Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid vs Duo Crisp (Which is Best?)

You’ve seen all the chatter about air fryers, and you’re thinking about getting one of your own. BUT you’re not sure you want another appliance to your kitchen… let alone learn how to use another small appliance!

However, having an appliance that has multiple cooking functions might just be what you’re looking for.  (Check out my post, How to Use an Air Fryer, to learn more about the traditional type of basket air fryers).

You’ve likely heard of the Instant Pot, but did you know there is a way to air fry food WITH most instant pot models?

Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid vs Instant Pot DUO Crisp Air Fryer

In 2019, Instant Pot came out with TWO options to combine the instant pot with the air fryer… but which one is the best?

I tested out both and will weigh the pro’s and con’s of each, so YOU can decide if you want to add either of these to your kitchen.

Instant Pot Air Fryer Duo Crisp Review

The Instant Pot Duo Crisp + Air Fryer is essentially an Instant Pot that can also air fry things. It comes with two removable lids, one for pressure cooking and one for air frying.

It is available in 6 quart (sold exclusively at Walmart) AND 8 quart size. NOTE: this is the size of the instant pot, but the actual air fryer basket is smaller. 

It is capable of a lot of the standard instant pot functions, EXCEPT it does NOT have the Yogurt Function (which we LOVE for this no-boil instant pot yogurt).

I typically really only use the pressure cook, saute, and yogurt function on any of my instant pots. So not having the yogurt button is a negative for me. 

Since it is the DUO Crisp, it comes with an air fryer basket, a dehydrating and broiling tray, as well as a protective pad. It’s also dishwasher safe and the total capacity of the air fryer basket is 

For those looking for a multicooker and an air fryer features, this is the ultimate combo. The food is just as crispy and juicy as if you had pulled it from an air fryer! 

Here are some pros and cons of the Instant Pot Air Duo Crisp:

Pros of the Duo Crisp + Air Fryer:

  • This Instant Pot comes with a separate lid for air frying but still retains all the functions of a traditional multicooker.
  • Versatile: there are 11 different smart programs that make cooking and frying things a breeze.
  • You can choose from a 6-quart or an 8-quart pot
  • The lid doesn’t need it’s own power cord to turn on. 
  • You can set the temp in 5 degree increments (some air fryers are only 10 or 25 degree increments).
  • Smaller display and the start button is present and also harder to see
  • It will not work with other instant pot models.

Cons as a Pressure Cooker:

  • Since they are one in the same, you will only be able to use it for one recipe. If you had a seperate air fryer, you could cook a side dish while using the instant pot.
  • The 8qt size is quite large for a smaller family (when using for pressure cooking)
  • Does not have the yogurt function or many other presets (although I never use the presets that are missing, aside from yogurt). 🙂
  • There isn’t much info about how to air fry in the manual.

Cons as an Air Fryer:

  • The air fryer lid weighs about 6 pounds (read: heavy) – you MUST be careful while moving it since the underside will be HOT!
  • The instant pot is for BIG crowds, but the air fryer basket itself is a small capacity – the diameter of the base for the 8qt is 8 1/4″ in diameter.  And the diameter of the base for the 6qt is 7 1/4″ wide. Most air fryers are around 9″ wide in diameter.
  • The air fryer basket is more challenging to clean than my regular air fryer.

I have a few other instant pots and love having them on hand, but I didn’t yet own an 8 quart. Since I do have a rather large family, I felt like this would be a good purchase.

However, it’s a bit funny that the instant pot itself is HUGE, but the air fryer basket really doesn’t have as much room as far as width goes.

At $179.95, this isn’t exactly cheap, compared to a standard Instant Pot, which is around $79 (or much lower during Black Friday or Cyber Monday). We’ve seen the 8 quart Duo Crisp drop as low as $130 last Cyber Monday. If you plan on making a ton of different air fryer recipes, then you may just want to purchase a traditional air fryer. 

Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid Review

If you already have an Instant Pot, and don’t need a larger one or an additional one, then the Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid might be a better option. However, you do need to know that there are some models it is not compatible with. And it ONLY works on 6 quart models. You can see this chart here.

If you have one of these models, then for a little more money, you can turn your Instant Pot into an air fryer. It is excellent for adding a final roasting/broil on some recipes like whole chickens, toasting up some instant pot bread, and broling your ribs as a final last step.

The air fryer lid is detachable with it’s own power cord. It is easy to store and has simple controls that aren’t too complicated to figure out. This is also great for those who want to use the air frying feature and still use and enjoy their regular Instant Pot.

You get air fryer accessories such as the air fryer basket and protective pad for countertop use and storage. This lid can be used for baking, broiling, roasting, reheating, dehydrating, and of course, air frying your food.

Here are some pros and cons of the Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid:

Pros:

  • This lid is easy to use and easy to store, so it’s not as complicated as trying to learn an entirely new appliance. 
  • It’s easy to keep clean, making it perfect for those who don’t want to mess with another appliance. 
  • The LCD display and control panel integrate nicely with the existing Instant Pot, so you retain all of the Instant Pot’s original functionality.
  • It works with many Instant Pots to quickly and easily convert them into air fryers as needed.
  • The lid adds six additional cooking functions to your existing Instant Pot without the use of another appliance.

Cons:

  • Don’t be fooled by this lid; it is heavy! It can be difficult to lift over the pot and is not for the faint of heart.
  • The lid does require more vertical space than the existing Instant Pot lid, so it works best if you have an open counter rather than trying to squeeze it under your cabinet. 
  • You cannot make large portions in the Instant Pot. You are limited to the size of the Instant Pot, which limits the amount you can make. Since Instant Pots are typically taller than they are wide, this limits the portions you can make.
  • It will not fit many Instant Pots. You have to have a particular make and model for this to work.

Final Thoughts:

Coming in at a whopping $79 for the lid alone, this isn’t exactly a small splurge. Compared to the price of getting an Air Fryer, it is about the same as some of the cheaper ones, but still less expensive than some of the ones that are nicer in quality. However, if you are short on space, this lid allows you to save yourself from another appliance and still enjoy your Instant Pot whenever you need it! If you have the Instant Pot already, I would recommend just getting the lid versus a whole new appliance.

The Final Verdict

After much usage and comparing, here are my final thoughts on which one you should go with. There is no right or wrong answer here; each one has its own unique features and uses case, so what wins or doesn’t isn’t going to be the same for each person.

The Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid will work better if you already own a 6 quart Instant Pot multicooker and don’t want to add another appliance to your home. If you have a small family or prefer smaller portions, you will get more use out of the lid than the Duo Crisp.

However, the Duo Crisp is a better option if you like larger portions or are cooking for larger groups like a big family or family gatherings. You can have all the air fryer features but would be a good option if you don’t currently own an Instant Pot. This one has so many unique features and allows you to enjoy air frying even if you don’t own an air fryer.

There was a lot to research in this post, so I hope that these comparisons helped you find the best Instant Pot for your needs and one that can air fry to your heart’s content.

Meal Type: Tips
Categories: Meat and Poultry

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