Paula Ghosh

Author Archives: Paula Ghosh

The Easiest Hot Dogs You’ll Ever Make (in a Crock Pot!)

My mom loves to host a gathering. She’s more than happy to cook a huge meal at every major holiday, even if there’s only a small group of us on-hand. My mom has a lot of tips and tricks up her sleeve for how to have many different dishes ready at the same time.

As for me, I’ve never quite had my mom’s knack for timing when it comes to feeding a crowd. I’ve even screwed up a casual backyard cookout before! That’s why I’m thrilled to share this new trick today.

I just learned that you can cook hot dogs in a crock pot. For me, this is a big deal. You might be wondering why I’d opt for cooking hot dogs in a crock pot over grilling them like a normal person. Let me count the ways:

  • 1. You can make them ahead of time for totally hands-off cooking
  • 2. It’s easier than chasing hot dogs around a hot grill when you’re trying to serve 20 or more people
  • 3. You can achieve the same great taste that you get from a steamed hot dog (like the ones you get at the ball park)
  • 4. Kids (and some adults) tend to be finicky about too much char on their grilled hot dogs

Have I sold you on this yet? Are you ready to learn how to make the easiest hot dogs ever? Great! Just follow this simple step-by-step tutorial.

See full recipe here.

What You’ll Need

  • Up to 60 hot dogs
  • A crock pot (6-quart size if you plan to cook 60 dogs)
  • 2-4 hours

That’s it! Of course, you need hot dog buns and condiments if you’re planning to serve them traditional-style. You could also serve the hot dogs with macaroni and cheese (for a child’s birthday party) or as chili cheese dogs.

You do not need water or any type of seasoning for this “recipe”, although Adrian Bustamante from the YouTube channel CookingGuide says putting the dogs in some water can keep them from burning.

My experience has been that the hot dogs release some of their own juices as they cook in the crock pot. This happens when you grill them or pan fry them, too, so I choose to skip the water.

About Your Crock Pot

You can use just about any crock pot for this recipe. I have two older model crock pots that each have just one knob to set the temperature. I also have this model (thanks to for the great picture) which has push buttons and a digital screen and a timer (which I recommend using in my step-by-step instructions, below).

The newest models made by Crock Pot have digital touch screens and a lot of different features and functions, like this 5-in-1 Multi-Cooker. All that said, we’re really just heating hot dogs, so you don’t need the fanciest model crock pot. Use what you’ve got, and adjust the amount of hot dogs for the size of the pot.

Step by Step Instructions

1. Place The Hot Dogs In the Crock Pot

Remove the hot dogs from their packaging and place them in the ceramic dish of the crock pot. How you arrange the hot dogs depends on how many dogs you are cooking.

If you are using a large crock pot (like a 6-quart pot) and only have 20-30 hot dogs, you can just toss them into the pot. The folks over at used this method; they simply piled the hot dogs up in the crockpot.

If you’re trying to cook 60 hot dogs at once in a large crock pot, I recommend doing what Stephanie O’Dea from did, which is to stand the hot dogs up on their ends and pack them in tightly. This method takes a few more minutes, but it’s the only way you’ll be able to fit all the hot dogs into the crock pot.

Pro Tip: You can also cook the mini hot dogs (also known as “cocktail wieners” or “little smokies”) using this same method. You can probably fit three to four packages of those little guys into a 6-quart crock pot, but I wouldn’t recommend trying to stand them on their ends!

A lot of recipes for mini hot dogs call for making a sauce, like this one for Honey Garlic Crockpot Little Smokes from, which sounds delicious!

2. Cover the Crock Pot

If you’re new to crock pot cooking, you should know that keeping the cover on the pot–and not lifting it too often–helps to keep all the heat and cooking magic in the pot. If you’re wondering if the crock pot is heating up, you can gently touch the sides to check the temperature.

Need to learn more about using your crock pot? This video provides a great introduction.

3. Cook for 2-4 Hours

One of the great things about this cooking method for hot dogs is that you can speed it up if you’re short on time, or plan way ahead on the morning of your party.

If you’re short on time, set your crock pot to the High setting and cook for two hours. If your crock pot has features like a timer and warmer, you should set the timer for two hours, and then have the crock pot switch to Warm setting.

If you have plenty of time before you need the hot dogs to be ready, set your crockpot on Low for four hours. (Follow the same timer/warming steps above).

Pro Tip: If you’re in the market for a new Crock Pot (you can never have enough; I have four), check out this Wifi-enabled model that lets you change heat and timer settings using an app on your phone!

