One of the best things you can do to stay healthy and keep your family healthy is make more meals at home. If you’ve been thinking of treating yourself — or buying a gift for a special cook in your life — to a new kitchen cooking appliance, slow cookers and pressure cookers are both promising options. What are the advantages of pressure-cooking vs. slow cooking?
The Benefits of Slow Cookers and Pressure Cookers
Both slow cooking and pressure-cooking beat fast food hands down. There’s just no comparison between fresh veggies, fruits, meats and grains versus processed foods packed with artificial junk.
Slow cookers are great because you can chop up some veggies and meat, toss them in the pot and let them cook all day until tender. By the time you get home from work, a delicious, hearty meal is waiting for your family.Pressure cookers use the power of high pressure, high temperatures and steam to cook foods quickly. No more waiting hours for a pot roast or remembering to soak beans in water the night before. A pressure cooker can have chicken thighs, dried beans, brown rice, winter squash, beets and carrots ready in under an hour!
The Truth About Nutrients and Pressure Cooking
Do you have to worry about slow cooking and pressure-cooking destroy nutrients in food? Not really.
When you’re slow cooking, the nutrients from your veggies and other ingredients end up in the cooking liquid. If you’re making a soup or stew, that broth is going to be full of vitamins.
Pressure-cooking also preserves a ton of vitamins. Foods cook more quickly and don’t lose any water, so those carrots, beets and sweet potatoes are still packed with vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin K.
The Right Option for Your Family
Which are a better choice for your kitchen: slow cookers or pressure cookers? Here are a few questions that can help you decide:
- How good are you at planning ahead? Slow cookers require some food prep the night before or in the morning. If you don’t usually start cooking until you get home, pressure cookers are more helpful.
- How large is your family? Slow cookers offer a lot more space. If you have a big family or you’re the type of person who cooks meals for several days at a time, you may run out of space with a pressure cooker.
- How do you prefer cooking? Pressure cooking doesn’t let you season on the go. If you like adding a little of this and that or tasting as you cook, a slow cooker is a better fit.
On a personal note, I think using a slow cooker is easier than a pressure cooker, but both options are perfectly safe if you follow the directions.
Our Experience With Pressure Cookers
Rob and I have a pressure cooker and a slow cooker. We use the pressure cooker for lightning-fast beans and stews (sometimes I forget to take the roast out in the morning). The slow cooker is amazing for flavorful one-pot meals and soups.
These appliances have helped us resist the temptation of pizza delivery. For a lot of families, “pizza night” or "McDonalds night" is more about being too busy to cook than anything else. Slow cookers and pressure cookers really help with that. According to Rob, his waistline has definitely noticed the difference.