Remember when cooking meals didn't involve programming? The Instant Pot IP-Smart doesn't require you to code in Perl to make a meal, but it has more programmable buttons on it than your television remote. And you can pair it with your smartphone via Bluetooth so you can start your meal from the IP-Smart's smartphone app while sitting in front of that same television. The buttons on the unit's control panel include functions for temperature and pressure. (The IP-Smart can do both high pressure and low pressure cooking). Plus, the control panel has presets for making soup, rice, meat and stew, multigrain dishes, beans and/or chili, porridge (which is British for oatmeal), poultry, slow cooking, yogurt, steaming, sauteing and just keeping stuff warm. This is a robotic chef with a degree in culinary arts.
The app can also download a database of recipes, so you don't have to go searching through online cookbooks (or old-fashioned paper ones) to figure out how to prepare haute cuisine. You can even send a recipe to the cooker step-by-step from your phone. The inner pot and lid can be placed in the dishwasher when you're done, and the inside of the outer pot can be wiped clean with a damp cloth to catch any spillage. So that you don't mess up your spotless kitchen counter while the food is boiling, there's an over-pressure protection feature. And the lid locks down, so that the pressure cooking won't accidentally pop it open. The timer lets you set the device to start cooking 24 hours in advance, so that you can spend your evening elsewhere and still have a meal waiting when you drag yourself home.
If you find the price of this device a bit steep for your budgetary requirements, look at some of the similar multi-function cookers on the market, like the Crock-Pot 5-in-1, the Gourmia GMC780 and the Instant Pot IP-Duo. Although none of these has a smartphone app, you could buy all three for less than the cost of a new IP-Smart.
From instant breakfast to Easter dinners and every side dish you can think of, the Instant Pot really delivers.
There are times when it would be handy to have two cooking at once.
I love the instant pot but cannot get the Bluetooth to connect to my phone.
This capable cooker returned consistently great results, but the so-so Bluetooth and app portion isn't quite worth the inflated price.