How to Keep Your Instant Pot from Ruining Your Cabinets

Your kitchen will thank you.

Instant Pot in Kitchen
Photo: Detroit Free Press/Getty Images

The steam that erupts from your beloved Instant Pot's pressure-release valve is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it means your super-simple meal is ready. On the other, it means that you likely just gave your wood cabinets a facial—and not the kind that makes you prettier.

The not-so delicious truth is that all those piping hot droplets of moisture can wreak havoc on wood and paint. As The Kitchn points out, repeated steam exposure (we're talking weekly or nightly) to your kitchen cabinets can soften the paint and warp the wood, which is the last thing Instant Pot enthusiasts with small kitchens want to hear.

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The best thing you can do is to use your Instant Pot in an unobstructed space where it can spout its steam without the confines of your cabinetry. If one of these spaces isn't available, The Kitchn recommends doing the pressure-release portion of your cooking beneath the vent hood of your stove. "Your kitchen's hood vent is designed to suck up steam and heat, so turn it to full blast and let the steam release!" the site advises. Just be careful to never set your Instant Pot on your stovetop while the stove or oven is in use.

But whatever you do, do not use a towel or cloth to cover the valve while it's releasing. Not only can this damage your pot, but it can also create an unsafe vacuum effect, causing steam to be sucked back into the cooker.

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