What to Do if Your Instant Pot Says Burn

What to Do if Your Instant Pot Says Burn

The Instant Pot has become a staple appliance in many kitchens, providing quick and convenient cooking options for busy individuals. However, one frustrating issue that Instant Pot users may encounter is the dreaded “Burn” message that occasionally pops up on the display. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic! There are several steps you can take to resolve the issue and get back to enjoying your favorite Instant Pot recipes.

1. Cancel the cooking cycle: When your Instant Pot displays the “Burn” message, the first thing you should do is cancel the cooking cycle. This will stop the heat and pressure buildup, preventing any further damage to the food or the appliance.

2. Release the pressure: After canceling the cooking cycle, it’s essential to release the pressure manually before addressing the “Burn” issue. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to safely release the pressure valve and allow the Instant Pot to cool down.

3. Check for burnt food: Once the Instant Pot has cooled down, carefully open the lid and inspect the food for any signs of burning. If you notice burnt food stuck to the bottom of the pot, remove it using a wooden spoon or spatula. Be cautious not to scratch the non-stick surface.

4. Clean the pot: After removing any burnt food, it’s crucial to thoroughly clean the Instant Pot’s inner pot. Use warm soapy water and a non-abrasive sponge to scrub away any residue. Make sure to also clean the sealing ring, lid, and any other detachable parts.

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5. Add more liquid: One common reason for the “Burn” message is insufficient liquid in the pot. If you encounter this issue frequently, try adding more liquid to your recipes, especially for thick sauces or dishes that tend to stick to the bottom. This will help prevent the Instant Pot from overheating and triggering the “Burn” message.

6. Deglaze the pot: If you’ve cleaned the pot but still receive the “Burn” message, it might be due to food debris stuck to the bottom. To resolve this, deglaze the pot adding a small amount of liquid (such as broth or water) and using a wooden spoon to scrape off any stuck-on food. Once the pot is clean, you can resume cooking.

7. Adjust cooking time: Another reason for the “Burn” message is excessive cooking time, especially for recipes that require longer cooking periods. You can try reducing the cooking time slightly to prevent the food from sticking to the bottom and triggering the message.


1. Why does my Instant Pot say “Burn”?
The “Burn” message on your Instant Pot indicates that the food has stuck to the bottom of the pot, causing it to overheat. This can happen due to insufficient liquid, too much cooking time, or food debris stuck to the bottom.

2. Can I still eat the food if my Instant Pot says “Burn”?
It depends on the severity of the burning. If only a small portion of the food is burnt, you can remove it and still enjoy the rest. However, if the burning is extensive, it’s best to discard the food to avoid any potential health risks.

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3. How can I prevent the “Burn” message in the future?
To prevent the “Burn” message, ensure there is enough liquid in the pot, adjust cooking times for longer recipes, and clean the pot thoroughly after each use to avoid any residue buildup.

4. Should I continue cooking if the Instant Pot says “Burn”?
No, you should never continue cooking if the Instant Pot displays the “Burn” message. Cancel the cooking cycle, release the pressure, and address the issue before resuming cooking.

5. What if cleaning the pot doesn’t resolve the “Burn” issue?
If cleaning the pot doesn’t resolve the problem, you may need to check the sealing ring for any damage or replace it altogether. Additionally, ensure that the venting knob is in the correct position and functioning properly.

6. Is the “Burn” message dangerous?
The “Burn” message itself is not dangerous, but it indicates a potential problem that needs to be addressed. Ignoring the message and continuing to cook can lead to further damage to the food or the Instant Pot.

7. Can I use my Instant Pot if it frequently displays the “Burn” message?
If your Instant Pot frequently displays the “Burn” message, it’s best to address the issue before continuing to use it. Follow the tips mentioned earlier, and if the problem persists, consider contacting the manufacturer for further assistance or having the appliance inspected a professional.

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