13 Recipes For People Who Think They Hate Slow Cookers

You might think the slow cooker isn’t your thing. But I have news for you: If you like brownies, or pulled pork, or cinnamon rolls, or CHEESY POTATOES, the slow cooker IS for you.

Here are 13 reasons to become one of those annoying slow cooker obsessives.

1. Cheesy bacon ranch potatoes are in the slow cooker’s wheelhouse. Also in my wheelhouse.

Cheesy bacon ranch potatoes are in the slow cooker's wheelhouse. Also in my wheelhouse.

Get the recipe here.

2. You can plan ahead by prepping entire meals and freezing them in a zip-top bag, so all you have to do is dump it all in and press start.

You can plan ahead by prepping entire meals and freezing them in a zip-top bag, so all you have to do is dump it all in and press start.

Get the directions for this and 5 other make-ahead crockpot meals here.

3. Heyyoooo, meatballs in the house. They’re great served straight from the slow cooker because they stay extra hot and saucy.

Heyyoooo, meatballs in the house. They're great served straight from the slow cooker because they stay extra hot and saucy.

Get the recipe for honey buffalo meatballs here.

4. Anything bacon-wrapped, like this pork loin, is perfect in the ol’ cooker.

Anything bacon-wrapped, like this pork loin, is perfect in the ol' cooker.

Get the recipe here.

5. Slow cookers encourage cream cheese in your soup.

Slow cookers encourage cream cheese in your soup.

Get the recipe for slow cooker cream cheese chicken chili here.

6. Gaze upon this honey-balsamic pulled pork and tell me you aren’t drooling.

Gaze upon this honey-balsamic pulled pork and tell me you aren't drooling.

Get the recipe here.

7. A slow cooker is great for cooking up homemade Chex Mix.

A slow cooker is great for cooking up homemade Chex Mix.

Get the recipe here.

8. Or stirring together some crack… er, I mean, buffalo chicken dip.

Or stirring together some crack... er, I mean, buffalo chicken dip.

Get the recipe here.

9. How about some s’mores brownies that are, wait for it….made in the slow cooker!

How about some s'mores brownies that are, wait for it....made in the slow cooker!

Yes, I will have three to five, please. Get the recipe here.

10. Or make a big batch of hot chocolate and spike it with NUTELLA. Serving size: one.

Or make a big batch of hot chocolate and spike it with NUTELLA. Serving size: one.

Get the recipe here.

11. ALERT! Even these pillowy cinnamon rolls can be made in a slow cooker!

ALERT! Even these pillowy cinnamon rolls can be made in a slow cooker!

Get the recipe for easy slow cooker cinnamon rolls here.

12. If you’ve ever had apple butter then you already know you should try making it in the slow cooker immediately.

If you've ever had apple butter then you already know you should try making it in the slow cooker immediately.

Get the recipe here.

13. You can even slow-mull cider in the slow cooker. Don’t forget to spike it with booze.

You can even slow-mull cider in the slow cooker. Don't forget to spike it with booze.

Lauren Zaser / Via buzzfeed.com

Get the recipe here.

Read more about 13 Recipes For People Who Think They Hate Slow Cookers on Reviewing The Best Cookers.

Boost a Slow Cooker Dish’s Flavor by Finishing With Acid and Fresh Herbs

If you feel like your slow cooker meals always turn out a little bland, this trick will reawaken the flavors of your dish—no salt required.

Hours of cooking in a crock pot can dull the seasoning of even the most flavorful food. That’s why Sarah Rae Smith at The Kitchn recommends you add a splash of acid to your slow cooker meal, whatever it may be, when it’s close to being done. A little citrus juice or any type of vinegar will reinvigorate your dish and take it from tame to tasty. Stir it in, then it let your dish finish cooking for the last half hour or so. When you’re ready to serve, top it off with your favorite fresh herbs to add a little extra zing. No matter what you’re cooking, it won’t end up a bland bowl of boring.

The original source at LifeHacker.

Read more about Boost a Slow Cooker Dish’s Flavor by Finishing With Acid and Fresh Herbs on Reviewing The Best Cookers.

Rice Cooker Reviews – Best Of 2015 – 2016

Rice Cooker Product Comparison

Product Name Features Price Point Rating Visit


Hamilton Beach 3 cooking functions (heat/simmer, steam-cook and keep warm) — capacity markings — digital display — timer for up to 15 hours ahead — non-stick pot — dishwasher-safe lid — steaming tray Mid-range Learn More


Tefal 2 functions (automatic cooking and keep-warm) — steaming basket — water-level markings — non-stick inner bowl — dishwasher- safe Mid-range Learn More


VonShef 2 functions (automatic cooking and keep-warm) — locking lid — non-stick pot — heat-insulated cover — removable power cord Mid-range Learn More


Lloytron Keep- warm function — non-stick pot — glass lid — measuring cup and spatula included Affordable Learn More


Andrew James automatic cooking & keep-warm function — steaming basket — non-stick bowl — glass lid — measuring cup & serving spoon Affordable Learn More

There are so many different models of rice cooker out there on the market that it can be a real struggle deciding which one to buy. In general, rice cookers are convenient and uncomplicated to use, given that they serve the purpose of creating hassle-free dishes; however, the dozens of different features on offer can get confusing. Here, we’re going to take five different models and compare them so that you can decide which one is best for your needs.

