10 Best Slow Cookers to Make Dinner Prep Easier

best slow cooker reviews

Every week brands advertise that the best slow cooker are theirs and have the most amazing features.

Well…we have researched and tested the best slow cookers so you don’t have to waste your precious time.

We’ve looked at 49 different slow cookers and crock pots and completed over 74 hours of research and testing to create this review which lead us to recommend that the Cuisinart Programmable Slow Cooker is the best slow cooker to buy. This is a straightforward and intuitively programmable cooker that cooks evenly with a more modern looking display. This slow cooker helps in saving time and reducing daily food expenses. Most of us working parents prepare our home made food when we get home from work, but a slow cooker with timer can be a better option if your time is limited.

Top Pick:

1. Cuisinart Programmable Slow Cooker

Price: $60
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In our most recent tests, the Cuisinart slow cooker again proved better than the competition. It doesn’t have fancy controls but is intuitive and performs about as well as many other slow cookers we tested, but after 74 hours of research and testing, we’ve find that its interface, locking lid and price make it the best value slow cooker for your money. By now you must be thinking that we are in love with everything Cuisinart, but we really don’t have a choice as their products are so often, top class.

We should mention then, that we don’t think there’s actually is the perfect slow cooker on the market. We found that every model had flaws, and most common of these seem to be that they cook just a little hotter then their settings are set at. Furthermore, the biggest difference between them is in their features, not the over all cooking ability.  Take this slow cooker for example. TheCuisinart programmable slow cooker outperformed the much more expensive models and soon became our favorite. The price on this one is just right and it has all the programmable functions we looked for in the best slow cooker.

Why our reviews are trustworthy

We have covered kitchen appliances, including slow cookers at ReviewLatest for a few years now, racking up long hours of research and testing in that time. We’ve looked nearly a huge number of slow cookers over the years of all types and consulted with experts and chefs (see citations at the end). We keep up with reviews from other noteworthy companies that also test or review products, such as, Reevoo, Amazon and Good Housekeeping though we do find that the coverage is not as comprehensive as it could be. Then we do our own testing of slow cookers and also have consumer that product test them at home for us. Much of this is conducted with our own consumer product testers, who provide their feedback through our product testing panels.

This review covers the best slow cookers on the market before and since the last time we created this guide. We’ve covered this category extensively.

Who should get this product?

The most compelling reason to buy a slow cooker is convenience in the kitchen. With a modern, programmable slow cooker you choose the temperature setting and the cooking time.  When the time is up, the machine kicks over to the warming setting. That way, you can prep your food before work and head to the office without your food overcooking. If you bring food to get-togethers or parties on a regular basis, having a slow cooker in your kitchen can be seriously time-saving

They are able to cook meals for four or more people with ease. Simple to set up and cook dinner without any fuss while you’re out or busy. The best slow cookers will do that every time and make a tired and hungry family a happy one.

How we began the test selection process

Slow cookers come in a range of sizes, from 1- to 7-quarts in total capacity. Most of the small cookers have only manual controls. The next sizes up are the 4- to 5-quart slow cookers, which work well for singles and couples who want to make an average sized meal. Most of these are manual cookers, although a few top priced ones are programmable.

We focused our research on programmable 6 to 7 quart slow cookers, because they’re big enough to make a meal for a family of four (with leftovers). Good Housekeeping and Consumer Reports also focused their reviews on this size cooker which were programmable with timers that had locking lids, and silicone gaskets to prevent unwanted spills. We wanted to find slow cookers that were easy to use, had a simple design, were programmable enough for the price and consistently provided a hot well cooked meal at the end of a long day.

We started by making a list of all of the best slow cookers that we could find for sale in retailers stores and online. We listed 49 models in the original selection process for this category.

How we tested them

The final selection of 10 programmable slow cookers we chose all have timers that range from 12 to 22 hours. At first, we thought the longer timer would be an advantage, but even the longest slow cooker recipes last less then 10 hours, so a 12 hour plus timer would be more than sufficient.

