Best Slow Cookers for the Best Stews in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update November 11, 2019
Don’t fancy going out every evening to have a tea, but have no energy for cooking at home after a hard working day in the office? Then a slow cooker is definitely a solution for you. The food cooked in a slow cooker has a richer buffet of tastes. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2019
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
CONTROLS
FOOD CAPACITY
MATERIAL
EXTRA FUNCTIONS
WARRANTY
 
PROS

The unit has a smart control panel with an LCD display, touch-sensitive controls, and a handy countdown timer. You can program it to stop cooking after a certain period of time.

CONS

Instructions are not wholly explanatory.

OUR VERDICT

Since the Crock-Pot CSC052 slow cooker automatically switches to "Keep Warm" after cooking, your meal will be ready when you are. This large slow cooker is a stellar option for busy families and batch cooking.

detailed parameters
CONTROLS

Digital panel with timer (from 30 minutes to 20 hours), 

3 heat settings: Low, High, and Keep-Warm

FOOD CAPACITY

4.7 L

MATERIAL

Metal housing, Ceramic pot 

EXTRA FUNCTIONS

Tempered glass lid, Cool touch handles, Non-skid feet, Dishwasher-safe bowl and lid, Hinged lid

WARRANTY

2 years

PROS

The slow cooker is great in terms of ergonomics. It's fitted with cool-touch handles, non-slip feet, and boasts simplistic overall design.

CONS

The cooking pot is rather heavy.

OUR VERDICT

The James Martin by Wahl slow cooker will be able to cook dinners and desserts for the whole family. And an informative control panel with an LCD display will give you complete control over the cooking process.

detailed parameters
CONTROLS

LCD digital timer with delay function (30 minutes to 20 hours), 3 Heat settings (Low, High & Keep-Warm)

FOOD CAPACITY

4.7 L 

MATERIAL

Metal housing, Ceramic pot

EXTRA FUNCTIONS

Tempered glass lid, Cool touch handles, Non-skid feet, Dishwasher-safe cooking pot and lid

WARRANTY

2 years

PROS

With this slow cooker, you'll be able to sear and slow cook from start to finish in one cooking pot, thus, saving time and effort on washing up.

CONS

The pot isn't ceramic and can't be used with metal kitchen utensils.

OUR VERDICT

The Morphy Richards Sear and Stew slow cooker is one of the easiest appliances to use. It will be an excellent option for novice cooks and busy households. The pot looks stylish and can be used for dishing up at the table, which is a real boon.

detailed parameters
CONTROLS

Rotary knob with 3 settings: High, Med, and Low

FOOD CAPACITY

3.5 L

MATERIAL

Metal housing, Non-stick aluminium cooking pot

EXTRA FUNCTIONS

Tempered glass lid, Cool touch handles, Non-skid feet, Dishwasher-safe, Power indicator

WARRANTY

1 year (+ 1 year when you register the product)

PROS

The Russell Hobbs 23200 comes with a removable cooking pot in which you can not only cook food but also serve it to the table.

CONS

The housing of the cooker tends to get hot. 

OUR VERDICT

This slow cooker provides sufficient capacity to cook a meal for 3-4 people, which makes it a perfect solution for most average families. With chrome exterior, it looks beautiful and requires very little care. You can be sure it will last for a long time. 

detailed parameters
CONTROLS

Rotary knob with 3 heat settings: High, Low, Keep warm

FOOD CAPACITY

3.5 L

MATERIAL

Stainless steel housing, Ceramic pot 

EXTRA FUNCTIONS

Cool touch handles, Tempered glass lid, Power indicator, Dishwasher-safe, Non-skid feet

WARRANTY

1 year (+ 1 year in case of online registration)

PROS

This compact kitchen appliance uses just 120 Watts of electricity and cooks at the temperature of 70˚C or 95˚C. The meals come out delicious and nutritious.

CONS

Markings on the control knob are not very clear.