 

Hamilton Beach Digital Rice Cooker Review – Our Number 1

Hamilton Beach Digital Rice CookerA great all-around cooker, this is a product that does more than just prepare plain rice. Large and attractive, it’s a fantastic option for those who want to get some real use out of their rice cooker and aren’t afraid to try new things.

  • With a listed capacity of 4.75 litres and an actual capacity that’s a little lower, this rice cooker is nevertheless highly capable of cooking amounts of rice as low as 1 litre with minimal fuss. The inner pot has handy markings on the side that indicates the amount of servings it will provide, so if you’re cooking for four people, you simply need to fill it to the ‘4’
  • Able to handle three different types of rice — white rice, quick rice and whole-grain rice — this product’s capabilities are well-complemented by the three different cooking functions it provides. These are named by the manufacturer as heat/simmer, steam cook and keep warm — and once the dish you’re preparing is cooked, this rice cooker automatically switches to the latter setting. Heat/simmer, on the other hand, is an ideal setting for beans, soups, pasta/rice mixes and more.
  • A useful timer allows you to delay cooking by up to 15 hours, which is absolutely ideal for those of us with busy working lives. You can come home to a perfectly cooked meal, and you’ll simply have to put the ingredients together in the morning and press a few buttons on the highly accessible digital display!
  • The steaming tray can be used for dumplings, vegetables and more, so you can cook an entire meal in this rice cooker with no fuss.
  • Easy to clean, with a non-stick coating removable cooking pot and a dishwasher-safe lid, customers report that water leakage isn’t an issue either — and that its simplicity really makes it worth it.

Producing light, fluffy rice, this is an excellent if large rice cooker that’s nevertheless suitable for all sorts of household arrangements, from couples to sizeable families. If you don’t have much counter-top or storage space, it might be one to pass up on — but its easy cleaning and various helpful features might make it worth the price (see the best price here)!

Features: three cooking functions (heat/simmer, steam-cook and keep warm) — capacity markings — digital display — timer for up to 15 hours ahead — non-stick pot — dishwasher-safe lid — steaming tray

Pricing: mid-range

Hamilton Beach Digital Rice Cooker and Food Steamer, 4.75 Litre

Price: £46.63

4.5 out of 5 stars (51 customer reviews)

5 used & new available from £36.23

 

Tefal Cooltouch Rice Cooker Review – Number 2

Tefal Cooltouch Rice CookerThis versatile rice cooker is something of an investment at its price, but it’s able to handle so many different types of rice and prepare them so perfectly that you may be willing to look past that. Let’s take a look at some of the features it offers.

  • With a 10-cup or 1.8-litre maximum capacity, this rice cooker can comfortably handle loads of up to about 8 cups. 1 cup won’t do, unfortunately, and small amounts may get burnt, but if you’re the thrifty sort who likes to cook large amounts and save the rest for later, this is a great option. The water-level mark helps you keep control over portion sizes, too.
  • Able to handle all sorts of rice from Jasmin and Basmati to glutinous or simply just white rice, this cooker has automatic cooking and keep-warm functions — it is able to calculate the exact cooking time independently, depending on the amount of water and rice placed in the bowl. After it’s done, it switches automatically to keep-warm, meaning that it will be ready when you are.
  • Like the Hamilton Beach model discussed above, the steaming basket allows you to prepare potatoes, vegetables and fish, among other things, as your rice cooks, meaning it’s no trouble to put together an entire meal!
  • The removable, non-stick inner bowl is easy to clean, and its plastic-handled glass lid is totally dishwasher-safe — as well as allowing you to check on your rice whenever you like without disturbing the cooking process.

Although it has no delayed-start or soup modes, unlike other models of rice cooker, its cool-wall body and non-slip feet ensure that there’s no risk of accidents — and its versatility, along with the self-adjusting automatic cooking mode, is really useful.

Features: two functions (automatic cooking and keep-warm) — steaming basket — water-level markings — non-stick inner bowl — dishwasher-safe

Pricing: mid-range

Tefal Cooltouch Rice Cooker RK1568UK, Steam Basket, Glass lid, Removable Bowl – Black

Price: £28.99

3.5 out of 5 stars (126 customer reviews)

29 used & new available from £28.41

 

VonShef Rice Cooker Review – Number 3

VonShef 1.8 Litre Rice CookerVonShef is known for its attractively designed and versatile kitchen appliances, and this rice cooker is no exception. Inexpensive for the amount it does in the kitchen and coming with lots of useful features, this is a great option for novices.

  • With a 1.4-litre capacity that can cook up to 8 cups of rice, 6 or 7 being a realistic maximum depending on the type of rice, small families who eat a lot of rice dishes will find this rice cooker really useful. It’s perhaps not ideal for single-person or couple households, unless you entertain guests frequently. Its 540-watt power consumption isn’t the highest we’ve come across — for its size, it’s fairly standard.
  • This is a rice cooker that produces plain rice that’s perfectly fluffy and dry, but it can also cook risotto, paella, pasta dishes and oat-based meals. Its simplicity of use means that you don’t have to mess around with different settings in order to produce different meals — you just have to press a few buttons, and away you go! It does, however, have a handy keep-warm feature that automatically activates once cooking is complete, and indicator lights for the start and keep-warm functions, too.
  • The non-stick removable cooking pot makes cleaning up a breeze, and can also be used as a serving vessel.
  • Its lid locks tight, but has a push-button release for convenience; there’s also a heat-insulated cover to keep your dishes fresh and moist until you’re ready.

