Use your Instant Pot as a Double Boiler to ensure slow, even heating for melting wax or chocolate, or cooking any sauce too delicate for direct heat.
Instead of buying special double boiler pans, make your own with an Instant Pot. Better yet, it’s quick and easy to do. Other than an Instant Pot, you only need a large mixing bowl.
Using an double boiler helps you easily melt chocolate chips or almond bark. (It’s perfect for making Instant Pot Chocolate Candy!) Plus, you can also use it to make delicate sauces and to prepare eggy custards.
What is a Double Boiler and How Does it Work?
Generally, double boilers are made from two stacked pots that use steam to cook or melt food. First, the bottom pot is filled with hot or boiling water. Then, a second pot is stacked on top of the bottom pot. Next, food is added into the second pot. As the steam rises from the bottom pot, it gently heats the bottom of the top pot.
To get all nerdy on you, the water in the lower part of the double boiler can only reach a temperature of 100°C (212°F) before it boils. Since most of the surface area of the upper pot does not come in contact with direct heat, the food being cooked in the upper pot can only reach a maximum temperature of 100°C (212°F). So, the double boiler helps heat food in a steady, even temperature as the steam rises.
One advantage of DIYing an Instant Pot double boiler is you can take your Instant Pot directly to your work area instead of being tied to the stove.
Instant Pot Double Boiler Equipment
For this double boiler, I used my 6 Quart Instant Pot. But you could also use a 3 Quart Instant Pot or an 8 Quart Instant Pot. Of course, you are not only limited to using an Instant Pot. This method should work well with other brands of multi-cookers too.
When using the Instant Pot as a double boiler, you will not be using the pressure function. So, you do not need the lid. To keep it out of the way, I stick the lid into the handle.
Next, I recommend using a glass or stainless steel bowl that’s big enough to not fall down into the pot. Your want your bowl to be suspended above (and not touching) the water. Depending on which size pressure cooker you use will depend on what size bowl to use. Be sure to use a bowl that is heat-safe.
I highly recommend these Pyrex mixing bowls! If you’ve been around for a bit, you know I love these for meal prep. They are so easy to use and to clean. You really can’t go wrong with them.
Instant Pot Double Boiler Instructions and Tips
Here’s how to use your Instant Pot as a double boiler:
Step 1: Add two cups of water to the inner pot of the Instant Pot.
Step 2: Press the “Saute” function key, and adjust the heat to high. Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat setting to low, or press “Keep Warm”. (You may need to turn off, or cancel, your high saute setting to change it to a lower setting.)
Step 3: Add your mixing bowl to the inner pot of the Instant Pot. Your bowl should be large enough to rest on top of the inner pot.
Step 4: Add your ingredients to the bowl, and stir occasionally until melted or warmed through.
NOTE: As you use your Instant Pot Double Boiler, please keep safety in mind. The water inside the pot can be very hot, so be careful moving your Instant Pot. Additionally, you may need to add more water if it evaporates too quickly. If you are working for long periods of time, occasionally, remove your bowl with hot pads, and allow it to cool off. Do not leave the Instant Pot unattended. Also, be sure to allow the water to cool before dumping it out of the pot to prevent any burns.
If you want to see the Instant Pot as a Double boiler, I loved this video from Indigo Nili.
Suggested Uses for an Instant Pot Double Boiler
One of the best things about the Instant Pot is its versatility. Using your Instant Pot as a Double Boiler is just one more trick to add to your arsenal!
While I focused on using a double boiler for food prep, you can also use it use for crafting (like melting wax).
You can use your double boiler to cook delicate sauces like Hollandaise sauce or Creme Anglaise. Coating foods in melted chocolate is one of my least favorite things to do in the kitchen. But I love that this double boiler keeps my chocolate warm as I work.
Stay tuned for my next post where I use this technique to make Copycat Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies!
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