Having a small kitchen at home, sometimes we have to search for multipurpose appliances to save space. Some of us happen to choose the most useful and skip those that are less commonly used so that we can manage our everyday cooking without having to use that appliance. A slow cooker, rice cooker or crock pot is a perfect example of that. We need three of them but don’t have the space to keep all three. So we have to choose only one of them to manage our everyday cooking. But which one is should be? Let’s see the ultimate battle of slow cooker vs rice cooker vs crock pot which will help you to choose the best one.
We all know the uses of a rice cooker, a slow cooker, or a crock pot. But we often fail to make the fullest use of it. If we can handle this smartly, we can manage the facilities of all three using only one of them. And their comparison will help you to do that.
So let’s check out the comparison—
Slow Cooker Vs Rice Cooker Vs Crock Pot: The Ultimate Battle
Despite serving different purposes, all three of them actually have kind of a similar mechanism of action and that makes it easier for us to choose the right appliance. Now, you all know Crock Pot is a slow cooker brand, so you may want to skip this out of the battle. But the Crock Pot is so useful and so user friendly that no one wants to skip buying a crock pot at home. That obviously makes the competition quite hard.
Anyways, in this post, we will discuss all three of them separately and include some heavenly recipes that you can make with any of them, no matter which appliance you are using. So let’s cut to the chase and dive right into the battle.
A slow cooker is such an appliance that completes an American household kitchen. We all know this appliance is a lifesaver when it comes to make zero hassle dinners which are super difficult to cook. For example, a smart slow cooker has made it possible to enjoy pulled beef sandwiches at game nights or delicious stews at winter nights. This appliance is indeed a blessing for working people.
Its functionality is not confined to slow cooking food only, it’s far more than that. We can see frequent uses of slow cookers in parties where we use it to keep the food warm. Like stews or mashed potatoes or soups, basically, the foods that need to be warm when served. A slow cooker is such an appliance that comes handy whenever you crave for foods that take a lot of time.
Can I Replace A Slow Cooker?
Now the question is, can I replace a slow cooker with anything else? The answer is, yes you can. A slow cooker is a basic appliance with a simple mechanism. It gets a low heat from its bottom, cooking the food slowly. That means you can easily replace it with something that is meant for slow cooking. Like a Dutch oven, you can easily pull off the slow cooker recipes with a Dutch oven. If you want to know how to do that, check out how to use Dutch oven as a slow cooker with some easy recipes.
Many of you have asked if you can replace a slow cooker with a rice cooker. A rice cooker can manage some slow cooker recipes, but not all of them. You can manage some of the recipes by simply keeping them on the warm option, which is kind of similar to the low option of a slow cooker. You can use the “Cook” setting to replace the “High” option, but rice cooker cannot keep the cook option for that long. So, you can’t actually make all the slow cooker recipes with a rice cooker.
But a rice cooker is amazing to cook other recipes like pulled beef or stews or soups. But if you are too much dependent on a slow cooker, you probably shouldn’t skip it. You can be smart with buying a slow cooker+rice cooker duo or a multi cooker, which can manage both slow cooker and rice cooker recipes. One of our favorite multi cookers is the Instant Pot 7-in-1 Multi Cooker. We are pretty impressed with its amazing and solid performance.
If you’re a rice lover like us, you can also think of buying a rice cooker too.
Let’s check out the ins and outs of buying a rice cooker—
A rice cooker is another sensational appliance that is a must have appliance in every Asian home. You cannot deny the need for a rice cooker if rice is your everyday food, so the battle gets quite tough to choose only one of them.
The functionality of a rice cooker is not confined to only cooking rice, we can see the use of a rice cooker in almost every cuisine. Craving for Indian food? You can easily make biryani in your rice cooker! Want to make some Italian Risotto? A rice cooker will be your friend! You can even cook other grains like couscous of farro in a rice cooker! Want to know how to do that? Check out how to cook Farro in a rice cooker for cooking this grain perfectly.
A rice cooker is an excellent appliance for steaming foods too. Most of the rice cookers come with a steam basket, in which you can easily cook some dumplings and dim sums. Or you can use the steam basket to enjoy some steamed vegetables to go with your diet meal. Besides, you can make some classic delicacies like Cotton Cheesecakes or Crème Caramels to calm your sweet tooth.
Can I Replace A Rice Cooker With A Slow Cooker
In spite of both working in a similar mechanism, a rice cooker has some major differences than a slow cooker. An automatic mechanism of switching the option from “Cook” to “Warm” (when the rice is cooked) indicates the core difference from a slow cooker, although some slow cookers have time options. If you want to cook rice in a cooker, a rice cooker is indeed matchless to provide perfectly cooked rice every single time.
On another note, you can say a rice cooker is irreplaceable by a slow cooker in terms of quicker cooking time. Since a slow cooker works on very low heat, it takes many hours to finish the cooking process. Waiting 4 hours for a bowl of rice doesn’t seem worth it.
Another way a slow cooker cannot replace a rice cooker is by not having built-in pressure cooked with it. Most of the rice cookers now have pressure cookers with it to cook the food super quickly, which is impossible with a slow cooker. So you cannot actually replace the whole unit with a slow cooker.
How To Cook Rice Without A Rice Cooker
On the brighter side, it’s actually possible to cook rice in a slow cooker. Some slow cooker has a multi cooking option which also includes a rice cooking function. If you have a Crock Pot at home, throw in your rice and take a double amount of water and leave it for 2 hours. That will only work if you have a lot of time, so we suggest to skip it if you’re in a hurry.