With its attractive, compact monochrome look and removable power cord for easy storage, this is definitely a rice cooker that offers plenty of bang for your buck. Although it doesn’t boast a timer, it’s a good option for small kitchens and those who are inexperienced with rice cookers, due to its safety-first design and easy cleaning.

Features: two functions (automatic cooking and keep-warm) — locking lid — non-stick pot — heat-insulated cover — removable power cord

Pricing: mid-range

VonShef 1.8 Litre Rice Cooker 540W Power – Free 2 Year Warranty

Price: £17.99

4.2 out of 5 stars (111 customer reviews)

1 used & new available from £17.99

 

Lloytron Kitchen Rice Cooker Review – Number 4

Lloytron KitchenIf you’re looking for a budget-friendly, petite rice cooker that’s great for a one- or two-person household and can handle different types of rice for a varied cooking experience, look no further. Offering an uncomplicated design and an easy-to-use display, it’s definitely a good option to consider for those who are perhaps newer to rice cookers in general.

  • The 0.8-litre capacity this rice cooker offers is lower than others, translating to a volume of approximately 4 cups of uncooked rice — in reality, it functions best at a capacity of around 3 cups, according to customer reviewers. At 350 watts, it’s powerful and no-nonsense, but also not exactly energy-intensive.
  • Featuring a keep-warm setting and simple controls, the cooker ensures that your rice is ready when you are, and you can prepare other dishes in the meantime.
  • It’s easy to clean, with a non-stick, removable aluminium rice bowl that you can serve food from if you so wish and a toughened glass lid with a stainless steel rim, so you can check on your rice without interrupting the delicate cooking process.
  • Coming with a handy measuring cup and spatula, as well as a recipe book, it’s easier than ever to get started with rice cooking.

Although this basic, simple model doesn’t feature some of the amenities — like a timer, a digital display or a steaming basket — that higher-end models of rice cooker do, it’s still worth a look if you’re interested in getting started, but don’t want to splash out just yet.

Features: keep-warm function — non-stick pot — glass lid — measuring cup and spatula included

Pricing: affordable

Lloytron Kitchen Perfected Automatic Non Stick Rice Cooker, 350 W, 0.8 Litre

Price: £18.94

4.3 out of 5 stars (43 customer reviews)

17 used & new available from £13.99

 

Andrew James Rice Cooker Review – Number 5

Andrew James Rice CookerAndrew James, known for their attractive and high-quality kitchen appliances, have branched out into rice cookers with this striking product. Well-reviewed all around, we can picture this being a great option for practically any household.

  • With a 1.8-litre capacity — around 10 cups, or more realistically, 8 or so — this rice cooker can feed a good-sized family with no trouble at all. Smaller amounts don’t work so well — they can end up burnt around the edges if you’re not careful — but reviewers report that two or more cups of rice is a perfectly adequate quantity.
  • The useful keep-warm function, which switches on automatically when the cooking process is finished, ensures that your food will be ready when you are. At 700 watts, it’s fairly energy-efficient — and considering the taxing requirements of a conventional stove, it uses much less power overall.
  • This rice cooker comes with a stainless-steel steaming basket, perfect for preparing fish, vegetables and more — so you can make an entire meal in one go.
  • The removable non-stick bowl doubles as a serving vessel at the dinner table, while being easy to clean straight away after use — and to help you work out portion sizes, this cooker comes with a provided measuring cup and serving spoon.
  • The glass lid allows you to check on your dishes without interrupting the cooking process, and won’t get stained — it’s easy to wipe down.

This rice cooker is not only beautiful, but ergonomically designed and easy to use, prioritising convenience and simplicity, and the manufacturers have clearly put a lot of thought into it. While the lack of a timer might bother some, the steaming basket is an additional boon that will be valued in any kitchen setting.

Features: automatic cooking and keep-warm function — steaming basket — non-stick bowl — glass lid — measuring cup and serving spoon

Pricing: affordable

 

Verdict

Andrew James have gone the extra mile with their stainless steel 1.8-litre rice cooker. Good value for money and blissfully simple to use, it takes away the hassle of continued observation and — most importantly — can cook many different types of rice without a problem. It’s not too large for most kitchens and very energy-efficient. Suitable for all sorts of users, from novice chefs to more experienced cooks who are just looking for a handy product that will help speed things along in the kitchen, this automatic rice cooker is one of the best for its price on the market.

Hamilton Beach Digital Rice Cooker and Food Steamer, 4.75 Litre

Price: £46.63

4.5 out of 5 stars (51 customer reviews)

5 used & new available from £36.23

The post Rice Cooker Reviews – Best Of 2015 – 2016 appeared first on Reviewing The Best Cookers.

