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Instant Pot Accu Slim Immersion Circulator Review

It's far from our favorite sous vide and costs a bit more than other higher scoring products
Instant Pot Accu Slim Immersion Circulator
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Price:   $80 List
Pros:  Maintains very stable temperature, recovers quickly when food is added
Cons:  Below average performance in our circulation attempt, so-so interface
Manufacturer:   Instant Pot
By Michelle Powell and David Wise  ⋅  Aug 23, 2021
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53
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 9
  • Temperature - 40% 8
  • Circulation - 30% 2
  • Ease of Use - 30% 5

Our Verdict

We had such high hopes with the Instant Pot Accu Slim given our past experiences with their all-in-one pressure cookers, but we were thoroughly let down. This sous vide machine delivered one of the least impressive performances we have seen to date in our circulation tests and we found it to be far from the most user-friendly model we have tested to date. It did do a very good job of maintaining temperature in our evaluation but was far from the most accurate or the fastest to heat compared to the other models we tested.

Compare to Similar Products

 
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Price $80 List$100 List
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Pros Maintains very stable temperature, recovers quickly when food is addedGood price, strong circulation performance, decent accuracyPowerful circulating pump, solid thermal stabilityProficient at maintaining temperature, good circulation performanceSuper stable at holding a temperature, fairly inexpensive
Cons Below average performance in our circulation attempt, so-so interfaceAttachment clip is far from our favoriteBulky design, somewhat priceyRelatively expensive, took a very long time to recover in our testNot the most accurate in our tests, subpar circulation
Bottom Line It's far from our favorite sous vide and costs a bit more than other higher scoring productsIf you want to try out sous vide cooking without spending a ton of cash, this is a great choiceAn overall solid and affordable machine that boasts an excellent price but isn't quite on par with premium modelsWe found this fairly run-of-the-mill to be disproportionately expensive given its mediocre performance in our evaluationsIt received one of the lowest scores of the entire group and we wouldn't readily recommend it
Rating Categories Instant Pot Accu Sl... VPCOK Sous Vide Cooker Wancle Thermal Imme... Aobosi Sous Vide Co... Gourmia GSV115
Temperature (40%)
8.0
7.0
6.0
5.0
6.0
Circulation (30%)
2.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
2.0
Ease Of Use (30%)
5.0
5.0
5.0
6.0
5.0
Specs Instant Pot Accu Sl... VPCOK Sous Vide Cooker Wancle Thermal Imme... Aobosi Sous Vide Co... Gourmia GSV115
Clamp/Mounts Fixed screw clamp Removeable fixed plastic clip Fixed spring clamp Adjustable and removeable screw clamp Fixed screw clamp
App Control No No No No
Wattage 800W 1000W 850W 800W 800W

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


Food is typically vacuum-sealed in bags prior to cooking.
Food is typically vacuum-sealed in bags prior to cooking.
Credit: Laura Casner

Likes


Overall, the Accu Slim's temperature stability and speed at recovering the set temperature once any food was added impressed us the most. To score stability performance, we sealed a temperature logger in a bag and had it measure the temperature of the water bath 60 times over the course of an hour. Points were awarded based on the amount of time each sous vide wavered from the steady-state temperature, with the Instant Pot Accu Slim maintaining a temperature within 0.1°F throughout the entire hour.

We were impressed with how well this sous vide maintained a...
We were impressed with how well this sous vide maintained a temperature.
Credit: Laura Casner

The Accu Slim also bounced back quickly once cold food was added, only taking a minute to regain the set temperature of 135°F in its 9.5-quart water bath once three frozen hamburger patties were added in a vacuum-sealed package. This sous vide was also only about average in temperature accuracy, displaying an average error of 0.27°F under the set temperature of 135°F and 0.72°F under the set temperature of 147°F in our assessments. This was measured in six places throughout the container with a lab-grade calibrated digital thermometer.

We didn't find the controls on this machine to be the most...
We didn't find the controls on this machine to be the most straightforward.
Credit: Laura Casner

Dislikes


The Instant Pot didn't do all that well in our circulation or ease of use tests, as well as the remainder of the temperature tests. This sous vide machine took a bit more time to initially heat up the water than some of the other products, with close to an hour elapsing before the Accu Slim could heat up 9.5 quarts of cold tap water to 147°F — something the top models did in less than 40 minutes.

The circulating pump on the Instant Pot failed to impress us all...
The circulating pump on the Instant Pot failed to impress us all that much.
Credit: Laura Casner

In our circulation tests, it also fared fairly poorly, moving the water around in the container much slower than the top-tier models. We added a small amount of diluted food coloring in a corner of the container, then timed how long it took each product to achieve a uniform hue. The Accu Slim was one of the slowest products in our tests, taking three minutes and 16 seconds, whereas the fastest models did this in 15 seconds or less.

The screw on the Instant Pot's clamp doesn't rotate super freely.
The screw on the Instant Pot's clamp doesn't rotate super freely.
Credit: Laura Casner

We also weren't huge fans of the interface on this product, finding it to be one of the least intuitive of the group. You need to hit the "Play" button to start heating and then hit it again once the water is at temperature to start heating. The screw on the clamp mount also doesn't spin super freely, so it can take a bit more time to get it mounted to the side of a container.

Value


The Accu Slim isn't the best value since it was easily outperformed by other models that cost quite a bit less.

Conclusion


The Instant Pot Accu Slim scored much lower than average, and we have a hard time identifying a particular reason why you should purchase it. We've made plenty of great meals with this product, but there are so many other products that scored significantly better, and a handful of those cost quite a bit less as well.

Michelle Powell and David Wise

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