I own several crock pots. As in: four. Yes, I own four crock pots, and don’t judge me, because when you’re juggling Thanksgiving dinner on the racks of your oven, I’m enjoying a glass of wine while surrounded by crocks. It works. (Also, I keep one in our camper. And the Little Dipper doesn’t even really count. And why are we arguing about this?)
Last year I threw a “party like it’s 1970” party for my husband’s landmark birthday, and that, of course, meant that I made every crock pot-able food I could think of. It also meant that I ran out of crock pots. So I borrowed one from a friend to supplement mine. It was the Hamilton Beach Set ‘n’ Forget Programmable slow cooker, and I loved it so much, I immediately began talking about buying one for myself after I had to return my friend’s. (In my defense, I only had three crocks, back then.) I was lucky enough to receive it for Christmas and have been singing its praises ever since.
If you only buy one crock pot, this is the one to buy (and at $38, it’s currently at its lowest price on Amazon in a year). It heats consistently, is programmable for whatever considerations you may have (like, if you need to throw food in it in the morning and then be out at work all day, you can program it to switch to “warm” after 8 hours rather than cooking your meal into mush), and the fancy little probe thermometer is just the icing on the cake. Also, the fact that you can clamp the lid shut means this is the crock you’ll take with you to potlucks, and it’ll never slosh food onto the floor of your car, no matter how many sharp corners you take.
Yes, I just raved about a crock pot for three paragraphs. This is not the glamorous life I once pictured for myself, but on the other hand, I make a mean crock of chili, so there’s that.