Multi Cooker Reviews – Best Of 2015 – 2016

Multi-Function Cookers: Product Comparison

Product Name Features Price Point Rating Visit


Instant Pot Duo 7 functions in one — 14 built-in programs — dual-pressure — automatic keep-warm up to 10 hours — timer with delay — microprocessor- controlled — stainless- steel inner pot — dishwasher-safe — built-in safety mechanisms High End Learn More


Redmond M90E 45 functions (17 automatic & 28 manual) — keep-warm and reheat settings — three-way heating — digital display with colour LED — non-stick inner bowl — steaming basket High End Learn More


Crock-Pot 6 functions (keep-warm included) — digital display — manual time adjustment — tempered glass lid — non-stick inner pot — dishwasher-safe Mid-range Learn More


Redmond M4502E 34 programs (16 automatic, 18 manual) — removable non-stick inner bowl — three-way heating — steaming rack — deep-fry basket Mid-range Learn More


Russell Hobbs 21850 11 programs — keep-warm function — non-stick inner pot — digital display — 24-hour timer Affordable Learn More

The wide array of multi cookers out there on the market, which help to reduce cooking times, offer convenience in busy modern lives and produce better-flavoured food, can get confusing fast when there are just so many different options to choose from. Add in the dozens of features you can get with a multi cooker these days, and many people are left completely in the dark about what’s best for their needs. With the comparisons provided by this guide, though, you’ll have no trouble making an easy decision on what to buy.

 

Instant Pot Duo Review – Our Number 1

Instant Pot DuoAny multi cooker which offers seven different functions is promising a lot, but for the price, this cooker really does seem to be an all-in-one appliance with a real commitment to simplifying life in the kitchen — and outside it.

  • Able to pressure-cook, slow-cook, make yoghurt and steam dishes, as well as cook rice, sauté meat and vegetables and warm food through, the ‘7-in-1’ promise of this cooker’s name holds true. To achieve these, it boasts an incredible fourteen built-in programs — for soups, stews, beans, chillis, poultry and more — that offer three different temperatures for slow-cooking or sauté
  • Dual-pressure cooking and automatic keep-warm systems really add to the functionality of this product, the latter holding heat into the food for up to ten hours after a cooking cycle.
  • Its timer allows for delayed cooking by up to 24 hours, which fits perfectly into a busy schedule, while the embedded microprocessor automatically adjusts heating intensity when needed without any fuss — no more worries about regulating it yourself! However, you can manually set the cooker, if so desired, for up to 3 hours of pressure-cooking or 24 hours of slow-cooking. The large control panel, which can be used to change settings literally at the press of a button, makes this a highly accessible product.
  • The dishwasher-safe, stainless-steel inner cooking pot has a 3-ply base that can work independently on all hobs (with the exclusion of induction models), allowing you to prepare different ingredients separately before combining them. The lid is also stainless steel, which makes both of the components incredibly easy to clean within moments.
  • The manufacturer promises 10 in-built safety mechanisms, and the cooker itself is virtually silent and emits very little heat to its surroundings. The 1000-watt power consumption is fairly energy-efficient, too.

With handy how-to videos on both its UK and US websites, the Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker is simple to use and blissfully stress-free. As with any kitchen appliance, you’ll need sufficient cupboard space to store it — it is rather large. Although expensive, this is definitely a purchase worth considering for the sheer convenience it offers, all in one attractive product (check the best price here).

Features: seven functions in one 14 built-in programs dual-pressure automatic keep-warm for up to 10 hours timer with delay of up to 24 hours microprocessor-controlled stainless-steel inner pot dishwasher-safe 10 built-in safety mechanisms comes with ladle, measuring cup and recipe book

Pricing: high-end

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, 6 Litre, 1000 W, Brushed Stainless Steel/Black

Price: £129.99

4.7 out of 5 stars (625 customer reviews)

18 used & new available from £111.21

 

Redmond M90E Review – Number 2

Redmond M90EIf you’re looking for a mid-sized, easy-to-store multi-cooker that retains incredible versatility, you’re definitely going to want to check out this Redmond M90E Series model. With an unbelievable 45 functions in total and a compact design that can cook a good volume of food, we’d say it’s seriously good value.

  • The sheer number of functions offered by this multi-cooker is staggering. 17 automatic and 28 manual programs allow you to prepare dishes ranging all the way from soups to pizza to pasta to yoghurt, and many more — and with a detailed instruction manuel and hundred-strong recipe book, absolute beginners will be cooking in no time.
  • Additional keep-warm and reheat functions are both set up to allow periods of up to 24 hours in between cooking and eating a meal, and the switch between cooking and keeping food warm when the process is completed is instantaneous and automatic. Its easy-to-read digital display in colour LED will notify you when this happens, as well as allowing you to change settings literally with the press of a button.
  • For the amount of versatility it offers, this cooker’s power consumption isn’t too high — 860 watts for its 5-litre capacity is really rather reasonable, and since it’s designed to replace a large number of traditional kitchen appliances, you’ll be saving on energy costs overall. Three-way heating — from the bottom, sides and top — ensures a really even, consistent cook all the way through your food.
  • With a non-stick ceramic inner bowl that can double as a serving vessel, it’s a breeze to wash up and keep clean over long periods of frequent use.
  • The inner steaming basket is a great addition for those who like to prepare vegetables, fish and so much more — you can make a whole meal in one go!

Coming with a 100-strong recipe book, this compact, aesthetically pleasing cooker is a great choice for anyone who is interested in creating literally hundreds of different dishes! Although pricy, it’s likely worth it for its versatility and attractive design.

