Crockpot Question
October 28, 2015 8:29 AM   Subscribe

Some time ago, while cooking a boston butt, I noticed that my crock pot was not getting as hot as it should.

I have had suspicions about the outlet it was plugged into, so I didn't automatically throw it out. I would like it use it again soon, as we are now firmly back into hot-food season, so yesterday I tried an experiment. I filled it half full with water, plugged it into a working outlet, and turned it on high. After three hours, the temperature was near 200 degrees F.

Does my experiment indicate that the appliance is definitely functioning correctly or definitely NOT functioning correctly. Or is it the information inconclusive? Is there a better way to tell if a crock pot is getting hot like it should without wasting food? Thanks!
posted by chaoticgood to Food & Drink (7 answers total)
I guess you could cook some beans or chickpeas, which won't spoil directly even if the temp is too low.

I would absolutely begin at the other end, though and have that outlet checked.
posted by Namlit at 8:37 AM on October 28, 2015

A Crock Pot brand slow cooker stabilizes, high or low, at 209 degrees. Other brands run right around that, maybe closer to 200.

That's normal operation for a slow cooker.
posted by Lyn Never at 8:52 AM on October 28, 2015 [5 favorites]

What vintage is the crockpot?
posted by bq at 8:53 AM on October 28, 2015

All the information I can glean about testing a crock pot states to put some water in and turn it to low rather than high. However, the official Crock-Pot website states:
"Using an instant read thermometer will ensure that your unit is up to temperature. Crock-Pot® Slow Cookers reach the simmer point and stabilize on both 'High' and 'Low' at about 209°F."
So if you're reaching 200°F after two hours on high I'd say your pot is good to go.
posted by lock sock and barrel at 8:53 AM on October 28, 2015 [2 favorites]

I'd start with a voltmeter, if I were you, but dealing with what you find might be exciting.
posted by mhoye at 9:49 AM on October 28, 2015

200°F sounds about right for a slow cooker, which tend to run in the 195-210 range. Most sources cite 200°F/94°C as the correct temp for a simmer.

If you want too be thorough, I'd do that test again, but test the temp about every hour for 10 hours. I'd also *not* leave it on overnight or leave the house until you've done your first long cooking run, if you're worried that the bad outlet might have damaged it.
posted by eriko at 10:05 AM on October 28, 2015 [2 favorites]

If you were in Denver, say (I gather you're not), your crock pot would only be able to reach 203F, anyway.
posted by jamjam at 10:36 AM on October 28, 2015

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