Instant Pot (pressure cooker) HB uses?

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rhys333

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Hey everyone,

I picked up a Instant Pot pressure cooker a while ago, and it's proving to be an excellent piece of kit. I'm wondering if anyone is using an Instant Pot (or other pressure cooker) in homebrewing. A few uses that crossed my mind are:

1) Sterilizing water and/or equipment (mason jars and such) for yeast slurry storage;
2) Canning starter wort;
3) Brewing sours (using yogurt setting on Instant Pot).

I'd really like to hear from anyone that's had success with these or other HB uses! :mug:
 

madscientist451

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I've thought about making a hop extract using a pressure cooker, but never got around to it.
I was going to use the hop extract in a short boil beer experiment.
 
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I've got an instant pot. We use it almost every day for cooking.

I have mostly used it for sterilization. Unfortunately they didn't design them with 1 quart mason jars in mind. The only way to fit (a single) 1 qt jar is to turn it on its side. It's a shame they didn't make it just an inch taller.

I do use it all the time to can small quantities of sauces in pint size jars. It's fantastically easy for that!
 

Tartan1

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I purchased my IP back in 2014 and shortly afterwards (after registering) received an email alert that I couldn't use it as a pressure canner. Keep in mind at that time they were advertising "pressure canning" as one of its capabilities, before the safety notice was issued.
From their site not sure if its still relevant or not but does apply to mine specific.
https://www.hippressurecooking.com/forums/topic/instant-pot-canning/

I do however use a 30qt stovetop pressure canner and have had excellent results. Boil extract on stovetop for about 15-20min then place in preheated jars (in 200 deg oven 20 min) lids preheated in boiling water bath for 5 min then into the canner for 30-40min after an initial 10 min open vent blowoff.
 
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I stand corrected, that is good news.
Actually, I stand corrected! I cannot find the paper manual to check my memory or where I got that assumption.

This is the model that I have. It's 'high' setting is 10.2 ~ 11.6psi (70 ~ 80kPa).

I'm clearly no canning expert. I do have a large pressure caner that I use to can starter wort. I have been using the Instant Pot to can small amounts of sauces like BBQ and pizza sauce without incident. None of them have had the lids pop up. (And no-one has gotten sick!)

Back to the OP's original question then. Is this is not good enough to sterilize equipment either then?
 
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rhys333

rhys333

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I stand corrected, that is good news.
Actually, I stand corrected! I cannot find the paper manual to check my memory or where I got that assumption.

This is the model that I have. It's 'high' setting is 10.2 ~ 11.6psi (70 ~ 80kPa).

I'm clearly no canning expert. I do have a large pressure caner that I use to can starter wort. I have been using the Instant Pot to can small amounts of sauces like BBQ and pizza sauce without incident. None of them have had the lids pop up. (And no-one has gotten sick!)

Back to the OP's original question then. Is this is not good enough to sterilize equipment either then?

I have the newer generation IP, and the instructions now say that canning/sterilizing ability hasn't been properly tested yet, so they're not recommending canning at this time. It sounds sorta like "it probably will work, but we need regulatory approval before telling you that".
 
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I think things marketed as "canners" need to meet some specific FDA rules. All the ones I have seen have an actual pressure gauge, for example.

My pressure canner justifies its existence just for wort and hummingbird food, I haven't even done anything cool with it yet. Oh, it also lets me make like 50 chicken wings at once, that's half the reason I got it. :) (Pressure cook the wings, chill them, then into the deep fryer. PARTY TIME!)
 
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rhys333

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So, here's a potentially stupid question...

What happens if you pressure cook sugar solution, maybe with a drop of citric acid? Might this produce brewer's invert sugar, or just destroy the Instant Pot?
 
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Why would it destroy the instant pot? I don't think you will have a problem.

If you put it inside a mason jar you could also sanitize the solution so it would last longer. :rock:
 

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Schlenkerla

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Hey everyone,

I picked up a Instant Pot pressure cooker a while ago, and it's proving to be an excellent piece of kit. I'm wondering if anyone is using an Instant Pot (or other pressure cooker) in homebrewing. A few uses that crossed my mind are:

1) Sterilizing water and/or equipment (mason jars and such) for yeast slurry storage;
2) Canning starter wort;
3) Brewing sours (using yogurt setting on Instant Pot).

I'd really like to hear from anyone that's had success with these or other HB uses! :mug:
To be honest, I bought my IP Ultra to make crystal malt, but knew I could use it for cooking. LOL

For Crystal Malt: Soak pale malt, equal to its weight with distilled water. Soak 3-12 hours. If more than 3 hours refrigerate. Then add it to the hot pot on the ULTRA setting at 150~160F for a minimum of three hours. Then put on a pan in the oven to dry at 180F for 6-8 hours. This makes the basic carapils malt. You can heat it at higher temps to make 10L, to 60L.

Also thought it could be used for small batch mashing and brewing.
 

Schlenkerla

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This website has a whole host of ideas for making specialty malts that an IP might be suitable for using.

I'm thinking, no malting whatsoever. Starting with pale malt make other malts. The IP would be used just for wet steeping, mashing or stewing prior to drying or roasting in a conventional oven. This covers the low end of the temp spectrum that a normal oven can't do. 100~170F.

Brewing The Hard Way - Chocolate Caramel Malt

 

MayhewMasher

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Hey everyone,

I picked up a Instant Pot pressure cooker a while ago, and it's proving to be an excellent piece of kit. I'm wondering if anyone is using an Instant Pot (or other pressure cooker) in homebrewing. A few uses that crossed my mind are:

1) Sterilizing water and/or equipment (mason jars and such) for yeast slurry storage;
2) Canning starter wort;
3) Brewing sours (using yogurt setting on Instant Pot).

I'd really like to hear from anyone that's had success with these or other HB uses! :mug:

Has anyone made a yeast starter in an Instant Pot? I was thinking that I could run the pressure high cycle for 10 minutes to sterilize and then pressure cook the starter wort for 5 or 10 minutes, let it cool to pitching temp, pitch yeast and cover with sterilized foil. What do you guys think?
 
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Has anyone made a yeast starter in an Instant Pot? I was thinking that I could run the pressure high cycle for 10 minutes to sterilize and then pressure cook the starter wort for 5 or 10 minutes, let it cool to pitching temp, pitch yeast and cover with sterilized foil. What do you guys think?
In theory that would work fine. You may want to find a way to get some of the trub out before you make your starter, otherwise all of that is going into your beer eventually.

While I only use foil to cover my flask when I make a starter, there is something about having such a big opening covered by foil that would worry me. I think the starter would grow just fine, but you would have to do a really good job of making sure it doesn't get contamination/infection.

I do think this would be a great way to make the starter wort. I might try this sometime as it would be a hands off way to make it. In my case though I think I'd pour it into my flask and cool it to make the starter.
 

stomatta

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I know this is an old thread but I wanted to add that I use my Instant Pot for cereal cooking of raw grains. A buddy gave me a 50lb bag of Raw Rye.. I tried cooking it stove top and it worked, but was messy and took a long time. I milled 2lbs and put in in the instant pot with enough water to cover it by an inch or so, cooked it for 5 minutes and it worked great in the mash! Got my gravity prediction right on. I had only the 6qt and I think you could maybe get 2.5lbs in it (which would be tight but I think would work) but if you had an 8 qt you could get easily more than 3lbs. Luckily we have two 6 qt now so if I wanted to get to 5lbs I could do it in one cook using both pots and be ready to add to the mash. I call it a Concoction since i'm adding it to raise the temp but not removing first to boil.
 
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