This story is part of 12 Days of Tips, helping you make the most of your tech, home and health during the holiday season.

There’s nothing higher on a chilly winter night than a pleasant heat crockpot meal — particularly one which’s straightforward to throw collectively throughout the day and offers you a scrumptious home made meal by night time. Your sluggish cooker can be nice throughout the holidays for straightforward appetizers or meals for a gaggle, like a dip or a chili.

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Whereas utilizing a sluggish cooker is an virtually foolproof strategy to cook dinner, there are a couple of widespread errors you may make which may mess up your meal. Fortunately, they’re straightforward to keep away from, so the one factor it’s worthwhile to fear about is that if there are sufficient for second helpings.

Listed below are 5 sluggish cooker errors you could be making, and find out how to repair them. You may also discover out why using a slow cooker could save you money in comparison with utilizing the oven, and our picks for the best air fryers of 2022

1. Utilizing an excessive amount of liquid

Whenever you’re cooking meat or poultry in your sluggish cooker, you need there to be some liquid to cowl the substances. However you do not wish to fill all of it the best way up with broth, inventory or water. There is not any purpose so as to add extra liquid than the recipe requires (or greater than sufficient to cowl the substances in the event you’re somebody who does these items by really feel), until your sluggish cooker proprietor’s guide says in any other case. 

If you happen to add an excessive amount of liquid to your sluggish cooker, it’s going to warmth up and evaporate as steam — however then will get trapped by the lid and drip again down into your meals, making it too watery. Yuck. 

Keep away from the messy crockpot cleanup by grabbing these sluggish cooker liners. Throw one in your cooker earlier than you place meals in it, after which merely take away it after you are executed with the meal — no scrubbing vital. These are heat-resistant and BPA free, and are available in numerous measurement choices relying in your crockpot.

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2. Including dairy merchandise too early

Many sluggish cooker recipes name for cheese, milk, bitter cream or different dairy merchandise. However you do not wish to add them till the previous few minutes of cooking — in any other case, they could curdle and break your dish. 

3. Opening the lid for a peek

The identical approach you do not wish to open the oven door too usually if you’re baking, you do not wish to elevate the lid in your sluggish cooker because it’s cooking. Doing so lets warmth escape and may dramatically decrease the temperature contained in the pot, which implies it will take longer to cook dinner your meals correctly. 

Learn extra: Best Instant Pot Accessories for 2022

4. Filling the sluggish cooker all the best way as much as the highest

You should not be filling your sluggish cooker to the brim with substances. It wants area between the meals and the lid to stop it from boiling over. The warmth inside additionally wants room to flow into and cook dinner the meals the precise approach. Typically, you should not fill your sluggish cooker greater than three-quarters full. 

5. Including herbs at first

Any dried or recent herbs you are utilizing ought to be added towards the tip of your cooking time. If you happen to add them at first, they’re going to lose their efficiency by the point all the pieces else cooks, and you will be left with much less flavorful meals. 

For extra suggestions, try whether it’s cheaper to buy groceries online versus in the store, and the trick to reheating your leftovers so they taste great

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