A crockpot or slow cooker is a great time saver. You put the ingredients in, cover and cook on LOW for about 6 to 8 hours or on high for about 3 to 4 hours, head out to work or run errands. When you arrive home, dinner is waiting for you. This also helps keep the dining out and take out food bill under control.
But does your crockpot actually save you money? There are many different opinions on this subject. One of the best articles I found was an online article from The Fun Times Guide. The author of the article breaks down the cost estimates by region, and crockpot vs. your stovetop.
The author estimates that the average electric a stove is used about 30 hours per month. I'm probably slightly above average, since I probably use my stove and oven double that amount of time per month. An East coast state may pay a higher rate per kilowatt hour rate than a Midwestern state. By using your crockpot half the time (30 hours per month), you can save money on your electric bill by using your crockpot or slow cooker.
If you dine out or order take out for a family of four once a week, you probably spend about $40 on average. Replace that one dining out or take out purchase by cooking a frugal family dinner in the crockpot, and you can save about $30 just in one week!
Crockpot cooking can be (and should be) a money saver. If you plan your menus and keep to simple crockpot recipes that don't require a lot of fancy ingredients, you can save lots of time and money each year using your crockpot or slow cooker just once per week.
Looking for more crockpot recipes? Get inspired by the San Antonio Budget Grocery Examiner's article "Slow Cooker Recipes for Summer" or A Year of Slow Cooking's blog. Lots of recipes and advice, even if you're just getting started.