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A trivet is the pressure cookers manufacturer’s answer to making steamer baskets without feet and is generally not anymore useful to an adventurous pressure cook than using a second steamer basket.
Trivets can be used alone to keep food, and other items (like heat proof containers) from touching the base of the cooker. They can also be used to keep foods raised, like a roast or a chicken, so that they are not in direct contact with the bottom of the cooker.
Similarly, to steamer baskets, they can be used to create multiple levels inside the pressure cooker so the trivet can sit in a sauce cooking at the bottom of the cooker while it holds another item in a raised container.
Suitable Substitutes for Trivets
In a pinch, several household items can be use in place of a trivet. The suitable substitutes should all be made of food-grade heat resistant materials.
The old standby substitute for a trivet is the the metal lid of a large jar, but suitable substitutes can include stainless steel cookie cutters, a screen from the food mill, an upside down ceramic or stainless steel bowl, a steamer basket, and even a real trivet that is just the right size can go from the table and into the cooker!
Novel uses for trivets
The trivet can be used to facilitate removal of a whole tender pressure cooked chicken. When pressure cooking an entire chicken, using our method to pressure cook the biggest bird by “sitting” it in the cooker, the trivet can be inserted in the bird from the bottom with the “pointy” end inside the bird and the two “feet” sticking out. When it is time to remove the bird, the handle of a cooking implement with a hook can be inserted in the neck cavity and used to lift out the bird.
Shop for Trivets or Racks
Because of the limited uses for a pressure cooker trivet, we recommend purchasing a steamer basket, instead. But if you think you can come up with some new uses for it (we want to hear about it) here they are for purchase.