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Old 09-05-2006, 03:58 PM   #1
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Is crockpot cooking safe?

i have a crockpot, and have used it some in the past until one day i put 2 and 2 together and wondered...
food is supposed to be quickly heated and quickly cooled.
this is the opposite of what the crockpot does!
i never got sick off of what i cooked in it, but i still wonder about it.
i figured this is the perfect place to pose the question...
is crockpot cooking safe?

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Old 09-05-2006, 04:02 PM   #2
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I'm pretty sure there has been a discussion on this one before, but I believe the answer in a nutshell is that the minimum heat setting on modern crockpots is in the safe heat range. I'll go see if I can find some of those discussions and post some links for you.

Here is an excellent thread to read thru.
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Old 09-05-2006, 04:07 PM   #3
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This is a quote from AllenMI:

The increased temperatures may be because a temp of 120°F is just right for extremely rapid bacterial growth. 150°F is a perfect holding temperature, although it will cook. The newer models with higher temps are not as likely to develop bacterial growth in the food as it cooks.

Some models of crockpots, according to my old "Crockery Cookery" cookbook, will actually exceed the boiling point. To measure how hot a crockpot gets, you might want to use some oil instead of water.
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Old 09-05-2006, 04:20 PM   #4
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I can not speak to the older Crock Pots, but the Crock Pots of today are completely safe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jessicacarr
food is supposed to be quickly heated
Nope this is not true. There are many things that benefit from long cooking times. Somethings should be cooked quickly, but other things should be cooked slowly. BBQ is a perfect example of something that needs to be cooked slowly over low heat. Try it any other way and you will not be happy.
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Old 09-05-2006, 04:31 PM   #5
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The foods cook at a temp comparable to braising temperatures in an oven. The crockpot makes it convenient in that you can set it and not have to tend it. Following the rules for cooking in crockpots makes them safe. Starting with frozen meats may make them unsafe, but in most manuals I am familiar with, this is not recommended.
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Old 09-05-2006, 04:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
I can not speak to the older Crock Pots, but the Crock Pots of today are completely safe.

Nope this is not true. There are many things that benefit from long cooking times. Somethings should be cooked quickly, but other things should be cooked slowly. BBQ is a perfect example of something that needs to be cooked slowly over low heat. Try it any other way and you will not be happy.
a valid point
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Old 09-05-2006, 05:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
I can not speak to the older Crock Pots, but the Crock Pots of today are completely safe.

Originally Posted by jessicacarr
food is supposed to be quickly heated

Nope this is not true. There are many things that benefit from long cooking times. Somethings should be cooked quickly, but other things should be cooked slowly. BBQ is a perfect example of something that needs to be cooked slowly over low heat. Try it any other way and you will not be happy.

Yes, but a crockpot should come to safe temperature relatively quickly and then cook slowly. It would, in fact, be unsafe if you set the crockpot to "low" and it took several hours to get the food above 140.
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Old 09-05-2006, 05:07 PM   #8
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OK my bad. I should have read this more carefully. Jenny is absolutley right of course. Food can cook for a long time, but needs to be brought up to safe temps quickly.
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Old 09-05-2006, 05:18 PM   #9
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You need to carefully follow the directions or recipe when cooking in a crock pot.

Recently I cooked 5 pounds of beef chuck roasts in a 6 quart crock pot, and the recipe was for a 3 pound roast. I was concerned at my excess meat, so I carefully watched what was happening in the pot the first hour. I ended up quickly switching the pot on high, from low, for almost one hour. I then turned it back to low as indicated in the recipe for the remaining 8 hours. I believe I simply had too much meat to safely leave the pot on low the whole cooking time. The roasts turned out splendidly.
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Old 09-05-2006, 05:22 PM   #10
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ok, so then my question is...do crockpots bring them up to that temp quickly enough for food safety?
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