: 4kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Silver | Power: Stovetop | Accessories: Steaming basket | Capacity: 6L
The best digital pressure cooker
Tefal CY855840 Cook4me One-Pot Connected Digital Electric Pressure Cooker
4.5 stars from 166 ratings
With over 100 built-in recipes and pressure cooking functions, this family-friendly pressure cooker helps you create nutrient-dense, delicious meals with step by step instructions and app connectivity.
Size (L x W x H): 37 x 35.5 x 35cm | Weight: 6.4kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Plastic | Power: Electric – 1450W | Accessories: None | Capacity: 6L
Best induction hob pressure cooker
Fissler Pressure Cooker
4.3 stars from 35 ratings
This simple, easy to use stovetop pressure cooker is a perfect match for induction stovetops.
Features including steam cooking function and secure locking, with enough room for cooking big family meals.
Size (L x W x H): 32 x 32 x 35.4cm | Weight: 6.6kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Stainless steel | Power: Stovetop | Accessories: None | Capacity: 5.7L
Best stovetop pressure cooker
Tower T90126 Pro Sure Touch Pressure Cooker
3.7 stars from 55 ratings
This stylish black stovetop is not only perfect for cooking rich stews and tasty soups, but it also looks great in your kitchen.
The two pressure options allow you to switch it up to suit your recipes so you can always get the best results.
Size (L x W x H):
24.8 x 37 x 23.9 centimetres | Weight: 3.5kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: Steel | Power: Stovetop | Accessories: None | Capacity: 6L
Best electric pressure cooker
ANSIO Electric Pressure Cooker
4.6 stars from 138 ratings
Electric pressure cookers are generally easier to use than stovetop ones, as you don’t need to fiddle with the stove or worry about keeping an eye on it.
Another major benefit of this electric pressure cooker is you’re getting more bang for your buck – you can use it as a slow cooker, a rice cooker, yoghurt maker and more.
Size (L x W x H): 32 x 32 x 35.4cm | Weight: 8kg | Dishwasher safe: No | Material: | Power: 1000W | Accessories: None | Capacity: 5.7L