Slow Cooker Sizes Guide
Not sure what size slow cooker to use? Our handy chart will help!
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When shopping for a slow cooker, one of the most important decisions to make is what size slow cooker to get. You can find sizes from a 1-quart to an 8-quart, with many different sizes in between. In other words, there are a lot of choices to sort through.
However, there are two things to consider when choosing a slow cooker size:
- Number of people to feed
- Type of recipes you want to make
Slow Cooker Sizes
A 1-2 quart slow cooker works for single serving recipes and dip recipes, so it's a good choice for singles or couples who want to avoid leftovers.
A 4-quart slow cooker is a good choice for small families (especially couples with young children). This size works well for casseroles and desserts.
6-quart slow cookers are often seen as the standard size. They are good for many dishes including soups, stews, desserts, drinks, and casseroles.
8-quart slow cookers work are best for cooking large roasts, whole chickens, ham, and other large cuts of meats.
In the market for a new slow cooker? Learn what to look for in our complete guide: Slow Cooker Buying Guide & Must-Have Beginner Supplies
General Tips on Slow Cooker Sizes
- Check the capacity of your slow cooker - Not sure about the capacity of your slow cooker? You can measure it by filling it with water! Fill up your slow cooker one cup at a time and count along the way.
- 4 cups = 1 quart
- Slow cookers work best when they are 2/3 or 3/4 of the way full. Many recipes are written with this in mind. If the slow cooker is too empty, the recipe might cook faster which could mean food that’s dry or burnt. If it’s too full, you will probably need to add cook time.
- Cook a smaller portion in a large slow cooker by using a baking dish. If your slow cooker is too big for a particular recipe, the food can be placed in a smaller casserole pan and set inside the slow cooker, according to this article from The Huffington Post.
The hack of using a small pan inside the slow cooker also works for baking. Learn about this tip in our article: How to Bake in a Slow Cooker
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