Worried About Coronavirus? You Can Use an Instant Pot To Sterilize Things.

You can use an Instant Pot pressure cooker to sterilize things to the same degree as hospitals and scientific labs.

Labs typically use commercial autoclaves, which do the same thing as an Instant Pot: sterilize through pressure induced high heat.

A senior at Dakota State University named Vaille Swenson worked in one of these labs at school. She got an Instant Pot for Christmas one year and wondered how it might fare against the autoclave at the lab.

Vaille and her team tested a bunch of pressure cookers and found that the Instant Pot managed to kill G. stearothermophilus endospores.

That means the Instant Pot conforms to the same standard they use to test commercial autoclaves. None of the other pressure cookers they tested pulled off this feat.

photo: Getty Images

Okay, so we're dealing with COVID-19 right now.

Question: what's the difference between sterilizing and disinfecting something?

Answer: when you disinfect something, you reduce or eliminate harmful microorganisms. When you sterilize something, you kill ALL microorganisms.

Keep in mind, because sterilization using an Instant Pot means things get REALLY hot, there's a limit to what you can sterilize. Most people use the sterilization feature on glassware like baby bottles. If something has a chance of melting, you don't want to try to sterilize it using an Instant Pot. A better bet would be to use a disinfectant instead.

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