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Converting Recipes for a Slow Cooker

June 1, 2004
Converting Recipes: Converting your favorite recipes to the crockpot or slow cooker is pretty easy. Here is a pageline for cooking times. If you are cooking on the low setting, make sure that any uncooked meat cooks for at least 8 hours.

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Stovetop Cooking TimeCrockpot Cooking Time
High TempLow Temp
15-30 minutes1 1/2 - 2 1/2 hrs4 - 8 hours
35-45 minutes3 - 4 hours6 - 10 hours
50 minutes - 3 hours4 - 6 hours8 - 16 hour

Seasoning: Spices will be diluted overtime as they cook in a crockpot. So add spices in the last hour of cooking.

Ground Beef: Brown ground beef before adding to the crockpot. It will taste better and have better texture this way.

Raw Vegetables: Uncooked vegetables like carrots, potatoes and onions should be place at the bottom of the crockpot for faster cooking.

Dairy: Add sour cream, heavy cream and other dairy ingredients during the last hour of cooking.

Cleaning: Do not add cold water to a hot crockpot to clean it. Either let it cool down or add warm soapy water.

Garnish: Many vegetables will lose their color in a slow cooker. Add a colorful garnish like fresh parsley, chives, tomatoes, red peppers or cheese for color.

Cooking Tip: Keep your crockpot at least half full to avoid overheating and overcooking food.

Thickening: Add a cornstarch in the final hour of cooking to thicken juices.

Use your crockpot outside in the summer to help keep your house cool.

What are your favorite crockpot tips?

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Tony Buel
May 15, 2005

Crockpots vary but the low setting is typically around 100 degrees and its high setting is around 300 degrees. Knowing this, it is fairly easy to convert most recipes for use in your slow cooker.

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