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Instant Pot Duo vs Duo Nova vs Duo Plus (2021): Which Instant Pot Should You Get?

Instant Pot multi-cookers are great since they offer a convenient way to cook while saving up kitchen space. However, there are plenty of Instant Pot models and choosing one can be unnecessarily hard, especially if you don’t know much about multi-cookers. We’ll try to help you out by comparing three of the more popular and affordable Instant Pot models—the Instant Pot Duo, Instant Pot Duo Nova and Instant Pot Duo Plus. Here’s a comparison chart for the three models to start things off.

Instant Pot Duo vs Duo Nova vs Duo Plus Comparison Chart

ModelInstant Pot DuoInstant Pot Duo NovaInstant Pot Duo Plus
 Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Saute, Yogurt...Instant Pot Duo Nova 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Saute,...Instant Pot Duo Plus 8 Quart 9-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer,...
PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Size Options3, 6 & 8qt3, 6, 8 & 10qt3, 6 & 8qt
Cooking Functions7-in-17-in-19-in-1
Cooking Programs13 smart programs11 smart programs15 smart programs
Control PanelTouch buttons
LCD screen (timer)
Touch buttons
LCD screen (timer + status icons)
Touch buttons
LCD screen (timer + cooking progress bar + temperature indicator)
EasySeal LidNoYesYes
Easy Steam ReleaseNoYesYes
Cooking ProgressN/AStatus iconsFull progress bar
Warranty1 year1 year1 year

Key Differences

The Instant Pot Duo Plus has all the features of the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova. However, only the Instant Pot Duo Nova has a 10qt size option.

The Instant Pot Duo (left), Instant Pot Duo Nova (middle) and Instant Pot Duo Plus (right).

Design-wise, all three have the same form factor, however, the Instant Pot Duo Nova and Duo Plus both come with easy seal lids while the Instant Pot Duo only has a standard lid. With easy seal lids, the release valves are automatically sealed when the lids are closed. On the Instant Pot Duo, you need to do it manually. The Instant Pot Duo Nova and Duo Plus lids also come with steam release buttons, so they are faster and safer to use than the Instant Pot Duo.

When it comes to their control panels, all three Instant Pot cookers come with one-touch buttons and LCD displays. The LCD display of the Instant Pot Duo is the most basic, only showing you the timer and which settings are in use. On the Instant Pot Duo Nova, the LCD screen displays the timer, settings in use and status icons to let you know its cooking progress. On the Instant Pot Duo Plus, the LCD screen is more advanced, as it shows the timer, settings, temperature and cooking progress bars.

As for their cooking functions, both the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova are 7-in-1 cookers, while the Instant Pot Duo Plus is 9-in-1. The Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova have the following functions: pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, saute/searing pan, warmer and yogurt maker. The Instant Pot Duo Plus has all these functions as well, with the addition of sous vide and sterilizer functions.

All three Instant pot models are available in 3qt, 6qt and 8qt sizes, with the Instant Pot Duo Nova having the additional size option of 10qt. As with most Instant Pot cookers, their 3qt models are cut down versions of the higher capacity models as they come with fewer cooking programs.

Instant Pot Duo Review

Best for those on a budget and/or experienced multi cooker users.

With its manual cooking program, the Instant Pot Duo is great for those who like to experiment a lot with their cooking.

By far the most popular Instant Pot model, the Instant Pot Duo appeals to the most number of people due to its affordability. As a 7-in-1 cooker, it has seven functions: a slow cooker, pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, saute/searing pan, food warmer and yogurt maker.

When it comes to design, it is the most basic of the three cookers. It has a standard lid and its control panel LCD only shows the most basic information, such as the timer and which settings are in use. However, this doesn’t mean that it is terrible, it is just not as user-friendly as the more expensive models. As such, this cooker is more suitable for experienced users that don’t need the beginner-friendly features that come with other models.

The Instant Pot Duo has 14 built-in smart cooking programs; bean/chili, saute/simmer, soup, poultry, meat/stew, multigrain, rice, porridge, steam, keep warm, manual, slow cook, yogurt and pressure cook. These cooking programs are available on the 6qt and 8qt models. The 3qt Instant Pot Duo is missing the manual, multigrain and poultry programs.

Click here for our comparison of the Instant Pot Lux and Instant Pot Duo

Instant Pot Duo Nova Review

Best for beginner users.

