Cooking in a slow cooker can be intimidating if you don’t know what you’re doing. Use these easy slow cooker cheat sheets to help you along and master the slow cooker!
When you get your slow cooker, you are so excited to start using it, you grab all these recipes off the internet and you start looking them over one by one. As you look over some of them, they may come across as vague, which makes you stop in your tracks.
If only it was easier to just get some tips and tricks for how to cook in your slow cooker and not make many mistakes. Well we’ve gone ahead and found some charts that will make cooking in your slow cooker much easier.
Things like, when’s the right time to choose cooking on “low” vs cooking on “high”. Or perhaps you’re curious how long you should cook that pot roast so you don’t ruin it. Check out these cheat sheets and make your life easier!
1. How long should I cook it?
Most slow cookers will come with two settings for you to pick from – “low” and “high”. When the time allows for it, we’d recommend you use the “low” setting since it tends to cook the food better and its doing the “low and slow” cooking method.
If you’re pressed for time, go ahead and choose the “high” setting. Just remember that the fat content in the meat, amount of liquid, and the size and vegetables you’re cooking will affect the cooking times.
2. How do I convert cooking time from “high” to “low”?
The difference between “high” and “low” on slow cookers seems to differ depending on what brand and model you have. One thing can be for sure – food takes seven to eight hours to reach a simmer point on low, versus three to four hours on high.
A general rule of thumb is: to go from “high” to “low” or vice versa, multiply (or divide) the original time by 1.5 to 2.5 hours.
3. How do I layer the ingredients?
Here’s one example where being a little bit fussy with things will pay off. Foods that are at the bottom of your slow cooker will obviously be closer to the heat, while those on top will be further away. So putting the ingredients in the slow cooker pot will affect how they cook.
4. What should I add at the very end?
The right finishing touches can add brightness, heat, richness, and other important elements to your dish. Just make sure to wait until the very end to stir them in, because some of the herbs will fall apart if they’re cooked for hours. Citrus and zesty flavors will also be a little bit off if they’re cooked too long.