Are Americans Scared of Their Own Damn Instant Pots?

Americans love the Instant Pot, the electric pressure cooker that can cook practically anything! But are they also, perhaps, a tad bit scared of the Instant Pot? Just a little?


These devices are suddenly ubiquitous thanks to social media word-of-mouth; “Deep discounts on Amazon Prime Day and again on Black Friday, along with the viral online sharing of these sales, turned Instant Pot into a household name,” reported NPR. But now the Wall Street Journal has explored the flip side of the boom: “Instant Pot anxiety.” The resulting article paints a picture of a hesitant American public that very enthusiastically ordered Instant Pots and is now, mmm, not so sure:

“It was too scary, too complicated,” said Debbie Rochester, who returned hers. “The front of the thing has so many buttons.”

“I filled it up, started it pressure cooking, and then I started to think, what happens when the barley expands?” said Sharon Gebauer, who also eventually returned hers. “I just said a prayer and stayed the hell away.”

“I thought I’d come closer to being an Olympic champion than be able to fix this,” said Linda Newell, whose yogurt boiled over.

“You read the manual and get so intimidated,” said Tina Shelly, who stuck her Instant Pot outside, just in case.


One source, who admitted to merely skimming the product manual, described using the quick release on a spaghetti recipe—the consequence being a literal rain of sauce in his kitchen. Look, it took me ages to get to the point where I could walk off and leave my slow cooker. I do not think I have the emotional fortitude or technical finesse for the Instant Pot life. The Journal was sure to note that, “Instant Pot has 10 safety mechanisms to protect users, the company says.”

The REAL question is where this latest revelation fits into the slow cooker plot twist on This Is Us.

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I don’t get it. I’ve used mine several times a week since I bought it about 2 months ago. I just set everything manually and once you get a feel for it it’s easy. And I did spaghetti and didn’t have sauce spatter everywhere, unlike my kitchen aid mixer which has fucked me more times than I can count.