Features: 45 functions (17 automatic and 28 manual) keep-warm and reheat settings three-way heating digital display with colour LED non-stick inner bowl steaming basket

Pricing: high-end

Redmond M90E Series MultiPRO Multi-Cooker, 5 Litre, 860 Watt

Price: £158.99

4.5 out of 5 stars (18 customer reviews)

7 used & new available from £83.03

 

Crock-Pot Review – Number 3

Crock-Pot Multi-CookerCrock-Pot’s brand reliability for slow cookers is well-known, and now you can transfer that renown over to your own kitchen with this high-capacity multi-cooker. Let’s take a closer look at some of its features.

  • With a 5.6-litre capacity, it’s a perfect option no matter the size of your household — its large volume simply means you can cook decent amounts and freeze them for later, putting the convenience into multi-cooking.
  • The simpler six functions it offers might seem inadequate to some, but there’s no need to fiddle around with multi-function buttons here — you can roast, sauté, steam, bake, sear and slow-cook (for up to 12 hours) with this versatile little cooker, making casseroles, curries, vegetables and fish dishes at the press of a button. The roasting rack and rice-measuring cup provided are handy, too.
  • A handy digital display features a separate, clearly laid-out button for each program, and easy-to-use controls — you can manually adjust the time, as well as temperature, or leave it to do its work. Using much less power than a conventional oven, this multi cooker can prepare meals with just the flip of a switch.
  • A useful keep-warm function automatically commences when the cooking process is finished, meaning you can rely on your meal to be ready when you are.
  • The tempered glass lid — which allows you to check on your cooking without interrupting it — and non-stick inner pot, which doubles as a serving vessel, are both dishwasher-safe to make cleaning easier than ever.

With an uncomplicated design and easy-to-use controls, this simple multi-cooker couldn’t be a more practical and versatile aid for your kitchen. Large enough to prepare big cuts of meat, but not too large to store when you have limited space, it’s a great-value option for practically any household.

Features: six functions (keep-warm included) digital display manual time adjustment tempered glass lid non-stick inner pot dishwasher-safe

Pricing: mid-range

Crock-Pot Multi-Cooker – 5.6 L

Price: £119.99

4.7 out of 5 stars (21 customer reviews)

6 used & new available from £56.05

 

Redmond M4502E Review – Number 4

Redmond M4502EThis versatile Redmond multi cooker shares some features with its cousin (listed above), but isn’t quite the same — which is important in the long run. Bound to come in handy for practically any kitchen, it’s equipped with an amazing number of functions that will spice up your inner chef’s life!

  • Its 5-litre capacity is large enough for almost any dish you please, from whole chickens to curries, stews, soups and more. Household size needn’t be a worry — if you’re a smaller family, you can simply cook large portions at a time and save some for later.
  • Although it lacks the 45 functions of the other Redmond model reviewed above, 34 still isn’t anything to sniff at. 16 of these are automatic, while 18 feature manual control — you can prepare a whole range of dishes, running the gamut from curries and pasta to French fries and yoghurts! A handy digital display makes controlling the settings a breeze. There are also keep-warm and reheat functions, the former of which can keep your meal ready and waiting for up to 24 hours.
  • The removable inner bowl, which can double as a serving vessel, is non-stick for easy cleaning, and the cooker features three-way heating technology that, aided by a microprocessor, warms food from the top, bottom and sides.
  • Also included are a useful few accoutrements, like a steaming rack, tongs and a deep-fry basket, as well as a book with a hundred unique recipes to help you get started.

With the plethora of useful features offered, this multi-cooker really goes the extra mile. It may not have the option of pressure-cooking, but if you’re looking to save time as well as money, it’s a perfectly good option for anyone interested in learning to use a multi-cooker — and doing it right.

Features: 34 programs (16 automatic, 18 manual) removable non-stick inner bowl three-way heating steaming rack deep-fry basket

Pricing: mid-range

Redmond M4502E Series Multi-Pro Multi-Cooker, 5 Litre, 860 Watt

Price: £89.99

3.9 out of 5 stars (30 customer reviews)

8 used & new available from £83.25

 

Russell Hobbs 21850 Review – Number 5

Russell Hobbs 21850Russell Hobbs have always offered a fine range of kitchen appliances, and now with this multi-cooker, you can add a whole new level of convenience to your kitchen. With plenty of functions and a nice compact size, it’ll be a boon to almost any household.

  • The 5-litre capacity means you can cook almost any dish that’ll fit — even a whole chicken or other sizeable cuts of meat! While smaller portions don’t always fare so well, it’s actually more convenient to cook up large batches of food and save them for later — in both time and money.
  • Eleven varied programs — varying from steaming, slow-cooking and stewing, all the way to specialised meat, fish, bread and yoghurt settings — offer an abundance of dishes to be made, with no more than the press of a button. This cooker also has a keep-warm function that doesn’t dry food out, so your meals will always be ready when you are.
  • With an easy-to-clean stainless-steel body, this multi cooker is both attractive and convenient — and can be tidied neatly away to keep your work surfaces clean and clear. A useful handle allows it to be moved easily, while the outside of the cooker doesn’t get hot to the touch even after hours of cooking.
  • A non-stick aluminium inner cooking pot is the only part that regularly needs washing, and that’s just as simple as giving it a quick rinse with soapy water. The aluminium composition also allows for very even all-over heating, so there’s no need to worry about some parts of your food being more underdone than others.
  • The LED-display digital panel is simple and easy to use, while the cooker features a timer that can be set for up to 24 hours ahead — perfect for busy modern lives.