4. Check the Temperature of the Hot Dogs in The Center of The Crock Pot

Crock pots are great because they conduct and hold a lot of heat. The hot dogs in the middle of the pot should be hot enough by the end of two or four hours, but always check them before serving.

Even if the hot dogs in the center of the pot aren’t piping hot, hot dogs are packaged fully cooked, so they should be safe to eat.

5. Serve and Enjoy

I like to serve the hot dogs right out of the crock pot. That way they stay warm and I don’t have to fish them all out of the pot after spending time to get them all in there!

I also like to keep the crock pot on Warm mode for the rest of the party or cookout. This keeps them ready for friends who arrive late, or anyone who wants to snack hours after we’ve eaten the main meal.

“Cooking” Made Easy

I really can’t believe that it never occurred to me to cook hot dogs in a crock pot before. There have been so many times when I’ve had a house full of people, only to be sweating bullets over my jam-packed outdoor grill, trying to keep everything from burning.

Now I just need to figure out how to make 30 hamburgers in the crock pot!

Don’t forget to check out that new Wifi Crock Pot. Technology may be taking over our lives, but if I’m going to arrive home two hours later than planned, I’d love to have the option to check on dinner from my phone.

Are you as excited as I am about this new trick to cooking for a crowd? Leave a comment or share your crock pot tricks!


Best Non-Stick Pan & Skillet Reviews (2020): Convenient Cookware We Love

Which functional kitchen lacks a good non-stick pan? Any home cook can benefit from having a non-stick pan. What sets these pans apart is how easier they are to clean compared to traditional pans. Just like what its name suggests, food won’t stick to its surface, making way for easier cleanup.

Quick Comparison: Top Non Stick Pans 2019

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

Selecting Based On Nonstick Technology 

Non-stick pans are not created equal. The last thing you would want to do is waste money on a non-stick pan with poor quality and one that might even cause health problems because the non-stick coating flakes off easily.

There are different kinds of non-stick technologies. Here are some of those technologies you would want to look for:


The original, Teflon pan has improved remarkably in safety and durability. Pans are now made with different coatings to make them better heat conductors. They are also now more durable than before.  Depending on your price range, you can even buy pans with diamonds bonded to the PTFE.

Teflon never had an issue with safety and dependability, especially if you are getting the original one. When getting Teflon non-stick pans, check out those that are free from PFOA as they are devoid of chemical components that can potentially make you sick.


The porcelain-enamel category for non-stick pans is good for you not only because of its non-stick properties but its ability to prevent the need for more oils when cooking with it. Everything just glides on its surface, even delicate foods.

It can be fragile but unless you are the type of person who often breaks things in the kitchen, you shouldn’t have issues using this.


Think of ceramic pans as “it” cooking pans. They are highly coveted not just because of their non-stick properties but also because of their look. If you want to make your kitchen look like a professional’s kitchen, having ceramic pans is important.

This material conducts heat effectively, so you shouldn’t have problems cooking any kind of food on its surface. Just make sure you give it some love and attention to prevent the material from going brittle over time.


One of the first alternatives to the DuPont classic non-stick brand was released by Calphalon in the late 1960s. It is made by treating aluminum hydro electrically. There is no PTFE in the coating. The surface is scratch resistant, and the pan is light and durable.

Overall, this type of pan is useful for cooking a number of things, but it may lag behind other similar non-stick pans when it comes to non-stick properties.

Our Pick: The Five Best Nonstick Pans 

When it comes to determining what to get, it’s important to carefully assess your cooking needs and preferences. What might work for others might not work for you. It’s about individual needs.

We also recommend trying out different non-stick technologies to see which one really provides the benefits you are looking for. We checked out the pans out there that stand out when it comes to features, durability and technology and here are the best choices:

T-fal E93897

This model that boasts of classic non-stick technology is one of the most popular models used in kitchens around the world. The non-stick interior is tough enough for T-fal to say it is safe to use metal utensils. The pan itself is a little heavy, giving this a stable and secure feel to it. There is added technology in the form of T-fal's Thermo-spot indicator. This special technology allows users to know when the pan is preheated for cooking, so it is going to be a big help for casual cooks.


  • There’s very little to complain about this product. It has managed to stand the test of time and even with frequent uses, it did not deteriorate as fast as other similar pans.
  • The weight of the pan is just right for its size
  • It has high sides, which is good when cooking more quantities of food.
  • The pan is safe for up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit temperature, which is higher than any pan of a similar caliber.


