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.
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.
Originally Posted by breadsauce
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.
"I puked like a hero for the rest of the night," Anthony Bourdain, 2002. (After spending the day eating ant eggs, bugs, and larvae, and drinking some gelatinous alcoholic stuff.)
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.
Originally Posted by JoanieL
Mine have 3 settings - High, Low, Off!!
Originally Posted by Rosemary 231
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..
Originally Posted by breadsauce
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?
Originally Posted by Him