This surprisingly affordable multi cooker will do wonders for any kitchen. Its eleven settings can be activated with just the touch of a button, while the non-stick aluminium coating of the inner cooking pot is both effective and easy-cleaning.

Features: 11 programs keep-warm function non-stick inner pot digital display 24-hour timer

Pricing: affordable

Russell Hobbs 21850 MultiCooker, 5 L – Stainless Steel Silver and Black

Price: £64.95

4.4 out of 5 stars (23 customer reviews)

14 used & new available from £54.36

 

Verdict

Russell Hobbs have outdone themselves again with their simple, attractive 21850 Multi Cooker. Easy to use, with enough functions to make a wide variety of dishes but not so many that you’re spoilt for choice, it’s incredibly well-priced for what it offers, and the 24-hour timer is definitely a bonus. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better multi cooker for an equivalent value anywhere!

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker, 6 Litre, 1000 W, Brushed Stainless Steel/Black

Price: £129.99

4.7 out of 5 stars (625 customer reviews)

18 used & new available from £111.21

The post Multi Cooker Reviews – Best Of 2015 – 2016 appeared first on Reviewing The Best Cookers.

Best Slow Cooker 2015 – 2016

Slow Cookers: Product Comparison

Product Name Features Price Point Rating Visit


Morphy Richards 48702 3 settings — dishwasher-safe — transparent glass lid — sear, stew & slow- cook options — non- stick pan Affordable Learn More


Morphy Richards 48705 3 settings — dishwasher-safe — transparent glass lid — sear, stew and slow- cook options — non- stick pan Affordable Learn More


Breville VTP105 3 settings (low, high and auto) — dishwasher- safe glass lid — removable inner ceramic pot — cool- touch handles Affordable Learn More


Russell Hobbs 19790 3 settings (high, low and keep- warm) — removable ceramic inner pot — glass viewing lid Mid-range Learn More


Andrew James 3 settings (high, low and auto) — ceramic inner pot — glass viewing lid — cool- touch handles Mid-range Learn More

Although they can be an incredibly useful, versatile addition to almost any kitchen, finding the right slow cooker for your needs isn’t easy, and we understand that. There’s a wide range of models out there with almost as wide a range of prices, and when you factor in all the different features and high-tech functions, it can get very confusing to try to pick out the ‘best’ one. That’s why we’ve put together this comparison post for people like you, taking a close look at five different models and drawing some conclusions that you’ll certainly find helpful.

So, without further ado . . .

 

Morphy Richards 48702 Review – Our Number 1

Morphy Richards 48702Morphy Richards produce some of the best-selling slow cookers out there, and have a generally great reputation — although, of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean their products will be of the highest quality. As far as price, though, you’d be hard-pressed to find one so inexpensive for what the company, and its reviewers, promise (check the best price here).

  • First off, you can sear, stew and slow cook meals in the same pot, as the name would imply. This is really handy — it means much less washing-up! — and if you have limited kitchen space, it’s even more useful.
  • The low, medium and high cooking settings allow for various styles of cooking — great for keen chefs!
  • Its 3.5-litre capacity is adequate for three to four people, according to the manufacturer. Reviewers claim that it can be used to cook for up to four people at the most, with three people being the optimum, although this depends on the portion size and what exactly you’re making. Like with most other slow cookers, you do have to fill it at least halfway to the brim — which means that while it might not be the best option for making one serving for a single person, it’s handy if you’re aiming to cook larger quantities of food that you can freeze.
  • With a non-stick, lightweight, aluminium-coated inner pot, searing meat before combining it with other ingredients and starting the slow-cook process is remarkably easy. This is a feature you’ll probably want to make use of if you’re planning to produce a variety of different meals with your slow cooker!
  • The transparent, toughened glass lid allows you to monitor the cooking process without disturbing it — those who are new to slow-cooking will find this a great reassurance, and will be able to check on their dishes without interfering!

The only glaring omission from this product is a timer that could allow you to schedule cooking duration, but buying a digital timer that you can plug it into might be a good work-around. It also lacks an automatic shut-off feature, so if that’s going to concern you, perhaps look elsewhere. If the lack of programmable options isn’t a worry — reviewers say that you can keep food warm on the lowest setting for as long as you like without burning it — then this attractive, easy-to-use product is a fantastic option for those who want to make their first venture into slow cooking.

Features: 3 settings (high, low & medium) — dishwasher-safe — transparent glass lid — sear, stew & slow-cook options — non-stick pan

Pricing: affordable

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

 

Morphy Richards Accents 48705 Review – Number 2

Morphy Richards Accents 48705Like the previous product, this offering comes from Morphy Richards, who are well-known for their range of slow cookers. You wouldn’t expect there to be all that much variation between different sizes, but customer reviews tell a different story.

