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5 Things You Didn't Know About Your Slow Cooker

The slow cooker has had anything but a slow history.
10/02/2014 04:01pm ET | Updated December 2, 2014
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Hundreds of cookbooks have cropped up for the slow cooker, and all of them have an angle; some focus on soups, others stews, and some emphasize the slow cooker's vital role in easy dinners. You can start your day with a hearty Mexican-style quiche.

Clean out the slow cooker and load it up with the ingredients for a creamy chicken Alfredo stew for lunch. For dinner, you can put in all of the necessities for slow-cooked pulled pork tacos, or skip ahead to dessert for some turtle monkey bread. It can help you pull off a dinner party or an easy weeknight meal with just a few ingredients and a little time. Heck, it can even treat your guests to tasty appetizers, and help with the drinks, too.

The slow cooker became the busy parent's best friend. The ability to "set it and forget it" meant less time scrambling (figuratively and literally) over the stove for dinner and more time with the family. Over the decades, the slow cooker became a must-have appliance for families. But what do you really know about this incredible appliance?

The slow cooker has had anything but a slow history. After it first came to market in the '50s as Naxon's Beanery, thousands of slow cookers were sold to families looking for an easy dinner idea. Its roots are deeply tangled in the religious practice of honoring the Sabbath, and have since evolved technologically, aesthetically, and functionally to help feed America for more than four decades.

We bet you didn't know these interesting facts about the modern slow cooker.

Naxon’s Beanery
This cooker was brought to market in the 1950s, but after being acquired by the Rival Company, it was rebranded as the Crock-Pot in the 1970s. Photo Credit: © Flickr / Jennifer LambClick Here to See More Things You Didn’t Know About Your Slow Cooker
The Original Cookbook
The first Crock-Pot, which cost a mere $25, came with an 84-page cookbook with over 150 recipes. This price has not risen much: some of the lower-tech, basic Crock-Pots still cost about that. Photo Credit: © Flickr / Carmel England
A Post-War Aid
As women began entering the workforce and the shift of gender roles began, Crock-Pots were enticing contraptions. They allowed mothers to maintain a semblance of work-life balance by making it possible to serve their families a piping hot meal after a hard day’s work. Photo Credit: iStock/ThinkstockClick Here to See More Things You Didn’t Know About Your Slow Cooker
Intense Competition
In the ‘70s, there were roughly 40 companies all making their own models. Photo Credit: © Flickr / Food Thinkers
A National Treasure
According to a study conducted in 2010 by Betty Crocker Kitchens, 80.6 percent of the homes in the United States own a slow cooker. Click Here to See More Things You Didn’t Know About Your Slow CookerPhoto Credit: © Flickr / Lynn Gardner

-Dan Myers, The Daily Meal