How Much Does It Cost To Use A Slow Cooker? Detailed Cost Chart With Energy Saving Tips

There are many kitchen appliances in the market that use their own way to cook food. All of them involve heat to make the best meal, and each uses up electricity in a matter of hours in cooking.

On the other hand, slow cookers are utilized to run for hours. As the name suggests, they “slow cook” the food, which is what slow cookers do best.

With that, running a slow cooker for many hours to have a hot and fresh dinner at night might convince you that it consumes lots of electricity.

Today, let’s cover up how a slow cooker can add to your bills, and let’s try to learn how a slow cooker utilizes energy. Can a slow cooker save money and energy? Find out below.

Does a slow cooker consume a lot of electricity?

One of the most promising features of a slow cooker is how energy-efficient it is, making it the most desirable kitchen appliance to be used on a daily basis. Slow cookers use up as little electricity as other appliances in your kitchen. Even if it is being used for long durations, it may as well use the same amount as an ordinary light bulb.

Slow cookers’ electrical usage varies from its wattage, and it also depends on its size and capacity. Its wattage runs from 120 to 150 watts for mini slow cookers, 250 to 500 for medium-sized slow cookers, 400 to 600 for large slow cookers, and up to 1500 watts for extra-large slow cookers.

That won’t cost you much electric charge because you run a 1.5 quarts mini slow cooker with 120 watts for 6 hours daily; it will only use 0.72 kWh. Let’s try to compare it with five typical light bulbs with 100 wattages that you leave on for 6 hours to light up your home.

You will have 3 kWh usage of electricity compared to the 0.72 kWh (6 hours x 5 light bulbs x 100) usage of your slow cooker. That’s even 4x lesser energy usage. Therefore, slow cookers are energy-efficient because they run for a long time but consume lesser electricity.

How much does it cost to use a slow cooker: Detailed Insights?

Now, let’s investigate the cost of different sizes of a slow cooker in the market, from mini slow cookers to extra large slow cookers. Find out how much does it cost to use a slow cooker below.

For comparison, let’s assume that the electricity rate is 10 cents per kilowatt-hours (kWh), and we will run every slow cooker for 8 hours daily for the whole year.

Mini or Small Slow Cooker Cost

Estimated Time Usage8 hours per day (8 hr)
Wattage120 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 8 ÷ 1000 = 0.96 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used weekly = 364 days per year)0.96 kWh x 364 = 349.44 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)349.44 x $0.10/kWh = $34.944/year

The annual operating cost of using a 120 watts mini slow cooker is $34.944 per year. See how energy-efficient it is in using one? Not only that it can cook food for you the whole day, but you can also save a lot of money from it.

Let’s try to find out if we will use a medium-slow cooker next.

Medium Slow Cooker Cost

Estimated Time Usage8 hours per day (8 hr)
Wattage400 watts
Daily Consumption400 x 8 ÷ 1000 = 3.2 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used weekly = 364 days per year)3.2 kWh x 364 = 1164.8 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)1164.8 x $0.10/kWh = $116.48/year

With the same calculations, if we use a medium-slow cooker, it will cost about $116.48 annually, which is a bit higher, and that is expected because it uses higher wattage than a mini slow cooker. Also, the capacity is bigger, thus good for family consumption rather than using a mini slow cooker for solo use.

What about if we use an extra-large slow cooker?

Large or Extra-Large Slow Cooker Cost

Estimated Time Usage8 hours per day (8 hr)
Wattage1000 watts
Daily Consumption1000 x 8 ÷ 1000 = 8 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used weekly = 364 days per year)8 kWh x 364 = 2,912 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)2,912 x $0.10/kWh = $291.2/year

Extra-large slow cookers are best for the community, party, and commercial cooking. It makes sense that using one will save more money than using other electric appliances. For about $291.2 yearly cost, an extra-large cooker will make more profit than you ever imagined.

How much does it cost to use a slow cooker per hour?