  • The bottom of the pan is not flat, which might deter you from cooking food like eggs.
T-fal C92182

You can’t go wrong with this ceramic non-stick pan, which is touted as one of the best in its niche. Its size is its best feature, allowing home cooks to load this up with more ingredients without worrying that ingredients will spill out. If you often cook big portions of meals for your medium to large-sized family, you will definitely find this a good buy. It’s also great for meal-prepping purposes so you can cook one-pot meals without making them in batches.


  • It is easy to clean. Even if dried-up bits get stuck on its surface, you shouldn’t have any issues getting rid of them.
  • It is a versatile pan that allows you to cook an assortment of dishes.
  • It conducts heat efficiently, preventing you from having uneven cooking spots.
  • Even if you cook pigmented sauces, the pan won’t discolor or get stained easily.


  • Some people might find its temperature limitations not ideal for cooking. If you like a pan that you can stick in your oven after sautéing ingredients on the stovetop, this is probably not the ideal pan for you.
Calphalon Contemporary

Calphalon has a good reputation when it comes to making non-stick pans, particularly anodized pans. True to its promises, this pan really does hold up well even against some level of abuse. It is very durable, thanks to its three layers of materials. You can cook a variety of dishes, making this a staple in your cooking equipment.


  • This pan distributes heat evenly.
  • The pain is thick and not too light, ideal for cooking on slippery stovetops, so it doesn’t move around a lot.
  • It can be washed in the dishwasher.
  • The handles feel sturdy. You can shake the pan or do some professional maneuvers without worrying that the handle will give out.
  • It really has superb non-stick features. You can cook anything without worrying that the food will get stuck on the pan.


  • Some people might find this pan a little too heavy for their preferences.
  • It is quite an expensive pan, not ideal for those on a tight budget.
Rachael Ray

It’s exciting to get something from the famous Rachael Ray. She’s practically a household name when it comes to making delicious meals. You, too, can make delicious meals in 30 minutes or less with this nifty pan from her cookware line. The porcelain enamel doesn’t disappoint with its durability. It’s quite thick and can be used for a variety of cooking needs. It is also easy to clean and doesn’t have toxic components that can get in the food you are cooking.


  • These pans heat evenly as advertised.
  • The food slides around quite easily with very little fat required.
  • These non-stick pans are quite affordable given how good their quality is. It is worth getting an entire set and swapping out all your other traditional pans.
  • The rubberized handles do not deteriorate, even when you put the pan in the oven.
  • You don’t need to get an oven-friendly dish to transfer your food because this one can withstand higher heat, great for finishing cooking in the oven.
  • They come in a myriad of attractive colors, and my teal set is as aesthetically pleasing as they are functional.


  • Some might find the size too limited for their personal cooking needs.
  • Make sure you use the right cooking utensils, otherwise you will end up scratching the surface.
Swiss Diamond

Swiss Diamond is the brand known for bonding diamonds with PTFE to reinforce the durability of the pan. As a pioneer in non-stick technology, you can’t really go wrong with whatever Swiss Diamond churns out including this particular model of frying pan. It’s a great value for your money if you are looking for something durable.


  • The base is completely flat, so it balances well on any type of stove for even cooking.
  • I have used a slightly damp rag to clean this while cooking eggs and omelets. Cleanup for this pan might be the easiest out of all the pans.
  • It is a great energy saver because high heat is not necessary.
  • The handle is as durable as cast iron, which is great because it has an easy, flexible grip, and the pan is approved for heating up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • It does its work in distributing heat evenly on its surface so you can cook any food you want without constantly worrying it will stick.


  • The price might deter some people from buying this.

Buying Reminders 

When buying, make sure you identify the right technology that suits your needs better. If you hate doing a lot of cleanup later, you are better off with technologies that allow crumbs, grease and food residues to get wiped away easily. Technologies like Teflon and Ceramic can certainly offer that to you although most non-stick pans have that feature.

Take size into consideration as well. If you like to cook for a lot of people or you want to fit all your ingredients in one pot to save you some cooking time, you should look for a bigger and more substantial pan.

Also, make sure you think about the compatibility of the pot to your stovetop. If you have a glass stove top, frying pans with a slippery bottom might easily move around. The same is true with gas stovetops. Check the grip of the bottom of the pan to make sure it stays in place. Weight is also an important factor to consider. Heavier pans are better because they provide more stability.


So, which of these products are the best options for your cooking needs? After all, you can’t buy everything recommended here, right?

