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Slow cooker recommendations. After reading all the posts about slow cooker recipes, I'm thinking it might be time to re-enter the crockpot wo

I had one years ago, and obviously there have been major improvements since my earlier model. I'm only cooking for two, so don't need a giant... Any recommendations on size and manufacturer would be appreciated

asked by mt gal 11 months ago
4 answers 596 views
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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added 11 months ago

I have three of them and use them all, but no need to be as obsessed as I am. My favorite is probably my 6 qt Cuisinart 3 in 1. It slow cooks, browns and steams. I have never used the steam function and I may never use it. I like it because some recipes are better if you brown meats first. I can do that in my slow cooker and avoid using multiple pans. It has a digital timer which I have found to be very nice.

I also have an inexpensive 4 qt Black and Decker. It was under $20 at Wal-Mart Mart. I use it to cook smaller roasts and soups and rice. Not having a timer isn't a deal breaker, but I wish I had spent a little more and bought one with a timer.

Last but not least, I have a 6.5 qt Crockpot brand. It's definitely a workhorse. It has a timer and is great on low, but does run hotter than my other two. It's great for ribs (because of its oval shape) and large amounts of chicken or beef stock.

A good thing to do is look on Amazon at different makes and models and read the reviews. The questions and answers are also useful.

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added 11 months ago

i bought a cheap metal one and while it works well heat wise it does some foods better than others. the heat element is on the bottom only and does not surround the walls. the metal container can be used on the stove top to brown meat first...nice option as is the non stick interior. but, i find that while i like chicken prepared in it, i do not like beef...i don't like the texture or really the taste. so, i would think about some of these issues. i think meat prepared in the traditional crockpot would be good as it would be more slow cooked braised rather in the very thin metal oblong container on mine. also, be aware that some cook fast (temp is higher). look at the comments on amazon and you will get a good sense of the features and cooks illustrated channel on youtube probably has a review of slow cookers too. i'm thinking of getting rid of mine and replacing with a pressure cooker (i did not order the one i was going to get and commented on it in a different thread because i wanted to do some more research).

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pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added 11 months ago

Today's slow cookers are not like that silly thing your Mom gave you when you graduated from college, in harvest gold with a flower on the side. Today's slow cookers are pretty awesome in terms of efficiency and capacity. Another vote for Cuisinart.

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added 11 months ago

I have the Hamilton Beach 3-in-1 slow cooker with 3 different sized crocks (2, 4 and 6 quart) - I love it because I can use the 6 quart for chickens or soups, or the 2 quart for dips to bring to work. I don't need 2 different slow cookers. It does run a bit hot though, maybe the newer black version is better (I have the old white version)