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What size crock pot?

I am trying to use my crock pot more this year.I have a 6qt crock pot which is great for making stock, but it's a bit big for meals for one or two even when I plan leftovers. Would you recommend having a smaller pot as well or is it ok to use smaller quantities in the larger. For many recipes it barely fills 1/4 of the way.

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  1. I'd get a smaller crockpot. They're not super expensive (I got a 2qt one that I love from Family Dollar for a steal--9.99--and I've had it for years), and as with most cookware, it's all about heat distribution. You could rig something up (a bain marie with a smaller ceramic dish inside) but for the relatively low cost of slow cookers, I'd go for it. We have an 8 qt, a 5 qt and a 2 qt for our tiny family.:-)

    3 Replies
    1. re: pinehurst

      Yea I just looked and the 2qt are like $20 so definitely worth it. There are many things I want to try but just won't work in the big crock.

      Is the 2qt enough for say a lb of chicken and liquid?

      1. re: fldhkybnva

        Absolutely.
        ETA, I've used a modified version (less taters, more veg) of this recipe in it with great success.
        http://www.justapinch.com/recipes/mai...

        1. re: fldhkybnva

          The rule of thumb is 1qt cooker = 1 lb meat, so that should be fine.

      2. I would get a smaller (3-4 qt) slow cooker as well. I started out with the smaller cooker & added a 6 qt later for potlucks, cooking to freeze, etc. But since I am usually cooking for 1 or 2, I find that smaller quantities cook more evenly in the smaller cooker. Also, it's easier for me just to leave the small one on the counter instead of trying to find storage space for it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: lyden

          Perfect. I think I'd use a smaller one more often even for simple things I usually would cook on the stove but can just plop in the crock without making enough for the neighborhood.

        2. The Hamilton Beach 3 in 1 is really nice, if you don't need any programming. It has 2, 4 and 6 qt bowls. But it only has high, low and warm, no timer setting.

          1 Reply
          1. re: rasputina

            I second this. We have one and it's perfect. Nice having all 3 sizes available in one unit.

          2. I have a 6 quart and a 4 quart, use the 4 more. I'm cooking for 2 adults and a toddler.

            I also like having an extra around for parties to keep things warm. I might not make the pulled pork in it, but I can pop it in there for over a grazing event like the Super bowl. You can also use them to sous vide veggies in them. Totally changed how I felt about radishes

            1. Depends on how much food I'm cooking. Size of crockpot has become an issue since I was widowed and now cook only for myself. I still use the 6-quart if I'm cooking something I intend to freeze, like barbecued beef or goulash soup or beef in beer, but my little 1-qt is most useful for just meals. It makes a single portion of meat with vegetables. I also appreciate it for vegetables cooked the southern way (a long time with a piece of ham)---fresh green beans or one bag of frozen collard greens.