Converting an Instant Pot into an air fryer isn’t a straightforward task, as these are two distinct kitchen appliances with different functionalities. An Instant Pot is primarily a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, and more, while an air fryer is designed to cook food by circulating hot air around it, creating a crispy texture similar to deep frying but with much less oil.
If you’re looking to achieve air frying-like results with your Instant Pot, here’s a basic guide to follow. Keep in mind that this won’t replicate the exact capabilities of a dedicated air fryer, but it can give you somewhat similar outcomes:
Ingredients and Equipment:
- Instant Pot (pressure cooker lid removed)
- Trivet or a small metal rack that fits inside the Instant Pot
- Cooking oil spray
- Food you want to “air fry” (e.g., chicken wings, fries, vegetables)
- Preheat the Instant Pot: Plug in your Instant Pot and set it to the “Saute” function. Allow it to heat up for a few minutes.
- Prepare the Food: Season your food as desired. For example, if you’re making air-fried chicken wings, toss them with a small amount of oil and your preferred seasonings.
- Place Trivet or Rack: Insert the trivet or metal rack into the Instant Pot. This will help elevate the food above the base and allow the hot air to circulate around it.
- Arrange the Food: Place the prepared food on the trivet or rack in a single layer. Ensure there’s some space between each piece for proper air circulation.
- Cooking Process: Close the Instant Pot with a glass or transparent lid (do not use the pressure cooker lid). You want to keep an eye on the food as it cooks.
- Cook and Flip: Set the Instant Pot to the “Saute” mode again, but set it to a low or medium setting. You will need to manually flip or toss the food occasionally to ensure even cooking. The food may not crisp up as much as it would in a dedicated air fryer, but it should still get some browning and texture.
- Monitor Cooking Time: The cooking time will vary depending on the type of food you’re air frying. Keep an eye on it and use your best judgment. You might need to experiment a bit to achieve the desired level of crispiness.
- Serve: Once the food is cooked to your liking, carefully remove it from the Instant Pot and serve immediately.
Remember, this method is an improvisation and doesn’t replicate the precise air frying capabilities of a dedicated air fryer. If air frying is something you’ll frequently do, investing in a standalone air fryer would be a more effective solution. Always prioritize safety and proper usage of your kitchen appliances.