If you are really meticulous in knowing the cost of a slow cooker on an hourly basis. Let’s try to calculate it below by using a 250-watt slow cooker with a utility rate of 50 cents per kWh:

Estimated Time Usage1 hour per day (1 hr)
Wattage250 watts
Daily Consumption250 x 1 ÷ 1000 = 0.25 kWh
Daily Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)0.25 x $0.50/kWh = 12.5 cents hourly

Thus, running a 250 watts slow cooker will cost you 12.5 cents per hour. Indeed, slow cookers cost low than an average running appliance in your kitchen. That makes you more to love your slow cooker every day.

How much does it cost to run a slow cooker for 8 hours?

What if we try to run a mini slow cooker for 8 hours? How much does it cost? Let’s try to calculate it using a 120 watts slow cooker with a utility rate of 50 cents per kWh.

Estimated Time Usage8 hours per day (8 hr)
Wattage120 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 8 ÷ 1000 = 0.96 kWh
Daily Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)0.96 x $0.50/kWh = 48 cents per 8 hours

See that? Isn’t it exciting to pay just 48 cents daily using your mini slow cooker? How much more do you want to save money from your slow cooker? That’s even a big leap if you have one.

What factors affect the electric consumption of a slow cooker?

Certain factors can determine the overall consumption of a slow cooker, and these include the following:

Settings

Most slow cookers today have three settings to be used for cooking. You may either use the low, warm, or high settings, which will affect how the slow cooker draws energy. There are times when you use a particular setting for a specific recipe. Sometimes you only want to simmer, thus using the low setting, and if you want to cook a roast, you use the high setting.

However, the big thing with these different settings is that the slow cooker will require more energy if you use a higher setting. Meaning to say, cooking in a low setting will entitle you to save more on the cost than using the high. Nevertheless, it is the style of your cooking that will determine it. No matter what setting you are using, slow cookers are still energy-efficient and can save you money in the long run.

Size and Capacity

The overall consumption of a slow cooker varies depending on its size and capacity. The larger the slow cooker you use on a daily basis, the higher the amount of energy it utilizes. Meaning that it will cost more than a mini slow cooker. Also, larger slow cookers have a bigger heating plate which needs more energy for it to cook food

Cooking Time

This is the biggest factor because the moment that you plug in your slow cooker and up until it cooks the food will determine how much energy you are using. If you utilize it for 8 hours from the usual 4 hours, it will cost you more. Nevertheless, slow cookers will still be more cost-effective than other appliances in your kitchen. So no matter what cooking time you will cook food, just remember that it is a need to do so in order to fill your stomach.

Model and Features

No slow cooker is alike. A single slow cooker has its own unique feature than the others. Most of them have different specifications, such as their wattage, capacity, and features affecting energy consumption. Moreover, if you can find a slow cooker with an energy-saver feature, that will be a plus for your kitchen.

Can I save energy using a slow cooker?

There are times that you are reluctant to use a slow cooker because you are running it all day. Can you really save energy with that even if you run it daily because you need it that much?

Yes, of course! You can save energy using a slow cooker because slow cookers are amongst the kitchen appliance out there that are most efficient. They are proven devices that can save energy. With that, you are also helping to save our environment.

In terms of saving energy, a slow cooker with 170 watts generally uses 1.2 to 1.7 kWh to cook a single mean, even if you run for 8 hours.

Frankly saying, that is not much for you to handle. Some slow cookers also operate in what we call a “duty cycle,” which means their heating element will run in a cycle. Periodically, the heat will turn on and off to maintain consistent cooking, meaning to say that it isn’t constantly using much electric energy for the whole duration.

Can I still save money when using a slow cooker?

Suppose we are talking about money, then yes! Slow cookers are among the kitchen appliances worth using because they are cost-efficient.

If you live in Washington with a general electricity rate of 10 cents per kilowatt-hour, then you would pay the cost below if you run that 4 hours daily to cook your own breakfast.

Estimated Time Usage4 hours per day (4 hr)
Wattage120 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 4 ÷ 1000 = 0.48 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used five working days a week = 364 days per year)0.48 kWh x 364 = 174.72 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)174.72 x $0.10/kWh = $17.47/year

Imagine that you only have to pay $17.47 the whole year just by using your slow cooker every day for breakfast. There’s nothing you can do because your slow cooker is doing its best for you to save energy, time, and money.

