Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • jd1000
    • By jd1000 30th Sep 08, 1:12 PM
    • 65Posts
    • 77Thanks
    jd1000
    How does a slow cooker save money?
    • #1
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:12 PM
    How does a slow cooker save money? 30th Sep 08 at 1:12 PM
    Hi all,
    Ive been thinking of getting a slow cooker, mainly to reduce the fuel bill from cooking on a gas hob or electric oven... but how will a slow cooker save money?

    Dont you have to leave it on for most of the day, isnt that going to use up a lot of electricity?
Page 1
    • phizzimum
    • By phizzimum 30th Sep 08, 1:19 PM
    • 1,697 Posts
    • 9,247 Thanks
    phizzimum
    • #2
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:19 PM
    • #2
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:19 PM
    a slow cooker uses about the same amount of electricity as a light bulb -so although you leave it on a long time, it will still use much less electricity than your oven.

    It's also great for using cheaper cuts of meat - they will taste delicious and be full of flavour - so again another way to save.

    Another factor is the convenience - a slow cooker is great for when you're out all day. you can come home to a home cooked meal with the minimum of effort. This means you're less likely to go for a ready meal or takeaway. It makes bulk cooking easier too, so you can fill your freezer up with meals ready to defrost when needed.

    Do you get the impression I love my slow cooker?
    • Quasar
    • By Quasar 30th Sep 08, 1:21 PM
    • 113,804 Posts
    • 233,198 Thanks
    Quasar
    • #3
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:21 PM
    • #3
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:21 PM
    That makes two of us, phizzimum!!! I get some shin of beef or similar cuts, dice it up and make the most wonderful stews - the result is healthy eating, cheaper and hearty!
    We do have freedom of thought. Now all we need is a bit of thought.
    • wildbri
    • By wildbri 30th Sep 08, 1:29 PM
    • 217 Posts
    • 144 Thanks
    wildbri
    • #4
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:29 PM
    • #4
    • 30th Sep 08, 1:29 PM
    remoska...... look at this on the forums sort of a quick slow cooker. only 480 watts compared to a 2000watt oven, everyone who uses them think that the are wonderful including my wife and I who have been using one for over 7years, we use it every day, get them from Lakeland ltd guaranteed for life. a bit pricey but you wont regret it. regards..........bri
  • foreversomeday
    • #5
    • 30th Sep 08, 4:05 PM
    • #5
    • 30th Sep 08, 4:05 PM
    My friend who is an electrician told me that the biggest consumers of electricity in a house are the kitchen appliances such as electric cooker, (esp. fan ovens) dishwasher and washing machine.

    When we had a lodger he would cook his own meals meaning the oven etc was on twice as much as it would have been otherwise, we definitely noticed the difference in our electricity bill!
    I don't believe and I never did that two wrongs make a right
  • Welshwoofs
    • #6
    • 30th Sep 08, 4:41 PM
    • #6
    • 30th Sep 08, 4:41 PM
    I couldn't be without my slow cooker. I have a Rival brand 6.5L model which has two cook settings and a 'keep warm' setting. My slow cooker is almost constantly on, either poaching whole chickens for the dog or cooking up soups/casseroles/currys/chillis for us.
    “Don't do it! Stay away from your potential. You'll mess it up, it's potential, leave it. Anyway, it's like your bank balance - you always have a lot less than you think.”
    !!!8213;
    Dylan Moran
    • Quasar
    • By Quasar 30th Sep 08, 5:51 PM
    • 113,804 Posts
    • 233,198 Thanks
    Quasar
    • #7
    • 30th Sep 08, 5:51 PM
    • #7
    • 30th Sep 08, 5:51 PM
    Mine is a Tefal, the smallest I could get because I live alone but I still get three generous stew portions out of it. It has four modes, steamer, rice cooker, slow cooker, and keep warm. Plus a timer.

    I use it a lot as a steamer too and I must say my greens taste so much nicer when steamed. Haven't used it as a rice cooker though.

    It cost me !!!163;35 in John Lewis, but it's worth every penny.
    We do have freedom of thought. Now all we need is a bit of thought.
    • Swan
    • By Swan 30th Sep 08, 5:59 PM
    • 6,633 Posts
    • 7,400 Thanks
    Swan
    • #8
    • 30th Sep 08, 5:59 PM
    • #8
    • 30th Sep 08, 5:59 PM
    a slow cooker uses about the same amount of electricity as a light bulb -so although you leave it on a long time, it will still use much less electricity than your oven.
    Originally posted by phizzimum
    mine is a Morphy Richards 6.5 lt, which has a wattage of around 330, so it would need to be a bloomin' big light bulb!

    leaving it on for 3 hours is roughly the equivalent of using a 1Kw 1 bar electric fire for an hour
    • butterfly72
    • By butterfly72 30th Sep 08, 6:59 PM
    • 1,202 Posts
    • 1,130 Thanks
    butterfly72
    • #9
    • 30th Sep 08, 6:59 PM
    • #9
    • 30th Sep 08, 6:59 PM
    I'm tempted to get one but get the impression that its mainly for meat dishes and we try not to eat many of them! What slow cook veggie things can you do?

    thanks
  • CravingSaving
    Well today I made up a huge batch of pumpkin soup, half ended up just as, and the other half (that wouldnt fit in the blender first time round, and had more stock), had some lentils thrown in.

