Both slow cookers and pressure cookers are wonderful gadgets for any home cook looking for expedient, hands-off cooking, especially for super busy cooks. Both slow cookers and pressure cookers handle all the heavy lifting when dealing with cooking techniques that are designed to take time such as braising, as well as for stewing tough cuts of meats and hard to prepare veggies such as beans, and more.
Although pressure cookers may look similar, they are actually quite different in the tasks they perform and in the mechanisms that allow them to function. While both appliances can make a world of difference when you need to prepare healthy and delicious meals, there are differences that are worth noting.
Pressure Cooker vs Slow Cooker
The differences between a pressure cooker and slow cooker
Pressure cooking is the number one method preferred for cooking food quickly and efficiently. Not only does pressure cooking allows cooks to prepare food 70% times faster compared to other cooking techniques such as stovetop cooking, but it also allows the preparation of a host of dishes including homemade bread and desserts.
Pressure cookers work by creating steam from the cooking liquid that is contained within the inner pot of the pressure cooker. When the pressure cooker is turned on, it causes steam build up to occur, which in turn works to increase the temperature and pressure within the pot. This high pressure, high-temperature environment is what allows food to cook faster and more evenly than other methods.
Slow cookers, on the other hand, are designed for slow cooking, which is the complete opposite of what a pressure cooker is designed to do. Rather than rely on the high heat-pressure environment to prepare food, slow cookers rely on slow, low heat to prepare food over a couple of hours during the course of the day. As such, if you are busy, you can simply load your pressure cooker and return to it once the food inside it is ready.
While pressure cookers are often associated with the fast cooking of tough cuts of meats as well as hard to prepare foods like dried beans, slow cookers are instead associated with roasts, ground beef, as well as stews and soups.
What should you get? A pressure cooker vs a slow cooker?
Your decision of whether you should purchase a pressure cooker or a slow cooker should be based entirely on your preference and how you intend to use the appliances. If you want a device that can cook multi-meals and do it quickly and efficiently, then you should definitely invest in a pressure cooker over a slow one. However, if you like to take your time when preparing food, then a slow cooker would make a lot more sense for your situation.
Lucky for you, you might not even have to choose between a pressure cooker and a slow cooker, as there are some devices out there that are sold as combination slow and pressure cookers. These multi-cookers offer users an array of options including slow cooking, pressure cooking as well as other specialized settings that allow you to warm food or cook meat. With a combination cooker, you would be able to enjoy the benefits of a pressure cooker without having to sacrifice the advantages offered by a slow cooker.