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132 Reviews
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65 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Slow Cooker I've Ever Had
I don't know why the other reviewer rated this versatile slow cooker so badly? I have used mine for over a year for roasts, whole chickens, chili, soups, etc. and all are done to perfection on "low". Sounds to me like the other reviewer had a defective one. This slow cooker really IS versatile! I have the stainless steel model, not the black aluminum one. You can...
Published on May 23, 2006 by E. Hollender

versus
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars DO NOT BUY
Do not buy this slow cooker! I have had one for a couple of years now ... the teflon started coming off my first pot and West Bend replaced it and advised me not to wash it in the dishwasher. Now less than one year later, the teflon is coming off the second one too! It has never been in the dishwasher and has never been used on its highest setting! I have used it on...
Published on April 21, 2010 by Susan Radel


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65 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Slow Cooker I've Ever Had, May 23, 2006
By 
E. Hollender "edroseh" (Atlantic Beach, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
I don't know why the other reviewer rated this versatile slow cooker so badly? I have used mine for over a year for roasts, whole chickens, chili, soups, etc. and all are done to perfection on "low". Sounds to me like the other reviewer had a defective one. This slow cooker really IS versatile! I have the stainless steel model, not the black aluminum one. You can slow cook all day or speed things up by using medium or high temperature settings. I will replace mine immediately if it wears out...don't know what I would do without it! I use it almost every day.

R in Florida
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not bad but I preferred the black version, May 12, 2007
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This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
This is my second Versatility, the first one being the basic black version. I ordered the second one because the nonstick coating on mine was coming off after quite a lot of use. The only problem with this one is that the bottom of the pan tends to warp when used on the stovetop. Also, I don't need the grill feature. Otherwise I'd recommend this line of slow cookers if you want to brown meat straight in the pan, something I prefer. There is another make of versatile cooker out there, but it costs in the order of $250 so this is a good low cost alternative.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beats the $300 versions hands down, but not a "real" crock pot, March 4, 2009
By 
G. Mesick (Federal Way, WA United States) - See all my reviews
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I've wandered into those kitchen shops where you drool over everything and can't afford anything. And I lusted after one of their upscale brand slow cookers that move from stovetop burner to oven to fridge with ease (for a few hundred dollars). And it made me wonder whether there wasn't a cheaper way to have the utility (if not the cachet) of those things.

Enter the West Bend Versatility Slow Cooker.

Because the pot is really just a stainless steel dutch oven (with a teflon base to prevent sticking), you can do whatever you want with it--including putting it on the burner unit that comes with it. But you can also use it to brown your meat on the stove in the same pot you use for slow cooking (saving you the trouble of putting a second pot in the dishwasher). You can also dispense with the base and put the thing right in your oven, if you choose. And it's light enough that you won't dislocate a shoulder doing so.

But the mystique of the crock pot, with the stoneware container emitting radiant heat all around your roast or stew--is gone. What you get here is--just a pot and a spare burner. But really, for most things, that's what you need. You don't really need the radiant heat; you need a burner that you can leave on during the day without worrying about burning your house down. And that's what you get here.

You can even use the base as a small griddle (though we don't). But that extra versatility raises some problems for people who aren't paying attention. The dial on the base goes from "keep warm" to "high" -- and then it keeps on going (kind of like the amplifier on "Spinal Tap" that goes to 11, instead of 10). The upper heat levels are for griddle use (I guess), not slow cooking. So you can burn things up if you don't watch what you are doing.

If the All-Clad crowd is too rich for your blood (or you want to see whether the concept will work for you at a tenth the price), you might want to give this one a try. Even if you don't often use the base as a burner, you will gain another pot to cook in. But if for you a crock pot is all about the mysteries of radiant heat, you will want to stick with the tried and true (and heavy) crocks of yore.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars West Bend 6-Quart Slow Cooker, July 18, 2006
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This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
We like our cooker because it is larger than our older alumimum one and we can put the pan with cover in the oven as well as browning the food in the pan on the stovetop.