Instead, you can cook rice on a stovetop. Take rice and submerge it in a double volume of water. Boil it until your preference and strain it with a strainer to get perfectly cooked and fluffy rice.
Another great way to cook rice without a rice cooker is by using a microwave oven. Take 1 cup of rice with 2 cups of water in a microwave safe bowl. The bowl must have a lid, cover the bowl and put it in the microwave and cook it on high for 12-15 minutes. Now the timing may depend on the quality of your rice, Parboiled rice usually take more time than Non Parboiled rice. After 12 minutes, take it out of the microwave and rest it for 10 minutes. Then fluff it up with a fork and that’s pretty much everything!
To wrap it up, you can get away without a rice cooker if you are smart. But still, you should think of buying a rice cooker if you want to have the perfect rice every single time. If you want to get the best deals on rice cookers, check out the best deals online at our smart rice cooker reviews.
Electric Cooker Recipes
If you happen to choose only one of them, do not think you cannot make delicious recipes without the other one. We have made some incredibly delicious and easy recipes that you can make with both of them. So without further ado, let’s dig into the recipes—
Multi Cooker Spaghetti Bolognese
Spaghetti Bolognese is such a quintessential Italian food that people drools over no matter which country they are from. The most crucial part of making Spaghetti Bolognese is making the Bolognese sauce, which requires a lot of time and patience to infuse the perfect flavor. But worry not, let’s learn how to make Spaghetti Bolognese in both slow cooker and rice cooker.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 4 hours
- Minced beef, you can also do it with minced lamb or pork. The mince should have 90-100% lean meat, 1 lb
- Olive oil, 2 tbsp
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 2 large carrots, finely diced
- 1 small celery, finely diced
- Tomato paste, 1 tbsp
- 5 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- Tomato sauce, 2 large Can. You can also use pizza sauce. But don’t use tomato ketchup.
- Salt and pepper, as per your taste
- Dried Unsalted Italian seasonings or Dried Oregano, Thyme, and Rosemary, as per your taste.
- Red wine, 1 cup. You can also use white wine.
- Beef stock, 4 cups. You can also use chicken stock or vegetable stock.
- Fresh basil, chopped, as per your preference.
- Spaghetti, 2 handfuls (for two persons)
- Parmesan cheese, to serve.
- Take a Dutch oven or pan and add 2 tbsp olive oil to it. Heat it up and add the garlic. Sauté it for 30 seconds and then add the onion, carrot and celery. Again, sauté it for 3-4 minutes until the onions turn translucent.
- Now crank up the heat and add the minced meat. Do not stir it right away, let it brown a bit and then break the lumps and stir fry it for a few minutes.
- Then add salt and pepper and red wine. Let it bubble up and reduce the wine. After the wine has reduced, add tomato paste and again, stir fry it.
- Now that everything has been sautéed pretty nicely, it’s time to add the tomato sauce. Add the whole tomato sauce with it and also add the beef stock. Now at this point transfer it to your slow cooker and rice cooker and leave it for 4 hours on “Low” or “Warm” mode. You can also continue this process in a Dutch oven.
- Meanwhile, prepare the pasta. Boil water and add lots of salt, so that the water tastes like sea water. Add the spaghetti and cook it according to the package direction. It may take 7-8 minutes, or it can take 10 minutes too. Be careful not to overcook the pasta, the spaghetti should be Al-Dante. Strain the pasta and pour some olive oil over it to prevent sticking.
- After 4 hours, your Bolognese sauce is nearly done. Crush some dry Italian seasoning, add it and simmer for a few minutes. Then finish off the sauce with a handful of chopped fresh basil and prepare to serve the spaghetti.
- To serve it, mix the sauce with the pasta and again cook it for 30 seconds to 1 minutes. Add some pasta water if it feels too dry. Do not take too much sauce in the pasta. Otherwise, your spaghetti will lose its taste. Now serve it on a plate and add grated parmesan cheese on top of it. You can also add some chopped fresh basil on the pasta. So you are done!
So that’s how you can make a delicious spaghetti bolognese in a slow cooker or rice cooker. You can try out other recipes by making an electric cooker version of it. So, even though you’re confused to choose between slow cooker vs rice cooker, there is no barrier to try out this recipe.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can easily clean a slow cooker by pouring soap water in it and rinse the cooker avoiding the electric parts. If your slow cooker has a removable pot, remove it and then put it in your dishwasher. Or you can use a slow cooker liner to avoid the hassle of cleaning the slow cooker.
A Dutch oven can be an excellent replacement for a slow cooker if you can use it properly. Use an ample amount of water and cook it on a very low flame for a long time. You can also use the warm option of your rice cooker to do so.
To cook rice in a pressure cooker, first take uncooked rice and add a double volume of water to it. Let it cook on high pressure until it whistles for one time. Take the cooked rice out, strain it and fluff it with a fork.
You can pull off a slow cooker recipe in an oven, but you have to use a lot of liquid in it and low temperature. We would prefer to use a stovetop with a Dutch oven instead.
If you’re putting your oven on a very low temperature and maintain a sufficient amount of liquid in the pot, you can use your oven as a slow cooker. But using an oven isn’t as tension free and as effortless as using a slow cooker.
So there you go, the ultimate difference between slow cooker vs rice cooker vs crock pot. I hope you have got an idea which one to get for you. So do not wait for anything else and buy any one of them! If you have any questions regarding this topic, do leave them in the comment section. We will get back to you as soon as possible. Until then, happy cooking!