We just realized that January is National Slow Cooking Month. Of course, it makes sense -- it's cold outside and our desire for pot roast has reached new heights. As it just so happens, the CNET Appliances team is testing slow cookers right now (but we aren't quite done yet).
So keep checking back for our slow-cooker reviews and roundup. In the meantime, enjoy this slideshow of the $129.99 Breville Slow Cooker with EasySear; the $59.99 Crock-Pot Cook & Carry Digital Slow Cooker; the $99 Frigidaire Professional 7-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker; the $59.99 Hamilton Beach Set 'n Forget 6 Qt. Programmable Slow Cooker With Spoon/Lid; and the $199.80 Ninja Cooking System. Hungry yet?
The $129.99 Breville Slow Cooker with EasySear (BSC560XL) is a bit of a mystery to us so far. It looks incredibly high-end and it definitely costs more than your standard slow cooker. You can place the inner pot on your cooktop and use it to sear, sauté, and brown meat. But, it doesn't come with a timer or a warm setting.
The $59.99 Crock-Pot Cook & Carry Digital Slow Cooker (SCCPCTS605-S) is more like that traditional "crock pot" you've seen before. It has the standard high and low settings and it will automatically transition to warm mode when it's done cooking. Can this less expensive model make food that's as good as the others?
The $99 Frigidaire Professional 7-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker (FPCP07D7MS) looks a bit more sophisticated than the classic Crock-Pot model. We do wish it had some sort of protective covering over the handles, though. These things get hot! But it does offer more in the way of features: buffet, soup, low, medium, high, warm, and timer.
The $59.99 Hamilton Beach Set 'n Forget 6 Qt. Programmable Slow Cooker With Spoon/Lid (33967) is the same price as the Crock-Pot model we're testing. They actually look pretty similar, too. It offers all of the basics, plus a spoon rest on the top handle and a thermometer probe that lets you check the temperature of your food.
The $199.80 Ninja Cooking System is pretty innovative for the slow cooker industry. Not only does it look different than the other models, you can use it on the stovetop or in the oven. It can sear, sauté, steam bake, and steam roast. This versatile machine also offers all of the basics you will find in traditional slow cookers.