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  • #16
    I have a Hamilton beach I love. Simple. No timers,
    But is a 3 in 1. It stores a 2,4 and6 wt inside each other so
    You always have the right size. I prefer the round slow cookers as
    In my experience the oval ones run hot
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    • #17
      Originally posted by Kaylee99 View Post
      I just got this one from Santa to replace my broken one:
      Hamilton Beach 33967 Set 'n Forget 6-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker: Amazon.com: Kitchen & Dining

      So far I love it. I've cooked chicken soup and Swedish meatballs in it and they turned out really good. Its great to be able to program the temperature or to use it the traditional low/high temp way. The probe is interesting (I'm going to cook a chicken later this week and try it out) and I really like the idea behind it. Also, the clamps to keep the stoneware to the base are AWESOME! No more spills when taking stuff to potlucks.
      I second this choice--I have one too, and LOVE it!

      Thought it was going to be too huge for just me, but turns out it's the perfect size. I cook batches at a time so some can be eaten right away and the rest portioned out for frozen meals.

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      • #18
        I just have a standard 6q or 7q crockpot. Just has a "high" or "low" or "Keep warm" setting on it, and a timer. Almost everything I've cooked in that thing comes out delicious. I think I paid $20-$40 for it on Black Friday a year ago. Use it at least once a week. Generally turn it on in the morning before I leave for work, and by the time I get home, whatever was in there is tender and delicious and ready to eat. Haven't done broths or soups in it, usually pasta sauces (for spaghetti squash) or roasts.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by curlygirl View Post
          I have a Hamilton beach I love. Simple. No timers,
          But is a 3 in 1. It stores a 2,4 and6 wt inside each other so
          You always have the right size. I prefer the round slow cookers as
          In my experience the oval ones run hot
          I have a Hamilton Beach oval slow cooker. It's settings are Hi, Medium, Lo and Warm. I have heard that the newer slow cookers cook hotter, thus faster, defeating the whole idea of "slow cooking". Is there a way to adjust for the hotter temps? Would it be possible to turn the slow cooker up to Hi until it's fully heated (with food already in the crock, naturally) and then turn it down to Warm. Lo isn't low enough, it still boils too hard and if I left it cooking while I'm at work the food would probably be overcooked or boiled dry.

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          • #20
            I used to swear by my little West Bend pot Amazon.com: West Bend 84905 5-Quart Oblong-Shaped Slow Cooker: Home & Kitchen, it has a metal crock that sits on a griddle base, so you can put it on the stove to sear meat, a huge time/dish saver. The little griddle was great for pancakes as well. Unfortunately, the quality just isn't there--a year later, the non-stick coating on the pot is flaking off (BAD!) and an accidental drop of the metal pot bent it enough that the lid wouldn't sit on it right anymore. It did it's job when we lived in an RV and had limited space and washing capabilities, but I dragged my huge Hamilton Beach Stay-or-Go slow cooker out of the yard sale pile when we moved back into a house. The clamps on the side and travel bag are very helpful if you take dishes to potlucks.

            I hate buying kitchen appliances (I have a rice cooker and bread machine gathering dust, ugh), especially since we plan to go back to RV life in the next few years, but I'm seriously considering the Instant Pot multi-cooker. I like the removable *stainless* liner, thus removing the toxic non-stick crap and giving you the ability to sear meat. Being able to pressure cook is a big bonus too.

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            • #21
              i got my crock pot just over a year a go.great bit of kit.

              don't go for a small one,i went for a 6.5 litre and i don't think you'd feed a family with it (not a hungry one anyway).i live by myself and wouldn't really want one much smaller.i tend to eat mainly in the evening though,and usually quite a lot compared to most people i know.
              also as someone else said the larger ones can fit a leg of lamb and are great if you're having people round.

              the only other thing i would say is get one that will stay on for at least 10 or 12 hours.some of the more basic ones i looked at will switch off after eight hours.so if you're out for any longer the food could be cold by the time you get home.
              mine will keep going for up to 20 hours i think which is great as i often go to an indoor rock climbing place after work so can be out for 15 or 16 hours.

              my advice,get a large one that will go for a long time.i think that's maybe why my old girlfriend left.

