Instant Superior 7.1L Slow Cooker – for family-size meals (kitchen review)

The Instant Superior 7.1L slow cooker is for family-sized meals. I mean huge, slow cooks in a large 28 x 13cm circular pot.

Slow cook is perfect for cool weather. Throw in some roughly cut protein, add vegetables, stock and flavouring/marinade, and press start.  Six to eight hours later, you have a delicious, hearty, flavoursome casserole/stew with proteins like tougher meat cuts that are totally tenderised. It is that simple.

When we reviewed Instant Pot Pro Plus 5.7L – cooking with Wi-Fi, one of its ten functions was slow cooking. The 5.7-litre pot was 22 x 13cm – really a 4L capacity. That is fine for most family slow cooks but not big enough for, say, four lamb shanks or slow cooking a brisket or pulled pork. The Instant Superior 7.1L is!

There is primitive slow cook, and there is slow cooking with finesse

The Instant Superior 7.1 slow cooker costs $179. You can get a Kmart 3, 5, or 6.5L cheapie for under $50. So why look at the Instant Superior 7.1L?

Well, three things.

  • Cheapies have manual settings – On, Low, High, and Warm. Instant has fully programmable temperature and time, smart menu programs, and automatic keep-warm.
  • Cheapies use a heavy ceramic pot. This means the pot takes far longer to reach the simmering temperature and more energy to keep it there – I guess you could say there is no finesse. Instant uses a PFOA-free, non-stick aluminium pot that is temperature-regulated and dishwasher safe.
  • Instant’s 7.1L capacity (you can use almost all the pot capacity, which means up to 10 portions), and even though it is a large pot, you can still do slow cooks for as little as two

It adds the finesse needed for different proteins and the automation to keep them warm.

Australian Review: Instant Superior 7.1L Slow Cooker Model 140-6128-01-AU price at 29/5/24

WebsiteInstant Pot
Product Page
PriceRRP $179 but seen <$150 at approved retailers.
Warranty12-months ACL
Support page
Made inChina
CompanyInstant Brands designs and distributes Instant, Corelle, Pyrex, CorningWare, Visions cookware, and Snapware food storage.
MoreCyberShack food appliances news and reviews

We use Fail (below expectations), Pass (meets expectations) and Exceed (surpasses expectations or is the class leader) against many of the items below. We occasionally give a Pass(able) rating that is not as good as it should be and a Pass ‘+’ rating to show it is good but does not quite make it to Exceed. You can click on most images for an enlargement.

We are also tightening up on grading. From now on, Pass, for example, means meeting expectations for the price bracket. We consider a Pass mark to be 70+/100 with extra points added for class-leading and excellence.

First Impression – big and round – Pass+

My wife and I are more familiar with the Kmart cheapies – we call them ‘crackpots’ – and the need to buy a new one every few years because the ‘Bakelite’ lid handle invariably cracks or the screw holding it rusts. We have also had our share of cracked or chipped ceramic pots, faulty controls, and burnt-out elements. It’s not surprising for a $30 device, but surprising as we only use it weekly in cooler weather.

This slow cooker arrives in a big box—the first hint that it is a larger one. The dimensions are 35.5 round x 26cm high x 3.7kg. The pot is 28 x 13cm and is almost usable to its capacity, as the slow cooker does not use pressure or heat that tends to make things bubble too much. The glass lid is micro-vented to keep in steam without pressurising it.

The next thing is the control panel. No simple knob here, but still very intuitive. It has an LCD readout for temperature, cook time, keep warm time and status. It has touch controls for temperature up/down, time up/down, start, cancel and menu (function programs).

Our first impression was that we could now cook lamb shanks and larger pieces of brisket or pork—terrific. So we looked up slow-cooker recipes using lamb shanks and used the first we could find on

Interestingly, we have previously pressure-cooked lamb shanks in the Instant Pot Pro Plus, and both produced excellent results. Pressure cooking is speedy and leaves the meat on the shank, so you use a knife to cut it off. Slow cooking means the meat falls off the shank and is so tender.

What else does it do?

Instant always seems to include several functions to help reduce the number of cooking appliances littering your bench.

Slow cooking

  • Low or High cooking temperature (default high)
  • Timer from 30 minutes to 24 hours (default 6 hours)
  • Keep warm (default – 10 hours)

The low setting is about 90°, and the high setting is about 110°. Keep warm is about 70° (surface temperature measured by a laser thermometer).

Keep warm

  • Low or High (default high)
  • Time from 10 minutes to 10 hours (default 10 hours)

It defaults on after slow cooking, or you can use this to keep other cooked foods warm.


  • Boil (default)
  • Time from 0 minutes to 4 hours (default 10 minutes)

It does not have a steamer rack, so invest in some 200cm (8”) round, stackable bamboo steamers.

We tried various steamed foods like Hong Kong Dim Sum and to freshen store-bought bagels (perfect). Steaming is the best way to prepare fresh vegetables like carrots, seafood like prawns, lobster, crab, muscles, or salmon steaks, dumplings, and steamed puddings.


  • Temperature 110, 135, 160° (default 160°)
  • Time from 1 minute to one hour (default 30 minutes)

Sauteing is for browning protein, simmering or thickening sauces. Our only caveat is to use silicon stirrers to protect the pot coating. It was perfect to brown the lamb shanks at 160° for about 5 minutes.

Maintenance – Pass+

Wash the lid and pot in the sink or dishwasher. A light spray of canola cooking oil will prevent any food from sticking to the pot.

There is extensive other information and recipes on Instant’s FAQ page.

Power – low but for a longer time – Pass+

It is rated at 800W per hour.

On the high slow cook setting, it peaks at 880W to heat the pot and contents and then drops to an approximate 500-600W cycle to maintain the temperature. It averaged 246 watts over an hour.

On the low slow cook setting, it peaks at 736W and settles to around 200W.

CyberShack’s view – Instant Superior 7.1L Slow Cooker adds finesse to slow cooking

Yes, we have always used cheapies, and now, having used the Instant Pot Superior 7.1 slow cooker, we see the difference. It is not that the cooking results are tangibly different (although we felt there was more depth of flavour) but that it solves a few issues.

  • A bigger, more usable pot ✅
  • Adjustable temperature and time ✅
  • Automatic keep warm (probably its greatest feature) ✅
  • Flexible multi-use ✅
  • And a little more confidence that we can prepare before work, and it will look after itself until we are ready to eat at night. ‘It cooks all day while the cook’s away’. ✅

Ratings – note that from 2024, 70/100 is a pass mark

We compare it to a typical slow cooker of a similar size.

  • Features: 90 – If low, high and keep warm are the manual settings on a cheapie, then that is the pass mark. This has fully adjustable settings, automatic keep-warm and four distinct uses.
  • Value: 85—No, it cannot compete on price with a cheapie, but the value is in its usable capacity, automatic controls, and four functions.
  • Performance: 85—We think the aluminium cooking pot gives superior temperature control and more even cooking. The power graphs show that it cycles to keep the temperature constant, whereas the cheapies use a reasonably inefficient thermostat.
  • Ease of Use: 90 – If all you want is the cheapie manual controls, then all the options are unnecessary. But the menu and touch system are intuitive (no, we did not read the manual). It is easy to use.
  • Design: 85 – it is similar in concept to all slow cookers but well-executed.

Instant Superior 7.1L Slow Cooker

$179 but seen for <$150







Ease of Use





  • Automatic keep warm
  • Four-in-one uses
  • Great for larger cuts of meat
  • Intuitive controls
  • Low power usage.


  • Not for those who need a smaller slow cooker.