OUR VERDICT

The Andrew James slow cooker is brilliant in its ability to use minimum energy but cook flavourful meals. It can turn ultra-tough cuts of meat into something infinitely tasty. This compact cooker is great for making smaller meals, but you can also choose 3.5L or 6.5L capacity.

detailed parameters
CONTROLS

Rotary knob with 3 settings: High, Low, and Auto

FOOD CAPACITY

1.5 L (3.5 L, 6.5 L are available) 

MATERIAL

Stainless steel housing, Ceramic pot 

EXTRA FUNCTIONS

Tempered glass lid, Cool touch handles, Non-skid feet, Dishwasher-safe bowl 

WARRANTY

2 years

Crock-Pot CSC052 4.7 Litre

Smart Design

The Crock-Pot Lift & Serve Digital Slow Cooker is an uber-solid appliance that is really made to last. Built with a unique hinged lid, it can not only make serving and stirring easier but also reduce worktop mess.

Owing to the handy hinged design, you can simply lift the lid to stir or serve your dish without a need to find some space to put down the lid. That is to say, it prevents condensation spill onto your table top - the drops simply drip back into the bowl. And in addition to traping all the moisture, the hinged lid also makes a good seal on the pot.

The overall build quality of the unit is stunning. The well-made handles are great for carrying the whole thing around the kitchen. And thanks to the detachable power cable and rubber feet, the cooker can be served at the table. It's sufficiently steady and attractive to move seamlessly from the stove top to the dining table. Moreover, the cooker is oven-safe as well, which means you can safely place it into the oven if you need to complete any recipe instructions.

The capacity makes impressive 4.7 litres which is enough to feed a large family. However, the downside to this capacity and the ceramic pot is a too heavy weight. The upsides are good heat retention and no fear of damaging its non-stick surface.

Review of Crock-Pot CSC052 4.7 Litre Digital Slow Cooker with Hinged Lid

Handy Timer Function

The Crock-Pot 4.7L Countdown Slow Cooker is a sophisticated unit that has a smart control panel with a display, touch-sensitive controls, and a handy countdown timer. You can program it to stop cooking after a certain period of time rather than having to switch it off manually, though you can’t delay the start of the cooking time.

It might seem a pity it doesn't have an option for a delayed start, but compared to most other slow cookers, having a reminder of how much time is left is an obvious advantage.

You can set the unit to cook at low or high heat for any period of time from 30 minutes to 20 hours, in 30-minute increments. Once the cooking is complete, it remains on "Keep Warm" setting automatically.

Crock-Pot CSC052 4.7 Litre Digital Slow Cooker with Hinged Lid in the use

Best For

Since the slow cooker automatically switches to "Keep Warm" after cooking, your meal is ready when you are. So, if you often return home from work ravenous for dinner, the Crockpot CHP450 is a great thing to have at your disposal. And if your family can't always eat together, you can leave "Keep Warm" and let everyone help themselves. In a word, this large slow cooker is a stellar option for busy families and batch cooking.

Detailed review of Crock-Pot CSC052 4.7 Litre Digital Slow Cooker with Hinged Lid

 

Wahl James Martin LEUKKALG12942

By James Martin

The slow cooker in question is another practical solution to modern-day food preparation. Proudly produced by the Wahl company along with James Martin, the cooker has been thoroughly tested to deliver you the highest build quality and excellent performance.

Manufactured with a large 4.7-litre ceramic pot, the slow cooker is capable of prepping large family-sized meals such as casseroles, curries, soups, and different stews. The capacious cooking pot is detachable, allowing you to serve it right at the tabletop. The pot is made of ceramic and has cool-touch handles for easy removal when it's still hot. It's covered with a transparent toughened-glass lid that lets you check what is happening inside without opening and releasing steam. Both parts are easy to clean and can be put into a dishwasher.

If you'd like to diversify your menu, you'll appreciate the fact that the cooker comes with a booklet created by James Martin. You'll find ideas on how to cook yummy Balsamic Beef, Mulled Wine, Beef Stew with Dumplings, and more. All the recipes are adapted for this very multicooker, so you won't ever need to modify them.

