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Showing 1-10 of 417 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 460 reviews
on December 16, 2013
My very old crock pot did a great job and I loved it. Sadly, the crock broke and I couldn't find a replacement. I bought another "slow" cooker but it cooked WAY too fast. I could set it to cook for 10 hours and the food was done (and starting to burn) after just 4 hours. It wasn't practical to leave it and go to work for the day. I kept it for a few years but it was relegated to the basement because I couldn't trust or use it. I had to get a new slow cooker.

After searching several sites, and reading a lot of reviews, I found this Hamilton Beach 33969 6-Qt cooker. I was drawn to it when I saw some reviews which stated it didn't cook too fast. The meat probe, different program modes, and lock/carry option were all nice bonuses.

I've now had this cooker for a few months and I'm working on my second round of filling up the freezer with foods prepared in it. I live alone so the 6-Qt is great for making a lot of food and freezing it for later use. Of course, the food is excellent the day that I cook it as well. I've had things cooking as long as 10 hours on low and nothing has ever burned or overcooked. The cooker drops down to warm after the cooking time has elapsed.

I've read some negative reviews (every product in the world has some of those), but I've seen nothing bad about this cooker. It cooks slow (as one would expect), it cooks thoroughly, and everything tastes great. Clean-up is very simple - nothing sticks since it's not overcooked. The hole in the cover for the probe also allows some steam to escape (it doesn't affect the cooking) so that I can still look in and see the cooking progress without having to remove the lid and release all of the heat. Programming is very easy with this cooker as well. London broil came out very tender, roasts, ribs, and chicken were cooked perfectly, sides (potatoes, mac and cheese, etc) came out great, and even pasta dishes have been made successfully.

After my last experience with the cooker which burned everything, I was gun-shy with a new cooker. I'm just so happy that I jumped back in and bought this one. Hamilton Beach did a great job with this cooker!
33 comments| 486 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 12, 2013
So, how does this compare with an old-fashioned crock pot? I've measured a bunch of things.

The heating ranges: The pot can be set for Warm, Low, or High. I heated water and measured both the temperature of the water and the temperature of the porcelain liner (using an infrared thermometer)

Old-fashioned crock pot: Warm: n/a. Low: Pot=180, Contents=150; High: Pot=260, Contents=205 (simmer)
This pot: Warm: Pot=165, Contents=145; Low: Pot=215, Contents=170; High: Pot=245, Contents=205 (simmer)

The Probe: A great feature. You can tell the pot to turn itself down to Warm once the probe reaches a set temperature. You can set the desired temperature between 140 and 180 in 5 degree increments. But you cannot use this for sous vide cooking: once the probe reaches the desired temp, the pot resets itself to Warm: It does NOT try to maintain the temp.

The Timer: You can set cooking time for Low or High of from 30 minutes to 12 hours in half-hour increments.

The Lid: The lock-down lid is a great feature and it works well. Some folks have commented that the gasket gives off an odor, and we found that to be true for the first couple of hours.
1010 comments| 514 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 11, 2012
After much research and reading of reviews on Amazon, I decided to buy this slow cooker as my first. So far we have used it a handful of times , each time netting us GREAT results. We have cooked using all the settings, including the probe setting. That in particular was eye opening, for we learned that a Boston Butt cooked on HIGH will be cooked to temperature in less than 2 hours. So this slow cooker gets hot! Calibrate your recipes when you first get your slow cooker so as to determine how long each will take. This goes for any slow cooker you end up with, not just this one.

I was worried that the slow cooker would be too big for our family (2 adults, 2 small children). I needn't have worried. It's the perfect capacity for a dinner plus one night's leftovers.

Why did I pick this model instead of the other Hamilton-Beach with a lot more reviews? Because I saw the higher model number on this one and hoped that it meant that this model is the newest one. So far I've had none of the problems people have described in the reviews for the other product, so I'd say it was a good gamble. I will update this review if the situation changes.
1111 comments| 450 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 17, 2016

Previously, I'd given this crock pot negative reviews because I thought it stopped working. Eventually, I figured out it was NOT the crock pot but the wiring in my old house. One particular kitchen outlet doesn't have enough voltage or power to get my Hamilton going.

