The Instant Pot Viva is proof that when it comes to comparing the best Instant Pots, the bigger price tag doesn't always guarantee better performance. The Instant Pot Viva is a staple multi-cooker model, perfect for a family home, at a fraction of the cost of more advanced pots. Operating in the middle ground between the simplicity of the Instant Pot Lux and the flashiness of the Instant Pot Ultra, the Instant Pot Viva is a capable multicooker that could suit any home.
The fact that it comes in a variety of colors, to suit different kitchen designs, is a great feature too, making it even more versatile and desirable.
Instant Pot Viva: features
The Instant Pot Viva is an updated model of the Instant Pot Duo, the brand’s original bestselling model. As part of this upgrade, the Instant Pot Viva gains valuable features whilst retaining its affordability. One of these upgrades is the addition of the sous vide function, which makes up one of the pot’s nine functions. All in all, the Instant Pot Viva can function as a pressure cooker, sauté pan, slow cooker, rice cooker, food warmer, yogurt maker, cake maker, stock pot, steamer, and sous vide.
The cake-making program is another marked upgrade of the Instant Pot Viva and is only available in a handful of the brand’s other models. It’s a useful feature to have, meaning you can use your Instant Pot to whip up great desserts too, as opposed to just main meals. The Instant Pot Viva is also versatile in its ability to cook at both high and low temperatures, ideal for delicate vegetables or seafood, which do not need to be pressurized.
The Instant Pot Viva also has an impressive 15 smart programs, meaning a wide selection of meals can be cooked at the touch of a button. If you often find yourself too tired to cook, then multiple functions mean you can still ensure nutrition and variation at mealtimes. As with all Instant Pots, the Instant Pot Viva is designed to cut down on lengthy cooking times, with processes that are 70% faster than traditional methods.
The Instant Pot Viva has ten safety features, which is a little less than the 12 or 13 found on later models. But there are still useful features that make this pot safe, like the new steam release valve, which removes the pressure from your Instant Pot in a quicker time, and without any risk of excess steam in your kitchen.
The Instant Pot Viva packs in a lot of great features and has one of the lowest prices of the brand’s range. However, it doesn’t have capabilities such as air frying, nor the improved large LED interface of models such as the Instant Pot Duo Evo Plus.
Instant Pot Viva: Design and accessories
A standout feature of the Instant Pot Viva is the option to customize the stainless steel interface in the six-quart size. You can choose from the classic stainless steel or black, blue, cinnamon, copper, and eggplant color options. It has a simple interface, with all 15 cooking programs having a designated button.
The Instant Pot Viva’s stainless steel inner pot and lid are both dishwasher safe, making it an excellent choice if you want a painless after-dinner clean-up. This model also comes with an extra sealing ring in the six-quart and eight-quart size, which means you can cook with your pot for even longer without having to worry about buying replacements.
If you want to be super organized and avoid the dreaded Instant Pot sealing ring smell, you may even want to designate separate sealing rings for sweet and savory foods. For more tips on making your cooker last, check out our guide to how to clean an instant pot. This pot also comes with a handy dishwasher-safe steam rack, which has multiple uses within your multicooker.
Instant Pot Viva: Performance and size
Compared to the other, more hefty Instant Pot models the Instant Pot Viva is a lightweight choice for your kitchen. For the six-quart edition, the pot weighs 11.84 lbs, whilst the eight-quart edition weighs 15.7 lbs. Make sure to consider how the Instant Pot Viva will fit into your kitchen and ensure you have room to store it when it’s not in use if you don’t want it to take up valuable space on your kitchen countertop.
For the six-quart option, the Instant Pot Viva has a height of 12.5 inches and a width of 12.2 inches, whereas the eight-quart version has a height of 14.2 inches and a width of 13.3 inches
The Instant Pot Viva, as with the other models in the brand, is embedded with a microprocessor in order to perform cooking tasks based on readings from temperature and pressure sensors. This means the Instant Pot Viva saves and remembers your previous three cooking programs so you can use them on your next meal.
Instant Pot Viva: user reviews
The Instant Pot Viva currently has a 4.8-star rating out of five on the Best Buy website from 745 reviews, with 97% of users saying they would recommend this model to a friend. The Instant Pot Viva is certainly a popular choice, and its simple to use controls make it a hit with many users.
One user commented that the Instant Pot Viva had "improved her life significantly" since purchasing it, adding that cleaning up after use is "super easy". Another reviewer referred to it as a "little piece of heaven", saying that it had not only replaced their crockpot but "simplified the cooking process".
However, one reviewer found that the rice cooking abilities of the Instant Pot Viva were not up to standard, saying that a dedicated rice cooker would be better. Other uses found a downside in the pot taking up a fair amount of space in their kitchen, with one saying it was "too big to leave on the counter".
Should you buy the Instant Pot Viva?
The Instant Pot Viva is a great choice if you want a dependable multicooker at a lower price. If you don’t think you will use the extensive functions that later models, such as the Instant Pot Duo Crisp, have to offer, then the Instant Pot Viva has everything you would need at a much better price. The ability to customize the model in different colors is a fun bonus, and will allow users to match their pot to a range of kitchen designs.