Review of Wahl James Martin LEUKKALG12942 Slow Cooker

Easy Controls

What most users find appealing about this slow pot is that it allows for cooking delicious meals with very little hassle and effort. All you need to do is pop your ingredients inside the pot, set the time and heat levels, and away you go.

As a nice design feature, the model is featured with a delay button in case you don’t want to start cooking straight away. Hence, you'll be able to decide when you want the cooking to begin, no matter whether it's day or night.

As far as the controls are concerned, you are free to set Low, High and Keep Warm cooking settings. Low mode is ideal when you need to cook foods long and slow. On this setting, you can expect from 7 to 10 hours of cooking. The High setting will speed up the cooking process a bit with 4 - 5 hours. It's perfect for those occasions when you require your meal slightly sooner and don't mind sacrificing a smallish amount of nutrients. An auto keep-warm function will ensure that your dishes will maintain delicious flavour until you’re ready to serve. The handy, programmable LCD display will give you complete control over timings.

When it comes to ergonomics, the James Martin by Wahl Digital Slow Cooker doesn't trail behind the competition. It's fitted with cool-touch handles, non-slip feet, and boasts simplistic overall design. Being intuitive and simple to use, the James Martin pot is a worthy investment for middle-sized families.

Wahl James Martin LEUKKALG12942 Slow Cooker in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Morphy Richards 460014 3.5L

Sear and Stew

Basically, you need to sear food in a frying pan before stewing it in a slow cooker, meaning you need to use additional cookware and clean it afterwards. With the Morphy Richards 460014 slow cooker, however, no longer will you need to do that!

The main benefit of this model is that you can simply take the pot out from the base and use it first on a stove top to sear some meat before adding other ingredients. This way, you'll be able to fry the meat until it gets crispy, golden crust but stays soft and tender inside with incredible mesmerising flavour. The pot features a no-stick coating, so you don't need to worry about burns and sticking.

Unlike ceramic cooking pots used in most other slow cookers, this hob-proof pot is very durable and lightweight. Hence, you can take the pot right to the table and serve directly from it. For easy carrying, it has two ergonomic handles.

On top of that, the pot, as well as the lid, is dishwasher-safe, meaning it can go straight into the dishwasher when you've finished your meal. So, cleaning up will be a doddle too.

Review of Morphy Richards 460014 3.5L Slow Cooker Sear and Stew

A Vast Variety of Meals

Once the pot is in the slow cooker base, you just need to select one of three available settings (high, medium or low) depending on when you want your meal to be ready. The pot allows you to cook not only delicious casseroles, chilli, curry but also a multitude of other popular recipes including desserts. The 3.5-litre capacity will be enough to feed a family of 3-4 members.

The vast majority of meals can be prepared in minutes - just toss everything in and turn the slow cooker on. The unit is operated by a knob rather than a tricky display with a lot of buttons, which makes this slow cooker particularly convenient to control for beginners. And owing to a transparent toughened glass lid, you'll be able to monitor the cooking process without disturbing the progress.

Morphy Richards 460014 3.5L Slow Cooker Sear and Stew in the use

Final Thoughts

The Morphy Richards Sear and Stew slow cooker is one of the easiest appliances to use. It will be an excellent option for novice cooks and busy households that would like to sear and slow cook from start to finish in one cooking pot, saving you time and effort on washing up. With that, the pot looks stylish and can be used for dishing up at the table, which is a real boon. We dare say, it's one of the most well-balanced cookers you can find on the market. It's affordable, sleek-looking, and straightforward to use.

