Pressure Cooking vs Steaming
Pressure cooking and steaming is a similar process. The difference is that when it comes to pressure cooking vs steaming, pressure cooking is much faster. However, stovetop steaming does have advantages too.
First up, what is the difference between pressure cooking and steaming?
Pressure cooking is fast! The sealed unit forces the water inside to form into steam, and this reaches temperatures of up to 250°F, which is over the boiling point of water. The boiling point of water is 212°F if it is not boiled in a vacuum (as with a pressure cooker).
This means that stovetop steaming or using a designated steamer appliance is not as hot or as fast as pressure cooking.
All multi-function pressure cookers also have a steaming function. This steam cooks under pressure, so it can be a good and fast way to steam food. However, this is not a very easy function to regulate. It can be tough to judge the timing because you only have a short window of time before your veggies become mushy. Green vegetables especially can become spoiled very quickly by a few minutes too long. Although root vegetables such as Swede, take longer and are a little more forgiving, they will take around half an hour. There is no real difference in the time between pressure cooking your veg and steaming it.
In many cases, you might find it easier just to steam your vegetables on the hob or in a steamer, which is easier to open and check on the food. Another point to consider is that if you are steaming veg in your pressure cooker, you cannot cook the other components of your meal at the same time.
For many people, old fashioned steaming on the hob is the easiest option. It offers you control over your food, and you can taste it as it cooks. When you steam in a pressure cooker, you need to go through the effort of releasing pressure and opening the lid every time you want to check on whether your vegetables are ready.
In our opinion, the steamer function on the pressure cooker is not very easy or convenient. Unless you are only steaming and nothing else, this function does not really fit in with the cooking process.
When it comes to pressure cooking vs steaming, there is no right and wrong answer. We are great fans of steamed veg but prefer to do this where we can keep control over cooking rather than having it hidden away in the sealed pot. Both methods are fantastic for producing freshly cooked meals, so it all comes down to personal preference.