Instant Pots are electric pressure cookers designed to be convenient, safe, and dependable. The Instant Pot Duo Nova was added as a new model in August 2019. Each Instant Pot model has variations that can make it difficult to choose between them.
To help you choose, here’s a quick side-by-side review of the key differences between the classic and best for beginners models in a side-by-side review of the Instant Pot Duo Nova vs Duo.
The 4 differences between the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova include:
- The front display panels are different on each model
- The Duo Nova seals automatically and Duo needs to be sealed manually
- 2 sealing rings are included with the Duo Nova
- a 10-quart option is available in the Duo Nova
Dig deeper into the comparison between the two models to look at the appliances combined, smart programs included, and other relevant stats.
And one more note: this post contains affiliate links. This means I may receive a small commission if you buy through my link. You won’t pay any more if you use this link.
What is an Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker?
Instant Pots are smart multi-use electric pressure cookers designed to be safe, convenient, and dependable. Safety is the most important part of a kitchen appliance. And with the Instant Pot, you will also prepare your meals faster while using less energy.
You’ll save counter space and spend less money on electricity. What’s also nice is you won’t add more heat to your kitchen in the summer when cooking hot meals.
Instant Pot usually releases a new model or two every year. In 2019 several new models were introduced including the new Duo Nova series.
If this is your first time shopping for an Instant Pot or you’re ready for another one, check out this side-by-side comparison of the Instant Pot Duo vs Duo Nova to help you figure out which model is best for you.
Instant Pot Duo, the classic model
The Instant Pot Duo is one of the electric pressure cooker models made by Instant Brands. They call it their “classic” model as it’s is one of their earlier versions. It’s called the “duo” because it has 2 pressure cooking levels. The original model only had one pressure level. The Duo is available in three sizes: 3 quarts, 6 quarts, and 8 quarts.
It replaces 7 kitchen appliances while also increasing the speed at which you can cook your meals. And has the most of the core smart programs the company offers.
The Duo has a manual-seal lid. It comes with 1 sealing ring along with a few other accessories.
Instant Pot Duo Nova, the best for beginners model
The Instant Pot Duo Nova is a newer model from Instant Brands, released in August 2019. They call it their “best for beginners” model. Similar to the Duo, it combines 7 kitchen appliances and has 2 pressure cooking levels. The Duo Nova is available in four sizes: 3 quarts, 6 quarts, 8 quarts, and 10 quarts.
In addition to the three core sizes, the Duo Nova is also available in a 10 quart option. It’s a great addition if you need to cook for a large number of people or like to do meal prep.
Check out the current deals on the 3 QT and 6 QT sizes
What are the differences between the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova?
Overall the Duo and Duo Nova are very similar Instant Pot models. The largest difference between the Duo Nova and Duo is the Instant Pot Duo Nova has a 10 quart option. In addition, the two Instant Pot models have different control panels, accessories in the box, and different lids.
For the most these two models are similar. The smart programs in the Duo Nova vs Duo side by side are the same. As with other 3 quart models, the smaller models have fewer smart programs compared to the larger models.
From a price perspective, the cost of each model is generally similar when you look at each quart-size side by side. Be sure to keep an eye out for special deals and flash sales to save money on your purchase.
The four differences between Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova are:
The front display panels are different on each model
These two Instant Pot models have different front panel displays. The Duo Nova has a backlit display similar to the Duo Plus. The Duo has the classic LCD also used on the Lux.
From a usage perspective, you probably won’t nice much difference. It might be more of a personal style preference on which you like better.
The Duo Nova seals automatically and Duo needs to be sealed manually
The new Duo Nova has an auto-sealing lid as an added safety feature that was introduced with the Ultra model. Have you ever forgotten to flip the sealing knob to the closed position when starting to cook? The auto-sealing lid is a great feature because it makes it harder to forget to seal in the pressure when you start cooking.
The Duo has a manual sealing knob. While the auto-sealing knob is great for starting to cook, it’s easier to do a controlled manual release with a Duo as you can tap to release pressure in smaller bursts. The auto-sealing lid has a button to release pressure.
With both pressure cooker lids, a controlled quick pressure release takes some practice to get right so you don’t cover your ceiling in steam.
2 sealing rings are included with the Duo Nova. The included accessories changed.
If you’ve purchased previous Instant Pot models, you received one sealing ring, a steam rack, a measuring cup, and a few stirring spoons.
The Duo Nova comes with two sealing rings, a steam rack, and a measuring cup.
If you’re new to Instant Pots, extra sealing rings are a must-have accessory. As the company releases new models, they’re starting to include two sealing rings instead of one with most models.
If you decide to buy a different Instant Pot, double-check what accessories are included and make sure to stock up on sealing rings. And even if your Instant Pot comes with 2 rings, consider grabbing at least one more. Your cheesecake will thank you.
A 10-quart option is available in the Duo Nova
The biggest difference between the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova (literally) is the Duo Nova is the first and currently, only Instant Pot model to be offered in a 10 quart option.
If you cook for large groups of people or like to meal prep with batch cooking, take a closer look at the 10 quart model.
