Pressure cookers are wonderful appliances that allow you to cook a multitude of ingredients and meals in just one pot. From roasts to legumes, rice, yogurt, and even canned goods, the culinary opportunities are endless.
Unfortunately, pressure cookers have always had a bit of a bad reputation. Where did this start? Who knows!
If youâ€™re one of those people that have always been scared of giving this method of cooking a shot, here are some of the top pressure cooker myths debunked to get you over your fears.
Pressure Cooking Causes Cancer
No, pressure cooking will not give you cancer! Because dry cooking ingredients at high heat is known to create cancer causing carcinogens, people have veered away from the traditional pressure cooker.
What they donâ€™t realize is that because the process involves both liquid and steam, carcinogenic compounds are very low, meaning that this is a complete myth.
Pressure cooking does not cause many harmful compounds such as acrylamide. In fact, pressure cooking is best known for its numerous fantastic health benefits.
The moist environment is key to keeping ingredients from developing harmful compounds. A recent study by a Swiss research team proved that potatoes cooked at high pressure for 20 minutes formed nearly no acrylamide, unlike during other high heat cooking processes.
Itâ€™s also worth noting that cooked at high pressure, potatoes only need approximately 10 minutes to cook completely, meaning that the likelihood of them producing any carcinogens are little to none.
Pressure Cooking Sterilizes All Food
People often confuse pressure cooking and smoking. These two methods of cooking are, in fact, complete opposites. While smoking allows you to cook meats in a way that preserves them for a matter of weeks, pressure cooking does certainly not.
Bringing pressure to your pot will not sterilize the ingredients inside it. Pressure cooking food for less than 30 minutes at a time will not kill the bacteria inside your ingredients, so make sure you pop any leftovers in the fridge once you have finished eating.
Pressure Cooking Takes Away All the Nutrition From Food
Quite the opposite! Pressure cooking retains a higher level of nutrients in food than other forms of cooking. Because of the way ingredients are cooked using liquid and steam in an airtight vessel, nutrients canâ€™t evaporate like they would during other cooking processes.
In addition to the above, research shows that retention of Vitamin C in broccoli, when cooked at high pressure, is far higher than when cooked using other methods.
Pressure Cooking Is Dangerous
All cooking methods can be dangerous if not undertaken with the right precautions. The same as an oven can burn, a fryer can spit oil, and a smoker can cause fumes, a pressure cooker has its own risks.
That said, by choosing a model from a reputable brand, reading the instructions properly, and being aware of your surroundings, pressure cooking is no more dangerous than any other form of cooking.
So, the real question is, are pressure cookers safe? Well, the simple answer is yes. This cooking method is among the best there are.
All you need to do is remember to keep your pressure cooker clean, not overcook your ingredients, and read the safety instructions before getting started.