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Multi cookers are often grouped with stove top pressure cookers because they have a program or two that cooks at pressure. But, somehow, comparing an appliance that can do so much more with a stove top pressure cooker that can only pressure cook always seemed a little unfair.
The Good Housekeeping Institute is making it right in this month’s issue by adding a new category to their annual appliance reviews: multi cookers!
“After more than 10 years of perfecting this technology we’re so happy multi-cookers are finally being recognized as a legitimate cookware category,” shares Fagor America’s CEO Patricio Barriga.
Splitting electric pressure multi cookers into their own section seems like a big deal, so we reached out to the Good Housekeeping Institute (GHI) to find out more.
Sharon Franke, Kitchen Appliances & Technology Director at GHI, revealed a key ingredient of the decision-making process beyond keeping an eye on the market – personal experience. “When we see a piece of kitchen equipment trending on social media, our friends and family start asking about it, and there are lots of new manufacturers entering the field, we realize it’s something we should take a look at,” says Franke.
And boy, did they.
The GHI rounded-up 10 multi cookers and got busy testing the pressure cooking, slow cooking and rice cooking programs. In all the institute cooked 44 pounds of veggies, 68 pounds of meat and 18 cups of rice to evaluate each cooker’s performance, safety and ease of use.
“Our procedures for testing multi cookers included determining how long it took each one to come up to pressure and how long for pressure to drop both naturally and with the quick release setting. In each pot, we cooked beef stew on both the slow and pressure cooker settings. Additionally, for each one with a browning setting we evaluated the ability to brown meat, and for those with a rice setting the ability to cook rice,” Franke elaborated.
Pressure cooking rice requires a nearly-magical formula of liquid, rice, time and pressure to perfect -apparently, not all manufacturers seem to know what it is. So, I asked for a little more detail on how GHI tested the multi cooker rice programs.
“In all cases we followed the manufacturer’s instructions,” Franke assured me. This emphasizes the importance of having a well written manual. Good directions ensure success for the consumer who just brought one of these machines home and is ready to make dinner.
In GHI’s review, seven cookers tied for second place, and two didn’t do so well for their lack of speed, difficult clean-up, confusing controls and missing programs (like “Saute”).
Only Fagor’s newest electric pressure multi cooker, the LUX, got top marks.
Fagor takes all
Fagor cleaned-up this year taking home GHI’s top prize for both the best stove top pressure cooker and best multi cooker. Their latest electric pressure cooker model, the LUX, aced all the veggie, meat and rice tests. It was also the quickest at reaching pressure, easy to clean-up, intuitive to use and, of course, having both a yogurty program a helpful manual closed the deal.
Fagor has sold electric pressure cookers for over a decade, so it’s no surprise that they’re happy with the results.
“We’ve been producing multi-cookers for years, it’s great to see our LUX spearheading this new cookware category and being recognized and honored by so many reputable institutions,” Barriga responds.
Don’t forget to visit The Good House Keeping Institute’s website to read all ten multi cooker reviews!
- Good Housekeeping Multi-cooker Reviews – The Good Housekeeping Institute