Slow-cooker stare-down:  Tell me why you don’t like your Crock-Pot and I’ll convince you!

From   |  March 29, 2010
In Coffee and Convo
Featured Recipe: Slow-Simmered and Savory Pot Roast

Slow-Simmered and Savory Pot Roast

I’m passionate about my slow cookers, and yes, that’s plural. I currently own five Crock-Pots in various sizes and configurations, and I think everyone should have at least one. They are my favorite wedding and baby shower gift. Lately I’ve added birthday gift to that roster and just shipped one of the six-quart models with the warming function to my forty-something sister.

When I recently caught myself in an impassioned speech on the glories of slow cookers in a conversation with my much-younger niece Maggie, I knew I’d crossed some sort of line. But these young moms who’ve been brainwashed into thinking that every meal has to include four hours at the stove -- no wonder they reach for takeout menus five nights a week.

We’ve never written a slow-cooker cookbook, but Desperation Entertaining! has a Crock-Pot chapter, and Cheap. Fast. Good! also contains some of our favorite slow recipes. The recipe featured here for Slow-Simmered and Savory Pot Roast was a huge hit when it ran in our newspaper column.

The slow cooker is my favorite fall-back position for a variety of desperate situations. Say I’m going to be away from home all day and want to be greeted by lovely smells when I return. Or I’ve got a house full of guests who’d like for me to come along for a the day at the beach. You guessed it. I just throw a bunch of veggies, broth and some sort of meat into my crock. Voila, hot homey dinner eight to ten hours later!

I always wonder what it is that some cooks just don’t “get” about the slow cooker. So here’s a challenge: If you don't like your slow cooker, tell me why. I’ll take your argument to the mat and see if I can change your mind. And hopefully all the other slow-cooker fans out there will help me out! Just put your Crock-Pot objections into the comments section following this post. Come on! It’ll be fun! (Humor me!)

Full disclosure: We are not paid to endorse any products here on Kitchen Scoop. We do accept products for review from time to time, and donate them to charities afterward when appropriate. We test all of our slow-cookers in Rival Brand Crock-Pots for consistency.

Comments

From Lisa - March 29, 2010

What don't I like about Crock-Pot cooking? Handling raw meat at 6:44am. EEEEWWWW!!!!

From Julie in San Diego - March 29, 2010

Chicken cooked in the crockpot comes out as dried, dessicated stringy meat, devoid of any juiciness. What's the secret to chicken in the crockpot?

From Felicia - March 30, 2010

I really want to love the Crock but I can't get beyond the steamy, watery aspect of everything I have ever ever ever cooked in it. I desperately wish it had a vent, to let some of that condensation out, so that the cooking juices were concentrated, rather than diluted.

From Pam - April 01, 2010

I am a crock pot fan but it's my husband that stops me from using it much. He claims it's unsafe to cook meats this way. He says the slow cooking process fosters bacteria growth and does not produce enough heat to kill bacteria. My only defense is to say that I've never heard of anyone who died from a slow-cooker meal.

From cheryl - April 06, 2010

I would like to be able to cook some of my favorite oven meals in the crockpot, especially in the summer. You know, like casseroles. If something would take 45 minutes to an hour in the oven at 350, what setting do I use on a crockpot and how long do I leave it in?

From Ann L - April 08, 2010

Most recipes I see say cook for 6 - 8 hrs. When I work, I am away from home for 12 hours. Is it safe to let the meal keep cooking that long? Will it get overcooked? I would love to be able to put the meal together in the morning and come home to it done. Though I have to admit finding the 10-15 minutes to do that would be a stretch some days as well.

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