Blue slow cooker with a thick and chunky beef stew inside
The Meat Mistake You Need To Avoid With Your Slow Cooker
When cooking meat in a slow cooker, it's crucial to avoid using a very high temperature, which can result in overcooking. For tender results, opt for a lower temperature.
Cooking low and slow keeps even temperatures and helps the meat’s connective tissues break down. With too high a temperature, the tissues won’t break down, resulting in chewy meat.
It’s also a good idea to defrost your meat before slow cooking. Frozen meat needs to cook for much longer and can cause your slow-cooked meal to become watery.
Frozen meat also takes longer to reach a safe internal temperature for eating, and thus can pose more risk, per the USDA. Instead, put it in the fridge to defrost overnight.
Another mistake is constantly removing the lid to check on the food inside. When you do this, the heat escapes and makes the cooking time even longer.