Detailed review of Morphy Richards 460014 3.5L Slow Cooker Sear and Stew

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Russell Hobbs 23200

For All Your Family

The Russell Hobbs Slow Cooker 23200 will give a helping hand to any homemaker. Instead of bending over the stove after a busy day at work, you will come back to a ready meal waiting for you to serve to the table. The capacity of the pot isn't very big (3.5 L) but more than sufficient for making a meal for 3-4 people with leftovers. Like all slow cookers, it doesn't cook quickly. Yet, that's is exactly what sets slow cookers from other appliances. You can pop the food into the pot early in the morning, select the program, and leave it on for the biggest part of a day. When you get back home, the meal will be ready and warm. The Russell Hobbs Slow Cooker 23200 has three standard cooking settings: high, low, and keep warm, which allows you to customize the temperature to different meals. The keep warm function will let you preserve your meal warm for several hours and warm it up quickly later on.

Review of Russell Hobbs 23200 Slow Cooker

Ergonomic Design

Speaking of the design, the Russell Hobbs 23200 has a user-friendly and easy-to-use control panel. You won't need to look up in the instruction to know how to use it. It's got a single rotary knob, with clearly marked heating settings you can use. The power indicator light featured on the cooker makes it easy to see when the device is on/off. The exterior of the cooker is polished stainless steel which not only adds appeal to the pot but also ensures its durability. The lid of the cooker is made of transparent glass so you can view the cooking process without having to remove it. The cool-touch handles and locks on the lid ensure convenient transportation of the pot and mess-free cooking. 

Russell Hobbs 23200 Slow Cooker in the use

Benefits

The Russell Hobbs Slow Cooker 23200 offers hassle-free cleaning. You can wash it by hand and in a dishwasher. There are few parts that need to be disassembled so you should not have any problem. Remove the pot and the lid and load them in the dishwasher or rinse under water.

Reviewing hundreds of slow cookers in the market, we can easily say that the Russell Hobbs Slow Cooker 23200 is one of the most attractive and well-built. It will become a nice addition to any family so you can safely present it to your relatives and friends. The price for the pot isn't mega high and even reasonable, considering its great performance and all the above-said features. We would definitely recommend this model for those who want to complete their kitchen with both a functional and attractive appliance.

Detailed review of Russell Hobbs 23200 Slow Cooker

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Andrew James 5060146068499

Economical Yet Functional

The Andrew James company is dedicated to developing premium-quality inventive products that are thoroughly inspected and tested to meet the highest standards. This homeware brand delivers a wide range of innovative kitchen appliances to both specialist and ordinary users, with affordability and excellent customer support as the heart of the philosophy. Andrew James products are widely praised for being economical yet functional. And the Slow Cooker under review is no exception.

This slow cooker is moderately-priced but offers some features you shouldn't pass by. It heats up to half the temperature of a conventional oven and requires just 120 Watts of power, whilst still cooking delicious meals at a fraction of the cost.

The pot heats up fairly quickly and the tempered glass lid retains heat within the cooker, leaving it no chances to escape. The more heat and longer cooking time, the better distribution of the flavours. Hence, you can be sure that all your meals will come out delicious and full of nutrients and vitamins.

Customers love that this cooker preserves the flavour of food and keeps the meat super tender - it will be evenly cooked from all sides and literally fall off the bone in your plate. They also noted that the appliance of this size can comfortably cook a meal for a couple of people. The elaborate oval shape allows you to load longer cuts of meat. You'll be able to fit a lamb shank or two large turkey legs in this pot, which you may struggle to put into round models.

Review of Andrew James 5060146068499 Slow Cooker

The Choice of Sizes

One of the most interesting features this cooker has in store is the Auto program. It means the pot begins cooking on high and then switches to low as soon as it reaches a preset temperature. The heat-up time depends on the food (and its amount) you load and whether or not it's defrosted. The manufacturer says the Auto function allows users to set the appliance to cook frozen goods as well. They will be ready to serve 8-10 hours later. This way, you can tip in the frozen ingredients before you go to bed and wake up to a hearty pot of slow-cooked dish in the morning.

With the capacity of 1.5 litres, the Andrew James slow cooker is handy for couples or small families. However, the cooker also comes in 3.5L and huge 6.5L capacities. This wide variety of sizes means everyone can choose the ideal appliance for their needs. The largest 6.5L pot is perfect for cooking in bulk. So, if you'd like to save money by bulk purchasing and bulk cooking, you may want to consider the bigger pot.