    You can cook most veggies in the slow cooker. Make sure they are covered in stock or water to stop them drying out. I would avoid slow cooking broccoli and cauli as they seem to go bitter, but everything else, especially root veggies are just fab!
    If I had a pound for every...... oh sod it, if I just had a pound I'd be richer!
    • nuttyrockeress
    • By nuttyrockeress 30th Sep 08, 8:15 PM
    • 1,249 Posts
    • 3,802 Thanks
    nuttyrockeress
    I have a slow cooker and rave about it.

    For example - yesterday I used it to cook braising steak (with red wine, carrotts, parsnips, onions) thickened it up using bisto and had that in home made yorkshire puds.

    I have saved the left overs to use for tea tomorrow and will make a pie and fill it with the remainder and home made oven chips

    Nothing nicer than coming home from work to the smell of food cooking!!
    It's nice to be nutty but's more important to be nice
    • Debt_Free_Chick
    • By Debt_Free_Chick 30th Sep 08, 8:41 PM
    • 13,149 Posts
    • 9,492 Thanks
    Debt_Free_Chick
    I'm not convinced it does use less electricity - you need to think about the consumption per hour multiplied by the number of hours you use it and then compare that with using the oven for a shorter period of time.

    I think the amount of electricity to produce the same total output is the same either a long time at a low temp or a short time at a higher temp ..... surely ....? :confused:
    Warning ..... I'm a peri-menopausal axe-wielding maniac
  • geomot
    A big slow cooker in Argos is rated at 225 watts - this means it takes 9 hours to use up 2kw-hours at full power.

    One of the small counter-top ovens at Argos is rated at 1100 watts - this means it takes less than 2 hours to use the same amount of electricty (2kw-hrs) - assuming that the heater element for the oven stays on all the time.

    so you can use the slow cooker for 5 hours for the same cost as using the small cooker.

    Lots of assumptions made here - I know I never use my slow cooker on full power & I know the oven heater element is never on all of the time.


    Hotpoint estimate average energy consumption of one of their built in electric ovens (the smaller top one) at 0.99kwhr - I suspect most slow cookers are operating at an average of about 0.1kwhr so slow cookers can run for ten hours for every hour that a small built in oven runs for.

    I do questions like this with year 10 physics but the questions about hair straighteners tend to get a better response (Former electrical engineer now a physics teacher).
    • wannabe sybil
    • By wannabe sybil 30th Sep 08, 9:21 PM
    • 2,727 Posts
    • 18,881 Thanks
    wannabe sybil
    I'm not convinced it does use less electricity - you need to think about the consumption per hour multiplied by the number of hours you use it and then compare that with using the oven for a shorter period of time.

    I think the amount of electricity to produce the same total output is the same either a long time at a low temp or a short time at a higher temp ..... surely ....? :confused:
    Originally posted by Debt_Free_Chick
    Umm I think it goes like this...

    If I make a casserole in the oven, I have the oven on for an hour and a half to two hours. So because I am rubbish at maths it is 2 x 2000kw or 4000kw, assuming that the oven uses 2000kw per hour as above. (figure of 2000kw comes from wildbri). Now today I made a casserole from lean casserole meat which would need a long time in the oven. The slow cooker was on 7 hours (on timer) and the result was melt in the mouth and enough for tea tomorrow. So that is 7 x 330 kw or 2310kw (330 kw comes from Swan, but I do think some are less). So if I had made it in the oven it would have used at least 3000kw but in the slow cooker I would use 2310 kw so it uses less power.

    Those of a scientific bent will question if the temperature of the oven affects the electricity consumption, and I have absolutely no idea. I am afraid my google expertise is inadequate to find anything, though I did find a slow cooker listed at 130 kw which is significantly less, I am confident, than an oven. My oven is gas.

    Additionally it can make a cheap cut of meat taste absolutely fantastic, you get a really good result with much better flavour. Then the convenience works even for a SAHM like me because I could prepare it during little bear's nap this morning but he was too busy being hurricane little bear this afternoon when I would have prepared the casserole.

    Quasar - I also have a Tefal rice/steamer/slow cooker/porridge thingy. The rice tastes amazing and is really easy but you get such a vast quantity that I usually dish up enough for me, dear heart and little bear and have enough for lunch the next day.

    Hope this is of use

    Edited to add that I think I have got my watts and kilowatts muddled. How mortifying!
    Last edited by wannabe sybil; 30-09-2008 at 9:23 PM.
    Ankh Morpork Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons - don't let my flame go out!
    • Swan
    • By Swan 30th Sep 08, 9:28 PM
    • 6,633 Posts
    • 7,400 Thanks
    Swan
    A big slow cooker in Argos is rated at 225 watts - this means it takes 9 hours to use up 2kw-hours at full power.

