Crock Pot Encyclopedia (Everything you were afraid to ask.)
Oven To Crockpot Conversions:
For most crockpots, the low setting is about 200º and the high setting
is about 300º. One hour on high is equal to 2 to 2 1/2 hours on low. Here
is the conversion for regular ovens to crockpots:
- 15 to 30 minutes oven = 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours on high in crockpot or 4-6
hours on low.
- 35 to 45 minutes oven = 3 hours on high or 6-8 hours on
- 60 minutes to 3 hours oven = 4-5 hours on high or 8-18 hours on
- Most uncooked meat and vegetable combinations require at least 8
hours on low.
General Cooking Times For Specific Foods:
- Pot Roast-12 hours low or 4-5 hours high
- Stew-10-12 hours low or 4-5 hours high
- Ribs-6-8 hours low
- Stuffed peppers-6-8 hours low or 3-4 hours high
- Brisket-10-12 hours low
- Swiss Steak-8-10 hours low
- Corned Beef and cabbage-6-10 hours low or 4-5 hours high
- Casserole 4-9 hours low or 2-4 hours high stirring occasionally
- Rice-5-9 hours low or 2-3 hours high
- Meat loaf-8-9 hours low
- Dry beans-1-2 hours high, plus 8-9 hours on low
- Soup- 6-12 hours low or2-6 hours high
- Chicken-7-10 hours low or 3-4 hours high
- Vegetable-2-4 hours low with liquid added
- Baked potato-8-10 hours low
The above is very general information. Check with your owners manual for
Other Useful Tips
- To avoid breakage or cracking, never add cold water to a hot
crockery insert. If you want to soak the hot pot immediately after the
cooked food has been removed, add hot water to the hot insert.
- For best results, most manufacturers recommend that the slow cooker
be half to three-quarters full. Refer to the manufacturer's instruction
book accompanying your pot.
- Keep perishable foods, such as meats, poultry, fish, and vegetables,
refrigerated until preparation and cooking time.
- If you opt to cut up vegetables or meats the night before you're
planning to cook them, be sure to package each different item separately
and store in the refrigerator.
- Purchase roasts and other large cuts of meats in a size and shape
that will fit conveniently into your slow cooker. Otherwise, plan on
trimming the meat to fit.
- To end up with the least amount of fat in finished slow-cooker
dishes, use lean meats and skinless poultry, well trimmed of fat.
- In general, avoid using completely frozen foods in the slow cooker.
If necessary, thaw frozen ingredients in a microwave oven before adding
to the cooker.
- To avoid heat loss, refrain from removing the lid during the first
three-quarters of the cooking time. If you peek often, an extensions of
the cooking time maybe required. Remove the lid only to stir food or
check for doneness.
- Use cooking times as guidelines. Pots vary; each one is not exactly
the same, and fluctuations in power or voltage may occur. Generally,
figure that 1 hour on high is about 2 hours on low. Some recipes should
only be cooked on high or low, so follow directions carefully.
- Because they cook more slowly than meats, generally place fresh
vegetables, such as carrots, potatoes, celery, and onions, in the bottom
and around the sides of the slow cooker. Then place meats on top.
- To avoid curdling dairy products, generally add milk, heavy cream,
sour cream, or cheese sometime during the last hour of cooking time. If
heating cheeses for long period, opt to use processed cheeses or cheese
spreads, because they can tolerate more heat. Some dessert recipes use
milk, cream, eggs, and cream cheese successfully, but for the most part,
these are cooked quickly on the high heat setting.
- Beef cuts will be better cooked on low for 8-10 hours, while chicken
can be cooked on high for 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
- Reduce the amount of liquid used in oven recipes (unless rice or
pasta is used) when using the low setting-the crockpot retains moisture
while it would evaporate in a regular oven.
- Spices may need to be reduced or increased. Whole herbs and spices
increase their flavoring in a crockpot, while ground spices and herbs
may lose some flavor. Add ground spices during the last hour of cooking.
Whole herbs and spices will probably need to be reduced by half.
- Rice, noodles, macaroni, seafood, Chinese vegetables and milk do
not hold up well when cooked 8-10 hours. Add these to sauce of liquid
about 2 hours before serving when using low, or 1 hour on high.
- If you want to use milk in an 8-10 hour recipe, use evaporated milk
- Browning meats is a personal choice. It's not necessary, but may
reduce the fat content if browned.
- Sautéing vegetables isn't necessary except for eggplant which should
be parboiled or sautéed due to it's strong flavor. You may want to
decrease the amount of strong tasting vegetables since they will
permeate the other foods in the crock pot with their full flavor.
- Dry beans can be cooked overnight on low as an alternative to
soaking. Cover with water and add 1 tsp of baking soda. Drain and
combine with other ingredients. Be sure beans are softened before adding
to any sugar or tomato mixture.
- Use long grain parboiled/converted raw rice in recipes and use
standard liquid amounts instead of reducing the liquid. For mixed
recipes requiring pasta, it's best to cook the pasta separately to al
dente and add just before serving.
Updated on May 10, 2021