Pressure Cooker vs. Slow Cooker – What’s the Difference?

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A kitchen is considered the heart of the home, and this heart functions well when it has the right and suitable appliances. So choosing the right equipment and appliances that fit best with your lifestyle and needs should always be the utmost preference of everyone. The basics of kitchen appliances include self-cooking equipment that can cook food independently without much human attention, for instance, a cooker. 

Cookers are appliances used to replace ovens, pots, and pans. Cookers allow the process of unintended but safe cooking for many hours and do not need much attention. Using a cooker can spend more time with your family and less time in the kitchen. Cooker also allows the heating and steaming of food that is considered a healthy method of cooking because it kills all the harmful contents, including dangerous microorganisms and anti-nutritional factors. 

Many types of cookers are available in the market, each serving and made for a unique purpose. Cookers vary in their shape, sizes, and the temperature at which they heat. For example, pressure cookers heat food at high temperatures and slow cookers heat food at low temperatures. 

This article will discuss the pressure cooker and slow cookers, why and when we should use a slow cooker or a pressure cooker, and their benefits. So, keep reading to find out the difference between a pressure cooker and a slow cooker. 

Pressure Cookers

Pressure cookers are used extensively to quickly cook food like rice and canning, storing and transporting food long distances. Pressure cookers cook food 70% quicker than traditional cooking pots. Pressure cookers operate on cooking food by using pressurized steam, and the food that takes 3 hours for cooking in an oven will only be cooked in an hour in a pressure cooker. 

Types of pressure cookers

Pressure cookers are multi-purpose cookers, and they need no thawing of food items before use. Pressure cookers have been used for a long time, and these days, many advanced types of pressure cookers are available in the market. Electric and stovetop pressure cookers are mostly used these days.

Stovetop pressure cookers require preheating externally, and they generally resemble a large saucepan. Most stovetop pressure consists of a lid, a pressure gauge that monitors internal pressure and a valve. The valve allows the steam to escape. Operating these pressure cookers is difficult and unsafe because they blow their tops and split all the contents within them all over the kitchen.

Electric pressure cookers are expensive, but they cook food in less time than any other cooker type. They are fully automatic, safe and easy to use. Electric cookers, however, are safer and more reliable than stovetop pressure cookers. 

Advantages and disadvantages of pressure cooker

Using a pressure cooker has different pros and cons. There are many different advantages of using a pressure cooker; for example, most pressure cookers available these days are fully automated. You can easily control them by just sitting in the room.

Some of the pressure cookers are multi-cookers, and you can cook more than one food at a time. Pressure cookers use steam for cooking, and this type of cooking does not damage the essential minerals and vitamins present in food. Pressure cookers are used for cooking food quickly and in less time. 

Besides all the advantages of pressure cookers, there are a few disadvantages; for example, we need to be extra cautious while popping the lid of a pressure cooker as the steam can burn the face or hands. Pressure cookers are more costly than slow cookers. 

Slow Cookers

 Slow cookers were invented in 1940 and have been serving for cooking purposes since then. Slow cookers are generally made up of porcelain, ceramic or metal and are used for cooking food at low heat. They retain heat efficiently and quickly meat slowly, taking up to 5-6 hours. Slow cookers are used by people having a busy schedule as they do not have time to make their meals in a single session. 

The basic design of a slow cooker

A slow cooker comprises a base, a lid and an insert. The base has a heating element. The handles and feet help carry the cookers from one place to another and the temperature knob help in adjusting the temperature for better cooking. The lid of slow cookers is made of ceramic, glass or metal and does not allow moisture to escape. 

Types of slow cookers

 Many different types of slow cookers are available according to their sizes and cooking pots. According to size, cookers are classified as mini cookers that are perfect for a single person, medium-slow cookers that are made for serving 3 to 4 people, large slow cookers that are for 5 to 6 people and extra-large cookers that are designed for a family of more than 7 people.

According to the cooking pot, they are classified based on the building material of their cooking pots, for example, metal, ceramic or aluminum. 

Advantages and disadvantages of slow cookers

Major advantages of these types of the cooker are the control of heat and the less attention needed for their operation. Food does not burn easily in them, and they do not require much cleaning. There are also some disadvantages of a slow cooker; for example, they are not good for cooking frozen food, and the power disconnection can lead to food spoilage. 

So What’s the Difference Between Pressure Cooker and Slow Cooker?

The difference between a pressure cooker and a slow cooker is that the pressure cooker cooks’ food quickly and in less time by using pressure than a slow cooker, which takes more time for cooking. Pressure cookers operate at high temperatures, while slow cookers operate at low temperatures. Slow cookers are more useful for cooking vegetables and tough meat cuts than pressure cookers because low temperatures are important for breaking down fat.