How to use a jiggle top pressure cooker
Food cooked in a pressure cooker

What is a jiggle top pressure cooker?

How to use a jiggle top pressure cookerFor many years, the basic design of a pressure cooker has remained relatively unchanged. Pressure cookers consist of a pot or vessel with a locking lid that provides an excellent seal to keep pressure in the container. 

A jiggle top pressure cooker is a pressure cooker with a weighted safety valve that allows any excess steam from the pressure to escape. A weighted valve is placed on top of the lid to allow the steam to escape when enough steam/pressure is generated. 

As soon as the pressure in the cooker reaches a certain level, the weight will move and release any excess steam.

The product is readily available and typically has a relatively low price compared to more modern pressure cooker types. It also includes a visible indicator and basic locking mechanisms to ensure you do not open the device while the pressure is still high. 

You may feel confident in using it, but you should still be careful when releasing the steam after cooking supper.

Jiggle top pressure cooker 1

What are some benefits of using a jiggle top pressure cooker?

Some consumers who use jiggle top pressure cookers report the significant advantage is that they allow them to more precisely control the pressure and, as a result, prepare excellent meals.

Multiple weights may be used to manage the jiggle top, which may be adjusted depending on the amount of pressure required.

Jiggle top pressure cookers are typically well-made, affordable, and they’re pretty robust. Because there are few moving components, there’s less risk of anything breaking down or going wrong.

For example, if something goes wrong with the weighted valve, they are reasonably inexpensive and easy to replace.

Instruction manual

What are some drawbacks of using a jiggle top pressure cooker?

Jiggle top pressure cookers are fantastic kitchen appliances, but they are not to everyone’s liking, and some people find there are a few disadvantages to using them.

Some of the disadvantages mentioned are:

Some learning needed for beginners

The major disadvantage is that learning how to use them can be difficult for some people. There is a learning curve with many kitchen equipments if you want to get the most out of them.

Time to learn is especially true for a jiggle top pressure cooker because it isn’t simply a case of throwing stuff in a pot and hoping for the best.

Some of the things people claim they need to understand are:

  • the correct weight has to be used so that pressure is released correctly, so food is cooked properly
  • The right amount of liquid is used for the food that you are cooking
  • What pressure is required
  • How long does each food take to cook

The list is not endless, but they are essential. Luckily, there are many resources online that you can use to help make the most out of your pressure cooker.

Unable to set and forget

Another disadvantage is that jiggle top pressure cookers cannot be set and forgotten. You have to keep an eye on them as, unlike with electric pressure cookers, there is no automatic off switch.

It is usual for people to set the timer and then leave it on many kitchen appliances. An automatic switch-off is not possible with jiggle top pressure cookers as the stove controls the heat.

Jiggling noise can be annoying to some people

Another disadvantage of utilizing a jiggle top pressure cooker is the rattling noise it creates. This is required for the pressure to be released.

At first, the mechanism jiggling sounds are apparent, but many people claim you don’t even notice it after long-term usage.

Lack of functionality compared to electric pressure cookers

One major drawback of using a jiggle top pressure cooker is that there are no settings available, so you have to determine the correct pressure and cooking time based on your judgment.

This can be difficult for some people, but it’s not as complicated as first thought with practice.

If you are new to pressure cookers, this may pose an issue for you.

Never fear; many resources online can give you all the information you need about pressure cooking.

How to use a jiggle top pressure cooker

The jiggle top pressure cooker is an old-fashioned stovetop pressure cooker with a long history in many kitchens worldwide.

It has some benefits but also some difficulties when compared with modern electric or multi-function pressure cookers.

1. Before using your pressure cooker, it would be advisable to read the user manual that came with your appliance to ensure you use that particular model in the way the manufacturer intended it to be used.

2. Like with all new kitchen equipment, you should wash it before using it to ensure it is clean and ready for food to be cooked in it. Also, check for any visible defects and ensure that the lid closes correctly, so there are no surprises ahead.