Though we are careful and only use nylon and silicone stirring utinsels, we have a couple of scratches already in the teflon coating. Even so, we would recommend this cooker.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Slow Cooker, December 5, 2009
By 
David Hartke (Prescott, AZ USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
I've owned the old model 84095 West Bend Cooker for a number of years and was intrigued by the new Versatility 84866 Stainless Steel Cooker. However, knowing how West Bend can put out some pretty cheap stuff I did not want to buy this sight unseen. Surprisingly, the new 84866 has a very solid cast metal pot which can be put in the oven and on a stovetop. However, do not put the cover in the oven. The cover is plastic in spite of what Amazon says about it being glass and can NOT be put in the oven. Also, remember that there are two Verstality models. The non-stainless steel model is black and has only three cooking temperatures (the 84866 has a continuous temperature range). The only other slow cooker that can replicate the funtionality of this cooker is the All-Clad cooker with a stainless steel insert (there is another model with a ceramic insert but you cannot put it on a stove top). I have not tried or even seen the All-Clad model with the stainless steel insert (a cheaper version is available with a ceramic insert but you can not use it on a cooktop) but I suspect it is very good AND very expensive ($300 at Williams-Sonoma). One can usually find the 84866 by West Bend for about $80. I have given this cooker a 5 star rating because it can be used as a cooker, to sear on a cooktop and an oven roaster all within a reasonable price range.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Slow Cooker, December 28, 2007
This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
I ordered this slow cooker to replace an oblong 5 qt westbend cooker that I have had for years. Initially, I bought a different brand with a ceramic pot that advertised that it could be used in the oven, microwave or on the stovetop. This pot was awkward, heavy and breakable. It was not adequate for use on the stovetop. The price was at least double the price of the Westbend Versatility.
I love the Westbend Versatility! It is lightweight and easy to handle and clean. I can start my food in this pot on the stovetop so I don't have extra cooking dishes. The size is perfect for small portions or large - and it looks nice. At $50.00 is was a real bargain and I plan to buy another one as a gift.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Nice, July 23, 2007
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This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
When you first put it on the stovetop (I have gas), the stainless steel bottom will bow up, afterwards, when all the contents are the same temperatue it levels out. Cooks great, very attractive.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars DO NOT BUY, April 21, 2010
This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
Do not buy this slow cooker! I have had one for a couple of years now ... the teflon started coming off my first pot and West Bend replaced it and advised me not to wash it in the dishwasher. Now less than one year later, the teflon is coming off the second one too! It has never been in the dishwasher and has never been used on its highest setting! I have used it on the slow cooking high setting which is about midrange for the knob. I am very disappointed in this crock pot and have purchased another brand!
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't cook the food !, January 2, 2009
This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
I also was disappointed with this crock pot. I have always loved the West Bend heated base with separate pan that I would brown the meat in first. I have a cheaper W/B one that cooks rings around this one, even on medium. I wanted a better pot and spent more than I wanted to, but thought it would be worth it, but it was not. I gave it more than one chance, on different temps but got the same results. By this time, I lost my receipt and had to keep it. West Bend gave me no answer with an email. :(
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for me !, April 5, 2011
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This review is from: West Bend 84866 6-Quart Versatility Slow Cooker with Glass Cover, Stainless (Kitchen)
It was time to retire my 26-year-old West Bend slow cooker.
Not because it quit working, but because the non-stick surface was beginning to fade a little.
As I shopped at a lot of local stores, the only slow cookers I could find were the ones that had temperature settings of just low and high. Not good enough for me, as my West Bend had a sweep-able thermostat that went from low, to medium, to high. Sorry it spoiled me. What really surprised me was fact that I could not find the West Bend brand anywhere. I figured they must have gone out of business. So maybe retirement wasn't going to happen after all. And I was not going to compromise.
Not being able to find anything locally, I turned to Amazon. And as you have found out as well, West Bend is alive and well here. After reading some of the reviews, I settled for this model.
Now first off, I'm not a slow cooker fanatic. I use it for spaghetti sauce, beef stew, chili, roasts, and soups. You get the idea. Nothing fancy.

YES Its got a sweep-able thermostat!!! That in itself was enough for me.

Some folks dislike the fact that this cooker is probably not one to leave unattended all day. Which is true, to some degree. You have to spend some time with this, to get to know its nuances. I would rather not leave any appliance like that unattended. I don't with my washer either.
Some folks dislike the fact that the sides get hot while cooking. My lawnmower gets hot too, but I don't go touching the muffler. And I try not to touch the burners on the stove while I'm cooking either. Guess I'm just funny that way.
Cord too short? Not for me. I have an outlet where it sits.
The griddle was invented for just that reason. Why would you use the base of this for that purpose? West Bend says you can, but I don't.
They also say you can brown meat in the pot on your stovetop. No thanks. I'm happy doing it the old fashion way. A little ol pan is not that hard to clean.

Oh, and did I mention it has a sweep-able thermostat?

Again, I'm not a slow cooker guru. This is just perfect for my needs.
Would I recommend this? You betcha. But if you are really serious about slow cooking, this might not be your cup o tea.
The reason I gave this four stars, was the fact that I would have liked the lid to be just a bit beefier. Bona-petit!
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