A slow cooker might take a load off our backs and do all the cooking for us, but when it comes to cleaning – that task needs to be done by us. No need to worry though, it’s not as big of a job as it seems. Here are some simple ways to clean your slow cooker.
What you will need:
- Baking Soda
- White Vinegar
- Dish Soap
- Cotton or microfiber cloth
- Small scrub brush
Step 1: Turn your Slow Cooker and unplug it
Be safe by checking that the cooker is turned off and unplugged for good measure before you start. Check to see if all your cords are in proper shape and damage free.
Step 2: Clean the exterior of the cooker by wiping it with a damp cloth
You do not want to start off using any harsh chemical based cleaners. If not completely necessary, this might do more harm than good by damaging the exterior and ruining the finish. Unless you have really tough stains, some warm water should do the trick. You can also use any mild dish soap if you prefer.
Step 3: Remove any tough stains
After step 2, if you still have stains left, mix in some baking soda and water to create a cleaning solution. Wipe the microfiber cloth with the baking soda mixture.
Step 4: Don’t forget the bottom!
While often overlooked, the bottom can get pretty dirty too from cooking. Scrub off any remaining food lodged at the bottom of the cooker with a scrub brush.
Step 5: Get the stoneware insert cleaned
Washing the stoneware with some mild dishwashing soap in the dishwasher on a daily basis.
Step 6: Cook off any food residue
You might see some of the tough food is hard to get off even after scrubbing them with a scrub brush separately. To get them off completely, fill the cooker with water and set it on the stove. Turn it on low heat to literally cook off the food. This might take a couple of hours to completely remove the food. Finally, wash it in the dishwasher.
Step 7: Bring in the Baking Soda
If the last step still does not work, it is time to bring on the baking soda. Baking soda is strong enough to do the job effectively without it being too hard to damage the surface. Same as before, fill the pot with water with a few drops of your regular dish soap, along with a couple of tablespoon of the baking soda. Turn it on a low heat and let it cook. After that, pour out the water and give it a wash.
Step 8: Remove any residue completely
From time to time, the stoneware needs a proper deep cleaning to eliminate all the mineral deposits due to cooking and cleaning regularly. Soak the stoneware with water and one cup of vinegar and leave it overnight.
Step 9: Clean the interior of the slow cooker
Underneath the stoneware, you will find the heating element encased in aluminum. While this part should never be immersed in water, it can get stained from food spills. So make sure it is cooled before you go in with a damp cloth and wiping it clean.
Step 10: Remove any stubborn stains with ammonia
Take a small bowl and fill it with ammonia. Put this in the cooker and leave it overnight after putting the lid on. This should remove any of the tough stains in the interior.
Step 11: Clean all the removable parts
Clean the handles, lids, and knobs from the cooker and deep clean it with warm soap water. If you want to, you can remove them completely and submerge it in a mild cleaner or soap mixed with warm water.
Step 12: Get all the nooks and corners
While you are at it, use the opportunity to clean all the nooks and hard to reach places. You can get to the smaller areas with a toothbrush or toothpick.
Step 13: Put all the pieces back together!
Once dry, put everything back together.