I hope all of you Instant Pot owners out there got a lot of use out of them this holiday season! I know I did. But after all that holiday cooking, your Instant Pot could probably use a little TLC, right? Well you’re in luck, because today I’m going to show you how to deep clean your Instant Pot (and how to KEEP it clean, too!)
If you’re new to the world of the Instant Pot (maybe Santa brought you one for Christmas?), this post will make a great resource for you in the future! Bookmark this post or print it out so you can reference it when it’s time to clean it.
I’ll start by sharing a few tips for keeping your Instant Pot clean during day-to-day use. If you get into the habit of doing these things after each use, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and effort cleaning your Instant Pot in the future! After the everyday cleaning tips, I’ll share a step-by-step process for doing a deeper clean on your Instant Pot, as well as how to deodorize the sealing ring if necessary. So let’s get started! :-)
How To Clean Your Instant Pot
Everyday Cleaning (After Each Use)
- Wash the inner pot. It’s dishwasher safe, so just toss it in with the rest of your dishes after dinner.
- Wipe it down. Use a wet dishcloth to wipe down the inside and the outside of the cooker.
- Clean the sealing ring. You should wash the silicone ring on the inside of the lid after each use to prevent it from absorbing food odors or colors. You can safely wash it in the top rack of your dishwasher.
- Wipe the inside of the lid. It’s easy to forget about the lid when cleaning your Instant Pot, but it’s often one of the surfaces that gets the dirtiest!
Deep Cleaning (Every Few Weeks)
Follow these 7 steps to deep clean your Instant Pot and prevent clogging, stubborn food residues, and weird smells from forming. Aim to do this process at least once a month if you use your pot frequently.
Step 1 – Unplug!
It’s good practice to unplug your Instant Pot any time you clean it, but it’s especially important when you’re doing a more intensive cleaning. You don’t want to take any chances!
Step 2 – Clean The Housing Unit
Use a clean, damp rag to wipe down the inside and the outside of the “housing unit” (or the main cooker part of the Instant Pot).
Use a small brush to remove any dried food residue from the bottom of the unit. Make sure to get your brush into all those nooks and crannies!
Step 3 – Wash The Lid
Hand-wash the lid of your Instant Pot with warm, soapy water.
Step 4 – Check The Smaller Parts
The smaller parts around the steam valve can get blocked with food or food residues, so this is a good time to inspect and clean them. First, remove the Quick Release handle by pulling straight up on it. Give it a quick wash with warm soap water and replace it.
Next, remove the shield the covers the steam valve on the inside of the lid. It might screw off or just pop off, depending on the model. Wash the shield and replace it.
Finally, inspect the condensation collection cup that attaches to the side of your Instant Pot. Give it a wash if necessary, and replace it.
Step 5 – Clean The Sealing Ring
Remove and inspect the silicone ring on the underside of the lid. If you notice cracking, other damage, or any deformities, you should replace it as soon as possible. You can find relatively inexpensive replacement rings online.
Wash the silicone ring in the top rack of your dishwasher, or perform a steam clean to remove any odors that might be present. (See the section below for more details on that!) Once the sealing ring is clean, replace it and make sure it is seated snugly against the lid.
Step 6 – Wash The Inner Pot & Accessories
Wash the inner pot, steam rack, and any other accessories you regularly use in your Instant Pot. The inner pot and steam rack are both dishwasher-safe, but you should check the labeling on your other accessories before putting them in your dishwasher.
Once you’ve cleaned the inner pot, use a paper towel and some vinegar to wipe it down. This will help remove any detergent residues and keep the finish looking shiny. (Never use steel wool or anything scratchy to clean the inner pot as they will damage the finish.)
Step 7 – Reassemble
The final step is to put all of the pieces of your Instant Pot back together. Make sure you don’t forget about the smaller parts, like the sealing ring, valve shield, or the Quick Release handle!
Deodorizing The Sealing Ring (As Needed)
If your sealing ring has taken on any funky food smells, you can deodorize it by doing a vinegar steam clean right in your Instant Pot. Fill the inner pot with 1 cup of water, 1 cup of vinegar, and a few lemon peels. Run the Instant Pot on the “Steam” setting for 2 minutes, then let the pressure release naturally. When the Instant Pot unlocks, remove the sealing ring from the lid and let it air dry.
The vinegar and lemon oils will help steam away the odors that get trapped in the silicone ring. This helps to keep odors from transferring to other foods you cook in the future! (But the sealing ring will eventually wear out, so you might have to buy a replacement sealing ring eventually.)
By following these cleaning tips, you can help ensure that your Instant Pot lives a long and productive life! :-)