Christine's Product Reviews

If you have seen some of our crockpot recipes already, you will realize that this method of cooking yields fantastic results and crockpot meals are very easy to make. If you want to buy a new crockpot to make these easy crockpot recipes, the good news is that they are relatively inexpensive and you can offset the price by saving money on cheap ingredients such as tough cuts of meat, which cook well in the slow cooker.

Where to Buy Crockpots

You can buy crockpots online or in kitchen stores or department stores. If you are on a tight budget, you might want to get a second hand one but it is important to check for breaks or cracks if you choose this option. Also, a second hand crockpot might not work properly so a new one is safer.

Different Types of Crockpots

There are crockpots with different sizes of crocks and crocks made from different materials, such as glass, non-stick metal, or stoneware. Stoneware is considered the best for maintaining temperature. Stoneware can chip if you drop it though. Non-stick metal is resilient to being dropped but it is not so good at maintaining an even temperature.

If you want to use your slow cooker to make crockpot soups or stews for one or two people, a two or three quart model should be adequate. If you want to feed a family or cook roasts, you might prefer a six and a half quart model. If you just want to make sauces and fondues or melt chocolate in it, you can get a small one-quart crockpot.

Buying Your First CrockpotThere is nothing to stop you from having several crockpots in assorted sizes if you plan to use them frequently and for different kinds of crockpot recipes. Crockpots come in different shapes. Soups, stews and desserts are good in round slow cookers but roast chickens and casseroles that need to be scooped out are better suited to an oblong or oval crockpot.

Crockpot Settings

Some crockpots have low and high settings, others have low, medium and high and some come with as many as five temperature settings or with an automatic shift, which changes the setting when you program it to. These extra settings are not necessary but you might want to have them.

Other features, which you might want to have, are LCD displays, programmable settings, an integrated cord, touchpad controls, indicator lights, and volume markings to tell you how much food is in the crockpot. Remember too that big crockpots have a higher wattage so they can cook your collection of the best crockpot recipes as efficiently as smaller models.

A heavy glass lid is preferable to a plastic one because they work better and last longer so if you plan to do plenty of crockpot cooking, go for glass. Some crockpots are easier to clean than others and some have removable inner bowls, which make them easier to clean. Some crockpot bowls are dishwasher safe and others are not, so check that if you have a dishwasher.

Crockpot Accessories

Crock pot liners are useful. These are heavy-duty plastic bags that fit in your crockpot so you can keep the basin clean. Dust covers, travel cases and an extra divided basin to split the crockpot in two are all handy accessories for the slow cooker. You can cook crockpot dessert recipes on one side and your savory 4 ingredient crockpot recipes on the other side without using two crockpots.

Finally, check that the cord on the crockpot is UL Listed and the warranty is for a minimum of a year, preferably extending into a three year partial warranty, in case anything goes wrong with your crockpot because once you have made one crockpot recipe you will want to make many more!

Photo Credit: Cuisinart PSC-400 Stainless Steel 4-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker



 
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Christine Szalay-Kudra

My name is Christine and I am delighted to welcome you here. Food is such a huge part of our family's lives and being able to find menus, recipes and cooking tips in one place online is something busy parents can really appreciate, which is why the Recipe Publishing Network aims to bring you exactly that.

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Thanks for visiting,

Christine

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