Ever since humans learned to cook with fire, we’ve been refining the process. In the early 1970s, the Crock-Pot helped cooking evolve to yet another new level, freeing cooks up for other things—like even leaving the kitchen, or the house, entirely.
The first Crock-Pots, made by the Naxon corporation (later purchased by Rival), were fairly basic affairs: Raw foods and liquids got hot, and stayed that way. They were based on earlier prototypes—from 1936—that encased food inside a shell, or “crock,” within a casing that provided heat. Crock-Pots, later marketed as generic “slow cookers” by numerous other brands, became commonplace in kitchens of the 1970s and ’80s.
Today, slow cookers have gone hi-tech, with self-stirrers, smart- cooking functions, digital timers and other sophisticated settings. Crock-Pot offers a line of pre-made, ready-to- “crock” meals, Crock-Pot Cuisine, that can be ordered online at crock-pot. com. And the company is working on the launch of a slow cooker that can be operated wirelessly, with a smart phone or other mobile device.
As slow cookers move into the future, they retain an essential element of their past: They’re still versatile, handy-dandy kitchen aides for getting a hot, delicious meal on the table with a minimum of fuss, mess, hustle and bustle. Crock-Pots rock!