The Instant Pot Burn Message: What It Is & How to Avoid It
The surest way to avoid an Instant Pot upset is to follow tried and tested recipes.
However, whether it's your first time or you're a seasoned pro (excuse the pun), it's never a bad idea to revisit the basics.
On that note, we’ve put together a quick guide to ensure you know what that the Instant Pot burn message is and how you can avoid it.
#1: The Instant Pot Basics
There are a variety of cooking modes available to you on the Instant Pot. These include everything from Manual to Saute to Slow Cook and even Yogurt cooking settings.
But how do you work them?
You simply select the function (i.e. slow cook), and adjust the time and pressure to suit your recipe. It’s important to find a recipe site that provides you with all the instruction you need for Instant Pot cooking modes and pressure release methods, like this great recipe index by Corrie Cooks.
#2: What is the “Burn” Message?
The “Burn” message means don’t panic. The great thing about the Instant Pot is - it lets you know what is going on with your dish. Your cooker or microwave would just keep incinerating your meal without so much as a beep.
However, it's rarely your food that’s burning. More often than not the Instant Pot burn message is an alert to let you know that your pot has detected a high temperature at the bottom of the cooking dish.
#3: Always Add Water
Instant Pot best practice dictates that you always use enough liquid for your dish. This allows the pot to bring the cooker to pressure.
How much liquid should you add?
Estimates vary and should be applied based on what recipe you decide to use. For example, many Instant Pot chicken recipes will call for at least half a cup of water.
WARNING! If you don’t use enough liquid you will get the burn message. Simply add more water after the Instant Pot has fully cooled down if this occurs.
#4: Use the Trivet
Using the trivet is a tried and tested way to never burn your dish.
The trivet makes sure no food gets stuck at the bottom of the inner pot - and makes getting the burn message almost impossible.
#5: Only Cook What is Appropriate
You should only cook what is considered suitable or proper within the Instant Pot guidelines or according to top-notch Instant Pot recipes.
This means, no fried chicken or turning your pot into a deep fat fryer.
We trust that you’ll understand that this may trigger something far worse than the burn message.
#6: Is Your Liquid Too Thick?
What's worse than a lack of liquid? Thick liquid, that's what.
Cooking thick tomato or cream-based sauces can cause the burn message to trigger. That’s because those thicker (sometimes starchier) sauces are more likely to get stuck on the bottom of the pot, which is what causes the burn message in the first place.
#7: Is Your Instant Pot Properly Sealed?
If your Instant Pot is not sealed correctly it can leak steam. That will cause the food at the bottom of the pot to burn.
And, you guessed it, that will trigger the burn message.
It's wise to be mindful of instant pot best practice to ensure you get the most of your recipes and most importantly avoid that burn message.