  • Like its smaller cousin, it’s easy to sear, stew and slow-cook a wide range of foodstuffs with this handy machine. Searing meat or frying vegetables in the cooking pan, which can be done before you commence with the slow-cooking process, means that these ingredients’ flavours combine readily with others, providing a richer culinary experience all around.
  • The attractive coloring of this slow cooker — brushed stainless steel — doesn’t retain dirt and fingerprints easily, so with just a little work, it will keep a lasting lustre that can take pride of place in your kitchen.
  • Low, medium and high settings allow for many different styles of cooking, and the simple controls (governed by a four-position rotary knob) are easy to use for a first-timer.
  • A dishwasher-safe cooking pan — which, with its non-stick aluminium coating, is lightweight and durable — takes away a lot of potential bother with cleaning! The transparent glass lid, which allows you to check on your cooking without interrupting the process, is also advertised as dishwasher-safe and ‘toughened’.
  • Able to cater comfortably for up to five people with its 6.5-litre capacity, and six at a stretch, it’s an ideal product for busy families.

Like other Morphy Richards Accents slow cookers, it can’t be used on an induction hob, but is luckily compatible with most others. The cooking time can be shortened if you’re looking to make smaller portions, although you do have to be careful with this — it can burn around the edges if you don’t put in enough food. The lowest setting can also function as a keep-warm setting, which is great — but again, it lacks a timer, which might put some people off. If that doesn’t bother you, this is a beautiful, lightweight slow cooker whose simplicity and ease of use make slow-cooking overnight a breeze.

Features: 3 settings (low, high and medium) — dishwasher-safe — transparent glass lid — sear, stew and slow-cook options — non-stick pan

Pricing: Mid-range

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

 

Breville VTP105 Review – Number 3

Breville VTP105Breville slow cookers — and the other kitchen appliances, large and small, they offer — tend to receive highly positive reviews all around, although they’re not as popular as Morphy Richards products, whose brand name is probably a little more popular in the world of slow cooking. This matt-black one has a lot going for it, though!

  • This slow cooker, like the two Morphy Richards ones listed above, has a removable inner pot — but if you’re searing meat or frying vegetables, the ceramic finish won’t allow you to do so in the pot itself; you’ll need to transfer these ingredients if you’re going to be pre-preparing them. This is fairly standard for slow cookers. However, you can serve food at the table in the ceramic pot without losing any heat — one less piece of washing-up!
  • With a 4.5-litre capacity, this slow cooker is a good size for small families. Reviewers feel it might serve up to four people comfortably, given that it can be filled to about three quarters of its total capacity — and yes, it’s big enough to cook a whole small chicken in.
  • The three cooking functions it offers are low, high and auto — the latter of these meaning that the slow cooker will start on high for an hour or so, then reduce the heat to low. The high temperature cooks for about four hours, while for dishes such as stews and curries, the low-temperature, eight-hour setting is a boon. Although it doesn’t offer a medium setting, some might feel that the auto setting is worth the trade-off — you can leave it at home unsupervised if you’re running on a busy schedule, as so many slow cooker users are.
  • A tempered, toughened glass lid allows you to keep an eye on your cooking without removing the lid and interrupting the process — perfect for nervous chefs! Also, its handles are cool to the touch, so there’s no need to worry about burning yourself.

With a handy oval shape that’s great if you’ve got limited countertop space, and which allows you to slow-cook larger cuts of meat than others, this is a neat, attractive slow cooker whose auto-cook feature is very handy, and competitively priced. Not being able to sear the meat in the pot might deter some, but the slow and even cooking it provides could well make it worth the extra effort elsewhere.

Features: 3 settings (low, high and auto) — dishwasher-safe glass lid — removable inner ceramic pot — cool-touch handles

Pricing: affordable

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

 

Russell Hobbs 19790 Review – Number 4

Russell Hobbs 19790Known for the quality and convenience of their kitchen appliances and accessories, Russell Hobbs have expanded their efforts towards slow cookers. Surprisingly well-reviewed for its low price, this stainless-steel-finished slow cooker has drawn a lot of attention from novices and more experienced chefs alike.

  • With a 3.5-litre stated capacity, and an actual capacity of slightly less, some might find this a little small for their needs — but to each their own. While feeding an entire family with this slow cooker isn’t feasible, even if the manufacturers do claim that you can get a good four or five portions from it, it’d be a perfect product for a couple or a single-person household.
  • Three different cooking settings, which can be switched between using a rotary knob, allow for a variety of dishes to be prepared; these settings are low, high and keep-warm, the latter of which ensures a busy schedule won’t leave you hungry by maintaining food at a perfect eating temperature after it’s done cooking.
  • The ceramic inner pot is scratch-resistant, and allows food to be served at the table with no fuss; however, you can’t sear meat or fry vegetables in it, and will have to do this separately. Many don’t have a problem with that, so depending on how much space you have in your kitchen, it might not bother you.
  • Its glass viewing lid means you don’t have to interrupt your cooking in order to check on it — even for dishes that can easily go wrong if cooked for too long or too little — and the stainless steel base is easy to clean.

Although it lacks a timer, unfortunately, lots of slow cooker fans find a way around this by acquiring a digital timer that they can plug their products into in order to schedule cooking times. The keep-warm setting is probably its most useful feature — some might feel that ‘low’ and ‘high’ simply don’t allow for enough precision in cooking. But if you’re looking for an easy-to-use, introductory, uncomplicated slow cooker, this is a great option.

