A pressure cooker's fundamental purpose is to speed up cooking time. From stews, curries and legumes to steamed puddings and cheesecake, there isn’t much that won't go in a pressure cooker.

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It requires less water than other conventional cooking methods and means more vitamins and minerals are retained. Lack of exposure to air also prevents oxidation of the nutrients in the food. To top it all off, you'll save time and money on your energy bills.

As for the slow cooker vs pressure cooker debate, the two one-pot gadgets operate very differently and have pros and cons to each. Read more about the best slow cookers and how to use pressure cookers.

We've tried and tested the market's pressure cookers so you can find the perfect model. For more unbiased expert buyer's guides, visit our review section to find 200+ round-ups of everything from the best microwaves and best food processors to the best coffee machines and best fridge freezers.

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Best pressure cookers at a glance

  • Best for those familiar with pressure cooking: ProCook Professional Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker, £119
  • Best for those new to pressure cooking: Lakeland 3L Pressure Cooker 18435, £86.99
  • Best for speed of cooking: Kuhn Rikon 5-litre Duromatic Classic Neo Pressure Cooker Side Grips, £159.95
  • Best budget pressure cooking: Tower One-Touch Ultima Pressure Cooker, £70.42
  • Bet high-quality multicooker: Sage The Fast Slow Pro Pressure Cooker, £145
  • Best high tech pressure cooker: Tefal Cook4me Smart Touch Connected Digital Multi Pressure Cooker, £399
  • Best multifunctional pressure cooker: Instant Pot Duo, £84.99
  • Best pressure cooker for frequent users: Prestige hard anodized non-stick Smartplus pressure cooker, £59.99
  • Best pressure cooker for practicality without the price tag: Tower aluminium pressure cooker, £30.66

Best pressure cookers to buy in 2022

Pro Cook Professional Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker

silver pressure cooker with black handle and gold badge

Best for those familiar with pressure cooking

Star rating: 4.5/5

The ProCook 6-litre pressure cooker is a side handled stovetop cooker made from high quality brushed stainless steel with a 7mm impact bonded base that is suitable for all hob types. The ProCook can also be used as a regular stock pot, thanks to the additional glass lid.

This is straightforward to use from the box and can be up and running immediately after a quick wash and dry. It is so simple to use, with a single-handed closing mechanism and clear open-close buttons on the central column of the lid, which snap the lid jaws firmly shut with a reassuring thump. The pressure gauge, set to one side of the lid, is easy to see and read.

The cooking results are excellent with this pressure cooker: we had beautifully cooked, tender meat, vegetables with great colour and texture and a rich, thick gravy made in under an hour — all of this with a staggering 25- year guarantee.

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The only downside is that there are no recipes in the instruction book, so this could be a problem to getting started and making the most of your pressure cooker unless you are familiar with this cooking style already. Read our full Pro Cook pressure cooker review.

Available from:
Pro Cook (£119)

Lakeland 3L Pressure Cooker

silver pressure cooker with black handles and lid with gold badge

Best for those new to pressure cooking

Star rating: 4.5/5

This Lakeland version is a compact, straightforward 3-litre stovetop pressure cooker with a small footprint, making it perfect for smaller households. It is suitable for all hob types, including induction.

The cooker is made of good quality stainless steel with a very impressive instruction book. We especially like the inclusion of a second glass lid, which instantly turns it from a pressure cooker to a useful pan or serving dish.

Setting up is super-smooth thanks to a well-written manual with detailed cooking times and pressure tables. In addition, there's a great section on cooking rice and grains. There are only 6 recipes, but they are comprehensive and easy to follow.

Searing ingredients can be done directly in the cooker, which is helpful, and the food produced on the test was, after a few adjustments, delicious and ready to serve with no more reduction needed. Anyone new to pressure cooking can feel confident using this pressure cooker. Read our full Lakeland 3L pressure cooker review.

Kuhn Rikon 5-litre Duromatic Classic Neo Pressure Cooker

silver pressure cooker with black handles and gold badge

Best for speed of cooking

Star rating: 5/5

The Kuhn Rikon stovetop 5-litre pressure cooker made in Switzerland is impressive in its quality. It feels robust and well-made but not overly heavy. It has a Superthermic sandwich bottom for energy-efficient heat transmission and distribution. In addition, it has side handles which are strong and feel secure when moving the pressure cooker around.

This is a great pressure cooker with its high-quality, robust build, ease of use and speed of cooking with excellent results: our stew cooked amazingly fast at only 25 minutes on level two.

The cooker comes without recipes but these can be found on an app to download. However, there are cooking times on the cooker's lid, along with the multi-lingual instruction book.

Though this was not the cheapest stove top on the test, the superior quality, speed of cooking and ease of use make this a great investment piece. Read our full Kuhn Rikon 5-litre Duromatic Classic Neo Pressure Cooker review.

Available from:

Khun Rikon (£159.95)

Tower One-Touch Ultima Pressure Cooker

silver pressure cooker with black handles and gold badge

Best budget pressure cooking

Star rating: 4.5/5

The Tower One Touch is an excellent pressure cooker for those on a budget. It is good for those starting pressure cooking and comes at a phenomenal price for the quality. The cooker performed as well as many of the more expensive models, and at 6-litres in size, it has a manageable footprint and is a good size for the average family.

