Normally I like to review slow cookers that are part of a lineup like Cook and Carry or Set ‘n Forget, but this time I decided to purchase, test, and review a very unique slow cooker just because it looked so different: the Crock-Pot 6.5-Quart Programmable Touchscreen Slow Cooker. There are a few main things which make this cooker unique, which should be immediately obvious just by looking at the photo on the top of this page. But can looks and fun features really make a difference in your slow cooking? Let’s take a look at what you get with the Crock Pot SCVT650-PS.
The Gourmia DCP-860 SlowSmart 8.5 quart Digital Slow Cooker is the largest slow cooker I’ve tested to date. Clocking in at eight and a half quarts, it’s a monster. But slow cooked meals lend themselves to making extra, so buying a cooker as big as this is not a crazy idea. Gourmia is a brand headquartered in New York City, which specializes in specialty kitchen equipment. They have a few sous vide immersion circulators available, as well as multi cookers, rice cookers, and mini fridges.
Their lineup of slow cookers is not very diverse, but there are two main options – both 8.5 quarters. One is programmable, one is not. Today we’re going going to be reviewing the programmable version.
Slow cooking is a perfect cooking method for the holiday season. With everyone so busy, it’s easy to save yourself a bit of time by tossing some ingredients into the crock and setting it to cook for 6-10 hours. Hey, you can even cook while you sleep! And stews, soups, or large roasts are perfect comfort foods to warm you up during the cold weather. Even if you’re reading this during the summer, keep in mind that a BBQ pot luck is much more fun when there’s chili or baked beans!
Hamilton Beach has been making appliances for decades, and they have a very robust and diverse lineup of slow cookers. The sizes of these slow cookers range from a tiny 2-quarter, to an extra large 8-quarter. Within this size range they have a variety of features to consider. Today, we’re going to review the Hamilton Beach Model 33473 7-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker in Silver.
This is not the largest appliance that Crock-Pot makes, but almost! Actually, the also offer an 8-quart version, which is also manual, and only a few bucks more expensive. So this one could be described as large, or medium large. It can feed up to 9 people, or cook a 7 pound roast. Wow, that’s a big roast! Hey, maybe you could fit a small turkey in here too.
The 7-quart manual slow cooker from Crock-Pot is shockingly inexpensive for the size, and it’s not much more expensive than the smaller versions they offer like the four quart cooker I reviewed recently.
This was an interesting buy for me because this really was the only slow cooker available that claims to be able to make food as a 2, 4, or 6 quart capacity slow cooker. Actually, it was quite difficult acquiring this one. They sent the wrong slow cooker twice, and then Amazon was temporarily out of them so I had to get it second hand. That’s why you see the damage in the picture above.
But the cooker worked just as fine, and I tested a couple of recipes with different quart sizes to see how it performed. Everything worked quite well, and I actually selected this model to be my #3 pick in the 4-quart mid-price category, AKA small sized slow cookers with a mid-range budget. Though it actually has a six quart capacity, which makes it a bit larger compared to other four quart cookers, the versatility of being able to cook larger dishes was interesting.
After reviewing quite a few slow cookers in the six-quart capacity category, of course I had to pick a few favorites, and the Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget was one of the top 3 in this category. Here in my review, I want to to show you exactly why it was one of my favorites, how it compared to other slow cookers with similar price points and features, as well as who this particular model would be best for. I made two recipes with this model of Set ‘n Forget, and you’ll see how they turned out below! (pictures included)
I’m always happy and willing to try a new Crock-Pot because it’s one of my all time favorite brands of slow cookers. I mean, after all, they are pretty much synonymous with this kind of kitchen appliance. Although I tend to personally own more budget items, in the case of slow cookers, I do think that spending a bit more money to upgrade from the most basic model can be worth the cost. The main reason is the added convenience.
For example, in my review of the Crock Pot Cook And Carry 6-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker I discovered the convenience of having a timer and automatic warming feature.
Bella makes a variety of small kitchen appliances, including pressure cookers, griddles, toasters, fondue pots, and of course slow cookers. Though you may be more familiar with brands like Crock Pot and Hamilton Beach when it comes to slow cooking, Bella can hold it’s own, and offers a good variety of sizes, price ranges, and uniquely designs. Last week I bought, tested, and reviewed the Bella 6 Quart Stainless Steel Programmable Slow Cooker with Locking Lid. This is model #13722.
After browsing small-sized mid-priced slow cookers for reviews, I settled on my Top 5, and the Cuisinart PSC-350 3.5-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker was one of them! In fact, it made the Top 3 (see more below). Priced at the middle of the road and making three and a half quarts of delicious slow-cooked meals, it’s definitely a good buy for some folks. But is this the right device for your kitchen? I’ve tested and written a full review, so you can decide if this is the slow cooker that you need.