Slow cookers are becoming a kitchen staple in UK homes. They’re a great time-saving piece of kit that requires minimal effort to use yet produces delicious, hearty, and warming meals.
Most slow cookers have multiple temperature settings so you can cook your food to perfection.
However, the majority of brands label these settings as ‘high’, ‘medium’, and ‘low’. For slow cooker newbies, this can be a little complicated!
So, what temperature does a slow cooker cook food at in Celsius?
What is the slow cooker temperature equivalent in an oven?
And which is the best setting to use to ensure your food is cooked to perfection every time?
Let’s find out!
What Temperature Does a Slow Cooker Cook at in the UK?
Most slow cookers have three temperature settings: ‘low’, ‘medium’, and ‘high’.
When set to ‘low’, the internal temperature of the slow cooker reaches around 90°C. On the other hand, the ‘high’ setting will see the internal temperature rise to around 150°C.
The ‘medium’ setting sites somewhere between these two figures at around the 120°C mark.
The temperature settings will vary depending on the manufacturer so we advise reading the user manual before whipping up a tasty meal.
Slow Cooker High vs Low Temperature Settings
The most important difference between ‘low’ and ‘high’ temperature settings on a slow cooker is how long it takes for the liquid inside the crockpot to reach a simmer at 100°C.
When set to ‘high’, the increased temperature means the liquid reaches the simmering point much more quickly. For this reason, food cooks quicker at this temperature than when set to the ‘low’ setting.
Below is a rough guide on how slow cooker high vs low temperature settings affect cooking times according to the BBC:
- 1-2 hours on high = 4-6 hours on low
- 2-3 hours on high = 5-7 hours on low
- 3-4 hours on high = 6-8 hours on low
- 4-6 hours on high = 8-12 hours on low
How Do Slow Cooker Temperatures Correspond to Oven Temperatures?
You might also be interested in the equivalent oven temperature for a slow cooker. This enables you to easily cook your favourite oven-cooked meals in your slow cooker without running the risk of food poisoning.
As a general guide, a dish that takes 1-2 hours in the oven at 180°C will take 4-5 hours in a slow cooker.
But to complicate things, this does depend on the crockpot temperature setting you’re using. Here is yet more advice from the BBC about converting from oven times to slow cooker times:
- 15-30 minutes in the oven = 4-6 hours on low
- 30 minutes – 1 hour = 5-7 hours on low
- 1-2 hours = 6-8 hours on low
- 2-4 hours = 8-12 hours on low
What Are the Best Crockpot Settings to Use?
There is a general consensus that cooking with the ‘low’ temperature setting is best for most recipes.
Food is cooked more gently when using lower temperatures, allowing for all of the flavours to develop in the dish.
Meat also becomes more tender the longer and slower it cooks.
Besides, the low heat won’t destroy any of the nutrients in the food so you end up consuming a more nutritious meal. Not only will your final dish be tastier but also better for you!
Bear in mind that the heat source in slow cookers is usually found at the base of the pot, so the foods here cook faster.
Root vegetables can take longer than meat and other veggies to cook. As such, always place these at the bottom of the dish to ensure they’re fully cooked through.
If you’re following a specific slow cooker recipe, we advise going with whatever temperature settings it recommends though for perfect food every time.
Hannah is a freelance content writer and self-proclaimed foodie. When Hannah isn’t sitting tapping at her laptop, you’ll probably find her in the kitchen. As an ex-chalet host, she’s used to cooking four-course meals for 10+ people and loves feeding friends and family whenever possible.