7 Common Things You Should Never Cook in an Instant Pot

Have you heard the one about the magical Instant Pot?

These pressure cookers have exploded in popularity over the past few years, and for good reason. An Instant Pot is the busy person’s best friend, allowing you to cut your cooking time in half and put a made-from-scratch meal on the table with minimal effort (and cleanup).

The Instant Pot can function as a slow cooker, pressure cooker, or a rice cooker and can be used to brown and sauté, food. They’re easy to use and with their incredible popularity, recipes on the web are plentiful. In other words — if you don’t have one, you’re really missing out.

But just because you can use your Instant Pot to prepare breakfast, lunch, and dinner, it doesn’t mean you can make everything in this versatile kitchen gadget. Ahead, discover the seven things you should never prepare in an Instant Pot.

1. Deep-fried foods

Homemade Southern Fried Chicken

You wont get the crispy texture you want. | iStock.com/bhofack2

Have a hankering for fried chicken? Unfortunately, your Instant Pot can’t help you out there.

These pressure cookers can prepare a whole chicken in an impressively short amount of time. But if you’re planning to serve finger lickin’ good, crispy fried chicken, you’ll need a legitimate deep fryer or Air Fryer. A pressure cooker just won’t get the consistency right for fried chicken or anything else that’s supposed to be served dry and crispy.

Next: You can make dessert, just not this one thing.

2. Cookies

american cookies

Use the oven instead. | CuorerouC/iStock/Getty Images

You can certainly prepare dessert dishes in your Instant Pot — just not cookies.

Since cookies need to bake on a flat surface, a pressure cooker doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for prepping these sweet treats since there’s not a lot of room to line them across the bottom. And since so many cookie options only take about ten minutes to bake in the oven, the time-saving aspect doesn’t really apply here. You’re better off making cookies the old-fashioned way.

Next: This dinner staple could increase the pressure in your pot.

3. Noodles

Asian Chow Mein Noodles

Noodles create too much pressure in an Instant Pot. | iStock.com/bhofack2

The list of warnings for an Instant Pot is miles long. That’s because misuse could cause serious injuries, and some dishes carry greater risks than others.

Noodles can foam, froth, and sputter during cooking, which can lead to excessive pressure buildup in your Instant Pot. And while most newer pressure cookers have backup pressure releases, cooking foods like noodles can still lead to an explosion if you’re not careful.

Some other foods that carry this risk include apples, cranberries, pearl barley, oatmeal, split peas, and rhubarb.

Next: Avoid this if you don’t want mush for dinner.

4. Multiple ingredients at once

pressure cooker

Don’t try to multi-task. | baloon111/iStock/Getty Images

Each item you add to your pressure cooker requires a different cooking time, so throwing it all together can make your stuff taste like mush.

It requires a little more effort, but making the effort to add each ingredient at the appropriate time will make your meal taste a million times better. And remember to never fill your pressure cooker more than halfway full when cooking with foods that expand (like rice). For other foods, make sure it’s less than 2/3 full.

Next: It’s just easier to buy this item.

5. Yogurt

Homemade yogurt

Just buy yogurt at the store. | Fortyforks/iStock/Getty Images

Technically you can make yogurt in your Instant Pot. But just because you can, it doesn’t mean you should.

Unlike most other things, Instant Pot yogurt takes 18 hours to make and even after all that time, it could still easily get messed up and taste gross. Yogurt is pretty cheap to begin with, and it’s already packaged for convenience. It seems logical to save your time and money wasted on ingredients and skip the homemade yogurt.

Next: This type of sauce doesn’t work in the Instant Pot.

6. Creamy sauces

Closeup cook's hand sprinkling chopped parsley and basil in the tomato sauce pan on the stove

Dairy can curdle in the instant pot. | iStock.com/ xalanx

Any sauce with a milk or cream base is likely to curdle if it’s heated too quickly, which is exactly what an Instant Pot does well. If you absolutely must make your cream sauce in the Instant Pot, wait to add it until the very end to avoid ruining it.

Next: This comfort food doesn’t fare well in a pressure cooker.

7. Bread

Your bread won’t get crusty in an instant pot. | Yucelozber/Getty Images

You can make bread in an Instant Pot, but it won’t have a crust — and isn’t that the whole point of bread?

It’s also not very pretty, so if you plan on serving it to guests, that’s something to consider. Homemade bread is absolutely delicious, but for that particular task, a dedicated bread maker works much better.

Read more: These Are the Top Reasons People Love Their Instant Pots So Much

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