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Compare the best slow cookers

One of the simplest yet versatile appliances available.

Slow cookers, also called crock pots, are handy small appliances to have around any kitchen. They can be used to simmer stews, soups, casseroles or any other food that requires a lengthy cooking time. And the best part? They’re super easy to use and require little effort on your part.

Our top 5 slower cooker picks

Best budget slow cooker

Crock-Pot 4 qt. Count Down Slow Cooker

For under $40, you can get a quality slow cooker from one of the best-known brands out there. This model features a built-in timer that automatically shifts to the keep-warm setting when the time is up, and it’s the perfect size for a family of four.

  • Price: $35
  • Where to buy: Amazon
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Best slow cooker for a big family

Cuisinart MSC-600 3-In-1 Cook Central 6-Quart Multi-Cooker

This versatile model comes in four-quart, six-quart and eight-quart capacities — the latter two being perfect for large families or those who love to entertain. It features three programmable cooking settings, an extra-large backlit LED display and its removable parts are dishwasher safe for easy cleanup.

  • Price: $100–$155
  • Where to buy: Amazon
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Best small slow cooker

Proctor Silex Portable 1.5 Quart White Compact Slow Cooker

If you’re looking for something that won’t take up much counter space and will be equally convenient to transport, this top-rated model is worth a look. It holds 1.5 quarts, is dishwasher safe and has three cooking settings. But one of its most stand-out features is its rubber seal and lid latch strap for spill-free transport.

  • Price: $25
  • Where to buy: Amazon
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Best high-end slow cooker

Breville Fast Slow Pro Multicooker

This stylish and high-performance appliance has a range of preset cooking programs and manual settings, an interactive LCD screen, dual sensors, a hands-free steam release and more. It also comes with an additional steaming insert.

  • Price: $245
  • Where to buy: Amazon
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Best multifunctional slow cooker

KitchenAid Multi Cooker with Stir Tower

This model has ten preprogrammed functions, plus many more manual settings that allow you to sauté, sear, bake, make soup and yogurt and more. Plus, it comes in super sleek stainless steel, or candy apple red if you’re looking for that bright pop of color in your kitchen.

  • Price: $550
  • Where to buy: Amazon
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This article does not include every slow cooker or brand available but rather is a general summary of some of the most popular and efficient brands and products. These prices and details were checked on the 09/07/18 and may have changed since.
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Why should you buy a slow cooker?

Slow cookers are an essential small appliance for any cook worth their salt. They’re ideal for meaty stews or flavorsome curries because they lock in all the great taste, sealing in the food’s juices without drying anything out.

It might seem counterintuitive that an appliance that takes a really long time to cook a meal would be a time-saver, but this appliance is ideal for busy people. Fill your slow cooker the night before or in the morning, set a program and come home to a hot, healthy meal already prepared in the evening.Back to top

6 tips for using a slow cooker

1. Slower is better.

It sounds obvious, but slow cookers are designed for slow-cooked meals. They work best when set to cook for hours at a time. When you’re busy you can set your crock pot in the morning, and arrive home to a warm meal in the evening.

2. Don’t open the lid.

Slow cooker meals are meant to be low-maintenance and hands-off. If you can’t help but check the progress, make sure your lid is transparent.

3. Remember, the liquid doesn’t reduce.

You’ll need less liquid than if you were frying or baking. If you’re cooking with wine, remember that the alcohol won’t evaporate like it will with other cooking methods, so a little splash goes a long way.

4. Go easy on the fat and oil.

You don’t need it. This is one of the beauties of using a slow cooker. Your meal will slowly marinate in its own juices and any added spices and herbs. So you’ll need less oil and fat to make your meal tasty and juicy.

5. Care for your appliance.

Keep your pot clean, especially the ceramic plate for the stove pot. Most models have removable dishwasher-safe parts, making cleanup a breeze.

6. Avoid overcrowding.

Consult your manual and don’t fill your pot more than is recommended.

What are the best slow cooker recipes?

The best thing about making meals with a slow cooker is that all you need to do is collect and prepare delicious ingredients, then leave them in the slow cooker to marinate all day long. It’s easy, delicious and requires no extra oils to cook — only what the recipe requires.

These are our favorite ideas:


Thai-style chicken curry with coconut milk

Source: Taste

Mushroom stroganoff
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Bottom line

Slow cookers come in a range of different sizes and price points, and are available from many leading kitchen appliance brands. If you have yet to buy a slow cooker, compare a few popular models to ensure you get the best value.

How did we choose these products?

To choose our list of the best slow cookers, we conducted online research to compare the size, price, type and extra features, also factoring in third-party product reviews.

Frequently asked questions

What’s the best slow cooker brand?

Breville, Crock-Pot and KitchenAid are just a few of the most popular brands that make high-quality slow cookers.

What features should I consider when buying a slow cooker?

  • Material. Ceramic and porcelain are the most popular crock materials, but there are also metal models available.
  • Lid material. Glass lids are ideal, since they allow you to see inside without opening the lid and letting all the warm air out.
  • Size. If you don’t have a lot of extra counter space, a smaller model might be best. But if you need to feed a large family, opt for a larger capacity.
  • Extras. Do you want the basics, or all the bells and whistles? Some handy features include a built-in timer, warming setting and a sear function.

Can you put raw meat in a slow cooker?

Yes! That’s one of the many beauties of using one of these appliances. Just be sure to check the temperature of the meat when it comes out to make sure it’s fully cooked.

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