The Crock Pot is out. The Instant Pot is in.

Photo credit: Ethan:

Like a lot of working moms, I have an issue with getting dinner on the table for my family at an acceptable hour on weekdays. I’ve tried all the tricks: a month’s worth of freezer meals in a weekend, crockpot meals, meal planning and shopping once a week instead of running to the store after work, meal delivery service. All of these were great in the beginning, but eventually I would get sick of freezer meals, if I didn’t feel like cooking in the morning crockpot meals didn’t get started, and I found I was wasting food with the meal delivery service (I wanted a simple beef stew, but instead I had to make Barramundi and Caribbean tomato sauce with coconut rice and spinach).

Don’t get me wrong – I love to cook and I love trying new recipes with bold flavors. I just don’t have the time for it on weekdays.

I had never used a pressure cooker before, as it seemed too scary to me. This fear probably stems from something that happened to my neighbor friend: He had a pressure cooker full of beans blow up in his little 10-year-old’s face and my mom had to rush him to the hospital. That memory forever haunted my pressure cooker nightmares.

Then along came my new best friend, the Instant Pot. Instant Pot lovers will tell you over and over how much they love their Instant Pot. They will tell you exactly how long it takes to cook a beef roast. They will tell you about making eggs and soups and chili. They will prattle on about the Instant Pot until you’re convinced they get a commission on sales. That’s because to know the Instant Pot is to love the Instant Pot. It cooks a meal in a fraction of the time and it’s chock full of safety features. So no hot bean face!

Don’t just take my word for it. Read Melissa Clark’s article for the New York Times, on the virtues of the Instant Pot, and for some great recipes. If we’ve convinced you that today’s modern pressure cooker will change your weekday meal preparation, much like the microwave changed life for every busy mom in the 80’s, buy one on Amazon and join the Instant Pot Community on facebook. Your friends might get tired of you raving about your new toy, but they’ll forgive you for it if you provide samples.