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The 8 best pressure cookers for 2023

For quick and easy meal preparation, a pressure cooker is a great addition to any kitchen - and it could save you money on your energy bills. Here is our pick of the best pressure cookers you can buy.

By Laura Martin | Last updated May 16, 2023

Selection of the best pressure cookers

If you grew up in the seventies or eighties then chances are you have slightly terrifying memories of a pressure cooker ominously rattling away on the stove, making all manner of strange noises.

Such relics are mostly a thing of the past, but the concept of pressure cooking hasn’t gone away. It is, in fact, making a comeback as people look for more energy-efficient cooking methods that give amazing results in a fraction of the time, not too dissimilar to the recent trend for air fryers.

If this all sounds like gobbledegook then let us explain. Pressure cooking is unique in that it builds up steam pressure inside a sealed pot to force liquid into the food you’re cooking, which means it takes less time to make and more flavour is injected into your dish. Imagine producing a beautifully tender piece of meat within 20 minutes that tastes like it’s been slowly cooking on a low heat for several hours. Or preparing a whole chicken from frozen within an hour. All achievable with a pressure cooker.

What's more, investing in a pressure cooker could not only transform your meal prep, it could save valuable pennies on your energy bills amidst the current cost-of-living crisis. Much like the best slow cookers, pressure cookers use less electricity than traditional cooking methods, which has only added to their popularity in recent months. But how do you choose the best pressure cooker for your household? Electric or stove-top? Budget or high-capacity? We've taken a deep dive into the Mumsnet forums - the largest online network of parents in the UK - and cross-referenced with online consumer reviews and expert opinion to bring you this guide to the best pressure cookers currently available for 2023.

Best pressure cooker at a glance

  • Best overall: Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, from £70

  • Best budget: Tower Compact 4 Litre Pressure Cooker, £40

  • Best for small kitchens: Drew & Cole Pressure King Pro Electric Pressure Cooker, £50

  • Best electric: Crock-Pot 12-in-1 Express Pressure Cooker, £99

  • Best stovetop: Lagostina Mia Pressure Cooker, £82

  • Best with a slow cooker: Sage Fast Slow Pro Cooker, £210

  • Best for smart features: Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK, £229

  • Best set: Kuhn Rikon Pressure Cooker Set, £303

1. Best overall pressure cooker: Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker

Instant Pot pressure cooker

Price on writing: From £70 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 3L, 5.7L or 7.6L | Power: 3 litre - 700W, 5.7 litre - 1000W, 7.6 litre - 1200W | Functions: Seven

What we like

  • Claims to cook food 70% faster than traditional methods

  • Smart programming

  • Multi-functional

What we don't like

  • Some reviewers claimed it took longer than expected to reach optimal pressure level

What Mumsnet users say

"I love my Instant Pot. I love that you can start a ragu by sautéing the soffritto then adding the meat and then the tomatoes before pressure cooking it. No other pots and pans needed unlike a traditional slow cooker. One pot wonders are a staple in our house!!" (Recommended by Mumsnet user LadyCampanulaTottington)

"The fact that you can just set it off and leave it is, IMO, the best thing about it and a total gift to parents. I don't do anything adventurous with mine, just one pot meals, or cooking up rice, polenta etc. Wouldn't want to be without it now though." (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user BessAndCress)

"I like the fact that you can do a whole meal in one pan as you can sauté and then slow cook. I've started to use the pressure cooking setting more and more - it makes excellent rice for example." (Vetted by Mumsnet user QueenofLouisiana)

Our verdict

Regular Mumsnet visitors will know that one of the most recommended products on our forums is the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker (and has been for years).

Available in three, six or eight-litre capacities, this whizz of a device does all the cooking for you, automatically adjusting temperature, pressure and cooking time to produce a whole host of delicious meals in minutes. We love the variety too - while it may be pricey initially, it's an impressive seven-in-one gadget that acts as a slow cooker, rice cooker, sauté pan, steamer and more.

The one-touch smart programmes mean you can set the cooker easily to tackle whatever dish you fancy that day, just take a look through your best cookbook and go from there.

