Many people have come across this confusion of opting for a Crock-pot style cooker or a plain slow cooker. Both, the Crock-Pots and slow cookers use steam to cook food over a long period and both produce the same delicious results. In fact, they are even used to cook the same style of meals. Be it vegetables or be it meat of any kind.
Then what sets them apart? Well the answer is simple, it is the material and the appearance of the cookers that sets them apart.
A Crock-Pot is a type of slow cooker. Introduced in the early 1970’s, it was originally marketed as a bean cooker. Over a period of time, it evolved into the model we are all familiar with today.
Crock-Pot cookers have a ceramic or porcelain pot that is set inside a heating unit. They are heated from the bottom as well as around the sides of the pot. You can choose from round to oval designs and they come in various sizes.
Another aspect that sets them apart from the conventional slow cookers is that, Crock-Pots is the heat settings. They have just two heat settings -LOW wattage, which cooks food at roughly 70 degree Celsius and HIGH wattage which cooks food at 90 degree Celsius. Crock-Pot cookers cook continuously. Some models also have a timer to allow cooking for a specific amount of time.
Slow cookers are cooking appliances used to simmer food at a lower temperature than other cooking methods, such as baking, boiling, and frying. Slow cookers allow unattended cooking for long hours. They can be used to make a variety of dishes including ones that are made out of cocoa and bread. Not all slow cookers are Crock-Pots. Slow cookers have some distinct characteristics that you may not find in Crock-pots.
Slow cooker refers simply to the appliance. Some of them have a metallic body that sits on a heating unit. Since the pot is heated from bottom, the heat is concentrated at the bottom rather than on the walls of the pot.
Food may cook slower as compared to when cooked in a Crock-Pot and it may have greater chance of scorching on the bottom because of the nature of the material. Thus, the food must be stirred more often in slow cooker. This requires the lid to be opened more frequently which releases more heat and extends the cooking time.
slow cookers usually have heat settings that are more than just low, high, and warm. Most slow cookers have a range of five heat settings. Slow cookers, since bottom heated, work in cycles, are powered on and off during cooking. Some models also have a timer to allow cooking for a specific amount of time.