Features: 3 settings (high, low and keep-warm) — removable ceramic inner pot — glass viewing lid

Pricing: affordable

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

 

Andrew James Slow Cooker Review – Number 5

Andrew James slow cookerFor those who need a slow cooker with a little bit more heft, this Andrew James model could be perfect. Although pricier than the others on this list, this is partly to be expected due to its larger capacity — and partly due to the high quality it promises.

  • Its 6.5-litre capacity and slightly smaller actual capacity will be more than big enough for a family of six, according to reviewers. For smaller households, this slow cooker might not be an investment worth making, unless you frequently entertain guests or make large quantities of food to freeze and eat over a week or so — you’ll get a lot of portions out of this!
  • Offering three different settings — low, high and auto like the Breville model listed above — this slow cooker allows for a wide variety of different dishes to be prepared. Many people find that the presence of an ‘auto’ setting more than makes up for the lack of a medium one — timings are adjustable, too, so the ‘low’ or ‘high’ settings can be modified to ensure that all the dishes you make are perfectly done.
  • With a ceramic inner pot, which couldn’t be easier to clean, this is a non-stick product. Unlike the Morphy Richards models, you can’t sear meat or fry vegetables in it — so if you’re limited on space, given that this is a big slow cooker already, you may want to get a model that offers an aluminium inner pot. Or not — the ceramic is scratch-proof and provides slow, even cooking as any good slow cooker should.
  • The glass viewing lid means that checking on your dishes as they cook is no hassle — and cool-touch handles make it perfectly suitable for carrying from countertop to table.

Large enough to feed a sizable family, this slow cooker takes all the inconvenience and rush out of preparing delicious dishes — the auto setting is particularly useful. The high heat, meanwhile, goes to 95 degrees Celsius, while the low heat at 85 degrees can cook all day.

Features: 3 settings (high, low and auto) — ceramic inner pot — glass viewing lid — cool-touch handles

Pricing: affordable

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

 

Verdict

With its dishwasher-safe lid and handy auto setting, the Breville VTP105 Black 4.5 L Slow Cooker is the best of the bunch for the useful features and great value it offers. From customer reviews and specifications, this is a slow cooker you can count on.

Morphy Richards 48702 Accents Sear and Stew Slow Cooker – Red

Price: £24.00

4.7 out of 5 stars (1857 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from £18.68

The post Best Slow Cooker 2015 – 2016 appeared first on Reviewing The Best Cookers.

Slow Cooker Chana Masala (Oil-free, Vegan)

I hope you don’t mind me sharing recipes from my newest favourite kitchen gadget. Rob bought me an Instapot and we’ve been slowly exploring it – both with the slow cooker and pressure cooker functions (I will be waiting a while to try the yogurt function unless someone can point me in the right direction for something easy).

Slow Cooker Chana Masala

I have been meaning to find a delicious chana masala recipe, and this one delivers. I know this is one recipe that can be quite controversial. I have had Orangette’s chana masala bookmarked forever as well as Deb’s version, but of course, the simplicity behind this recipe appealed to us.

The long cooking time made for a lovely robust flavour. Perfectly spiced, this wasn’t too tomato heavy nor was it screaming “curry powder”. It was lovely. Potatoes are certainly not traditional but they were delicious here after the long simmer.
Slow Cooker Chana Masala

Rob actually made this dish and while it is not as easy as dump and slow cook, it is pretty close! You just need to puree a few ingredients first, then it was dump and slow cook. For those that cook without oil, I found this to be incredibly flavourful without any oil. No tarka, no sautéed onions.

Rob also took a few liberties with the recipe, creating a super saucy curry. (Anyone else spot the theme?) He also learned that you need to keep the slow cooker lid on while it works, although to be fair, I know there are some recipes that tell you to keep it off.

I decreased the amount of water that Rob used, and tell you to keep the slow cooker lid on, but another easy way to boost the curry would be to simply add more chickpeas.

Do you have any favourite chana masala recipes?

Slow Cooker Chana Masala

PS. I am sharing this with this month’s Slow Cooker Challenge and Meat Free Mondays.

Slow Cooker Chana Masala
Adapted from Holy Cow Vegan

1 large onion, coarsely chopped
28 oz can diced tomatoes, with juice
1.5-inch piece of ginger, chopped
6 cloves garlic
4 cups cooked chickpeas (or 2 x 19 oz cans), rinsed and drained if canned
3 tbsp tomato paste
2 large potatoes, cubed
3 bay leaves
3/4 tsp ground cumin
1.5 tbsp ground coriander
1.5 tbsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
1.5 tsp chaat masala
1.5 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp Aleppo chili flakes, or to taste
Salt to taste

1. In a food processor fitted with its S-blader, puree the onion, tomatoes, garlic and ginger.

2. In a slow cooker, place all the ingredients except the salt. Stir to evenly combine. Add 3 cups water and set the slow cooker on high. You can add more water if it is too dry later. Put the lid on and slow cook on high for 6 hours or until it reaches your desired consistency.

3. Remove the bay leaves and discard. Stir in salt, to taste. Serve with rice, roti or naan.

Serves 4-6.

Original article source.