Hottest Pressure Cooker Set for Christmas 2012

fagor-futuro-5-piece-pressure-cooker-set

fagor-futuro-5-piece-pressure-cooker-set

Buying a pressure cooker for someone for Christmas 2012 may cost you a pretty penny. But one way to get the maximum valve for your money is to consider buying an entire set.

Typically, a set would include two pots, two lids for pressure and regular stove-top cooking, a steamer and some other accessories. For the price of one regular pressure cooker, you would get multiple in a set.

Marketing a set of pressure cookers is relative new in the market place. Only a few leading brands are offering this type of bundling for those savvy shoppers and efficient cooks at home. Having two pressure cookers of different sizes, you can practically replace many pots and pans you might have to use in cooking a meal.

Let’s take a look of the 5 best pressure cooker sets in 2012 based on customer reviews. The line-up is from lowest to highest price all with 4.0 or better ratings.

Fagor Duo Combi 5-Piece Pressure Cooker Set

Overview of Fagor

Fagor, a leading manufacturer of household small appliances is based in Spain and has been serving consumers worldwide for over 50 years. It also has a wholly owned subsidiary in the U.S. focusing on marketing pressure cookers and a line of specialty cookware.

Multiple pressure cooker lines are sold in the U.S. as such the Rapid Express, the Splendid, the Duo, the Elite and the Futuro. Each line is progressively better in design features and higher in price. Most of the Fagor pressure cookers are now manufactured in China except for the Futuro line.

Common Features in the 3 Fagor Pressure Cooker Sets

18/10 stainless steel is used for all Fagor pressure cookers, including the steamer. Each set always consists of two pots of varying sizes with two interchangeable lids and a steamer. Triple safety features are the hallmark of all Fagor pressure cookers and sets. They are suitable for all cooktops such as gas, electric, ceramic and induction. Two pressure levels of 8 and 15 are available except for the Elite set. A visual pressure indicator and an automatic pressure release method are designed into these pressure cookers. A 10-year warranty is offered for all.

Fagor Duo Combi Set

This set includes two pots of 4 and 8 quart sizes perfect for cooking a main dish in the bigger pot and a side in the smaller one. Two interchangeable lids are for pressure cooking as well as for conventional cooking. The non-pressure cooking lid is made of tempered glass that allows you to see-through while cooking.

This set is priced the lowest among the three just under $130. It’s a great bargain for as many pieces as you would get and for the stainless steel material. It’s rated as 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Fagor Elite Pressure Cooker Set

This has the same 5-pieces with 4 quart and 8 quart pots as the Duo Combi set. Unlike the Fagor Duo Combi set, this one only has one pressure setting of 15 psi (pounds per square inch). Everything else is the same as the Combi set.

This Elite Pressure Cooker Set is rated as 4.9 out of 5 stars on Amazon and it’s priced about $25 more the Duo Combi set. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand why this set is more expensive with everything being equal and only 1 pressure level. I even tried to call Fagor America and nobody manned the phone line. Not a good sign if asked me. The only plausible justification I can think of is the grade of stainless steel used.

Fagor Futuro Pressure Cooker Set

This set includes the same number of items as in the other two sets. There are quite a few differences in this set:

  1. Two pots of 4 and 6 quarts instead of the 8 quarts
  2. The shape of the pots is more of a “bell” or “curvy” shape than the straight shape in Duo Combi and Elite lines.
  3. The other significant difference is the added layer of aluminum in the base of the pots for better heat conductivity.
  4. This set has two short handles vs. the previous one long and one short handles. The benefits of the two short handles are balanced weight when carrying the pot and the saving of storage space.
  5. The next difference is that the steamer is also doubled as a food grater.
  6. A “Tastefully under Pressure” cookbook with more than 90 recipes are included in this set.
  7. And it’s designed and manufactured in Spain as opposed to China for the Duo Combi and Elite sets.
  8. It’s priced at $60 more than the Duo Comi and $40 more than the Elite set.
  9. It has 4.5 star ratings.

Kuhn Rikon 6-Piece Duo Pressure Cooker Set

While the Kuhn Rikon Duromatic Duo set is marketed as 6-pieces. In essence, it has 5 pieces because it counts the cookbook as a piece. This set includes one 5-quart pot and a 2-quart frying pan, two interchangeable lids for pressure and regular cooking and a trivet.

Both pots are made of stainless steel with a tri-clad base. The tri-clad features a layer of aluminum in the center encapsulated by two layers of stainless steel on the inside and the outside. It’s for the same reason explained earlier to combine the best of both materials.

The size of the frying pan is quite small and shallow. It’s designed to be used for making a side dish or for braising, browning and sautéing meats and vegetables.

The Kuhn Rikon pressure cookers are all designed with two pressure levels of 8 and 15 psi. The lower level is great for cooking delicate foods.

As a well-known housewares manufacturer, Kuhn Rikon excels at designing the most cutting-edge and sophisticated safety features. It features five-integrated levels to release excess pressure and to ensure it’s safest to use the pressure cooker. Learn more about the five-safety features here.

Another strength is that the Kuhn Rikon pressure cookers have a fully enclosed system. It requires very little liquid and it is incredibly energy efficient to maintain a desired pressure level during cooking. The result is that foods taste better with less nutrients and flavor being boiled away through the excess steam.

With the reputation and accolades comes the higher price tag. This set commands almost $270, which is about $70 more than the most expensive Fagor set. It has received 4.5 star-ratings on Amazon.

WMF Perfect Plus 6-1/2 Pressure Cooker Set

WMF is a German manufacturer of housewares. Included in the set are two pots of 6-1/2 and 3 liter (about the same in quarts) with two lids suitable for both pots. The set also comes with a steamer.

Its design brilliance lies in the incredibly efficient use of the handle. Whether it’s close or opening of the lid, gauging the pressure level for low or high and releasing of pressure when cooking is complete, it’s all done through the top of the primary handle.

Only two pressure levels are available as 8.5 and 13 psi. The high pressure is a little bit shy of the pressure cooking standard of 15 psi. If your recipe calls for 15 psi, you’d have to cook it a little bit longer to compensate for the lower pressure.

The set is made of heavy duty stainless steel with an encapsulated aluminum in the center of the base and well-constructed to last for a long time. WMF’s manufacturer warranty is only 3 years vs. 10-years for Fagor and Kuhn Rikon.

The WMF set is priced as the highest among all the five pressure cooker sets in this review, over $300.00. It’s quite an investment to get this set for sure. It’s rated as 4.8 out of 5.

Which One Is Right for You?

You may be wondering which one to buy. If I were you, I would choose one of the Fagor sets due to the combination of quality, design feature and value. The three Fagor sets provide price points for low, medium and high. It’s really up to your budget on which one to buy. If $50 makes quite a difference in your holiday spending, choose the Duo Combi set. If you want to buy a set with more updated design features, then the Fagor Futuro set is an excellent option.

Kuhn Rikon’s pressure cookers are highly praised in the culinary world. If your budget is around $250, then the Duromatic Duo set is worth considering.

WMF also has a very solid reputation as shown in the 4.8 star-ratings. I love the design and easy of use of this pressure cooker. The price is just bit too high for me personally.

All three brands and multiple models have been reviewed at length on this site. The best way to find the reviews is via the sitemap under Pressure Cooker Reviews.

All in all, you can’t make a bad decision choosing one of the five sets. It’s just matter of your budget consideration. One thing for sure is that the recipient of this pressure cooker set will be forever thankful to you for saving them so much time and money in energy bill, not to mention the health benefits.

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