General chatter - Crock-Pots, Pressure Cookers- tools to make meals easier

11-10-2010, 03:10 PM
May I ask some of you chef chickees for advice?

I'm planning my Christmas wish list and I was thinking of asking for one of the above items. It dawns on me, though, that I only actually know a *little* of what those things do.

A crock pot cooks slowly all day long.

A pressure cooks at high pressure, high temp, so certain things cook faster.

Which would be better for me?

Do you use them, how do you feel about them? Is it worth it?

I like the crock pot mostly for making stews and having them ready when I come home. That I could (presumably?) cook beans all day, so that I can buy dried ones instead of canned ones.

(Or would it be better to cook beans in the pressure cooker under supervision?)

11-10-2010, 03:16 PM
love my crock pot, wish i had a better one. i'd say i use about 3 times a month, give or take? one thing i would say is there are much better ones out there now with timers and things on them and i really wish i had one of those instead of mine that just has high and low settings.

i have no experience with pressure cookers other than the horror stories of the old ones exploding- new ones are much safer.

11-10-2010, 03:22 PM
I also have a High or Low setting crockpot - definitely get one with a timer if you can :) I use mine probably 3 times a month as well, give or take. Soups, stews, chicken breasts, beans, you can apparently even make desserts - yum yum yum!

11-10-2010, 03:26 PM
I have a crockpot and I have a pressure cooker. I use my pressure cooker a couple times per week and I use my crockpot a couple times per year. If I had to choose one, I'd definitely choose the pressure cooker. I have a fagor duo set which means I have a smaller pot and a larger pot, 1 pressure cooker lid and 1 regular glass lid. I find myself time and time again going to the pressure cooker pan to cook even when I'm not doing pressure cooking.

Here is the set I have:

11-10-2010, 03:36 PM
I ADORE my crock pot! I cook in it at least once a week, sometimes more. Today, for example, I'm making a chicken pot pie at home and the chicken is cooking right now in the crock pot. I use it for soups, stews, chilis, cooking chicken, roasts, pork, beans, LOTS of stuff. Never have used a pressure cooker, ever.

11-10-2010, 03:38 PM
I love love love my crockpot.
I have two. One little ones for doing beans and steel cut oatmeal over night.
I have a big one that I use for soups and stews. That one has a 4 hour, 6 hour, 8 hour, 10 hour and warm setting. AND I can take it apart and move it to the table. I use that one at least once or twice a week

11-11-2010, 03:46 PM
I would go with the crockpot. We use ours 3-5 times per week. I think it has been over a year since we last used the pressure cooker.

11-11-2010, 08:31 PM
We brought our Rival crock pot on vacation with us. We made chili verde yesterday morning and set it on 10 hrs low. When we came home, this place smelled SO GOOD! We merely had to heat some tortillas (for boobalah) and eat. I have another one that is 3 sizes in 1. The thing I like about that one is that it has a warm selection. I can prepare something on my stove, pack it for travel and put it in whichever size is needed and put it on warm when I arrive at the pot luck or whatever. The Rival automatically clicks over to warm when it is done. The other one does not. You have to physically turn it to warm.

I have a pressure cooker as well. I use the crock pot more often. I've actually taken a roast from the freezer and browned it in the pressure cooker, added a small amount of stock and started it cooking. We had a roast beef dinner in less than an hour.

Don't forget the library as a wonderful source for slow cookers as well as pressure cooking cook books.

11-12-2010, 09:02 AM
I used to use the crock pot often when the kids were here, now with just Angie and I not so much.

Great for the family with busy schedules! I still use it for my tender!

Personally, I don't like the ones where you can set the hours then they go to warm...both my big one and small ones seem to over-cook the food. I stick to the one, most of the time, that you just set on low or high.

All 3 of mine are Rivals.

11-12-2010, 04:24 PM
I have 3 crockpots and use the 2 biggest ones at least 2x a week. I make soups, stews, fajitas, tacos, sloppy joes, roast chicken, oatmeal, etc. At Thanksgiving, I use at least 3 at once--a fleet if you will.

11-12-2010, 04:59 PM
Wow, thanks everyone for your imput! I have a lot to think about, because I really see the value in both :)

11-12-2010, 06:37 PM
Count me as a Crock pot lover! I also have 2 and I hope Santa brings me one with a timer for Christmas!:)

11-13-2010, 09:24 AM
For me, the beauty of the crockpot is that you can cook food without oils for maximum flavor. Also, you can cook lower quality cuts of meat that taste awesome. I must add that my experience with pressure cooking is from my teenage years when my dad used one. We had lots of pet name for it, the pulverizer, the nuke (this was before microwaves were available and yeah I'm dating myself!). I've read that the newer ones are safer (Look out! It's gonna blow! Hit the deck! And yes, it did...) and not as harsh on your food.

11-13-2010, 11:07 AM
We don't eat meat but when we did, the pressure cooker infused the flavor, I found that crockpots tend to reduce flavor (or at least in terms of spices, you need to add spices later in cooking or add more).

I can cook beans in 20 minutes instead of 2 hours which is why I like the pressure cooker. You can also cook rice and other grains fairly quickly. I also like that I can use my pressure cooker pans for something other than just pressure cooking. Also, if you want to do canning, pressure cooker can do that too. I didn't grow up using a pressure cooker, only been using it for a few years but now I'd be severely crippled in the kitchen without it.

And of course it depends on your style of cooking. If you rather let something cook for hours while you are gone or cook within minutes?

11-14-2010, 09:56 PM
Before church this morning I browned a roast then tossed it in the crockpot with carrots, potatoes, onions, parsley salt, pepper and 2 cans of mushroom golden, one regular....took all of 15 minutes...

dinner, 9 hours later was awesome....

so good and little effort!

11-16-2010, 02:09 PM
Before church this morning I browned a roast then tossed it in the crockpot with carrots, potatoes, onions, parsley salt, pepper and 2 cans of mushroom golden, one regular....took all of 15 minutes...

dinner, 9 hours later was awesome....

so good and little effort!

This sounds really good! Ilove Golden Mushroom soup. Bet the house smelled really good when you got home.

11-16-2010, 03:27 PM
I use my crock pot quite a bit. It's so nice to come home from work and have dinner practically done.

For those that have a timerless crockpot, I bought a timer from Lowes then just plug my timerless crockpot into it. It can come on and turn off while I'm at work and only cost me $6. I've been using this for 3 years and the timer has always been reliable. Saved me from having to spend the extra money on one with a timer.