2. Best budget pressure cooker: Tower Compact 4 Litre Pressure Cooker

tower-pressure-cooker.png

Price on writing: £40 | Buy now from Argos

 Key specs

Capacity: 6L | Power: n/a | Functions: One

What we like

  • Comes with steamer basket

  • 10-year manufacturers' guarantee

What we don't like

  • Some reviewers said seal let too much steam escape

  • Might not be big enough for larger households

What Mumsnet users say

"I have a standard stove top pressure cooker. Absolutely fantastic. Constantly in use. I do stews and add potatoes towards the end for a one pot dinner." (Advice from Mumsnet user billy1966)

“I have had a cheap Tower pressure cooker from Argos. It’s been excellent and I have no complaints at all! I use it most weeks as a pressure cooker and also the large pan size is useful for cooking other things.” (Tried and tested by Mumsnetter MissingFriendandSad)

Our verdict

This stovetop pressure cooker from Argos works a bit differently to electric models. It takes its heat from your hob and produces the necessary steam to cook as quickly and effectively as its more expensive electric counterparts. It's compatible with all hob types and has a stainless steel interior for quick and easy cleaning.

Sure, it's not the largest or most high-tech product on the list, but at £40 it's a great option for first-time pressure cooking beginners. It may take some getting used to, but once you've got your head round it, it'll last for years - the guarantee is an impressive decade.

3. Best compact pressure cooker: Drew & Cole Pressure King Pro Electric Pressure Cooker

Drew & Cole Pressure King Pro Electric Pressure Cooker 8-in-1 Multi Cooker

Price on writing: From £50 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 3L, 4.8L, 5.7L | Power: 900W to 2100W | Functions: Eight

What we like

  • Claims to cook food up to 90% faster than traditional cooking methods

  • Eight functions

  • Locks vitamins and nutrients into food

What we don't like

  • Some reviewers complained that the included recipe book wasn't up to scratch

What Mumsnet users say

“The Pressure King is bloody brilliant. I use mine almost daily (often more than once) and gave my slow cooker away after having it for a few weeks. Honestly the best piece of kitchen equipment I own. I would buy another without hesitation if it broke.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user TinyTickler)

We got ours in October and it has been fantastic. We cook a lot of Pakistani food in there, wholemeal rice is super fluffy and light, beans/lentils very easy to cook. I like the fact it’s not just a pressure cooker. (Tried and tested by Mumsnetter TakeMe2Insanity)

Our verdict

Mentioned on the Mumsnet forums almost as much as the Instant Pot is the Pressure King Pro, another outstanding performer in the world of pressure cookers. Plus, it's so compact that you can simply pop it away in the cupboard next to your food storage containers when you're done.

Perfect for couples or small families, this little 3L device is not only a pressure cooker, but also doubles up as a slow cooker as well. It has eight preset programmes, each perfect for a specific food type, be it rice or meat or soup, as well as a handy timer so you can set it to finish cooking just as you arrive home. We also love that it comes in larger sizes, so you can choose the right capacity for your family.

Related: Discover the best bread maker for delicious, fresh loaves

4. Best electric pressure cooker: Crock-Pot 12-in-1 Express Pressure Cooker

Crock Pot Pressure cooker

Price on writing: £99 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 5.6L | Power: 1000W | Functions: 12

What we like

  • Offers four ways to cook and eight programmes

  • Ideal for large families

  • Delay function allows for easy meal planning

What we don't like

  • Takes up more space on countertop than some other models

What Mumsnet users say

We have a Crock-Pot, I think we've had it at least 10 years and still as good as new. The bowl and lid go in the dishwasher so it's easy to clean." (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user Roserunner)

"Absolutely love my multi-cooker/power pot. I do spag bol, chilli, pasta sauces, casseroles, stews, soups and more! Basically it is worth its weight in gold and I couldn't live without it!" (Type of product recommended by Mumsnet user Blackmagicqueen)

Our verdict

Crock-Pot is a famous brand in the world of electric pressure and slow cookers and this particular model offers incredible value for money. While it may seem like an expensive choice initially, it is multi-purpose, so it doesn’t just pressure cook - it also slow cooks, steams, roasts, bakes and sautés - making it a fantastic all-rounder that saves you needing lots of different pans or devices.

