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GSI 5.7 L Halulite Pressure Cooker

MATERIAL: Proprietary, Hard Anodized Alloy
WEIGHT:4 lbs. 7 oz.
MSRP: $ 79

Camp cooking for the most part is considered to be something that is relegated to dehydrated bag meals, cold food, or GORP. Sure some folks will come up with fancy this or that and depending on where you’re camping (car based or backcountry) you can definitely get pretty creative. The biggest issue that I have had is the prep-to-cook-to eat time. I don’t mind beef jerky and oranges and have little to no doubt I could sustain off of them almost indefinitely, however often times my family is not so keen on this diet so we tend to cook more. Well, “real” meals often means multiple dishes, a wide variety of ingredients with different cooking times, and the chaos of trying to find a place to prep, cook, eat, and clean without camp looking like a yard sale. Fortunately I was recently introduced to the time honored tradition of pressure cooking. More than likely you grew up with one, or at least in your family’s recent past they used one. And after a bit of research I discovered that the reason they have fallen out of favor was their ability to be misused or would fail causing extremely high pressured liquid and steam to explode all over the place and scare the crap out of anyone with in 1/2 mile. Fortunately technology has come a long way and GSI Outdoors is a shining example of not only the portability of these modern miracles, but also how light weight they can be, as well as featuring robust layers of safety features.

The unit I received for review is the 5.7 L Halulite pressure cooker that features:

  • High-performance, non-reactive, hard anodized aluminum construction provides exceptional efficiency and uniformity.
  • Lighter, more compact design makes it easier to store and carry.
  • Triple safety system locks lid until all pressure has dissipated.
  • Independent release valves prevent over-pressurization, even if one valve becomes clogged.
  • Reduces cooking time by up to 66% saving fuel, effort and carbon emissions.

When I first got the cooker I was excited but a bit lost as to what to cook, how it all works, and what exactly I would do with it. What I did know is that this was a neat idea to up my van camping food game. So I quickly googled pressure cooker meals and voila I came up with something simple. So simple that I was suspicious. Here’s the deal, I took 2 frozen chicken breasts, an onion, some carrots, potatoes, green chilies, 3/4 cup water, and some seasoning and put it all in the pot. Sealed it up and placed it on my camp stove.

In pretty short order it started to steam and I knew pressure had built well as the little “party hat” valve on the top started to dance.


I let it do this for 20 minutes and then turned the burner off and let it reduce the pressure on its own by leaving it alone for another 10 minutes. Once the pressure had reduced enough one of the safety locks releases and you can open the unit. It will not open until pressure is low enough to be safe. The result of this “experiment” was nothing short of magical.

Seriously, this was ridiculous. 30 minutes start to eat of a delicious meal and only one pot to clean up. And what’s more is the clean up is barely more than a wipe down of the cooker, no burned residue, no scrubbing intensive work.

So while you might think this is beginner’s luck I have now used this cooker many many many times and made a wide variety of delicious one pot meals and the longest total time any has taken me was 45 minutes for country pork ribs, and the shortest time was 3 minutes for rice…this thing is magic.

Now you will no doubt see other pressure cookers that are fancy and electronic, and those may be fine for sitting on your counter at the house impressing visitors. But if you want a sweet machine that you can camp with, use over a gas burner or an electric cook top then the GSI Outdoors unit is for you. The facts are; this thing is durable, efficient, easy, and makes delicious meals with no mess and little to no effort. No hovering, stirring, fussing over a meal. Just add you ingredients, get the pressure up and set a timer. Too easy.

I have learned through this experience that there are things out there that still amaze me and this lightweight kitchen miracle will take the van life/car camping/over-landing world by storm. FACT.

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