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              • #22
                I've got 2 slow cookers; a large one and an average size and both are oval. Both cook hotter than I want even on low. When making stock, for example, they bubble hard enough that liquid bubbles up around the edge under the lid and splashes the counter round about. And I have to top up with hot water several times during a 24 hour cook or they would boil dry.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by breadsauce View Post
                  I've got 2 slow cookers; a large one and an average size and both are oval. Both cook hotter than I want even on low. When making stock, for example, they bubble hard enough that liquid bubbles up around the edge under the lid and splashes the counter round about. And I have to top up with hot water several times during a 24 hour cook or they would boil dry.
                  Exactly what happened to me. Have you ever tried bringing it up to full temp on hot and then turning it to warm, if you have a warm, for the rest of the cooking time? I plan on giving it a try, mine boils too hard even on low.

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                  • #24
                    If you're wanting a slow cooker primarily for bone broth, I'd check out pressure cookers. I have the patience of a five year old, and every few years I buy a slow cooker, realize I don't like waiting that long for something, then take it back.

                    A pressure cooker takes a couple of hours to make good bone broth rather than overnight. Reputable brands are now very safe (although my old one which I bought at a yardsale never gave me any problems either). I got a stove top one last month, but that's only because I have very limited counterspace where I live and I get tired of the small appliance shuffle when I have to use something on top of my counters.
                    "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by JoanieL View Post
                      If you're wanting a slow cooker primarily for bone broth, I'd check out pressure cookers. I have the patience of a five year old, and every few years I buy a slow cooker, realize I don't like waiting that long for something, then take it back.

                      A pressure cooker takes a couple of hours to make good bone broth rather than overnight. Reputable brands are now very safe (although my old one which I bought at a yardsale never gave me any problems either). I got a stove top one last month, but that's only because I have very limited counterspace where I live and I get tired of the small appliance shuffle when I have to use something on top of my counters.
                      My kids gave me a pressure cooker for Christmas year before last. The crock pot made such a mess and took so long. I love using the pressure cooker for bone broth. I want to use my crock pot/slow cooker for slow cooking.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Rosemary 231 View Post
                        Exactly what happened to me. Have you ever tried bringing it up to full temp on hot and then turning it to warm, if you have a warm, for the rest of the cooking time? I plan on giving it a try, mine boils too hard even on low.
                        Mine have 3 settings - High, Low, Off!!

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by breadsauce View Post
                          Mine have 3 settings - High, Low, Off!!
                          I've heard others say "buy and older crock pot/slow cooker at a garage sale or resale store. They cook like slow cookers used to - slow. I still have my old one and my daughters old one too so I would have different sizes. Too bad, they're still in storage and I have to use my newer, faster slow cooker for awhile..

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                          • #28
                            This may not apply to all of you, but one of the reasons I don't like slow cookers has to do with altitude sensitivity. This applies to old style rice cookers too.

                            The boiling point of water varies dramatically with elevation. At sea level water boils at about 212f, but at even 4500' it boils at just under 204f. However, the thermostats used in slow cookers (and rice cookers) run at fixed temperatures. Result: The same slow cooker will work great at sea level +/- 500', but will disappoint at 2500' and be more than frustrating at >5000'.

                            Just something to keep in mind. Electric pressure cookers (and, to repeat myself: THEY ARE WHAT YOU WANT ) are less subject to that problem because they typically regulate to a constant internal pressure instead of temperature. Temperature and pressure are related so cooking times will vary but you won't have the boil over/run dry problem.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Him View Post
                              This may not apply to all of you, but one of the reasons I don't like slow cookers has to do with altitude sensitivity. This applies to old style rice cookers too.

                              The boiling point of water varies dramatically with elevation. At sea level water boils at about 212f, but at even 4500' it boils at just under 204f. However, the thermostats used in slow cookers (and rice cookers) run at fixed temperatures. Result: The same slow cooker will work great at sea level +/- 500', but will disappoint at 2500' and be more than frustrating at >5000'.

                              Just something to keep in mind. Electric pressure cookers (and, to repeat myself: THEY ARE WHAT YOU WANT ) are less subject to that problem because they typically regulate to a constant internal pressure instead of temperature. Temperature and pressure are related so cooking times will vary but you won't have the boil over/run dry problem.
                              Very good point. We are at 1600 feet. Water boils faster right?

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