We also considered models with stove top inserts. However, most slow cooker inserts have a nonstick coating, which isn’t ideal for high-heat. Extreme temperatures cause that coating to break down faster, diminishing its effectiveness. A simple on-off light, so you can tell that the machine is cooking can also prevent accidents. Many of the programmable slow cookers don’t have this feature.  Like many small home appliances, most slow cookers come with a one year limited warranty. All of the machines we tested come with this warranty length, so it didn’t affect the overall decision. Armed with this criteria, we scoured every review we could find and read up on more than 49 slow cooker models. From our research we found that programmable models in the $50 to $75 range fared just as well as, if not better than the more expensive cookers.

Earlier in this review, we mentioned that a universal complaint about most slow cookers is that they run too hot, even on a low setting. Ideally, the cooking liquid should simmer between roughly 190 °F and somewhere below the boiling point of 212 °F.

To determine how hot each of the slow cookers operated at, we filled each crock with 3 quarts of water and measured the temperature of the water every 20 minutes on the low, medium and high settings. We then tested for hot spots, to see if it heated evenly and how much water evaporated over a time of six to eight hours. In our original test, we also cooked 4 pound lamb rump in the Cuisinart Programmable Slow Cooker. Additionally, we judged whether the programmable timers were intuitive and easy to use, whether the product was sturdy and safe, and if the design made them difficult or impractical.

Other Top Picks:

2. Smart Wifi-Enabled WeMo 6-Quart Slow Cooker

Price: $130
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Known for being the most tech-smart slow cooker ever,the WeMo 6-Quart allows anyone to check on their meal without actually being in the kitchen. All thanks to the amazing WiFi control, you can easily adjust the temperature of your meal remotely, without any hassle and on the go. With that being said, the slow cooker is dishwasher safe.

3. Cuisinart 3 in 1 Central 6 Quart Multi-Cooker

Price: $150
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This is a miracle slow cooker that will let you cook, steam or saute your food with extreme fluidity. The multi-cooker comes with three programmable functions that are perfect for sauteing vegetables, brown your meats and master your slow cook acts. The multi-cooker has an LCD display with blue back-light which will give you clear picture of what’s happening and keep you posted.

4. Bella Programmable Digital Slow Cooker

Price: $40
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Who says slow cookers have to be expensive? This is one affordable slow cooker that may not have the advanced functions of a $200 cooker but it does get the job done. It can get you well-cooked meals without any issues; all you’ll need to do is set the timer.

5. Black Decker 7-Quart Slow Cooker

Price: $52
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Not only is this cooker great at its job but its also designed in such a way that it makes cooking fun. The cooker comes in teal color and is quite noticeable. It is so well designed that many people consider making it a permanent part of their display. In addition, the cooker has 3 different heat settings that are perfect for almost every recipe there is.

6. Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget Programmable Slow Cooker

Price: $50
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This Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget Programmable Slow Cooker is an elegant cooker that is best designed for chefs who love to keep a track of things. A thermometer probe reads the cooking temperatures and feeds it back to the LCD display for further action.

7. West Bend Oval-Shaped Programmable Slow Cooker

Price: $83
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This slow cooker features a unique oval design that makes it perfect for cooking all kinds of odd meat cuts. For instance, you can slow-cook a rack of lamb quite easily without the need for too much manipulation. Moreover, this cooking appliance also comes with griddle settings in addition to the standard warm/low/high modes.

8. Chefman Programmable Slow Cooker

Price: $74
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Chefman has come up with a sensible solution for one of the most common problems in a kitchen: skidding. Their programmable slow cooker is designed in such a manner that it will never make any mess in your kitchen and you can work on other things without worrying about a spill.

9. Crack-Pot Programmable Casserole Slow Cooker

Price: $45
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Compared to its counterparts, the Crock-Pot Programmable Slow Cooker comes with absolutely no knobs. The design is simple, easy to understand and works with everything you put in its way. The cooker is controlled through a digitally controlled panel while an air-tight lid ensures that you don’t run into any kind of problems while making a gourmet meal.

10. Hamilton Beach Stay or Go Programmable Slow Cooker

Price: $50
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Well suited for large parties, the Hamilton Beach Stay or Go Slow Cooker will let you make food for an entire family gathering with its 6 quart interior. Additionally, the cooker comes with folding handles that make it very portable just in case you never want to lose sight of it!

 

Best Slow Cookers And Crock Pots to Buy

A slow cooker with timer helps in saving time, reducing daily food expenses . Mostly working parents always prefer to prepare their home made food within a short duration, but a slow cooker with timer can be a better option if your limited for time.