Rachel Ray’s Cucina Hard Porcelain Enamel Nonstick Skillet is an easy choice to make if aesthetics is important to you. It comes in different striking colors such as agave blue that will truly make it stand out in your kitchen. If you want to feel excited while cooking because your cookware is not only functional but also pretty, this is a great buy.

If you don’t fancy repeatedly buying non-stick pans because they just keep getting damaged, spring for the Swiss Diamond nonstick fry pan. It’s a little bit more expensive than your average pan but its construction and durability more than makeup for its lofty price. Avid home cooks will surely want to add this to their kitchen cooking collection. You can cook different kinds of meals with it.

Do you want a non-stick pan with grilling functions at the same time? Get the Calphalon Hard-Anodized Non-stick Cookware. You can grill vegetables on its surface and get that gorgeous grill mark on your food. This is a multi-purpose cooking tool ideal for those who do not like to buy different kinds of cookware because of a tight budget or due to their limited storage space.

T-Fal’s Ceramic Coated Non-Stick pan is perfect not just for frying but also for cooking a variety of meals. Because it is deeper, it tends to have more space for ingredients. Get this if you often cook bigger meal portions. For anyone looking for in the best non stick pan, we highly suggest you check out T-fal's C92182 Initiatives Nonstick Ceramic as it allows you to cook different dishes without worrying about ingredients sticking to the pan and burning. 

From the same brand, their thermo-spot heat indicator fry pan is ideal for all sorts of frying needs. It is inexpensive, so you won’t have issues getting this if you are on a tight budget.

We know you probably need to buy other cookware sets aside from a frying pan so make sure you check out our homepage for recommendations. Find out what products are worth buying and which ones will last you a long time.

Zojirushi vs. Tiger: Top 5 Best Product for You Choose

Did you know that even seasoned and professional cooks use rice cookers? Rice cookers turn the (sometimes very tricky) task of making rice into an easy, hands-off activity. If you’re looking to make sushi rice or Asian rice, two top brands of rice cooker are Zojirushi and Tiger.

Zojirushi vs. Tiger is a hot topic amongst sushi rice aficionados. You could spend all day reading forums and reviews about which is better. Both companies produce a variety of different rice cookers, which vary in price, size, shape, features, and technology.

To help you determine which of these two brands of rice cooker is right for you, we’ve boiled it down to a few key differences that you should consider.

Quick Comparison: Top Tiger Rice Cookers 2019

Quick Comparison: Top Zojirushi Rice Cookers 2019

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.


So you’re buying a rice cooker because you want to cook sushi rice. But what about those times when you just want some good ol’ brown rice? Or when you want to cook multiple foods at once without dirtying every pot in the cupboard?

  • Zojirushi has rice cooker models that double as steamers, allowing you to steam fish or other foods while the rice cooks. Other Zojirushi models have cake settings that bake cakes.
  • Tiger has added new slow cooker settings to its latest rice cookers, allowing you to create soups and stews, while another has a bread baking function.

Bottom Line: Both Zojirushi and Tiger have rice cooker models that include setting for multiple types of rice and other foods. Before you commit to a specific Zojirushi or a Tiger, review all of the model’s features and functions.

Warranty And Repair

Since both Zojirushi and Tiger are top-notch brands for rice cookers, you won’t find a lot of customer complaints online. Both seem to have durable products with longevity.

  • A review of each company’s product warranty information gave Zojirushi a bit of an edge over Tiger. Zojirushi does not require you to register your product after purchase in order to make a warranty claim; Tiger does.
  • Zojirushi’s warranty claims to cover against “defects in materials and workmanship". 
  • If you haven’t registered your Tiger rice cooker and it breaks, your warranty may be null and void.
  • Tiger also covers only the repair of the electrical components of its products.

Both companies have one-year warranties.

Bottom Line: If you are investing in a top-of-the-line rice cooker from either of these brands, you may want to opt for the brand that provides more warranty coverage, and that’s Zojirushi.


Both Zojirushi and Tiger manufacture rice cookers with a range of technology, including conventional electric, microcomputer (also known as microm), and induction heating (IH).

  • Zojirushi has added another new technology to it’s line with the Induction Heating Pressure Rice cooker & Warmer. According to their website, this new rice cooker “elevates cooking temperatures to higher levels”, which results in softer rice that stays softer for longer compared to regularly cooked rice.
  • Tiger has yet to release this latest pressurized technology.
  • Both brands also offer what is known as fuzzy logic cooking options, Zojirushi calls this “Neuro Fuzzy”, while Tiger calls it their “Automatic Cooking Logic”. Fuzzy logic means that the rice cooker automatically senses and adjusts the temperature of the rice or other food that you are cooking, and adjusts it as necessary to produce the best quality food.
  • Fuzzy logic and other techonologies give you more settings for cooking rice and other foods, while taking out the guess work out of which setting to choose. Fuzzy logic usually cost a little more, but you should consider spending the extra money if you’re planning to cook a variety of foods in your rice cooker.​

Bottom Line: Zojirushi has a bit more technology up its sleeve than Tiger, but that only puts it slightly in the lead in this comparison.

