Before settling on an Instant Pot or multicooker, there are some considerations to make in terms of size, price, functionality and cooking programs.
Consider the features and programs
Food-specific modes and options will make the difference when it comes to picking the best Instant Pot for your cooking needs. If you want to venture into making your own yogurt, or if you love hard-boiled eggs, it's worth it to pay a bit more for an Instant Pot model that can do those things.
Picking the right Instant Pot size
When it comes to choosing the right size, Instant Pot recommends a 3-quart model for one or two people. Families of six or fewer will likely be happy with the 6-quart multicooker. If you have a large household or host large groups often, consider springing for an 8-quart model.
Price and value
You can find multicookers and Instant Pots for hundreds of dollars, but even the budget-friendly models do most of what you'll ask of an Instant Pot and do it well. The pricier models may include more cooking programs, more user-friendly release valves or a sleeker exterior, but how well they pressure-cook, slow-cook or steam won't change much even as you jump up in price.
If you're still not sure which model will be the best Instant Pot for your kitchen, take a look at Instant Pot's product comparison chart or its guide to choosing the right cooker. At the end of the day, all of these models offer the basic pressure-cooking and slow-cooking modes Instant Pot is known for performing so well.
Other multicooker brands to consider
There are options from other brands, too. We reviewed a great Wi-Fi multicooker from ChefIQ, for example. It does more than Instant Pot's Wi-Fi model and comes with an integrated scale, nonstick pot and helpful iOS or Android app. It costs $200, so if you're not ready to graduate to a high-end model, Instant Pot's more affordable options are great for beginners. Ninja also makes several multicookers that have performed well in our testing. The Ninja Foodi 6.5-quart with SmartLid ($199) and is just one of several options from the brand's expansive line.