Straightforward digital controls also make using the Crock-Pot easy-peasy. The only trouble you’ll have will be deciding what to cook first.

Related: Make food prep easy with the best food processor according to Mumsnet users

5. Best stovetop pressure cooker: Lagostina Mia Pressure Cooker

Lagostina Pressure Cooker

Price on writing: £82 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 5L | Power: n/a | Functions: One

What we like

  • Six safety systems included

  • Dishwasher safe

  • Good quality

What we don't like

  • Pricey

  • Only one function

What Mumsnet users say

“I've got a Lagostina stovetop pressure cooker. Very easy to use and good safety features.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user HardasSnails)

Our verdict

If we’ve piqued your interest in a stovetop pressure cooker but you’re looking for something a little more high-end than the Tower 4L Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker, then take a look at this gem from Lagostina.

Happy customers report that their Lagostina pressure cookers are still going strong after more than 30 years, which is a testament to their quality.

What’s more, these Italian pressure cooker experts have come up with their own patented LagoEasy’Up technology which makes it much easier and safer to handle the pot and the lid when full. The downside? It's pretty pricey for a cooker with one function - if you want more versatility, the best multi-cooker may be a better option.

6. Best pressure and slow cooker combination: Sage Fast Slow Pro Cooker

Sage fast slow pro pressure cooker

Price on writing: £210 | Buy now from Lakeland

Key specs

Capacity: 6L | Power: 1100W | Functions: Six

What we like

  • Two devices for the price of one

  • Purchase from Lakeland includes a three-year guarantee

What we don't like

  • Pricey

What Mumsnet users say

“I've got a Sage and it's incredibly easy to use. It's a slow cooker that also does pressure cooking and steaming (also claims to do risotto in nine minutes). I probably use it at least twice a week. Great for potatoes, pulses, soups, stocks, stews, bolognese etc.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user Mogthoughtdarkthoughts)

Our verdict

Pressure cookers and slow cookers do very different things - the pressure cooker being a tool for quick food prep and the slow cooker being used for dishes where only several hours bubbling away will do.

If both sound appealing but you don’t have the budget or the space for two devices, then this pressure and slow cooker combination from Sage is just what you need.

With six preset settings - including pressure cooking, slow cooking, searing and sautéing - and dual sensors that keep an eye on your ingredients, adjusting temperature and pressure to suit, this multi-cooker is a little more expensive than the average pressure cooker, but more than makes up for the price tag thanks to its huge versatility and space-saving qualities.

Related: On the lookout for more kitchen essentials? Don't miss our guide to the best lunch box, tried and tested by Mumsnet users

7. Best pressure cooker for smart features: Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK

Ninja Foodi Pressure Cooker

Price on writing: £229 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 6L | Power: 1460W | Functions: Nine

What we like

  • Also doubles as an air fryer

  • Features Ninja's TenderCrisp technology for an extra crispy finish

  • Versatile

What we don't like

  • Pricey

What Mumsnet users say

“I love my Ninja Foodi. It’s a pressure cooker/slower cooker but also an air fryer. I think I use it every day. Can cook whole chicken in it and cooks food from frozen. Cannot recommend highly enough.” (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user Glas14368)

“I use mine every day. It does everything!” (Recommended by Mumsnetter Fairydustandpixies)

Our verdict

The acclaimed Ninja Foodi is another nifty multi-purpose cooker that might just change your life.

Like the Sage Fast Slow Pro, it’s a brilliantly versatile gadget and can be used for pressure cooking, slow cooking, steaming, sautéing, baking, roasting and grilling. Buy what really makes this gadget stand out from the rest is its ability to air fry. In fact, you may never need to use your oven again!

Thousands of happy customers rate this as one of the best things they’ve ever bought for their kitchen and while this model is on the large size, a mini option is also available. It's quite pricey, but other than that, it's hard to find fault with the Ninja.