Where It's Made

Tiger and Zojirushi sell rice cookers that are made in both Japan and China, so neither one wins this comparison. If the country where the parts were manufactured and assembled is important to you, be sure to check the specs of each model (from each brand) carefully.

Top 5 Best Tiger Rice Cooker on Market

Tiger Corporation JBV-A10U-W

The Tiger Corporation JBV-A10U Micom Rice Cooker and Warmer will let you cook rice in a very easy way. It comes with a nice Tacook plate that will enable you to create simple entrees with the rice cooker as the rice steams below. It also comes with other innovative features such a four cooking settings for white rice, brown rice, jasmine rice, and other types of food.

The Tacook plate is great for preventing the food cooking inside the rice cooker from affecting the rice steaming below it. It’s also removable and washable.​

This rice cooker is a great choice for anyone who is looking for a machine that’s easy to use. This machine comes with a one push operation that will enable you to cook a batch of rice with just a single push of a button.

Another great thing about this rice cooker is that it comes with a synchro-cooking function that will allow you to cook your entrée and rice at the same time.

And if the thought of having a nice slow cooker sounds great to you, I’m sure you’d also be delighted to know how this rice cooker has a cooking setting for slow cooking. This means you can cook stews, chili, curry, soups, and more.​


  • Comes with 4 cooking menu settings
  • Is very easy to clean
  • Has a non-stick inner pan
  • Includes a non-stick spatula
  • Includes a cooking plate
  • Includes a measuring cup
  • Comes with a free cookbook
  • Has a one push operation


  • Has a cheap look to it
  • Isn’t compatible with other measuring cups
Tiger JNP-S10U-HU

The Tiger JNP-S10U 5.5 Cup Rice Cooker will let you cook white rice without much effort. This model is very conventional, it will just bring you back to the basics of plain rice cooking.

If you are looking for a rice cooker that will ensure you always have warm rice to serve, this one may be the best choice for you. The Tiger JNP comes with a handy keep warm function that can stay on for up to 12-hours.​

This rice cooker is also very easy to clean and maintain since it comes with a removable and washable steam vent as well as a non-stick inner pan. What’s more is that you can easily use it to steam vegetables, poultry, seafood, and other types of food.

Even though this rice cooker is pretty basic when compared to the rest, it has undergone vital testing that ensures its functionality, durability, electric limitations, and food sanitation. Needless to say, this rice cooker is one that you can surely rely on for years to come.​


  • Has a keep warm function
  • Has a non-stick inner pan
  • Comes with a retractable cord
  • Comes with a free spatula and measuring cup
  • Comes with a removable and washable steam vent


  • The lid isn’t really tight fitting
  • Isn’t compatible with other measuring cups
Tiger JAX-T10U-K

If you are like some people who are seeking for an easier way to cook rice, this rice cooker will completely enable you to cook a batch of rice that you don’t need to keep an eye on at all times. With a single push of a button, you will be able to end up with a nice meal.

If you would like to get a machine that’s a bit more modern than most rice cookers in the market today, this one comes with a microcomputer that will provide you with 4 cooking functions and 10 pre-programmed cooking settings.

This rice cooker also monitors the whole cooking process, ensuring that your meal will be cooked the right way and will be up to your standards. It also contains a Tacook synchro cooking function that will allow your cooker to prepare two dishes at the same time. You don’t even have to worry about the flavors of the entrée and the rice mixing together since the Tacook function completely prevents that from happening.

Aside from being a totally modern piece of cookware, this is also very easy to clean since its inner lid and steam cap is removable and completely washable. It even comes with a free cooking plate and cookbook.​


  • Can accommodate 5-cups of rice
  • Comes with 4 different cooking functions
  • Comes with 10 computerized cooking settings
  • Comes with a removable and washable inner lid and steam cap
  • Includes a free cooking plate
  • Includes a free cookbook


  • The measuring marks inside the pan aren’t really visible
  • Is only compatible with its own measuring cup
Tiger JKT-S10U-K IH

If you want something that’s easy to maneuver, clean, and handle, the Tiger JKT is definitely a rice cooker you should check out.