I plugged my Hamilton into a different socket and it worked BEAUTIFULLY. Sorry, Hamilton, for my negative review before. That was complete and utter customer idiocy. :(

I've had this crock pot for a while now and it still works like new. After fixing the problem, I've used it a dozen times...and every single time, my dishes have come out beautifully. Thank you for making such a wonderful product!
33 comments| 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 2, 2015
Purchased slow cooker December 2013 and loved unit. The probe function worked great. The manual timer worked as expected. After cooking, unit places itself into a warm and hold mode. Simple loved the unit. Purchased separate carry case to accommodate the unit. Expected to have and use the unit for a very long time. Mind you I use the unit about once every 6 - 8 weeks. So not extremely often. I go to use item this past weekend and unit turns on, I program it. Go to check on my dinner several hours later and realize something is terribly wrong. Glass lid is not full of condensation.

Touch unit and it is cold. Figure I must have done something wrong in programming unit. I mean it is supper simple, but it had to be me. Unit is only a year old and has been used a half a dozen times. So I program unit and come back in one hour. Same issue, unit not heating up. Transfer my stew and am forced to cook it over the range.

Next day I place water into the crock pot, pull out the instruction manual in case I am doing something wrong. I still cannot believe it can be the unit. Following instructions, I set the unit. Hour later, no heat. Call Hamilton Beach technical support. They understand the issue immediately. State it cannot be fixed. Unit needs to be replaced. Unit is beyond their 1 year warranty. And it is.

Under the circumstance they are will to help me out and sell me a unit for 50% off MSRP or ($59.99 * 50% = $29.99, plus $10 for shipping. I paid $39.99. So no real savings realized

I ask, concerning this may happen again with a new unit, have they corrected this problem. No, the units have not changed. This is not considered a problem needing fixing. Have not decided what I'm going to do.

Be aware this unit does have a certain percentage of product failure the manufacture has decided to accept as acceptable.
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on March 26, 2016
Thisbis an amzing slow cooker. The meat probe works. If you make drumsticks in this the meat will fall off the bone.
I am so glad i traded in my old working slow cooker for this one. I now realize my old ones thermostat must have been off. This one works amazing
This has helped my wife and I. With me working fulltime and her taking care orlf 3 kids in sports and different school dropoffs. We just prep food in morning and come home to a full great meal at night twice a week. We hate eating out so this really helps.
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on December 1, 2013
This crockpot functions as advertised, but I'm not at all happy with Hamilton Beach's customer service. The crockpot went out on me about seven months into the warranty period. I contacted customer service. After sending them proof that it wasn't working properly, they offered to ship a replacement, but required that I pay 17 dollars in shipping fees. I argued down to 12, but I thought it was ridiculous to have to pay anything to replace an item in warranty. That had never been the case with other items I've replaced. They told me their hands were tied as it was simply part of the warranty policy, like they have no say in which policies they decide to adopt.

Other than that, it cooks evenly. No complaints on that front.
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on September 10, 2013
First off, I took one star off because the power cord is RIDICULOUSLY short. It is 2/3 the length of my coffee pot, and 1/2 the length of my Ninja blender. I know the manufacturers are worried about law suits over long and tangled cords, but this short cord has the opposite effect. Unless the Crock Pot is situated directly in front of an outlet it will require the use of an extension cord. This then becomes an issue as most common cords are 18g wire – MUCH TOO LIGHT to carry the heat load and much too long thereby creating another hazard.

To alleviate this problem, if you need a little extra length, consider “Coleman Cable 6991 Power Strip Liberator, 8-Inch Extension Cord, 3-Pack” sold here at Amazon. These short cords are 16g wire (13 amp) and more then enough for the 275 watt Crock Pot (DO NOT USE AN 18g CORD!). If necessary you can string 2 together for 16 inches of extra length. (As with ANY electrical cord or appliance, EXTREME care must be taken not to get the plugs wet or allow them to come in contact with metal objects, or YOU for that matter.) Of course, it should be plugged in a GFI outlet anyway! *** DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK ***

With that said, my Crock Pot arrived today, a day ahead of schedule. There was some damage to the packaging but it did not appear to affect the Crock Pot itself. Before using it to make Baby Back Ribs (more on that later) I played around with it. The manual is fairly easy to understand and using the three modes, program, manual, and probe are simple enough.

