Preparing food in the kitchen is an exciting job to those who enjoy them, and at the same time safety while around the kitchen is important. A pressure cooker is a common household appliance that involves particular safety concerns. It involves risk of dealing with really high temperature and pressure. The boiling temperature of water measures around 250 degrees Fahrenheit under pressure. This higher temperature helps the food get cooked easily and promotes faster cooking. No worries! Modern pressure cookers are equipped with different safety features. Read more to know about pressure cooker safety.
Are Pressure Cookers Safe?
If you are wondering what could be the worst thing to happen if you can’t use a pressure cooker properly? Yes, they can explode. But, don’t be afraid, it doesn’t blast violently. In the worst possible situation, you may find this sort of dangerous things happening. And, the association of heat is a vital issue. One may burn himself/herself from any source of heat regardless of the types of cookers and stoves. Other than this, pressure cookers are absolutely safe and convenient to use. Besides, pressure cookers have experienced a great deal of development over the years. Go through the following section to know the chronicle of pressure cookers and the safety features they have evolved to date.
Old-school Pressure Cookers
Like many consumer electronic appliances, pressure cookers have seen several generations, and the first ones were known to be an old-type pressure cooker. They are out of the scene right now as it’s the era of modern technology. These are extinct but not forgotten. They were very loud due to the release of pressure through a “jiggler valve”. These cookers lacked safety measures and used to pose a severe threat to human lives. Though modern pressure cookers are new variations of the old-school pressure cookers, they are loaded with safety measures. Stovetop and Instant Top pressure cookers are the newest versions of pressure cookers.
Stove Top Pressure Cookers
Stovetop cookers are the most widely known and used pressure cookers. They have come up with the solution to the safety issues regarding the use of pressure cookers. Now, there is a minimal chance of an explosion and any health hazard related to pressure cookers. The safety features of a modern induction safe pressure cooker are as follows.
Stainless Steel Body
Most of the stove top pressure cookers come in a stainless-steel body and riveted, durable handles which have made them suitable for easy handling and safe transport. Besides, stainless steel doesn’t react with food keeping the taste and nutrients of the food intact.
Secure Locking Lid
The safety pressure valves play a pivotal role to ensure the safety of a stove top pressure cooker. It controls the steam release so meticulously that there’s no scope of accidents unless you’re totally out of luck. These valves help the cooker release excess pressure by opening up. The secure locking lid makes it safe and easy to use.
Pressure Sensitive Cooker
This is a great safety feature that glorified the safety of modern pressure cookers. One can’t open the cooker until the inside pressure comes to a stable position. And, you can’t open it if it is already in use.
Electric Pressure Cookers/ Instant Pot
Are electric pressure cookers safe? Of course, they are. Electric pressure cookers aka instant pots are the member of 3rd generation pressure cookers. They are the latest inclusion in the league of modern pressure cookers. They can be a part of your kitchen remodel ideas. They come with the following significant safety features to ensure the safety of the users.
Automated Lid Close/Leak/Pressure Detection
This cooker an excellent mechanism of detecting any issue concerning the close, leak or pressure of the lid. It will not activate pressurized cooking if the lid goes missing or is closed improperly. It will be switched off automatically using the preprogrammed technology if any leakage is detected. And, you will no be able to open the lid if the cooker is still operating in high pressure.
The steam release vent has to undergo serious turmoil. It is prone blockage as food particles can jam the aperture. These cookers come with an anti-blockage vent system to prevent the blockage.
To control the temperature, these cookers use thermostat under the inner pot. This thermostat regulates the temperature of the cooker. An electric cooker will stop functioning if the inner pot reaches a certain limit set by the users. Even, it will disconnect itself from the power supply using a fuse if the temperature reaches an unsafe level such as more than 160 degrees Celsius.
These cookers function safely within a range of pressure between 70kPa-80kPa, or 10.12psi ~ 11.6 psi. If the pressure exceeds the limit, it will push the steam release to allow the steam flow freely to the outer atmosphere. If the pressure rises too high and the pressure regulator mechanism fails, these cookers will activate internal protection system by creating a gap between the inner pot and the lid. This will release the steam from the gap to the internal chamber and stop the heating.
How to Use a Pressure Cooker Safely
Stop asking the question ‘Is pressure cooker safe?’, instead, take some precautions to ensure safety. Though, contemporary pressure cookers have built-in safety features to avoid the hazards/risk factors. But, it’s better to follow some rules of using a pressure cooker to make it safer. Read the following portion to get some pressure cooker safety tips.
Inspect the Cooker
The first rule of using any equipment is to inspect the equipment before and after uses. Check the rubber gasket, release valve, vents, and handle of the cooker before using it. don’t forget to check the electric output and cable while using an electric cooker.
Fill the Cooker Correctly
Some people overfill the cooker. This is a bad practice as the volume of food expands while being cooked. So. Filling the two-thirds of the cookers is recommendable. And the coker uses liquid to create the steam, so, use enough liquid to fill the cooker.
Release the Pressure Safely
Don’t touch the cooker with bare hands. Protect your hands with heat resistant pot holder. Be cautious when you are using the quick release method by using the valve to expel the pressure. Keep your face, hands, and body away from the hot stream of pressurized air.
Clean the Cooker and the Vents
Being knowledgeable about cleaning the cooker is a good thing for regular users who want to ensure safe operation while getting healthy foods. Make sure the vents are entirely clean before cooking anything. Because a jammed vent will not allow the valve to open to release the pressure.
Pressure cookers are safe to use. If you heard that it may explode and burn your skin, that’s partially true. But, in most of the cases, it is the error from the user’s end. So, this isn’t actually the fault of the cookers. Nowadays, the pressure cookers come with potent safety features that have a solution to every possible situation that may arise during the cooking process. So, don’t worry about the safety of using a pressure cooker. Hope this article has put an end to the discussion- “Is pressure cooker safe?”