This rice cooker comes with an inner pan that has its own handle. This means you can easily take out the pan for serving once your rice is done cooking. Aside from being completely ergonomic, this rice cooker also has a 2 preset cooking timer that can be very handy whenever you are in a rush.​

Speaking of being in a rush, this rice cooker induction property will ensure that your rice will get cooked really quickly and evenly. The way this cooker works is that it uses a heating element to directly heat the pan up to its sides, ensuring that you get perfectly cooked rice every time.

This rice cooker also comes with a Tacook plate that’s integrated with a Syncro-Cook feature that will let you steam rice as you steam other food as well such as pastries, vegetables, poultry, fish, and meat. You shouldn’t also worry about the flavors of the rice and the other food mixing together since this rice cooker comes with a steam vent technology that prevents that.​


  • Comes with an inner pan that has a grip
  • Is very easy to carry
  • Comes with a 2 preset cooking timer
  • Is made with 5 layers of metal
  • Is made with 3 layers of coating
  • Comes with a washable lid
  • Has a detachable inner and outer life
  • Has a detachable steam vent cap


  • Can easily be scratched
  • Cannot be used with hard scouring pads
  • Is only compatible with its own measuring cup
Tiger JKT-B10U

This rice cooker comes with several cooking functions that will let you personalize its settings to completely meet your personal preferences and needs. You can set this rice cooker to cook a multiple types of rice including brown rice, jasmine rice, white rice, and mixed rice.

You can also use this rice cooker to prepare different types of food such as oatmeal or porridge. Needless to say, this rice cooker is a great machine that you can use to make a fine breakfast for yourself or your family.

This rice cooker also comes with a fine menu that is very easy to understand. All you need to do is select your preferred cooking setting from the eight listed in the menu and the rice cooker’s Micom chip will communicate your selection to the rice cooker’s software to adjust the heat, required power, and cooking time.

If you want to get a rice cooker that can last you years, this rice cooker that’s made with 3-layers of metal will surely meet your expectations.

Aside from being very durable, this rice cooker is also very ergonomic and easy to handle since its inner pan comes with its own handle. It’s also very easy to clean since its inner and outer lid along with its steam vent cap is completely removable and washable.​


  • Is very sturdy
  • Is made with 3 layers of metal
  • Comes with a washable lid
  • Has a removable inner and outer lid
  • Has a removable steam vent cap
  • The inner pan has a grip handle


  • Doesn’t come with a warming plate
  • Is easily scratchable
  • Must be hand washed

Top 5 Best Zojirushi Rice Cooker on Market

 Zojirushi NP-HCC10XH

If you are looking for something that can quickly make you fluffy rice, this Zorijushi rice cooker may be the right choice for you. This rice cooker can cook batches of rice really quick because it is an induction rice cooker that’s able to heat up faster than conventional ones.

Aside from being able to cook rice really quick with its induction technology, this rice cooker can also save you a lot of bucks. Its induction technology is actually more efficient despite being able to perform the same way as gas powered cookers can.

Apart from being a really efficient rice cooker, this one also comes with several sets of cooking functions. The multi-menu functions allow you to prepare a variety of different rice and porridge (grain cereal) types. Those varieties include; white, brown, jasmine, mixed, sushi, etc.

It also has an automatic keep warm function that will ensure you always get to serve warm rice even when your rice has been done cooking for hours. It even has a delay timer that will allow you to set the exact cooking time for your rice. This means you can have perfectly cooked rice just waiting for you in your kitchen.​


  • Has a delay timer
  • Has healthy cooking options
  • Has multi-menu cooking functions
  • Is an induction rice cooker
  • Can cook rice really quick
  • Has a keep warm function


  • Isn’t compatible with other measuring cups
  • Can be a bit confusing to use for the first time
Zojirushi NS-TSC10

This rice cooker is very modern since it comes with its own micro computerized fuzzy logic technology that will ensure you get perfectly cooked rice every time.

What’s great about this rice cooker is that it has a dimension of 14 x 10.1 x 8.5 inches. But despite its compact looking design, it can easily accommodate enough rice that you can serve for a large groups of people.

Other useful features of this rice cooker is its keep warm function, reheat cycle features, and extended keep warm that will help you get warm rice out of your cooker every single time. This rice cooker is also very easy to clean since its exterior is made with stainless steel that you can easily wipe out.

Aside from the exteriors being super easy to clean, its inner cooking pot is also easy to clean since it’s made with aluminum materials with a fine Teflon coating. However, since Teflon is an easily scratch-able material, you may find it a bit hard to maintain.


