When I was thinking about writing about how much I love my slow cooker because it saves me time, money and uses less energy that a conventional oven I thought I would check Northern Cheapskate to see what articles have been written about it in the past, I discovered that Northern Cheapskate Christina has the same love for her slow cooker and has shared many ideas of when to use it, how to use it and slow cooker cookbooks you might want to try. Had we known when we met in college that we each had a love for slow cookers we could have started a Slow Cooker Culinary Group on campus. I can just imagine the wonderful potlucks we could have had!
Do you want to know how much I love my slow cooker? I have different sizes so I can accommodate almost any recipe. And when my mid-size slow cooker started on a downward spiral of parts breaking off (which being the cheapskate I am, I kept figuring out ways to keep using it until it was no longer able to be fixed) I went on the search for another one about the same size in hopes that my ceramic insert would fit and I could use that same size while one insert was in the wash. I was successful. It’s like I have 3 1/2 slow cookers and that makes me happy.
Even though I am a stay-at-home mom, I rarely am actually home. I like to be out and about and starting a meal before we leave in the morning fits great in to our lifestyle, just as it would for someone leaving for work in the morning. Even if we are home all day it is nice to get a meal started on my own time rather than worrying about if I have time to do it after my daughter gets home from school, which leaves me free to hang out with her and help with homework and still have a hot meal on the table.
Using a slow cooker for 7 hours uses about 3/4 of a kilowatt, whereas a conventional oven uses 2 kilowatts for one hour. You can do the math on some of your favorite recipes and see how much energy and money you are saving. Most recipes made in a slow cooker would have taken an hour or more to make in a conventional oven, so you already are saving over half. Every bit of energy you save means a lower electric bill and money saved. Some of the ideas that have been shared on Northern Cheapskate on how it will help save you money by using a slow cooker include:
- Use during the holidays (we are already spending extra money on gifts and using extra energy for those holiday lights, so cut back where you can.)
- Menu Planning (use for times when people eat at different times – one meal ready and hot for a variety of times.)
- Cheap Alternatives for Kitchen Gadgets (use slow cooker as a fondue pot instead of buying both)
- Cool Meals for the Summer (make a hot meal without heating up your house, which means less of a need for the air conditioner)
Also, be sure to check out the Slow Cooker Recipes I have shared on Save Green Being Green. Some of them include Turkey Pad Thai, Sausage and Rice Stew, Applesauce and many more.
I am always looking for new tried and true Slow Cooker recipes, so now it’s your turn. Share your favorite Slow Cooker Recipe!