To round things up, the Andrew James slow cooker is brilliant in its ability to use minimum energy but cook flavourful meals. It can turn ultra-tough cuts of meat into something infinitely tasty. This compact cooker is great for small families, but you can also choose 3.5L or 6.5L capacity.

Andrew James 5060146068499 Slow Cooker in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

What Is a Slow Cooker?

A slow cooker is a countertop kitchen appliance designed for cooking at low temperatures for several hours. Unlike multi-cookers and other similar devices, this one is used to facilitate unsupervised cooking so you do not need to monitor it and can go do other things while it is cooking a meal. From simple rice to pasta sauce to casserole, a slow cooker will prepare any meal with no fuss.

The main benefit of using a slow cooker is that you can load all the ingredients in a pot early in the morning, set up the appliance, and forget about it - by the time you get back home from work, your meal will be ready. This makes a slow cooker a must-have appliance for anyone who doesn't have time to fuss with long food preparation but would like to eat at home nonetheless.

This selection of slow cookers includes five top-rated models that will help make dinner preparation much easier for you. Read our guide to find out which slow cooker suits you better.

We also recommend you to take a look at these reviews of food processors and microwave ovens. You might find them interesting and useful.

What Features to Compare

For those who've decided to buy a slow cooker, we offer a few practical tips that should help you find the perfect crock pot. Hopefully, after reading this guide, it will be easy for you to make the right choice.

Design

First things first, consider the design. Though it might not seem that obvious at first, crockpots are not the same: some models are oval while others are round. In general, oval shape is considered more practical as it can accommodate larger chunks of meat, but if you don't need a big pot, a round slow cooker will suit you fine. Slow cookers can also come in various capacities. Depending on your needs, you can choose a pot from 500 ml up to 7L. Further on, check out the exterior of the device. It should be made of quality materials and surrounded by metal for better heat conduction. For your convenience, we recommend opting for a lid made of glass so that you can easily see what's happening inside the appliance without having to open it during use. Another thing to look out is convenient controls. Many slow cookers come with digital controls, sparing you the need to rely on the guesswork when cooking.

Coating

Next, pay attention to the quality of the coating. As a rule, most slow pots come with a non-stick coating to prevent food from sticking to the bottom and facilitate clean-up of the device. However, not all models can boast of having pots entirely covered with a non-stick coating so make sure the one you choose offers as much coverage as possible. You may also want to check the compatibility of this pot with other cookers. Quite often a pot can be used separately from a slow cooker, but to use it safely, you need to make sure it can be used with your type of cooker.

Heating

Speaking of operation, and heating in particular, you should be aware that some slow cookers have no temperature control at all and work only at a constant heat setting. These are basic models that should be turned on and off manually. More sophisticated models, in turn, will offer at least several heat settings, such as low, medium, high, as well as keep warm, and allow you to vary the power, providing you with more cooking options. In addition, they will often include timers and preset programs, so you won't need to keep an eye on the device. In regard to the heating element, we advise you to choose a model with a heating element placed in the housing. Such placement is considered the most effective, allowing the slow cooker to generate the heat evenly and to maintain a consistent temperature throughout the whole process of cooking.

Sources:

1. Yvette Fletcher How to buy the best slow cookerWhich? 

2. Kathy Hester How to choose a slow cooker, Nava.

3. Slow Cooker Buying GuideConsumer Reports. September 2016.

4. Slow cookerWikipedia. September 11, 2016.

5. Caroline Hire 10 top tips for using a slow cooker, Good Food.

6. Simmering, Wikipedia. September 25, 2016.

7. Slow Cooker Preparation GuideRecipeTips

8. Andrea Lynn 10 tips for using your slow cooker to get the best resultsTODAY. September 12, 2016.

9. 14 Tips for Slow-Cooker MealsFood Network

10. Suzanne Driessen, Glenyce Peterson-Vangsness Slow Cookers and Food Safety, Extension.

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