A slow cooker; is another product that everyone suddenly had to have. Another appliance in the kitchen, am I really going to use it? We hear you thinking. If you have doubts about whether a slow cooker is worth it, you have come to the right place. In this article, we discuss all the advantages of a slow cooker as well as shine a light on things to consider.
For those new to the slow cooker world, we recommend reading our beginner’s guide on slow cookers first. In this guide, we explain exactly what a slow cooker is and what you can do with it.
Already have a slow cooker at home, but want more inspiration? We regularly share our favourite slow cooker recipes with our visitors.
#1 Very little effort & time-saving
As soon as you turn on the slow cooker, you can leave the house with peace of mind. So you don’t have to stand by it like with the traditional stew pot. This saves you a lot of time and gives you more flexibility to plan your day the way you want. Throw the slow cooker full of ingredients or a complete meal in the morning and a delicious meal will be waiting for you when you get home.
#2 Slow cookers provide the best taste experience
As soon as you get home, you can smell it immediately: something delicious is waiting for you. The big advantage of a slow cooker is that the moisture cannot escape, so flavours remain intact. Also, cooking at low temperatures ensures good distribution of flavours.
#3 Tender meat
Did you know that a slow cooker can even save you money on meat? With a slow cooker, you can easily tenderise tough meat or cheap cuts of meat. For example, you can use it to make venison meat dishes or lean beef. Our favourite slow cooker dish is rendang, which is slow-cooked beef with Indonesian spices.
Tip: buy a slow cooker with a separate inner pan. Then you can brown the meat on the cooker first before turning on the slow cooker. This will save you a lot of washing up.
#4 A slow cooker is for everyone!
You don’t have to know a lot about cooking to use a slow cooker. A little inspiration is always useful, but all slow cooker recipes are very easy and require little effort. Even you with little experience in the kitchen can make a good impression with meals from the slow cooker.
#5 Never burn or scald food again
Do you regularly let the potatoes burn on? With a slow cooker, this is a thing of the past. Because all the moisture stays in the inner pan, the food will never burn. Burning of food happens when there is no moisture left in the pan. So with a slow cooker, this is a thing of the past.
Convinced? Then take a look at our test results to find the best slow cooker for you.
#6 Cooking with a slow cooker is healthier
There are several reasons why cooking with a slow cooker is very healthy. Because of the low temperatures, nutrients are preserved. At high temperatures, many nutrients such as vitamin C can be lost, which is of course a shame.
Another advantage of a slow cooker is that moisture cannot escape. Where you normally throw excess water with all the nutrients down the drain, in a slow cooker they remain safeguarded.
Finally, with a slow cooker, you are most likely to use less oil because you are cooking entire meals in one go. And because you cook with a lot of liquid, less oil is needed.
#7 Less washing up!
Because of the low cooking temperatures, there is less chance of food sticking to the bottom, as with an electric oven. An inner pan with a non-stick coating rinses easily under the tap. In some cases, the inner pan is also dishwasher-safe. In general, you use much fewer utensils when cooking with a slow cooker. So time-saving!
#8 No need to reheat food
Most slow cookers have a keep-warm function. With some slow cookers, you will have to set it yourself. The easiest way is when a slow cooker jumps automatically to the keep-warm function after cooking. That way, when you get home, you don’t have to reheat the food.
#9 Slow cookers save you money (low power consumption)
Firstly, a slow cooker is cheap to buy: you can get a simple slow cooker for as little as a few tens. Secondly, the running costs are very low. Contrary to what many people think, a slow cooker uses very little energy. Even less than a light bulb. We explain exactly how power consumption works here.
#10 Ideal cooking for large groups
Finally, a slow cooker is ideal if you want to cook a lot of food in one go. You can fill a slow cooker about three-quarters full. The capacity starts from 1.5 litres and goes up to as much as 6 litres for a large slow cooker.
The drawbacks: why not buy a slow cooker?
Earlier, we wrote an article on why it is better not to buy a slow cooker. In this article, we discuss the disadvantages and explain what you need to consider.
Below are the disadvantages in brief:
- A slow cooker is limited to slow cooking. It does not include other cooking techniques such as baking.
- Another appliance you take into your home – and it can also take up (quite a lot of) space.
- Not all ingredients are suitable for a slow cooker. Think, for example, of soft vegetables such as leafy greens and cauliflower.
Conclusion: to buy or not to buy a slow cooker?
A slow cooker is definitely a handy kitchen tool. Some couldn’t even live without it. But of course, to get the most out of it and enjoy its benefits, you have to use it. So the question is: will you actually use it? A lack of inspiration or proper planning can turn a slow cooker into a bad buy. Fortunately, we are happy to help you on your way with inspiration for simple slow cooker dishes.