Non Toxic Food Preparation, part four

We’ve pretty much covered the gamut of non toxic cookware/bakeware; stainless steel, cast iron, and stoneware. But there is just one type of cooking we haven’t covered yet: the crock pot.

Most weeks I use my crock pot at least once, sometimes twice. It’s normally used for making a whole chicken. Which if you haven’t put a whole chicken in the crock pot yet – you must! The meat is moist, and while it’s nothing pretty to look at (since the skin doesn’t brown) the meat just falls right off the bones. Because of this I tend to use every small piece of meat after I pull it off when we’re finished eating, normally for soups.

Around the internet there has been some talk of the ‘dangers’ of crock pots, most often referenced is the issue of lead in the glaze. I’ve even seen some bloggers throw theirs out after learning this.

But is it true?

Fact is, I just don’t know. I don’t’ have a lab to test them out myself, so I rely on others to do the dirty work for me.

The blog Terminal Verbosity tested a few crock pots themselves with an XRF gun and found no lead in any of the test subjects. They also quote Jennifer from The Smart Mama as saying –

“Basically, when the glazes are properly formulated and fired at a high temperature, the lead is sealed. However, if they are not properly prepared and fired, lead may leach into food stored in or on the ceramic ware.”

Personally, I trust the newer crock pots much more than the older ones.

The crock pot I received as a wedding gift over 11 years ago has seen it’s share of kitchen duty. I’m actually thinking of retiring it very soon as the knob on the front fell off some time ago.

And nothing says “jimmy-rig” more than changing the heat on your crock pot with a fork!

I’m thinking about the Hamilton Beach 6 quart since it comes with a clip-tight lid and has about a million more functions than my current slow cooker.

The Zisha is also compelling as the pot is made from natural clay and is said to not contain any chemicals.

I really can’t imagine life without a slow cooker. And in many ways it’s a great way to get around using non-stick pans and helps you prepare healthy foods that are ready at the end of a busy day.

What about you? What do you use for slow cooking?

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About Donielle

Donielle is an amateur herbalist and natural momma to two littles (with another babe in heaven) after dealing with being less than fertile. She has a passion for nourishing nutrition, natural living, and spreading the word on how food truly affects our health.


  1. I have a whole chicken cooking in my crock pot right now, actually. I love my slow cooker and couldn’t see myself living my current lifestyle without it! I think that a slow cooker is an essential for any busy woman (especially working women and moms of littles) who has a desire to prepare real food for her family.