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Slow Cooker Sizes Guide

Not sure what size slow cooker to use? Our handy chart will help!

Slow Cooker Sizes Guide

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:

  1. Number of people to feed
  2. Type of recipes you want to make
If the slow cooker recipe doesn't mention what size to use, refer to our chart for a handy place to start. It is also helpful to own two sizes (one small and one large) so you can make different types of recipes at the same time.  Want more slow cooker tips? Sign up for our free newsletter!

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.

Slow Cooker Sizes Chart

General Tips on Slow Cooker Sizes

  1. 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
  1. 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.
  2. 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. 

What size slow cooker do you normally use? 

Up Next: How to Clean Your Slow Cooker

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