Cuisinart PSC-400 Stainless Steel 4-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker
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- Programmable slow cooker with removable round-shaped ceramic cooking pot
- Simmer, low, and high modes; 24-hour programmable cook time; auto keep-warm; cord storage
- Brushed stainless-steel housing; glass lid with stainless-steel rim; cool-touch chrome-plated handles
- Includes cooking rack, recipe book, and instruction book; dishwasher-safe lid and ceramic pot
- 3-Year limited warranty
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|Item Dimensions||—||16.5 x 14.2 x 11.8 in||16.5 x 10.5 x 8.7 in||10 x 15 x 15.2 in|
|Material Type||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel|
Programmable technology makes homemade meals easier than ever! This Cuisinart Slow Cooker features a 24-hour programmable countdown timer, three cooking modes- and it automatically shifts to warm when it's done cooking! Whether preparing one-pot entrees, sides, or desserts, operation is easy. Meals can be served in the ceramic pot they're cooked in, and cleanup is easy with the dishwasher-safe lid and ceramic pot. Designed for today's busy lifestyles, all the work is done ahead of time. Dinnertime is as relaxing for the cook as it is for the diners. Enjoy!
Top Customer Reviews
In researching our purchase and reading numerous reviews, we found that the Cuisinart generally received positive evaluations. There were a few negative ones, but obviously we discounted them and went ahead with the Cuisinart anyway. Some reviewers criticized it for overheating food, but overheating in a slow cooker is usually a sign that the pot was underfilled. A good slow cooker should have the power to heat a full pot to over 200 F, so it should come as no surprise that the heater can boil a low pot. The Cuisinart instructions specifically warn against underfilled pots, and we have had no overheating problems with even half-full pots.
We have not had this cooker long enough to comment on durability. Contrary to some opinions, our impression is that the Cuisinart is a solidly constructed, well-designed appliance, made with high quality materials. No sign of a lemon here.
We use our 4 qt cooker to make meals for a family of four. We debated whether to get a larger size, but in retrospect we realize that a one gallon pot holds more than enough for our family.
Programmability was important to us, and we like the userfriendliness of this unit. A few reviewers have lamented the lack of a delayed start program, but a feature that encourages you to leave raw food at room temperature for a prolonged period did not sound that desirable to me. The cooker will automatically switch to a safe warming mode in case you are not around at the end of the cooking cycle.
A cookbook is included, but most of the recipes are one or two steps beyond the convenience of a mix-and-go meal. We have bought cookbooks with simpler recipes, and have been happy with the results.
There are other slow cookers that will perform the basic tasks competently for less money than the Cuisinart. For the extra cost you get programmability, a nice appearance, superior quality, and a few unexpected extras.
After agonizing about multiple choices, I chose to go with truly modern features. What I have come to like the best is being able to set a specific time and having it automatically move to warm until I am ready to serve. This really came in handy a few days ago when my husband and I were delayed 2 hours getting home.
I have read criticisms about the temperatures being too high. If you read the intros of modern slow cooker cookbooks, they emphasize that newer cookers try to run at temperatures that ensure food safety. This one has an automatic aspect in the first 30 minutes that brings food rapidly up through temperatures into the safe zone before settling down on either the high, low or simmer cooking setting. This stage could be misunderstood as being too high if you have not read the manual. Advice: Use simmer for making soups.
This does mean that some older recipes may need adjusting. But of the recipes we've tried from the enclosed recipe book, as well as from two excellent cook books (Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Recipes for Two: For the Small Slow Cooker OR Art of the Slow Cooker: 80 Exciting New Recipes everything has come out beautifully. Some have been done on low and a couple have been done on high, whichever was called for. Both settings worked well.
This 4 qt size has turned out to be the most versatile for us. The crock cleans up very well. Be sure to read the instructions about not rapidly changing the temperature of the crock with either cold ingredients or when washing it.
The unit cooks well and evenly.
The sleek design is suitable for a permanent home on the counter (unlike my older crockpot with it's 1970's floral print, which is best hidden in the cupboard). The retractable cord is an added bonus that makes it easy to keep on the counter or store neatly on a shelf.
The digital display is great - I love being able to set the time and walk away. But, calling this a programmable unit is a bit misleading - it's equipped with a digital timer, that's where the programming ends. The only thing that kept this review from being 5 stars is the lack of a "delayed start" option, which I thought would be included on a "programmable unit". However, to be fair, that short-coming, if you can call it that, is compensated for by the "warming feature" that keeps food warm after the cooking cycle.
The 4 quart is great for a small household. However, since you technically should only cook about 3 quarts in a 4 quart unit, if you have a household of 4 or more or love to eat "left overs", I suggest you consider bumping up to the 6 quart unit. Otherwise, you may find that your regular recipes don't quite fit into the pot.
All in all, well worth the investment.
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