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How to properly care and clean for your pressure cooker?

on June 14, 2021

best pressure cookers

If you have a pressure cooker at home, you are probably using it frequently. This device is so simple to use that you may find yourself turning to it for many recipes.

However, what is the result after a month or two of cooking with it?

A dirty, grimy pressure cooker that smells of all the previous dishes you cooked that needs a deep cleaning.

dirty grimy instant pot pressure cooker

This simple guide will show you the tips and tricks that every pressure cooker owner should be aware of.

Everything from removing food residue stuck to the pot, to keeping the lid clean and removing odors from the sealing ring and pot in general.

cleaning the inner case of your pressure cooker

Clean the inner housing

The first step is to clean the inner housing of your pressure cooker -- The portion that houses the non-stick or stainless steel pot. 

  1. Begin by removing the pressure cooker plug from the mains.
  2. Remove the inner cooking pot and set it aside.
  3. Using a moist clean towel (not wet), wipe the inner housing area, the heating element, and the rim.
  4. Food can also accumulate inside any recessed area which you can try using a pastry brush or a paintbrush to remove.
  5. After this, remember to go over the inner housing area with a dry towel to prevent rust from developing.

 pressure cooker inner pot cleaning

Clean the cooking pot

The cooking pot of your pressure cooker may be made of stainless steel or it could also be a non-stick pot. It can handle a variety of cooking methods, including searing and browning meats, pressure cooking or even making yogurt.

The disadvantage of using one pot for everything is that particles of food and char meat can stick to it. For example, rice is notoriously difficult to work with especially glutinous rice.

For daily cleaning, you can just use a soft sponge and dishwashing liquid to clean the sides before rinsing it clean.

Once every two weeks to a month, depending on your cooking frequency, soak the pot in white vinegar for about 5 minutes before using a sponge to remove any residue and rinsing it clean. The vinegar should significantly soften any residue that should be able to be scrub away easily.

If that still does not work, it’s time to try this Kitchenware Cleaner powder that is safe to use for your pressure cooker pot.

oxyaction kitchenware cleaner instructions

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Sprinkle a tablespoon into the pot and pour in boiling water to the top of the pot. Allow it to soak for 15 to 20mins. Pour away the solution and start using a sponge to wipe away any residues. Finish with soap and water and rinse thoroughly.

 philips pressure cooker lid cleaning

Clean the lid

Oils, fats, liquids, and aromatic spices tend to lodge within the seals and gaskets of the pressure cooker lid. Do you smell the previous dish you cook in your pressure cooker lid even after a week?

Here is a short checklist for keeping it clean:

  1. Examine the pressure float valve and clean it of any food debris by using a brush and running water
  2. Examine the steam release valve and if it can be unscrewed, remove it and wash it with soap and water. You want to check that they are free of food debris.
  3. Remove the metal plate beneath your lid if it can be detached and clean it thoroughly under soap and water.
  4. Take the silicone sealing ring off. This ring picks up strong odors especially easily.
  5. There is a good reason businesses tout baking soda in things like laundry detergent, toothpaste, and underarm deodorant. That’s because it is great at eradicating undesired odors. In this case, make a paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the sealing ring. Let it sit for about twenty minutes and wash off.
  6. If you find that the Metal Plate and the silicone sealing ring still has a strong smell that is tough to get rid of, try this:
  • Add 2 cups of water with 2 tablespoons of white vinegar to your pressure cooker. If you do not fancy the smell of vinegar, add in some lemon juice and roughly chopped lemon rind. 
  • Then turn on the steam function for 2 minutes.
  • After this, remove the sealing ring and air-dry it.
  • If this still does not work, try soaking the ring overnight in vinegar, which is an all-natural odor remover. Please remember to wash it thoroughly with soap and water before using it.
  • You can also choose to buy an additional silicone sealing ring from your manufacturer and use one ring for savory dishes while the other is kept specially for sweet dishes.

Remember not to stretch or place the sealing ring into any harsh chemical.

storing your pressure cooker

Storage of your pressure cooker

You can store your pressure cooker anywhere you want but remember to store it with the pressure cooker lid upside down and the sealing ring separated so it can air out.

You won’t want any funky smells trapped in the pressure cooker overnight with the lid covered.

Remember to unplug it after every use too.