Is it ideal to have a 200 watts slow cooker?

Let’s try to dig deeper. What if you have a 200 watts slow cooker and live in Florida. Would it be ideal to have one?

The Energy Information Administration shows that living in Florida has an average price of 12.20 cents per kilowatt-hour. If you have a 200 watts slow cooker and you run that 8 hours a day for five working days a week annually, how much does it cost?

Estimated Time Usage8 hours per day (8 hr)
Wattage200 watts
Daily Consumption200 x 8 ÷ 1000 = 1.6kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used five working days a week = 260 days per year)1.6 kWh x 260 = 416 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 10 cents per kWh)416 x $0.122/kWh = $50.75/year

Using a 200 watts slow cooker will only cost you $50.75 yearly if you are in Florida. This will tell us that the cost of using one is ideal and budget-friendly. You can save more money from using a 200-watt slow cooker, money, and time.

With so many slow cooker models in the market, it’s not easy to decide if that one slow cooker you can find will save time and money. However, we suggest that you get a slow cooker with around 120 to 200 watts to save even more money and feed your whole family.

If you want to have a bigger wattage slow cooker because it has added features or a multi-cooker, you can have that one since it can make your cooking versatile. Consider it two slow cookers for the price of one.

Just remember this, the higher the wattage, the costlier the slow cooker becomes when cooking. To know the wattage of your slow cooker, you can check the instruction manual.

Is there a way to reduce costs when using a slow cooker?

Slow cookers are an energy-efficient and cost-effective way of cooking. It doesn’t drain so much money from your pocket, but you can actually reduce costs when using it.

One of the general rules of thumb is to turn it off when not used. Don’t ever let your slow cooker run all day if you are not cooking; that will incur unnecessary costs.

Also, make sure that you turn off the switch after cooking and unplug it from the will. Having it idle will still make it drain your electricity and your pocket as well.

You may also want to find an energy-efficient slow cooker that you can use for a lifetime. That could be a hero to your expenses. If you want to find out our best recommended slow cooker energy-saver, continue reading below.

Is it cheaper to use a slow cooker than an electric oven?

Yes! It’s is very much cheaper to run a slow cooker than an electric oven. If you run both for 6 hours a day three times a week, then a slow cooker will cost you $22.464 annually rather than an electric oven which costs you more at $655.2 per year. That makes it better and way cheaper. Slow cookers are indeed the holy grail of all kitchen appliances.

Which is cheaper to run?

Let’s try to compare a slow cooker with other kitchen appliances used for cooking. Find out which is cheaper from the given examples below.

For comparison, let’s assume that the electricity rate is 20 cents per kilowatt-hours (kWh). We will use Elite Gourmet Electric Oval Slow Cooker MST-350B (3.5 Quarts) that has 120 wattages as an example. We will try to run both appliances for 6 hours daily, and we’ll check the annual operating cost to compare which of them is cheaper to run.

Slow Cooker vs. Conventional Oven

According to Direct Energy, an average electric oven will use around 2000 to 5000 watts. So let’s say that we have an electric Oven with 3,500 watts.

Slow CookerElectric Oven
Estimated Time Usage6 hours per day (6 hr)6 hours per day (6 hr)
Wattage120 watts3,500 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 0.72 kWh3,500 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 21 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are0.72 kWh x 156 = 112.32 kWh annually21 kWh x 156 = 3,276 kWh annually

Using an electric oven for 6 hours a day costs 29x higher than a slow cooker. That’s a big difference, to begin with. Silicon valley power estimates that every household in the US consumes an average of 2.3 kWh using a conventional oven and costs about $0.30 hourly.

Compared to a slow cooker, conventional ovens require more heat and will consume more energy, thus having a much more increased cost.

Slow Cooker vs. Pressure Cooker

According to Daftlogic, an average pressure cooker uses 1000 W. So let’s try to run a 1000 watts pressure cooker in one whole year.

