Slow cookers are handy machines and you cannot get the slow-cooked flavor or texture using an oven or microwave but, like most things, slow cookers occasionally go wrong. If your machine is no longer covered by the warranty or you got it second hand, what do you do when this happens? Can crockpot pottery be repaired and will it still be safe to use? Can you learn how to fix a cracked crockpot?
Crockpots are fairly simple and there is not much that can go wrong with them. This small appliance has a heating element, a metal shell and a ceramic pot. The Nichrome wire element encircles the metal liner and this is how heat is distributed around the crock. The low, steady temperature and tight lid cook the food evenly and reduce evaporation. Most slow cookers have a removable crock so you can clean it more easily. Unfortunately, this also means you can drop it on the floor more easily!
Slow Cooker Troubleshooting
Actually not that much can go wrong with a crockpot. The heating element or thermostat might be faulty, the crock might crack, or the cord might need to be replaced. Apart from that, this simple little machine usually works quite well.
When using your slow cooker, leave it on a surface, which can withstand spills, just in case. The low cooking temperatures mean that boiling over is unlikely to happen but it is better to be safe than sorry. If the crockpot does not heat, check the electrical cord, appliance controls, and heating element. Service the heating element like a switch, replacing it if it is faulty.
If the slow cooker only heats on one temperature, test the thermostat and switch. Also, test the heating element in case it needs to be replaced. If the slow cooker leaks, replace the crock. If the crockpot overheats, check the thermostat and replace it if it is faulty. If the controls or element are damaged beyond repair, buying a new crockpot might be the cheapest thing to do.
Can Crockpot Pottery Be Repaired?
If you do drop your crock, it might crack, break, or chip. In all of these instances, you will need to replace the crock. A cracked or broken crockpot cannot be glued together because the heat from cooking will dissolve the glue and a chipped crock will eventually break.
Even if it doesn’t the crack might mean the lid no longer seals well and the liquid from your crockpot recipes might evaporate, resulting in dried-out dishes rather than the delicious slow cooker recipes you had in mind. Take care with your crockpot liner but, if it does break, you can usually order a replacement online or find one in your local kitchen supply store.
Can Stoneware from a Crockpot Be Used in the Oven?
A lot of people ask, “can I put ceramic insert in the oven crockpot” and we do not recommend this. Some people report that they often put a crockpot ceramic insert in the oven without problems but slow cooker inserts are not designed for this use. Crockpot inserts warm up gradually when you turn the crockpot on and they never go above a certain temperature.
An oven is hot when you put the stoneware into it, which might cause cracking, and they get a lot hotter than slow cookers. Why take the risk? Replacement crockpot inserts are expensive to replace and you can use a Pyrex dish or an ovenproof casserole dish in the oven instead.
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