Air fryers have been all the rage recently – and rightfully too. Who doesn’t want fried food that’s healthy, right? From bloggers to Youtubers, every influencer seems to be living their best life with air fryers in their kitchen.
But we think that Instant Pot’s version of an air fryer is more interesting than an ordinary one since it combines pressure cooking in it as well. So in this post, we’ll be reviewing the very hyped Instant Pot Duo Crisp + Air Fryer.
What features are included or excluded in it? Should you buy it or is it not worth it? Read on for a detailed review and our opinion on how well this model performs in the kitchen.
Here’s what we think about the features present on the Instant Pot Duo Crisp air fryer:
Right out of the package, you’ll notice that the Duo Crisp is heavy. And by heavy, we mean a whopping 22 pounds! Luckily, though, the air fryer lid is removable, and this way, the weight is significantly reduced for moving it around.
Plus, the Instant Pot Duo Crisp 6-quart is much more lightweight, so if you don’t need a huge 8-quart Instant Pot, go for the smaller size.
The basic design is pretty similar to other models – a brushed stainless steel base with a tri-ply bottom inner pot and black, matte lids. The display is slightly smaller than Instant Pot Ultra or Nova, and the buttons are far less in number.
Moreover, this model comes with two lids – one for air frying and crisp cooking functions, and the other for performing regular Instant Pot functions. Both are easily removable lids, but the air frying lid may prove heavy and bulky (as we mentioned earlier).
On the other hand, the pressure cooking lid has a button you can twist to release steam from a safe distance, and it also automatically locks and goes from vent to sealing position without you having to remember to do that.
So, overall, the design is very similar to most models of Instant Pot.
Air Frying Mode
Who doesn’t want crisp fries and chicken nuggets that aren’t drenched in oil, right? With the innovative air fryer lid, you can now use this appliance as either a stand-alone air fryer or finish off your tender steaks by giving them some crispy skin.
Basically, all you have to do is switch the lids. When you’re done pressure cooking, just put on the air fryer lid to finish off your dish. It’s truly a one-pot meal option that doesn’t require you to pop the dish into a convection oven.
If you want to use it as an air fryer alone for healthy meals with less oil, just pop whatever you wish to air fry on the rack (included) and press one of the air fry icons.
You can choose to bake, roast, air fry, or broil stuff, and the size of this bad boy (8-quart) is large enough to fit a whole chicken inside of it.
How well does it crisp up stuff? We’d say pretty well. Although it tends to take slightly longer to crisp up or fry things, we still think it does a pretty good job at giving your food some extra crunch.
However, the manual lacks proper instructions for air frying – there aren’t any timing directions given. So you’ll probably have to use a lot of guesswork, which can prove challenging, especially for novices who have never worked with an air fryer before.
Previous models of Instant Pot came with many presets, but this one is as simple as it can get. It works as a pressure cooker, steamer, sauté pan, slow cooker, dehydrator, and sous vide machine.
So while you don’t get the rice, yogurt, chili, etc., presets, which is a bummer for many, you can still make a bunch of recipes with these modes.
Plus, you can always set those presets manually – you just have to know the right time and temperature for each recipe. The package does come with instructions on timings for various foods, so that’s pretty helpful.
With that said, we love how well this gadget pressure cooks. It also heats up surprisingly quickly in sauté mode, with its tri-ply bottom distributing the heat as evenly as possible.
The slow cook mode isn’t the best, as it takes more time than a regular slow cooker, but it surely gets the job done.
The dehydrator works as well as any machine, making tasty little chunks of dehydrated fruit for the kids. Just make sure you set it for at least three to four hours for Instant Pot to work its magic.
So overall, the Duo Crisp is a pretty impressive all-rounder gadget, despite lacking presets that were so hyped on previous models.
Since this model lacks presets, it doesn’t have a herd of buttons on its control panel. Instead, there are just a few basic controls, which gives the appliance a much cleaner look.
Apart from the five pressure cooking options, you get a row of five smart programs for the air fryer lid. Below this, you’ll have a delay start and keep warm button. Also, there’s a start button on this model, so you will always have to press it to start the cooking process.
There are also two sets of plus and minus signs on the top – one for increasing and decreasing the pressure and the other for adjusting time. Quick and easy, isn’t it?
Hence, if you compare this to the Ultra or Smart Wifi, the Duo Crisp has a simpler control panel that’s pretty straightforward to operate.
The Instant Pot Duo Crisp comes with a whole new set of accessories that previous models didn’t have. It has a trivet that turns into a rack for steaming or air frying stuff.
Also included is a storage cover for the air fryer lid that also doubles as a protective stand, so you have a safe surface area to rest the hot lid on.
Apart from this, you get an air fry basket and two silicone rings.
Just like every Instant Pot, the Duo Crisp comes with over ten safety mechanisms, including overheat protection, auto-sealing lid, leaky lid detection, and more.
Moreover, all of their models are UL and ULC certified, so you can rest assured that you’re safe from any harm.
Fortunately for those who can’t handle the humongous 8-quart Duo Crisp, it’s now available in a second size – 6-quart.
Instant Pot Duo Crisp 6 Qt Specifications
- Dimensions: 13.58″L x 13.58″W x 12.99″H’
- Weight: 19.6 lbs
- Ideal for: Families with 4-6 members
Instant Pot Duo Crisp 8 Quart Specifications
- Dimensions: 13.58″L x 13.58″W x 12.99″H
- Weight: 22 lbs
- Ideal for: large meals for eight or more people
Reasons to Buy
- Multi-cooker with removable air fryer lid
- LCD screen with big, bright font
- Simple user interface
- Lots of accessories
- Steam release button for safety
- Makes healthy meals
- Dishwasher-safe inner pot, storage cover, and basket
Reasons to Avoid
- Heavy and takes up lots of space
- Delay start and keep warm option not available for air frying
- 1-year warranty
Instant Pot Duo Crisp FAQs
How to use Instant Pot Duo Crisp air fryer?
Place the food items into the air fryer basket or rack and keep the whole thing in the inner pot. Next, lock the lid by simply lining the prongs on the side of the lid with the holes on the base unit.
Now press the air fry button, set the time and temperature, and press start. Also, you can always take off the lid to check on your food during the cooking process.
Can you use the Instant Pot as an Air Fryer?
You don’t have to buy a whole new Instant Pot to get the air frying function. Just buy the air fryer lid separately and turn your regular Instant Pot into a Duo Crisp!
Note: the lid isn’t compatible with Duo Evo Plus, Max, Duo SV, and Smart Wifi.
Can Instant Pot Duo Crisp make yogurt?
Even though there are no presets for it, you can still make yogurt in the Duo Crisp. All you’ll need is a digital food thermometer to check the temperature of your milk while heating and cooling it, and then use the sous vide mode for setting the yogurt.
Try watching tutorials on Youtube, and you’ll be good to go.
Should you buy the Instant Pot Duo Crisp air fryer? If you already own an Instant Pot model that’s compatible with the air fryer lid sold separately, then no.
But if you were planning to buy an Instant Pot anyway, then the Duo Crisp is worth the extra bucks with its innovative air fryer lid. Say goodbye to mushy meals that pressure cookers often tend to make – the Duo Crisp can crunch up any meal of any size.
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