  • Comes with micro computerized fuzzy logic technology
  • Comes with an automatic keep warm function
  • Has a 2 delay time setting
  • Has an extended keep warm reheating cycle
  • Comes with a retractable power cord
  • Is easy to clean
  • Has a stainless steel exterior


  • The inner pan can be a bit difficult to lift from the cooker
  • Is ideal for dishwasher cleaning

3. Zojirushi NS-WAC10-WD 5.5-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker

Zojirushi NS-WAC10-WD

The Zojirushi NS-WAC10-WD 5.5-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker can offer you multiple cooking functions ideal for mixed rice, sushi rice, white rice, sweet rice, porridge, rinse-free cooking, and quick cooking.

A lot of user reviews on this machine has been really positive because of the preset functions that allows them to cook pretty much any kind of rice, especially tough ones like brown rice.

If you cook plenty of rice all the time, this 5 and ½ capacity rice cooker might be the best one for you. With this rice cooker, you will be able to cook a batch of rice for 6 up to 8 people with ease.

Other useful features of this rice cooker is its keep warm, extendable keep warm function, and timer option. These heating functions once activated, will keep your rice at optimal heat levels without overcooking your rice. The timer option on the other hand, will enable you to set a time for your rice cooker to automatically start the cooking method without the requirement of your supervision. This is also a highly-celebrated function by many users because it has been really helpful in times of multitasking.

This rice cooker also comes with a user-friendly LCD display, multi-cooking functions for different types of rice, and free accessories such as a spatula, a spatula holder, and a measuring cup.​


  • Has a 5 ½ cup capacity
  • Has a user friendly LCD display
  • Has multi-cooking function
  • Comes with a free spatula, spatula holder, and measuring cups
  • Comes with a detachable power cord


  • Doesn’t work with other measuring cups
  • The LCD can get glitchy over time
Zojirushi NS-VGC05

If you are looking for a small rice cooker that can help you make fluffy rice for two people or a small group, this rice cooker will surely help you get the job done.

What’s great about this rice cooker is that it comes with an LCD screen that’s very easy to read and navigate. It also comes with an automatic keep warm function that can be very handy if you want warm rice right out of the cooker at all times.

What’s more is that this rice cooker completely eliminated the need for monitoring and stirring. The technology contained within this rice cooker will completely ensure your rice is flawlessly cooked without lumps.

This rice cooker also comes with its own smart technology that will make sure your rice or the other food you cook in your rice cooker will be cooked under the perfect temperature within the perfect time span, significantly reducing food wasted because of being burnt. This feature of the cooker can also save you a lot of time and can offer you flexibility since it doesn’t require any monitoring.

What’s more is that this rice cooker comes with a set of instructions in a number of languages, making it very easy to understand and operate.​


  • Can cook brown rice really quick
  • Comes with a free spatula
  • Comes with 2 measuring cups
  • Comes with a free recipe list
  • Has an easy to read LCD screen


  • Is a bit heavy
  • Isn’t compatible with other measuring cups
 Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 5-1 2

The Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 is another Japanese rice cooker that has garnered a number of positive praises from its users. If you are looking for a rice cooker that can count as a great investment, you should definitely add this one to your list.

One of the main reasons why this rice cooker has become well known in the market today is because it’s equipped with Zojirushi’s trademark Neuro Fuzzy logic technology. This rice cooker’s computer chip adjusts both the temperature and cooking time to optimal levels to ensure you get perfectly cooked rice every time whether it’s sushi rice, brown rice, white rice, sweet rice, or even porridge.

This is also another large capacity rice cooker in this list. This rice cooker can easily accommodate 5 and ½ cups of rice. You can also keep large quantities of rice really warm even after hours of resting because it comes with an automatic keep warm function along with an extended keep warm and a reheat cycle.

This is also another large capacity rice cooker in this list. This rice cooker can easily accommodate 5 and ½ cups of rice. You can also keep large quantities of rice really warm even after hours of resting because it comes with an automatic keep warm function along with an extended keep warm and a reheat cycle.​


  • Has a keep warm, extended keep warm, and reheat cycle
  • Can accommodate 5 and ½ cups of rice
  • Comes with a 1 year warranty
  • Has an easily understandable LCD display


  • Takes up large counter space
  • The manufacturer warranty doesn’t cover parts replacement

Making The Choice

Investing in a rice cooker can simplify your meal prep, but choosing one is clearly not so simple. Zojirushi edged out Tiger in terms of technology and warranty coverage, but only just slightly. Here are the key questions you need to ask yourself to choose between Zojirushi vs. Tiger.