One thing to note. If you want additional inner lines or sealing rings for the 10 quart model, contact the company for assistance. These particular accessories are not available yet on Amazon or the company store. They’ll likely be available in the future for you to buy directly so in the meantime contact Instant Pot directly with questions.
Side by Side comparison of the Instant Pot Duo vs Duo Nova
To help you take a closer look into the Duo Nova and Duo, here is a side-by-side comparison of these two models. To help you make your purchase, this comparison covers the appliances combined by each model, smart programs, and size options.
The 7 kitchen appliances combined with each model
Each Instant Pot combines multiple kitchen appliances into one, saving you counter and storage space. You also save money by using one appliance for multiple cooking methods.
When looking at the Duo vs Duo Nova, both Instant Pot models combine the same seven kitchen appliances. Either of these two models can take the place of a:
- Pressure Cooker
- Rice Cooker
- Saute/Searing Pan
- Yogurt Maker
- Slow Cooker
Here is a view of the kitchen appliance side-by-side combined in the Instant Pot Duo Nova and Duo.
|Instant Pot Duo||Instant Pot Duo Nova|
|Number of Appliances Combined||7||7|
By including multiple appliances into one kitchen appliance, preprogrammed buttons help you take advantage of the different cooking functions.
Smart programs and functions in the Duo Nova and Duo
Instant Pots use smart programs to control heat intensity, temperature, pressure, and cooking duration at the push of a button. The company designed each program based on extensive testing to help you create amazing meals.
When shopping for an Instant Pot, you should note that not all quart sizes will have all of the functions included in a series. The mini 3 quart has a smaller front panel and typically has a program or two fewer than its larger 6- and 8-quart siblings.
There are 14 smart programs included in the Duo and Duo Nova series.
|Instant Pot Duo||Instant Pot Duo Nova|
|Number of Smart Programs||14||14|
* The Poultry and Multigrain smart programs are not currently available in either 3-quart option.
** The Pasteurizing program is part of the Yogurt Smart Program. Choose “More” to pasteurize milk. Be sure to use a thermometer to temperature of the heated milk to ensure it reaches the proper temperature.
Neither of these models has the Cake or Egg programs at any quart size. Don’t worry about missing out. Cook hard-boiled eggs using the Steam button and cakes including the famous cheesecake using the Pressure Cook button. Check your recipe for how long to set the cooking time for.
If you’re looking for additional smart programs and cooking options, try comparing the differences between the Instant Pot Duo and Duo Evo Plus.
The sizes available for Instant Pot Duo and Duo Nova
The primary Instant Pot sizes are: 3 quart, 6 quart, and 8 quart. You’ll find most of the core Instant Pot series have each size option available. The 6 quart is usually the most popular size.
If you need something larger than a 8 quart pressure cooker, the Duo Nova has a 10 quart option available.It’s literally the largest difference between Duo Nova and all other Instant models at this point. A 10 quart model would be useful if you like to batch cook as part of your meal prep routine, or if you want to cook larger cuts of meat.
The quart sizes available the Duo and Duo Nova Instant Pot models include:
|Instant Pot Duo||Instant Pot Duo Nova|
In addition, you can also take a closer look at the Duo Nova 10 quart if you need something larger to support your cooking needs.
Check out the current deals on the 3 QT and 6 QT Duo Nova sizes
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a few more questions? Check out these frequently asked questions about the Duo and Duo Nova.
The Instant Pot Duo Nova comes with 2 sealing rings, trivet/steam rack, and a user manual to help you get started with your new electric pressure cooker.
Duo means the Instant Pot has two pressure cooking levels: low and high. Most Instant Pot models, with the exception of the Lux have both high and low pressure cooking options.
As of 2020 there are 12 Instant Pot models. The Duo and Duo Nova are two of the models currently available. There is also the Lux, Duo Plus, Ultra, Smart, Duo Crisp + Air Fryer, Pro Crisp + Air Fryer, Duo Evo Plus, Max, Viva and Duo Gourmet.
Some models are exclusive to certain stores and there are other exclusive versions with a series. For example, the Duo Gourmet is exclusive to Costco. And the Star Wars-branded series was
exclusive to Williams Sonoma when it was released.
There are also few models that have since been retired, not included in the list above.
What other questions do you have about the differences between the Instant Pot Duo Nova vs Duo?
When shopping for an Instant Pot you need to decide between the features and sizes to ensure you pick the right one for your cooking needs.
Overall the two models are very similar, but there are 4 differences between the Duo Nova and Duo that might make you prefer one of the other.
If you’re looking for an additional Instant Pot, there are a few interesting features in the new Duo Nova that make an interesting upgrade. It has an auto-seal lid and comes with two sealing rings compared to the Duo. And if you need the largest model, the Duo Nova will be the way to go.
You’ll notice most people find room for multiple electric pressure cookers in their kitchen because they’re a great addition. So if you’re looking for another Instant Pot consider trying a different model so you get the best of both worlds.
As part of your research, what are you looking at when comparing the Instant Pot Duo vs Duo Nova?