South Beach Diet - Food Processor and Crockpot




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jenne1017
02-22-2010, 06:06 PM
Chicks, it's shopping time!!! Well, if DW finds a job sooner rather than later, I can use my tax money to buy two items we desperately need: a food processor and a crock pot.

What kinds of each do you have and do you recommend them? I know a lot of our recipes call for one or the other, if not both. And I am so sick of adding water to everything I make because I have to use my blender and having to spend a few hours preparing food when I get home from work.

Thanks in advance!


shantroy
02-22-2010, 06:43 PM
I'm a cuisinart fan. My mom still has her Cuisinart food processor from over 30 years ago and it still works like a dream. As does her 45 year old Cuisinart stand mixer. Those things last forever!

I have a rival crock pot (6 quart), and it works really well. I'd recommend it. It has lots of bells and whistles so it can be a bit complicated at times, but it works well.

I also have Cuisinart slow cooker(3 .5 quart) and like it as well. It's the basic model, but I've never had a problem with it.

Make sure on whatever model you buy the lid fits tightly and that the ceramic insert is removable. It's a pain to clear other wise! Some models may let you use the insert on the stove for browning, mine don't, but it's a nice feature one less dish to clean.

jenne1017
02-22-2010, 06:45 PM
What sizes do people recommend? I was thinking a 7 cup blender and a 6 qt. crock but it's just the two of us...would that be too much?


artic123
02-22-2010, 06:51 PM
Ohhhhhhh, I'm such a slow cooker fan. I have 3 crock pots. All of them Rival (6 qt., 4 qt., 3 qt.) Borrowed one more slow cooker for Christmas and made my complete dinner in them including the cake.

You are going to be so happy.

Sharon

shantroy
02-22-2010, 06:57 PM
I like my 6 quart, and I use it the most. I'm a huge big batch cooker so I like to make a lot of food at one time. If I'm trying to do just a simple one dinner meal it can be a little big, but its not terrible. I got the 3.5 quart, because there were times when some of my smaller meals came out a bit dry. However, I think the 6 quart is good in that it gives some leeway in cooking. That's what I started with, and I use on a regular basis.

I have a Cuisinart mini chopper (3 or 4 cup I think) which works well for me, but when I'm doing a lot of cooking I like my mom's bigger one. The only thing that sucks with the smaller one (that I have), is that is doesn't have any of the cool blades it just chops. So decide what you want from that. Do you want it to be able to slice, grate, chop, julienne etc. or just chop things into small pieces?

CyndiM
02-22-2010, 07:22 PM
We have the large crockpot. It makes enough for dinner and leftovers for the week. When I need a smaller container for stuff like oatmeal I just put a ceramic bowl inside the crockpot (learned that trick from someone here). Ours is a Rival and it does have hot spots that I don't like. Things can stick and burn in a couple of places even if there is enough moisture in the dish. I will replace it eventually with a different brand.

I'm also a Cuisinart fan for appliances. However my processor is a KitchenAid. It's the model that has a regular and small size bowl. Honestly I usually use the large bowl not the small. I rarely use if for just chopping veggies (too lazy to clean it all after) but use it often for bean burgers.

I love the reviews on Amazon. I've picked several appliances based on lots of positive reviews and the system hasn't failed me yet. Even if you don't buy from them it's worth scanning.

I do love good kitchen toys ;)

WaistingTime
02-22-2010, 08:19 PM
I agree - a removable crock is a must!! i have a big Rival one with no bells and whistles, just settings for low, high, and warm. It was really quite cheap at Target. (I dropped and broke my old one''s lid last year so had to replace the whole thing.)

I have a cuisinart that I got as a wedding gift 22 years ago. It works really well. Those are probably quite expensive! I don't use it that often but it is great when I do. I would love a little chopper someday, maybe. And a mandolin.

Lexxiss
02-22-2010, 08:23 PM
I'm a Cuisinart fan, as far as food processors go. I have 2 that are over 20 years old. If I ever need something, the parts are still avaliable. I even sent one in once for repair.

I just have a basic crockpot which I sometimes wish it was a little bigger so I could have more available for freezing.

TallGirl
02-22-2010, 08:26 PM
I have a kitchenaid food processor and love it. I just bought my first crock pot a few months ago and it was the best kitchen purchase I've made in a long time. I wanted the larger Rival digital but the store I went to only had the Crockpot brand large digital one. I have no complaints about it at all and I've been using it at least once a week.

Kslosingit
02-22-2010, 08:57 PM
I have 2 food processors. One is a small-ish cuisinart that also came with a blender attachment. I can't remember the size, but it can't be more than 3 or 4 cups. My other one is a Hamilton Beach than is a humongous monster. It's great, but too big IMO, and I am cooking for 8, not 2. I keep my small one on the counter and use it just about every day. I only drag out the big one every once in a while. Now, as far as quality, I am not sure the brand/cost matters. My cuisinart was much more expensive than the hamilton beach but I don't think it is any better for the money. In fact, the blender part of my cuisinart broke after only 2 years and I rarely even used the bender! You'd probably do just as well with a cheaper brand if that's what you can afford.

