The popularity of these devices encourages high competition in this segment, forcing companies to constantly improve their models. Of course, the functionality essentially affects the choice of multi cooker. But, of course, it also depends on the price, set of cooking programs, features of the multi-cooker and its main technical values.
Auto warming mode, delayed start, Wi-Fi connection, 3D-heating, drip collector and preset cooking programs
Auto warming keeps the temperature of ready meals for a predetermined time. But this mode also can be used for cooking yogurt. In this case, the device must support temperatures up to 40 degrees for at least 8 hours. Unfortunately, temperature over 40 degrees kills useful bacteria strain.
Moreover, some such models have option for switching off this function. It’s conveniently in some cases. For example, the recipe for separate dishes envisages their slow cooling after cooking.
Delayed start provides automatic start cooking at the set time. It use a timer that varies from 2 to 24 hours.
Wi-Fi connection provides download new recipes from the internet, technical support and remote control.
Electric heaters in models with 3D-heating function provides food heating simultaneously from below, the sides and top.
Of course, 3D-heating reduces cooking time by approximately 30% and significantly increases the uniformity of heat treatment. But, these models usually have additional protection against switching on device with an empty bowl.
This feature provides optimal conditions for baking due to uniform heating of cakes, pastries, and cookies on all sides. Unfortunately, the cost of 3D models is higher.
Models with drip collector option use a small cup for collection of condensate on device lid.
Preset cooking programs provide cooking in automatic mode and significantly affect the functionality. The number of cooking programs reaches several dozen.
Steaming cooking, non-stick coating, inspection window, self-control, locking switching on without bowl and Voice Guidance
Of course, many people today prefer steamed vegetables, burgers, dumplings, etc. Therefore, almost all modern models have this accessory.
Of course, the non-stick properties of the bowl deteriorate due to abrasion of the coating layer during operation. This is one of the main problems. In the end, the user buys a new bowl. But manufacturers are constantly improving the coating quality. Today, they use coatings based on polytetrafluoroethylene polymer (Teflon, Expert Pro, Prometal Pro, Intensium, Stalaflon, Adgelast, etc), or based on a ceramic (Termolon, Ekolon, Greblon and etc). Of course, the coating type significantly affects its longevity and model cost.
Inspection window in the housing provides visual control over the cooking process. But, of course, transparent lid also solves this problem.
Almost all modern models have self-control. LED screen displays the test result Of course, error code greatly simplifies fault identification.
Locking switching on without bowl eliminates the overheating risk. Unfortunately, inexpensive models usually don’t have this feature. Option uses the button with a spring under a bowl that is pressed in the moment of bowl placing inside chamber. But this element is used only for activation of temperature sensor and is not protection in the traditional sense. Therefore, switching on device without bowl activates uncontrolled heating. In this case, the heater will operate up to combustion of thermo-fuse.
Voice Guidance is very convenient for visually impaired people.
1. Reliable valve of lid locking protects the user from burns during cooking.
2. Button of smooth steam issue.
This button is used for forced the steam issue after cooking for unblocking lid. Otherwise, the user must wait of pressure decrease after natural cooling.
3. Electric cord.
Cord in some models is detaches. This feature simplifies the device storage and its replacement if necessary. Cord length also affects usability.
4. Rubberized insertions.
They prevent sliding device on a table surface.
5. Bowl with handles.
Plastic handles significantly improve usability and reduce the risk of burns during operation.
6. Heat-resistant knobs on the housing increase the usability.
7. Additional emergency hole is intended for emergency venting steam.
Criteria for choosing a model
Of course, the choice depends on the required functionality of the model that in turn depends on the technical characteristics of the device.
But additional factors also influence the choice. This list includes the following aspects.
1. Easy removal of the bowl.
2. Operation range of timer.
This option in some models amounts only a few hours. Accordingly, cooking during a long time (for example, of jelly) is impossible. This aspect greatly narrows the range of dishes.
Many manufacturers equip their models with additional attachments (container-food steamer, measuring cups, special plastic spoon, holder for them, etc.). They significantly extend the model usability.
4. Reliability of the lid lock.
Opening a lid is blocked up to safe level of pressure within the device. Lock must be made of reliable metal. Lid must maximally tightly abut to housing and the insulating gasket must not have of visible defects.
This video demonstrates the wide possibilities of a modern multi-cooker.