I decided on this model solely because of the Probe Mode. I cook almost exclusively by internal temperature. The heating element is a little light at only 275 watts, but it seems to be doing the job nicely so far. LOW mode does take a while to bring food up to temperature (I used 4 quarts of water as a test), but in the case of a full Pot, use HIGH for one hour, then LOW for the remainder of the cooking time. (No, you can’t program that, but I’m not a big fan of leaving appliances alone and unattended anyway.)

The major difference on this model from the previous is the lid clip handles. They made them MUCH easier to secure the lid for transport (DO NOT lock the lid for cooking), but the trade off is they stick up when not in use. My solution was to pop the metal clips off until, and unless, I will need them to transport the unit. Of course by then I will have lost them – Ha Ha. (So personal preference here.)

I started using the Crock Pot to make one of my favorites – baby back ribs. I start off by par-boiling the ribs for 15 minutes to remove excess fat. I then put the ribs – six pound worth (yeah, it was a tight fit) – in the Crock Pot and added a bottle of Stubbs BBQ sauce, a little apple cider vinegar, Worchester Sauce, fresh garlic, oregano, and pepper. I used the Probe to monitor the temperature BUT set the Crock Pot to MANUAL HIGH. In approximately one hour the internal temperature of the ribs was 165 degrees. I then switched to LOW power for the next 5 hours (so far 4 hours have passed) and everything is working PERFECTLY! The ribs at the center of the pot are maintaining 171 degrees. At 2 and 4 hours I flipped the ribs over and rotated the center ribs to the outside for more even cooking.

The surface of the Crock Pot becomes quite hot (the control panel gets warm, but not too hot). Please keep the Crock Pot away from the edge of the counter so children or pets do not burn themselves.

And one final issue that has been raised. In the even of a power failure or fluctuation the Crock Pot WILL shut off. There is a small capacitor to store enough of a charge that if the power interruption is brief – less than about 5 seconds – the settings are maintained and it will continue to cook. So it is possible to set the Crock Pot to cook all day, and for you to come home to an uncooked meal and food left out at room temperature for several hours. But, as I said before I’m not a fan of leaving appliances unattended, so this is not an issue for me.

Perhaps an option for the next model is a 9 volt battery backup (like my clock radio) or memory that does not lose its “state” when the power goes out. Of course, this will add to the cost.

I did buy the 4 year (3 extra years) protection plan for $12.00 -- $4 per year, how can you go wrong? All in all an EXCELLENT Crock Pot that I highly recommend.
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on August 25, 2013
Unfortunately I bought this during a time when I wasn't using a slow cooker often. We used it once and the next time we tried it it wouldn't come on. Tried unplugging and using different outlets, nothing. Sadly it was outside the return window so we just threw it out.
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on November 16, 2013
Trying to decide between this and a more a basic "Low or High" slow cooker, I opted for this unit because I thought the probe feature would come in handy. Wow, was I right.

I primarily use this for slow cooking beef, pork, and chicken, and it's really difficult to accurately guess when the meats are finished. When a slow cooker cookbook says to "cook on low for five hours", it's highly likely that your meats will need less or more time. With the probe feature, I can truly "set and forget" because the unit will kick into warming mode when the desired temperature is reached.

When I recently did a pork shoulder for pulled/chopped pork, the recipe said to leave it in the slow cooker for six hours. Had I done this, my pork would have been WAY overcooked because it hit 170 degrees in just four hours. Had I not been home, it's nice to know that the unit would have kicked into warming mode for me automatically.

While the probe is pointless if you primarily do soups, stews, or chili, it's an imperative feature for someone like me who uses it to try and get as close as I can to BBQ in the off-season. :)
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