The crock pot is also something that you don't have to spend a ton on. Mine is a big oval one from Walmart and was I think under $30 a few months ago. It's only got 4 settings- off, low, high and warm- but it works great. I know they have fancier ones out but I am technologically impaired so this one is perfect for me. Probably since you're cooking for 2, you would want a smaller one because I would think extra space might make things cook differently. Even if it didn't, the extra space in there would bother me, but I am just weird that way. :D

Chelby29
02-22-2010, 08:59 PM
I'm thrifty and practical, sometimes even cheap. ;) Here is my suggestion: Visit your local thrift store, shop Ebay, and check out Craigs List. My Kitchen Aid food processor is refurbished from Ebay and works perfectly. My small crock pot is used and ugly, but works. I see crock pots all the time at thrift stores. I'd rather spend my money on the good stuff to put in my appliances. :)

Kslosingit
02-22-2010, 09:06 PM
Oh, Chelby is right! I see crock pots on Freecycle at least once a week.

tinkin3
02-22-2010, 09:12 PM
I agree about buying a used crockpot. Those things never die! But, like a few others have said, make sure that it has a removable washable insert -- otherwise, it's a pain to wash.

If there is only two of you, I recommend the Cuisinart Smart Power Duet. It's probably about 3 cup size, but is perfect for small portions. I use mine all the time and really love it!

Thighs Be Gone
02-22-2010, 09:18 PM
I have a Cuisinart Food Processer that I paid about $100 for. It was well worth it in my book. I bought it 8 years ago and it's still going strong.

My crockpot is a 3-quart Rival. I think it was maybe $30. I like it and it does the trick.

If you want a cheaper food processor I have heard great things about the Magic Bullet.

CyndiM
02-22-2010, 09:21 PM
A major consideration with food processor size is what you will use it for. If you're just chopping veggies a small one will be perfect. I use mine primarily for bean burgers (including the falafel recipe) and actually need the larger bowl. I could never make those in the small bowl even for 2 people (I do make the whole recipe though, not a smaller version).

Similarly with the crockpot - my Rival was very inexpensive and it was great when I only used it once in awhile. It's not holding up well to more than weekly use though. It's got these annoying hot spots (can you tell I'm working up to replacing it). For me that's always the balance with new appliances. I want to spend the least I can to get what I want but I have often ended up with something I needed to replace sooner than I expected. Speaking of I have this small crockpot I need to find a home for. Got it as a gift for hot cereals, used it once and the stupid thing heats unevenly and the cereal stuck a lot. I went back to the bowl in crock method. Of course I also have great things I thought I would use but don't :o I'm getting pickier about my toys

murphmitch
02-22-2010, 09:34 PM
If anybody is interested in an easy way to make steel cut oats in the crockpot (the one Cyndi refers to), here's the method I use:

http://annkroeker.wordpress.com/2008/03/25/overnight-crockpot-steel-cut-oatmeal/

jenne1017
02-22-2010, 10:15 PM
Thanks all!

The idea of a used appliance freaks me out. I don't know why, but there it is. The ideas are good ones though.

I will need the bigger processor, I know. DW has a small, maybe 2 cup if that, chopper and it is not good. I also want to use it for slices so I can make sweet potato chips ;) There are a few Cuisinart ones I've eyed but checked out a few on Amazon and decided to add one to my wishlist (hint hint DW) and had added a Hamilton Beach crockpot a few months back.

I checked ebay and they are at least $20 cheaper than amazon so, I may go to them in the end.

Overall, your tips have been very helpful and have cued me in to what I want. I think I will go for the bigger items as I always make enough for leftovers! We just got a $800 car bill so none of this will happen as soon as I had hoped though. It's always something.

Anyway, thanks again. I will let you know what we buy, when we can get it!

Mmckellen
02-23-2010, 06:37 AM
I have the combo cuisinart food processor/blender and it works fine for me. I also have a crock pot brand crock pot which I love BUT I wish I had gotten the largest size available and an oval shape rather than a round shape.

TwynnB
02-23-2010, 06:40 AM
My DH bought me a new rival crock pot for christmas (the oval 6 qt), and it DESTROYED the first meal in it I made...was way too hot on "warm". I'm upset...I don't know if it's a bad one, or a bad design. I haven't braved another recipe yet, I want to do it when I'm home (it was actually boiling on warm). I'm using my old 5 qt. Rival that I've had (gulp) nearly 20 years now...still a little work horse.

I have a Cuisinart Smart Stick immersion blender...which comes with a little wisk, small blender, and another thingee. This thing is awesome! Have you considered something like that? (if you're making small quantities)

Have fun!

tammies00
02-23-2010, 08:01 AM
I bought my crock pot at walmart. It was like 20.00 and I love it. It is a hamilton beach brand. I have had it for about a year now. It isn't fancy, but it has everything I need. It is big enough for what I need it for.

I love my food processer too. I use it a lot.

Tammie

jenne1017
02-23-2010, 09:42 AM
I have a Cuisinart Smart Stick immersion blender...which comes with a little wisk, small blender, and another thingee. This thing is awesome! Have you considered something like that? (if you're making small quantities)

Have fun!