What can a slow cooker with timer do that can’t be expected by a normal cooker?

The normal cooker can only cook food as per the speed of flame and can even burn the food if there is an imbalance in the quantity of water and food. But the roast slow cooker not only saves the food from burning, but saves your excess fuel expenses as well. Within a few moments, your morning food can be prepared which is a blessing for the school going kids and working parents.

Whether it’s caring about food for your kids, your own food dieting according to the prescription of your doctor, everything can be taken care of. The main feature of these advanced slow cookers with timer is that you can set timer for this pressure cooker such as Cuisinart-programmable, and it will set the cooker to cook food within a few minutes or 8 to 10 hours on slow timer. So, it gives your convenience the first preference.

Which is the best slow cooker?

Unlike the oven, the chance of burning food will be very low in slow cooker. Bella Linea is one of the best programmable slow cookers in which your food won’t become dry due to moist heat produced by this slow cooker. In comparison to a normal cooker, the programmable slow cooker with timer restricts the overcooking of the food and the sounds produced by timer ensure that the cooking is finished.

In a slow cooker with a timer, you can make varieties of foods such as soups, casseroles, bread baking, etc. You are free to follow tips from cook books and internet sites for making great tasty dishes using your slow cooker.

Why should you Buy a Programmable Slow Cooker with Timer?

Time saving appliances

You can handle the slow cooker by choosing the lower or higher temperatures and easily judge the difference between a normal cooker and a time saving cooker. Now, many advanced features have been added along with timers to the programmable cookers such as the digital views and auto shut-offs. The digital slow cooker with timer has the digital views feature to enable you to check the status of food inside the cooker. The program of cooking can be set up to 24 hours maximum time duration in advance and the time duration can be set between the duration ranging from 5 minutes to 24 hours.

Food safety

According to food safety regulations in the USA, the slow cookers should have ability to reach high temperatures in short span of time, so that some category of food items like meat don’t get positioned in the bacteria-growing zone which lies between 39 and 141 degrees Fahrenheit.  And the slow cookers support the temperature range from 140 F up to 238 F to give you the best possible food safety.

Saving of Time and Fuel

The crucial feature of the slow cooker lies in saving your time and energy. You can perform multiple house chores, work along with cooking food while using programmable slow cooker with timer. The cleaning process of the stainless steel slow cooker pot is also easier than the normal cookers.

User-friendly long lasting Accessories

There are a few electric or digital slow cooker models that offer digital displays and run on electric energy and temperature probes. This facility makes the setting easier and forgettable. Also, you need not worry about food burning or drying chances. The slow cookers which come with a rubber seal and a lid also restricts the lid from blooming and steam from releasing. The roasting slow cookers are coming with roasting rack and spoon accessories as well. So, start cooking using the booklet with the top rated slow cookers.

Excellent Warranties & Support service

Most small cookers with timers cover defective parts and labor for at least a year in their warranty cards. In addition to it, you can also contact customer service department to resolve any query about your slow cooker. You can even raise an inquiry about new accessories or parts. In case you lose your manual provided with the box, you can easily find a similar copy online by surfing the website of the related manufacturer.

Top rated small slow cooker with timer brand

There are many best rated slow cookers with timer brands available on the market. The name of some of the best slow cookers are Bella Linea, Hamilton Beach, Cuisinart, KitchenAid, Crock-Pot. In these cookers, many programmable automatic features are available.

There are various sizes and designs of small slow cookers with timers available. It even includes a temperature probe plugging to read the temperature required for cooking of a large piece of meat.

Recommended features

The electric and gas fuel operated Slow cooker with timer is always recommended for use. It helps in working with a digital slow cooker with timer for a longer period. Make your lifestyle more comfortable and reliable with the usage of a slow cooker with timer. You don’t have to stay in your kitchen for longer time. Once you set the program of temperature of cooker along with the appropriate quantity of ingredients, you don’t even have to remember the finishing time of the cooking. It will cook your food well and keep it moist for even 24 hours.

Get multiple advantages from slow cooker with timer and save your food, time and energy. So, make your lifestyle more reliable and relaxing. It will assist you in cooking food like an auto operated robot and also show the status of food through Digital views which is not possible in any normal cooker.

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