Slow CookerPressure Cooker
Estimated Time Usage6 hours per day (6 hr)6 hours per day (6 hr)
Wattage120 watts 1,000 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 0.72 kWh1,000 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 6 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used thrice per week = 156 days per year)0.72 kWh x 156 = 112.32 kWh annually6 kWh x 156 = 936 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 20 cents per kWh)112.32 x $0.20/kWh = $22.464/year 936 x $0.20/kWh = $187.2/year

With the calculations above, using a pressure cooker annually will cost about 8x than using a slow cooker. This means that the pressure cooker utilizes more energy than the slow cooker making it more costly. Also, pressure cookers are used to increase pressure in order to cook food, thus requiring more steam and stem to cook.

Slow Cooker vs. Microwave

According to Daftlogic, microwaves run at 1700 W at their maximum. So let’s try to run a 1700 watts microwave thrice a week in one whole year.

Slow CookerMicrowave
Estimated Time Usage6 hours per day (6 hr)6 hours per day (6 hr)
Wattage120 watts1,700 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 0.72 kWh1,700 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 10.2 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used thrice per week = 156 days per year)0.72 kWh x 156 = 112.32 kWh annually18 kWh x 156 = 1,591.2 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 20 cents per kWh)112.32 x $0.20/kWh = $22.464/year 1,591.2 x $0.20/kWh = $318.24/year

The calculated annual cost of using a microwave is 14x higher than that of a slow cooker. Again, running a microwave is much more costly rather than using a slow cooker for daily use.

According to Siliconvalleypower, microwave usage in the US will consume at about 0.12 kWh per 5 mins, costing about $0.02 per 5 mins.

Microwaves cook by producing heat within their metal interior which food absorbs. This means that it will create more heat in order to cook, thus having more energy consumption than a slow cooker.

Slow Cooker vs. Electric Stove

According to Direct Energy, an average electric stove will use around 3000 watts. So let’s say that we have an electric stove with 3,000 watts.

Slow CookerElectric Stove
Estimated Time Usage6 hours per day (6 hr)6 hours per day (6 hr)
Wattage120 watts3,000 watts
Daily Consumption120 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 0.72 kWh3,000 x 6 ÷ 1000 = 18 kWh
Annual Energy Consumption (Both kitchen appliances are used thrice per week = 156 days per year)0.72 kWh x 156 = 112.32 kWh annually18 kWh x 156 = 2,808 kWh annually
Annual Operating Cost (Utility Rate = 20 cents per kWh)112.32 x $0.20/kWh = $22.464/year 2,808 x $0.20/kWh = $561.6/year

Using an electric stove for 6 hours a day costs 25x higher than a slow cooker. Daftlogic estimates that an average electric stove has an average of 2000 watts, which is basically higher than a mere slow cooker.

On the other hand, electric stoves will differ on how many burners are being used; the more burners to be used, the higher the electric cost and consumption.

Most energy-efficient Slow Cooker

If you want to seek the most energy-efficient slow cooker, then we recommend the Crock-Pot Cook & Carry Programmable Slow Cooker SCCPVL610-S-A (6 Quarts).

It comes with a size capacity of 6 hours with only 240 wattages. Imagine having a medium-size slow cooker that is very cost-effective.

That is enough to serve your big family. You can also utilize its digital timer to monitor your cooking. With this slow cooker, you can do every cooking and also save your money in the bank.

Final Thoughts

Slow cookers feature many benefits in cooking and convenience to users. Not only that but also it saves more energy and cost less than other kitchen appliances.

The nicest thing about having a slow cooker is that you only throw the ingredients and wait for it to cook rather than using other appliances that require more setup.

Now that you know the cost of your slow cooker in your home. Your next step is to test it for yourself and check your monthly bill, and you decide if it is more energy-efficient than using other electronic kitchen appliances. And we bet that your slow cooker won’t turn you down.

About Al Amin

Al AminHi, this is Al Amin. I studied hotel management. So I have a little more love for cooking.

After working as a cook for a long time, I can easily understand which cooking appliances are most suitable for cooking.

Here you will find very good ideas about cooking tools and appliances. At the same time, you can decide for yourself which product is best for your kitchen.

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