If you're as obsessed with fall as I am, you have probably been looking forward to the leaves changing and the temperatures dropping since mid-August. Well, the season is finally upon us, and despite a few too-warm days here and there, it's time for cozy sweaters, hot coffee, and most importantly—comfort foods.
The best way to cook fall favorites
Soups, stews, chilis... all those hearty, warm meals pair so perfectly with a brisk autumn day. And when you prepare them in a slow cooker, you can make the whole house smell as delicious as the food you're about to eat. Plus, most slow cooker recipes require little if any attention once you throw everything together, leaving more time to jump in leaf piles and carve pumpkins.
There are a lot of slow cookers on the market, and we've tested the top models to find the best. While the higher end models performed well, we found one that's much more affordable. The Hamilton Beach Set n' Forget Programmable Slow Cooker only costs $49 on Amazon. To put that into perspective, the best overall model, the Cuisinart 3-in-1 Cook Central, costs over $100 more.
Regardless of which model you choose, the possibilities are endless for preparing hot, home cooked meals. Just take a look through some of the most popular slow cooker recipes on Pinterest to see for yourself.
What we love about the Hamilton Beach Slow Cooker
The low price point is a definitely plus in our book, but that's not all the Hamilton Beach Set n' Forget has to offer. This 6-quart appliance features a built-in probe that allows you to monitor meat as it cooks without having to remove the lid.
You can also choose program mode to set a timer for your meal. Once time is up or the ideal temperature is reached, the slow cooker will automatically switch over to Keep Warm mode. This is especially ideal if you're running late from work—no burnt, overcooked food. Just a tasty, ready-to-eat meal.
If you're preparing a slow-cook meal for a pot luck or a football viewing party, the Hamilton Beach has a gasket-sealed lid with clips that secure it in place for spill-free transportation.
Helpful accessories for slow cooking
• Slow cooker liners for easier cleanup—$23.65 for a box of 50
• An insulated travel bag to keep things warm while you're on the road—$14.39
• A set of heat-resistant gloves, meat shredders, and a silicone basting brush—$14.99
• Bag holders for leftovers and preparing frozen slow cooker meals—$9.55 for a set of 2
• A silicone roasting rack for faster, healthier cooking of meats—$9.15
Prices are accurate at the time of publication, but may change over time.