    One of the small counter-top ovens at Argos is rated at 1100 watts - this means it takes less than 2 hours to use the same amount of electricty (2kw-hrs) - assuming that the heater element for the oven stays on all the time.

    so you can use the slow cooker for 5 hours for the same cost as using the small cooker.

    Lots of assumptions made here - I know I never use my slow cooker on full power & I know the oven heater element is never on all of the time.


    Hotpoint estimate average energy consumption of one of their built in electric ovens (the smaller top one) at 0.99kwhr - I suspect most slow cookers are operating at an average of about 0.1kwhr so slow cookers can run for ten hours for every hour that a small built in oven runs for.

    I do questions like this with year 10 physics but the questions about hair straighteners tend to get a better response (Former electrical engineer now a physics teacher).
    Originally posted by geomot
    I understand the basic principle about working out the relationship between the power consumption of slow cookers & ovens, but most of the things I do in my SC I'd not use an oven for, stews, soups etc
    & I'd never dream of putting the oven on to do a casserole, it'd simply get stewed instead

    what I've never been able to work out is how the SC consumption compares to having something simmering on the stovetop on the lowest flame :confused:
    specs for cookers tend to only give you the maximum output for a hotplate/gas ring
    • wannabe sybil
    • By wannabe sybil 30th Sep 08, 9:36 PM
    • 2,727 Posts
    • 18,881 Thanks
    wannabe sybil
    Swan - I know what you mean. It is like comparing dragons and ducks, it isn't comparing like for like.

    I suppose that if I was feeling that I needed a particularly robust challenge then I would have to try and work out power usage for each appliance. Then I would know if making a casserole that is in the slow cooker then reheated in a microwave would be cheaper than putting it in the gas oven and then reheating in a microwave, although I think the result would not be as toothsome. I would get a lot less steam from a slow cooker than a stew on the hob, which I also would prefer to the oven. My oven is particularly inefficient.

    But when all is said and done, I do have a weakness for gadgets and today I have used my oven, my slow cooker, my microwave, my toaster, my breadmaker, my remoska, my washing machine and (in desperation for half an hour) my tumble dryer.

    I need help.
    Ankh Morpork Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons - don't let my flame go out!
    • Debt_Free_Chick
    • By Debt_Free_Chick 30th Sep 08, 9:36 PM
    • 13,149 Posts
    • 9,492 Thanks
    Debt_Free_Chick
    Those of a scientific bent will question if the temperature of the oven affects the electricity consumption
    Originally posted by wannabe sybil
    I think that was what I was clumsily trying to suggest - that if you want to heat something to a certain temperature, then you either use a lot of heat quickly or less heat over a longer period.

    Think about boiling a pint of water. In fact, boil two Put them in saucepans of the same size. Put one on a fast hob/ring and another on a slower hob/ring. Which one boils first? :confused:
    Warning ..... I'm a peri-menopausal axe-wielding maniac
  • basmic
    I think we need some slow cooker recipes.

    I have a slow cooker sitting unused in the cupboard, which was a christmas present to me.
    • wannabe sybil
    • By wannabe sybil 30th Sep 08, 9:44 PM
    • 2,727 Posts
    • 18,881 Thanks
    wannabe sybil
    I think that was what I was clumsily trying to suggest - that if you want to heat something to a certain temperature, then you either use a lot of heat quickly or less heat over a longer period.

    Think about boiling a pint of water. In fact, boil two Put them in saucepans of the same size. Put one on a fast hob/ring and another on a slower hob/ring. Which one boils first? :confused:
    Originally posted by Debt_Free_Chick
    I think I am the wrong person to answer this, but I am at somewhat of a loose and and thinking aloud...

    In my slow cooker I just heat the stew. If I cook a casserole in the oven then I heat the oven and the casserole. The seal is likely to be less efficient for an oven than a slow cooker, in my experience.

    Another point is, if you were cooking a casserole on a really slow heat, like Gas 2 or 3, then you would have to allow a long time, at least three or four hours.

    And something else I have thought of, but those of a more scientific disposition can put me right. In the slow cooker the food is kept, I think, at a temperature of gentle simmer. If I am right (and I am not saying that I am) then that means that the temperature is likely to be around 100 centigrade. So you are using enough energy to keep the temperature at that level, whereas in the oven the heat is likely to be more. But I have never heard a casserole bubble in the oven.

    I think I need a cup of tea. It is a very interesting question.
    Ankh Morpork Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons - don't let my flame go out!
    • wannabe sybil
    • By wannabe sybil 30th Sep 08, 9:47 PM
    • 2,727 Posts
    • 18,881 Thanks
    wannabe sybil
    I think we need some slow cooker recipes.

    I have a slow cooker sitting unused in the cupboard, which was a christmas present to me.
    Originally posted by basmic
    I am extraordinarily bad at giving linkys, but in the headings of the Old Style Board there are the indexed collections which include slow cooking, but any casserole or stew or soup would be suitable, but don't use it for expensive meat. It is wonderful at transforming tough meat, I can't praise it enough.
    Ankh Morpork Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons - don't let my flame go out!
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

610Posts Today

6,649Users online

Martin's Twitter