3. The next step would be to fill the pressure cooker with a certain quantity of water, depending on the recipe you are following. However, it’s critical to keep less than 2/3 of the pot filled with liquid.

This is necessary to allow steam to build up and generate pressure in the pot. If too little water is used, the pressure cooker will be unable to reach the required pressure. Not to mention that having too little water in some recipes will result in burnt or raw ingredients, which you don’t want.

The minimum amount of water required for a jiggle top cooker should be at least 1 cup (or 250 ml).

4. Place all of the needed ingredients in the pot and start cooking. Check the water level to be sure you’ve got enough. Feel free to make any necessary adjustments to the water before sealing the lid.

Remove the weighted pressure regulator from your cooker and begin heating it. You may use the highest heat setting without worrying about causing damage to the food at this time. As heat is applied, wait until the water inside begins to boil and pressure builds up.

Place the weighted pressure regulator on top of the vent on top of the lid to avoid excessive pressure from escaping when you start seeing steam emerging from it. Before you attempt to mount the regulator, remember to put on a pair of cooking gloves because high-temperature steam can quickly burn your fingertips.

The pressure regulator will begin to jiggle once it is in place, and after a few minutes, it will start to rock. Now is the time to adjust the heat setting on the pressure cooker to low and allow the pressure regulator’s rocking pattern to stabilize. Allow the pressure cooker to rock consistently for as long as needed per the recipe you are following.

5. Once you finish cooking your foods with the pressure cooker, you have two options for releasing the pressure from the pot, either a natural release or a quick release. When you let your pressure cooker cool down on its own at room temperature for as long as it takes, this is known as a natural release.

A quick-release (or manual release) is when you don’t want to wait for the pressure to decrease naturally and release it yourself. Be careful when doing this – Remove the pressure valve with potholders and tongs.

This will release a powerful blast of steam from the valve, rapidly cooling down the interior temperature and discharge all remaining pressure.

6. Clean the pot thoroughly and store it safely until you are really to use it again!

child washing up

Cleaning your Jiggle Top Pressure Cooker

After each use, you must clean your pressure cooker thoroughly to obtain the best and safest performance. It’s OK to put the container in the dishwasher, but make sure to hand-wash the lid and rubber seal.

Dishwashers may clog tiny food particles into the valves and vents, which might obstruct steam from coming out at crucial times, affecting its ability to release pressure when needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

The minimum required amount of water for a jiggle top pressure cooker is 1 cup (or 250 ml).

Allow the pressure cooker to cool naturally after cooking. Remove the pot from the heat source once the pressure has dropped naturally. Turn off any gas or electric stoves as needed. Let sit for around 20-30 minutes while the pressure reduces so that you can easily remove the lid.

It's not advised to use a jiggle top pressure cooker without its weighted regulator, as this controls the amount of pressure within the pot at any one moment, ensuring that your meals are properly cooked.

To quick release, the pressure in a jiggle top pressure cooker, remove the pot from the heat source and place it on an unheated burner. Remove the pressure valve with potholders and tongs. This will release a powerful blast of steam from the valve, rapidly cooling down the interior temperature and discharge all remaining pressure.

The amount of pressure generated inside the pot will be determined by the weight you place on the valve. The more pressure you want to create, the heavier the weight placed on top of it. As pressure builds up within the pot, it reaches a specific PSI and is strong enough to resist the weight pushing against it from above, causing the valve to jiggle from side to side and releasing some pressure inside the pot.

The jiggle top pressure cooker works similarly to other pressure cookers, except it shakes when full pressure is reached. This informs you to lower the heat. The pressure cooker should shake about 1-4 times every minute or so. If it jiggles more frequently than that, the pressure is too high, and you should reduce the heat.

Yes, this is normal. When pressure builds inside the container, the safety valves open just enough to release excess pressure, resulting in a hissing noise and a jiggle of the weighted safety valve on top.