I had one and it broke! Same brand and it didn't even last a year -- I used it for soups and it was great. But it wouldn't work the same for things like chickpeas and I really want a mandolin but they are $$$ so this might work for slicing too!

Kslosingit
02-23-2010, 11:11 AM
Jenn, if you want the food processor for slicing too, look at the bigger ones. My hamilton beach is the "wide mouth" one and it's awesome because I can fit bigger things in there to slice. (like if you want to do a big onion or something) Remember though that the slices will be pretty thin. I wanted it for tomatoes but I have yet to figure out how to slice a tomato neatly with it and I have had it for several years.

jenne1017
05-01-2010, 10:42 PM
Just an update: I bought a food processor tonight!!! Cuisinart, 11-cup, fancy schmancy. I will break it in tomorrow when I make baked falafel!!!!

Crockpot soon. I figure they might be going on sale now that it's getting warmer out.

TwynnB
05-02-2010, 07:08 AM
Congratulations!! I'll be over for supper ;)

jenne1017
05-02-2010, 01:05 PM
lol twynn! lunch is at 2p

1oftheLuvs
05-02-2010, 07:12 PM
New toys..... :yay: Ya know what we use our food processor for more than anything else, Jenne? Fresh cabbage for Crackslaw.... Nummy... :D

jenne1017
05-02-2010, 08:06 PM
New toys..... :yay: Ya know what we use our food processor for more than anything else, Jenne? Fresh cabbage for Crackslaw.... Nummy... :D

That was the FIRST thing I said to DW after I used it -- buying heads and shredding for CRACKSLAW!!!! :spin:

1oftheLuvs
05-02-2010, 10:38 PM
That was the FIRST thing I said to DW after I used it -- buying heads and shredding for CRACKSLAW!!!! :spin:

Crackhead! :lol3:

I've read that cabbage starts to lose it's nutritional value once it's been cut, so you should get more nutrients in your crackslaw using your new food processor. It definitely tastes fresher than when you use the packaged stuff.

jenne1017
08-07-2011, 10:07 AM
So now, onto blenders. I had a cuisinart one and it broke - the plastic topper, the tread for the spigot, everything. Leaks like no one's business. Would cost $57 plus shipping to replace the parts so it might be time for just a new one.

Recs??

CyndiM
08-07-2011, 12:44 PM
I can't believe you dug out this thread :) After much asking and agonizing I just sucked it up and bought a VitaMix. We absolutely love it and it has a 7 year warranty so I won't need to replace it anytime soon. If you really start getting into smoothies this is the way to go.

asphyxia63
08-07-2011, 03:49 PM
This is funny because I have recently considered getting a new blender... I want one that is easy to clean, I'm sick of stabbing my fingers to try to clean the bottom. It comes apart, but I hate having to do that every time I use it!

CyndiM
08-07-2011, 04:52 PM
I should add that I use my immersion blender for everything that doesn't require the VitaMix - "cream" soups, simple smoothies, eggs, etc. It is very easy to clean and portable.

jenne1017
08-07-2011, 06:41 PM
Interesting...pricey though, but if it works and has a warranty...Though as we're experiencing with our couch, they don't mean much!

CyndiM
08-07-2011, 06:44 PM
Interesting...pricey though, but if it works and has a warranty...Though as we're experiencing with our couch, they don't mean much!

I did read tons of reviews (I agonized for months over spending that much) and their customer service and warranty service got rave reviews. I was also looking at the BlendTec but went with the VitaMix partly because of the great reviews about their warranty service.

jenne1017
08-07-2011, 06:54 PM
I did read tons of reviews (I agonized for months over spending that much) and their customer service and warranty service got rave reviews. I was also looking at the BlendTec but went with the VitaMix partly because of the great reviews about their warranty service.

I think it's out of our range...FOR NOW. But good to know. Am surfing Amazon now. THanks!

Lexxiss
08-07-2011, 08:25 PM
I, too, love my Vita Mix. I had definitely not planned in my budget for it although I had really, really, really wanted one for years. Costco had a demo and $100 off so I just did it. It has been the best investment I've ever made in the kitchen. I use it every single day and in retrospect don't have any residual issue about what I paid for it.

jenne1017
08-07-2011, 10:26 PM
Good to know Debbie. If we had it, I'd buy it. But with the move, there is no way. Plus, DW has been wanting a Kitchenaid mixer for 6 years and we haven't bought it yet...

Maybe I can convince her ;) Thanks!

OnMyWayDown
08-11-2011, 02:04 PM
I can only chime in two things that I have found. First of I have two food processors. One is this really old or 4 cup thing and the other is a cuisinart 16 cup $400 processor. Well let me tell you. YES I adore my cusinart but I find myself grabbing the little one due to ease of cleaning and size.

Second I have a Rival Slow Cooker/Crock Pot that is removable. I dont use it to ofter so I have yet to replace it but you MUST get one that the insert can be removed and works on the stove top. Also it MUST have a timer. I find myself irritated by these two options that i dont have every single time I use it. Hope it helps