The cooker comes with a thorough instruction booklet, and a complete novice could approach setting up and using it immediately. The lid and locking system's opening mechanism is straightforward with just one hand and a simple twist. Included with the cooker is a detachable timer complete with batteries, which is handy with a manual cooker as you can keep an eye on the time as you move about your home. Read our full Tower One-Touch Ultima Pressure Cooker review.

Sage The Fast Slow pressure cooker

silver pressure cooker with black accents and gold badge

Best high quality pressure cooker

Star rating: 5/5

It is hard not to be impressed by the sleek good looks of this multicooker, with its brushed steel exterior and large LED screen accessing 11 pre-set and various manual programs.

Every aspect of the machine feels solidly made, from the handles and ceramic-coated steel inner pot to the secure removable lid, making cleaning the Sage super easy. The cooker is tall but has a small footprint relative to large multi cookers.

It couldn't be easier to start cooking with the Fast Slow. First, turn the machine on and use the sauté or searing functions, depending on what you are making. Next, select pressure, choose from a range of programs (or custom cook your recipes) add the ingredients and liquid, then close and turn the large knob in the centre of the lid, check the pressure valve is in the correct position, and away you go.

The machine will do the rest, including controlling the level of pressure, time and best form of steam release. The Sage has 7 pressure levels and the added safety of three types of steam release; all are hands-free and only need the press of a button. Read our full Sage The Fast Slow Pro Slow Cooker review.

Tefal Cook4me Smart Touch Connected Digital Multi Pressure Cooker CY912840

glossy black pressure cooker with screen and gold badge

Best high tech pressure cooker

Star rating: 4/5

The Tefal Cook4me CY912840 is an innovative pressure/multi cooker, but this one is technology smart. The interactive and intelligent cooker is for those who like the latest gadgets and will not be disappointed.

The 36cm round cooker is a striking black with some silver accents, and until the screen lights up, it does look slightly menacing. That changes when the large tilting screen lights up and the recipe programme kicks in.

The cooker needs to be connected to wi-fi, and the app downloaded, for access to a staggering 400, mainly pressure cooking, recipes which guide you step-by-step.

The Cook4me is not as complicated as it seems at first. If you are tech-savvy, this is a brilliant cooker and excellent for busy households where quickly getting healthy, exciting and delicious food on the table is needed. Read our full Tefal Cook4me Smart Touch Connected Digital Multi Pressure Cooker review.

Available from:
Amazon (£375)
Currys (£399)

Instant Pot Duo

Best multifunction pressure cooker

Read our full Instant Pot Duo review and find Instant Pot recipes and user advice

The Instant Pot is a single piece of kit that performs several jobs. The main function is pressure cooking, although it also slow cooks, steams and sautés – which could mean less appliances and more space on your worktops. It cooks dried pulses very quickly, and tough cuts of meat in 30 minutes.

It's mostly silent when cooking, apart from the odd release of steam. It has max and ½ fill lines marked on the interior of the liner, which is important for safety, and uses power efficiently. You can also brown ingredients using the sauté button, saving you having to fry ingredients in a pan first.

If you're a true devotee, you can add to your repertoire and buy accessories for it. These include steamer baskets, yogurt pots, ceramic inner pots, cake tins and different shaped steam vents. Worth the hype. Read our full Instant Pot Duo review.

Prestige hard anodized non-stick Smartplus pressure cooker

Best pressure cooker for the frequent user

The durable non-stick surface of this pan added extra versatility and we were able to make a surprisingly good risotto. It proved very easy to clean, too. Prestige gets top marks for thorough explanations, giving the user a broad understanding of how different foods work so you don’t need to stick slavishly to a recipe.

We liked the simplicity and sleekness of the design, as well as its comparatively lightweight feel. It has a 6-litre capacity and is also available in stainless steel. Other features include a veg basket with separators and trivet, a non-stick surface and two steam settings. Suitable for all hob types.

Tower aluminium pressure cooker

Best pressure cooker for practicality without the price tag

Only slightly more expensive than the IKEA pressure cooker, this offering from Tower ticks some additional boxes. It's lighter in weight and comes with a vegetable steaming basket and stand.

There's comprehensive information on cooking times, but still only two recipes. The design is super simple, meaning it's both easy to seal and doesn't have any bits that are awkward to clean. In this price range, you're unlikely to get much more. Suitable for all hob types, it comes in 4-litre and 6-litre versions.

How we tested pressure cookers

We tested a representative range of pressure cookers and scored them against our test criteria, focusing on the following four areas.

1. Size and storage: is the pressure cooker easy to store? Are there any features that would make it more compact?

2. Design: we assessed the aesthetic credentials of each model.

3. Cooking: we tried a variety of recipes to really put them through their paces, including meats that take a long time to tenderise, pulses and recipes with a lot of liquid, to see if it escaped on pressure release.

4. Ease of use: we looked at how easy the model was to open and close and whether the functions and accompanying literature were useful and straightforward.

Which pressure cooker should I buy?

If you purchase a large pressure cooker, look for one with two side handles. The pots get heavy when they contain food, so it's easier to lift and handle a pressure cooker if they have them. Folding handles require less storage space. Many recipes call for the use of accessories such as a steamer basket or cooking rack, so you'd get the best value for your money if you buy a pressure cooker that comes with one or two of these accessories.

How to use your pressure cooker

10 tips for using a pressure cooker
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Pressure cooker recipes

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This review was last updated in May 2022. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at goodfoodwebsite@immediate.co.uk.

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