What Is Natural Release On The Instant Pot?

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Natural Release On Instant Pot. Today we wanted to answer your essential questions about the instant pot natural release. What it is, how to do it, and most important of all, when you need to do a natural release.

This instant pot natural pressure release guide is also featured in the Magic With Gadgets Podcast. Simply search for Magic With Gadgets on your preferred podcast player, then scroll to episode 2 of season 2 to access this awesome episode.

what is natural release on instant pot
What Is Natural Release On Instant Pot

Instant Pot Natural Pressure Release

I got my first ever instant pot on the 25th of November 2016. I remember the date well because it was my daughter Sofia’s 2nd birthday. We were doing the birthday thing and I was staring at my instant pot sat in its box and was super excited to get it out and see what all the fuss was about.

The next day the hubby and I, did just that and made instant pot broccoli, instant pot salmon and broccoli and a few other recipes, and of course the instant pot water test.

We had already been in the instant pot facebook groups and had learnt all the instant pot jargon and were ready to go.

But for those of you that haven’t learnt about the instant pot first, all that instant pot jargon is probably driving you crazy and the biggest one of all, is often instant pot natural pressure release.

Today, I wanted to make things even easier for you and share with you:

  • What does natural release mean on instant pot?
  • Natural release vs quick release.
  • Do you turn instant pot off for natural release?
  • How long is natural release on instant pot?
  • How to do natural release on instant pot?
  • And so much more.

Plus, as well as our free newsletter, we also have a free instant pot mini course. It is ideal for instant pot beginners or those that want to get more confident with their electric pressure cooker. The free course runs for 5 days with a new lesson delivered each day to your inbox.

What Does Natural Release Mean On Instant Pot?

Let’s get the big question out of the way as I know many of you want to know, what is instant pot natural release?

Well, basically, it’s a simple concept for leaving the instant pot on after the instant pot has beeped and told you that your food is cooked.

It’s a way of carrying on the cooking process a bit like when you cook on the stove and then you turn the heat down to a simmer.

Instant pot natural release is very important to learn and understand when you get an instant pot. Even though about 5% of recipes use a natural pressure release, it is still essential for some instant pot recipes.

Such as instant pot raspberry jam. I made the error of NOT doing a natural pressure release when I first made it and ended up with jam syrup up the walls of the Milner kitchen!

Do You Turn Instant Pot Off For Natural Release?

No, you don’t. You can be sat on the sofa and let the natural release happen while you are in the middle of a Netflix marathon.

Because what happens is that the instant pot beeps and then goes straight into natural release mode.

Therefore, what I do, is sit on the sofa and relax when I put the instant pot on. Then when I hear the instant pot beep that the food is done, I set the timer on my watch.

I set it for an approximate time that I feel it will take for the instant pot to naturally release its pressure. Then I head to the kitchen and check on the food.

If it’s a recipe that calls for a 5 minute natural pressure release, yes I am talking to you instant pot macaroni pasta salad, then I will set my watch to 5 minutes and then go to the instant pot when it hits the correct time.

How Long Is Natural Release On Instant Pot?

The instant pot natural release time differs greatly depending on what food you are cooking.

In many instant pot recipes, I find that 10 minutes seems to be the standard time.

BUT if you have an instant pot that is very full then expect a long time for natural pressure release. Such as our instant pot irish stew.

Or I find that the natural release time is similar to the time to pressure. Therefore, if you have a food that takes about 15 minutes to go to pressure then expect 15 minutes of natural pressure release.

Natural Release Vs Quick Release

Then of course you are probably wondering what the difference is between natural release and quick release.

Natural release is waiting for your food to release its pressure without you having to hit the valve from sealing to venting.

Whilst quick pressure release is moving the valve from sealing to venting as soon as the instant pot beeps.

For more information and to compare I recommend you check out how to quick release instant pot, which is episode 4 of this podcast series.

How To Natural Release Instant Pot?

I find it better to explain how to do natural release on instant pot, with photos.

Firstly, once you have finished cooking in the instant pot, and the instant pot beeps you would just leave it and it will look like this:

natural release vs quick release

It has now entered natural release mode and you can stop this at any time by pressing cancel and moving the valve from sealing to venting.

But don’t touch it and this is how it looks after a minute:

How Do You Make Ham Tetrazzini?

If you have a recipe that calls for a 5 minute natural pressure release then your pressure cooker will read: L005, and you can wait until it counts up to the time you need.

And then it continues doing this, until you tell it otherwise and that is exactly what doing a natural pressure release is all about.

Did You Know We Have A Podcast?

We started the Magic With Gadgets podcast in the January of 2021 as a way to offer a different way to enjoy Recipe This. It focuses on cooking with kitchen gadgets. You can find out more about our podcast here.

With twice weekly episodes through September to December. This is episode 2 of the second season and you have the choice between reading this post, listening to the podcast or both.

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natural release on the instant pot


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I’m Samantha and along with my chef husband Dominic and our three kids, we teach you how to cook smart with kitchen gadgets. You can learn more about us and how we can help you by CLICKING HERE →

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