If you want the biggest Instant Pot cooker, the 10qt Instant Pot Duo Nova is the only choice.

The Instant Pot Duo Nova is similar to the Instant Pot Duo in that they are both 7-in-1 cookers. However, the Instant Pot Duo Nova is more beginner friendly since it has a more advanced lid design that comes with a couple of safety features and it has a more advanced control panel LCD as well. Its LCD screen, in addition to showing the timer and settings, also display status icons to let you know how the cooking process is going.

The Instant Pot Duo Nova lid come with easy seal and easy steam release features, both of which are helpful to beginners and inexperienced cooks. With easy seal feature, the release valves are automatically sealed when the lid is closed. This is one less thing to worry about so it is very useful. As for the easy steam release feature, it makes the process safer, so you don’t hurt yourself, and faster.

As for its built-in cooking programs, it has the following: bean/chili, saute/simmer, soup, poultry, meat/stew, multigrain, rice, porridge, steam, keep warm, slow cook, yogurt and pressure cook. The only difference between the Instant Pot Duo Nova and Duo when it comes to cooking programs is that the former does not have a manual cooking program.

The Instant Pot Duo Nova is available in 3, 6, 8 and 10qt size options. Of all the Instant Pot models, Instant Pot Duo Nova is the only one that has a 10qt size option.

Instant Pot Duo Plus Review

Best if you want the most advanced cooker of the three.

The Instant Pot Duo Plus is the most feature-rich cooker among the three.

As the most advanced cooker, the Instant Pot Duo is also the most expensive. It is a 9-in-1 cooker and it has these functions: warmer, rice cooker, slow cooker, pressure cooker, steamer, saute/searing pan, yogurt maker, sterilize and sous vide. With two more cooking functions, the Instant Pot Duo Plus is the most versatile among the three and it allows you to prepare more varied meals.

Aside from having the most cooking functions, it also has the most advanced LCD display. It’s LCD displays the timer, settings in use, temperature reading and full progress bars that let you know the status of what you’re cooking.

The Instant Pot Duo Plus has 15 smart cooking programs; meat/stew, soup/broth, rice, oatmeal/porridge, saute, yogurt, slow cook, egg, pressure cook, bean/grain, cake, steam, keep warm, sterilize and sous vide.

As for its design, it has the same form factor as other Instant Pot cookers. The lid that it comes with it is the same as the one on the Instant Pot Duo Nova. The Instant Pot Duo Plus comes in 3qt, 6qt or 8qt capacity, and as usual with Instant Pot cookers, the 3qt capacity is missing a couple of built-in cooking features, namely, the cake and beans/grains programs.

Verdict

For the budget conscious, the Instant Pot Duo is a great choice, while the Instant Pot Duo Nova is great for those that want a more user-friendly control panel. If you want the best of the three, the Instant Pot Duo Plus is the clear choice.

If you just want a multi-cooker without spending too much, the Instant Pot Duo is the smartest choice. While it is not as feature-rich as the other Instant Pot models, it is still an excellent cooker for its price. However, if you want a more user-friendly cooker and you don’t mind spending a bit more, you should get the Instant Pot Duo Nova instead. It has a more detailed LCD screen and it has a couple of safety features that makes it easier to use. When it comes to cooking functions, they are almost the same.

If you want the best of the three models, then the Instant Pot Duo Plus is the obvious choice. You’ll be able to cook more types of foods with this model as it comes with more cooking functions and programs. It also has the most detailed control panel of the three.

FAQs

๐Ÿ“Œ What is the difference between the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova?

The Instant Pot Duo Nova comes with a lid that has a couple more features. Its LCD screen also displays more information, such as status icons to let you know the progress of your cooking.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is the Instant Pot Duo Nova worth it?

If you already have an Instant Pot Duo, upgrading to the Duo Nova is not worth it. However, if you are buying your first Instant Pot, then the Duo Nova is worth purchasing.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is the Instant Pot Duo Plus any good?

Yes, the Instant Pot Duo Plus is an excellent kitchen appliance that is worth buying. It comes with several cooking functions and its sous vide cooking function separates it from other multi cookers at the same price point.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is Instant Pot a good brand?

Yes, they have been in the market for a while and they offer some of the best multi-cookers and kitchen appliances for the money.

Last update on 2021-05-08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.