Summary: This is the only crockpot I would ever buy! Being able to brown meat in the same pot is the only way I would take the time to do it. Awesome for spaghettie sauce or chili: cook the meat, then add the sauce ingredients and let it cook! Also helpful to bring a large pot of soup to the boil quickly on the stovetop, then keep at your desired temp in the crockpot for however long you need to.
Summary: I purchased this to replace a Cuisinart that had a ceramic bowl that cracked. This is WAY better! The fact that you can brown with it on the stove and then throw it right into the base is reason enough to get this. It cooks evenly too. I wish I'd gotten this the first time around. It surely works better than much more expensive models.
Summary: The features I like the most are the removable pan, which is nice for cleaning, the shape, which allows you to put long cuts of meat in, the warm setting for keeping food, the ability to brown meat right in the removable pan, and the cord holder underneath. The reason I gave it 4 stars out of 5 is because the outside handles and body get too hot to touch without using pot holders. The lid does too, but that's to be expected.
Summary: Bought this on Amazon for $56 in January 2012. Used it 4-5 times a year. It was convenient to brown meats and veggies and then put that into the base to continue cooking. Low generally was hotter than other slow cookers, but it seemed ok. Last night I made a French onion soup and after leaving on low for 2 hours I lowered it to warm. No warm. Light is on, entire thing is ice cold 3 hours later. Food was spoiled and the thing is not useful anymore.
Summary: Based on all the excellent reviews, I'm sure that the problems was unique to this unit. The heating element was out of whack. all temperature settings created the same amount of heat, too hot. Finally opted to go with a 3-in-1 unit.
Summary: I checked out so many slow cookers before I bought this one that my brain ached. According to the reviews on Amazon, a number of slow cookers were either unsafe or simply shut themselves off prematurely, leaving nearly raw, cold food sitting for hours in the pot. This product not only is quite reliable but also has several excellent innovative features. One is that the inner pot can be used directly on the stove to brown meat before cooking it.
Summary: I feel bad rating this slow-cooker 2 stars, because we really did enjoy using it. However, I want people to see the review. For the first 4 or 5 uses, this slow cooker worked great! I still love the idea of this type of product; I only wish it were larger and not coated with this type of non-stick coating.
Teflon-like coating: If you're avoiding PTFE's, don't buy this
Maggie Magoo, Amazon
13 March 2013
Summary: Those who want to avoid Teflon-like, PTFE nonstick coatings need to know that this cooker's aluminum cooking surface is coated with Xylan. I couldn't tell that from the product description or picture, but when I started to unpack the pot it looked coated with something. Contacted Hamilton Beach to confirm it's coated with Xylan. Good Housekeeping warns that high temperatures may cause nonstick coatings like Xylan to break down at the molecular level.
Summary: I am loving this slow cooker. I have so far done two meals for company, and both have been a great success. The size is a bit too big for my daily needs, being a single person, but I chose it primarily for entertaining. For this, the size is perfect. However, it would make great meals plus plenty of leftovers for just me. I have no complaints about how it works.
Summary: I adore this slow cooker. I understand the importance of browning meats before giving them a long slow cook. Brown=flavor, plus richer, darker sauces and gravies made from the cooking liquid. It's incredibly convenient that the cast aluminum insert can go directly on a burner and be used to brown meat instead getting another pan dirty. And being able to put the insert back onto a burner when everything's done to thicken up a sauce/gravy is equally helpful. . .brilliant.