Top 5 Best Slow Cookers That Are Better Than All The Rest

I tend to think of seasons in terms of the food we eat and how I prepare meals for my family; it’s either grilling season or slow cooker season. The warmer months of spring and summer are filled with fresh vegetables, salads, and everything and anything on the grill. But the cooler months of fall and winter are filled with soups, casseroles, chili and anything I can dump into my slow cooker. Between the ease of preparing a meal and the all-day smell of comfort food, I highly recommend a quality slow cooker for your kitchen. Whether you are looking to purchase your first slow cooker or upgrade to a newer model, these five are as droolworthy as the food in them.

(For your convenience, I have linked to Amazon which is an affiliate of ours so you can read more about these products. You can also find these items at most major retailers.)

1. Slow Cooker That Does Practically Everything:
Ninja 3-in-1 Cooking System

This Ninja 3-in-1 cooking system can be used as an oven, a stove top, or slow cooker. In one appliance you can sauté and sear your meats and vegetables and then slow cook them to perfection. Or you can make brownies, cakes, and other desserts by using the Ninja’s healthier and faster steam cooking option. The Ninja uses Triple Fusion Heat to cook your meals while keeping them moist and full of flavor. And you will use fewer pots and pans and save time cooking dinner for your family.

Accessories include a steam rack, square pan, and mini muffin pan. The non-stick pot is removable and unbreakable. The reviews for this cooker are about as high as they can be. People love the fact that this is a really great slow cooker but that it can also do so much more.

2. Slow Cooker That Is Programmable:
Hamilton Beach Set And Forget Programmable Slow Cooker, 6-Quart

This slow cooker would fit in perfectly at my house. While I love to cook meals for my family, I tend to be pulled in a few different directions at dinner time. Three young kids have a way of letting me keep food on the grill too long or forget to check the status of whatever I have in the slow cooker. The Hamilton Beach Set and Forget Programmable Slow Cooker allows me to actually forget what I am serving for dinner but does me the favor of switching to warm mode when my meal is done.

The Set and Forget slow cooker offers three ways to cook your food. The probe mode is used by placing the temperature probe into the meat you are cooking and then setting the desired temperature you want the slow cooker to shift to warm your food—not overcook it. Or you can use the program mode to set the slow cooker to kick into warm mode after a certain amount of cooking time. The manual mode is always an option too. Simply set the cooker to warm, low, or high.

For easy serving the lid is hinged and will stay up while you are getting your food. For easy cleaning, the hinged lid and the stoneware are removable and dishwasher friendly. For easy travel, the side handles snap up for carrying and the hinged lid clips securely into place, keeping your food in the slow cooker and not all over your car.  You can find it for a great price on Amazon.

3. Slow Cooker That Travels:
Hamilton Beach Stay Or Go Slow Cooker, 7-Quart

If you don’t want or need all of the cooking options of the Hamilton Beach Set And Forget, but want the ability to take your meals to family gatherings or parties, the Stay or Go Slow Cooker is perfect. Using the manual mode, you can keep your food warm or cook it on high or low. For spill-resistant travel, the Stay or Go has foldable side handles and a hinged lid that locks securely into place with a front clip. The lid and stoneware are removable and dishwasher friendly. People who bought this slow cooker rave about how much they love this crock pot.

4. Slow Cooker For Casseroles And Entertaining:
Crock-Pot Casserole Crock Slow Cooker, 3.5-Quart

It looks like a casserole dish but cooks like a slow cooker. Finally. Crock-Pot offers us their Casserole Crock Slow Cooker. The shape of this dish allows for more even cooking of your favorite casserole recipes—and for easier scooping when the meal is done. Because of the rectangular shape, the Casserole Crock can cook anything from macaroni and cheese to apple crisp. Ribs, lasagna, and your grandmother’s favorite green bean casserole never tasted so good.

When your meal is ready, you can use the Cook and Carry locking system to safely take it on the road. This slow cooker can be used in warm, low or high heating modes. The stoneware is oven safe but not dishwasher safe. Exterior colors include cranberry, navy, charcoal and black and white.  Folks give great reviews for this cooker.

5. Cheap But Good No Frills Slow Cooker:
Crock-Pot Manual Slow Cooker, 2-Quart

For those of you who are cooking for one or two and don’t care about fancy cooking options, this manual slow cooker from Crock-Pot is perfect. It is rated the #1 Best Seller on Amazon’s list of slow cookers and it’s really, really affordable and easy to use. The stoneware is removable and is dishwasher safe, as is the lid. If you want a slightly bigger slow cooker, you can also purchase one with 3-quart capacity. Both sizes come with a small collection of recipes. The reviews for this slow cooker are consistently high.

While most slow cookers come with suggested recipes, there is no shortage of slow cooker specific recipe books or people willing to share their favorite slow cooker meals on Pinterest—trust me, you’ll spend more time pinning recipes than the time it takes to prepare a slow cooked meal. Before you can make that easy, mouthwatering meal, you need a droolworthy slow cooker. The five I highlighted will not disappoint. Happy (slow) cooking!

SEE ALSO: 9 Awesome Gadgets To Make Holiday Cooking Easier

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