8. Best pressure cooker set: Kuhn Rikon Pressure Cooker Set

Kuhn Rikon Pressure cooker

Price on writing: £303 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity: 4L and 8L pans both included | Power: n/a |  Functions: One

What we like

  • Offers the option to cook large quantities

  • Quiet

  • Safety-conscious design

  • Great quality

What we don't like

  • Very pricey

What Mumsnet users say

"I have a 6-litre Kuhn Rikon duromatic stovetop pressure cooker - not the cheapest, but it’s excellent. Very energy efficient and durable, and the perfect size for a family meal with plenty leftover." (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user burblish)

"I have a Kuhn Rikon stovetop pressure cooker and it would be instantly replaced if anything happened to it. Brilliant for soups and cooking pulses - I do a big batch of beans and freeze them. It’s a zillion times better than a slow cooker and makes amazing macaroni cheese." (Recommended by Mumsnetter MoltoAgitato)

Our verdict

We love these top-of-the-range stovetop pressure cookers from Swiss brand, Kuhn Rikon, available in a four- and eight-litre capacity.

The advantages of having a pair of pressure cookers is clear, giving you flexibility to cook varying quantities of food, or even to use both at the same time when preparing food on a larger scale. Plus these particular models are known to be quieter and less hissy than some thanks to their revolutionary patented spring-loaded valve.

However, at an eye-watering £300, they're the most expensive option on our list. If you're serious about pressure cooking (and you'd have to be at these prices), they'd make a great addition to a budding chef's kit.

Related: Whip up impressive family feasts with the best recipe boxes

What is a pressure cooker?

A pressure cooker is a small electric or stovetop cooker which is used to speed up cooking times. It uses high pressure steam to force liquid into the food you’re preparing, meaning it cooks in far less time than by conventional cooking methods. Because of this, your food also retains its nutrients well, making a pressure cooker a healthier option for most families.

Is it better to slow cook or pressure cook?

Slow cooking and pressure cooking serve different purposes. Pressure cooking is great when time is at a premium and you want to prepare food quickly. Slow cooking, which uses lower temperatures, is ideal for dishes, like stews, that are best prepared over a long period of time.

Both are convenient methods of cooking because you simply place your ingredients in the cooker and it prepares the dish for you, with little intervention needed.

There are some brilliant multi-purpose cookers on the market which allow you to pressure cook and slow cook (not at the same time), eliminating the need for two products. We recommend the Sage Fast Slow Pro which is a great cooker for quality and versatility.

How do I choose a good pressure cooker? 

The main considerations when buying a pressure cooker are the size and the heat source.

For a couple, or a small family, a three-litre capacity pressure cooker should be sufficient for most dishes. But if you cook on a larger scale then consider a pressure cooker with a capacity of at least six litres which is enough for a larger family or for batch cooking.

Decide whether you want an electric or stovetop pressure cooker. The main difference between an electric and stovetop pressure cooker is the power source. An electric pressure cooker is powered from the mains to create the necessary steam, whereas a stovetop cooker sits on your hob and heats up like a normal pan.

Stovetop pressure cookers are usually made from stainless steel. They tend to work at a higher pressure than electric ones, so they may require a little more liquid to be added. Because they have higher pressure, they are faster than electric cookers and, because of their design,  they can make more of a noise and may appear to rattle as they reach their peak.

Another advantage of stovetop cookers is that because of the simplicity of their design and the lack of electrical components and digital controls there is less that may break down over time so they will likely outlast their electric counterparts.

Electric pressure cookers work automatically. Simply set to your desired programme and your cooker will do the rest. Timers mean that they are a great option if you wish the food to be prepared for when you get home.

Which brand of pressure cooker is best?

We think that the best pressure cooker for all-round efficiency and quality is the Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, a hugely popular gadget with Mumsnetters and found in thousands of kitchens country-wide.

For more on the brand, we also have a guide to the best Instant Pots, so you can see which model is the right pick for your kitchen this year.

Which brand of stainless steel pressure cooker is best?

It depends on what you're looking for - in terms of budget options you can't beat the Tower 4L Pressure Cooker, but for something a bit more stylish the Lagostina Mia Pressure Cooker is a solid, reliable option. In terms of large-scale cooking, opt for the Kuhn Rikon Pressure Cooker.

How we chose our recommendations

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation from a real parent, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which pressure cookers discerning Mumsnet users had bought for themselves.

We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which pressure cookers had won accolades or been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across websites and print media, and what customer reviews said about them. Having collated all that information, we then chose the top pressure cookers  for several interest categories.

Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.

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