1. How much versatility do I need in my rice cooker?

2. Do I want to make many different kinds of foods?

3. How important is it to me to have the best technology?

4. If my rice cooker breaks, will the manufacturer pay for the repair/replacement?

5. Do I want a rice cooker that was made in China, or one that was made in Japan?

If you have more questions about Zojirushi vs. Tiger, leave it in the comments below and we’ll do our best to assist you.


Stainless Steel vs. Non-Stick: How To Choose?

Are you in the market for new cookware or bakeware and are trying to decide which one is best for you? Besides choosing between the many brands, price points, and metal options, another question you need to consider is whether to choose stainless steel or non-stick.

Stainless steel vs. non-stick is a tricky question because there are a number of different factors to consider, including what type of cooking you do, durability of the product, and the safety of chemically treated cookware. (cooper cookware is non-stick)

Differences Between Stainless Steel and Non-Stick

1. Coating


  • Most non-stick cookware and bakeware is coated with Teflon, a chemical coating that prevents foods from sticking to the surface of the pot or pan.
  • The Teflon coating on non-stick pans makes them better for low-fat cooking, since you don’t have to add any butter or oil as a preventative measure against sticking. Non-stick pans are also ideal for cooking delicate foods like eggs or pancakes, which fall apart if they stick to the pan. 
  • Stainless steel cookware does not have a coating on it, which means that food does sometimes stick to it, especially if you don’t coat the pan with butter, oil, or another type of fat.

2. Browning


  • Non-stick cookware prevents food from browning, which can result in a less flavorful dish. Many recipes for meat call for browning or searing, as well as using the brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan for gravies and sauces. Non-stick pans are not ideal for this type of recipe.
  • On the flip side, non-stick bakeware is often preferred by bakers because breads, muffins, and pastries retain their lighter, more appetizing, color and taste.
  • Stainless steel pots and pans allow foods to brown, or caramelize.
  • Caramelization occurs when sugars in a food turn brown when exposed to high heat.
  • For many cooks, the best part of cooking meats or vegetables is the caramelization, because the browned sugars create additional flavor.

3. Durability


  • The Teflon coating on a non-stick pan is not as durable as a stainless steel pan. High-quality non-stick cookware can last a long time, but only if you take the right precautions.
  • You must be careful not to use sharp utensils when cooking with non-stick pans, or you risk scraping away the Teflon coating. Washing non-stick pans also requires the use of soft cleaning products.
  • Stainless steel is so durable that it is used in the production of many household items, like appliances, faucets, and silverware.
  • Since stainless steel cooking surfaces do not have a delicate coating on them, you can use any type of utensil when cooking, or when cleaning them.
  • If you hate kitchen clean-up after dinner, stainless steel pots and pans are your friends; they are dishwasher safe. Not all non-stick cookware can go in the dishwasher, though, so read up on the specifics of each non-stick product before purchasing.

Safety Concerns with Non-Stick Cookware

The main chemical in the Teflon coating on non-stick cookware has a high melting point, so many people consider it safe to use for most cooking. Unfortunately, it begins to break down and release particles when heated to temperatures above 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

Studies have shown that when Teflon is heated to 680 degrees or more, six toxic gases are released, two of which are carcinogens. If inhaled in large amounts, these gases can be harmful to humans. If inhaled by birds (as in, your pet, if you have one), the fumes can be deadly.

Good Housekeeping did a test to determine how easy it would be to overheat a non-stick pan on a typical household burner. The testers were surprised to find how quickly both lightweight and medium weight non-stick pans could reach temperatures upwards of 500 degrees.

The lesson:

Cooking with Teflon-coated pans doesn’t mean that you’re at an automatic health risk. It does mean that you need to be extra careful when heating non-stick pans. Even the latest ceramic non-stick coating technology does not allow for maximum heat when cooking.

Making The Choice

Nobody wants to struggle with their pots and pans in the kitchen. We want to be able to cook with ease and have cleanup be simple. Before buying the prettiest set of cookware or bakeware (or the one with that is on sale today) ask yourself these questions:

  • Is adding oil or butter to my cooking going to be a problem for my diet?
  • Does caramelization on my meats and veggies matter to me?
  • ​How important is it that I be able to throw my pots and pans in the dishwasher?
  • ​Do I cook with high temperatures often?
  • These simple questions should put you on the right track to deciding between purchasing stainless steel or non-stick.

If you still have more questions about stainless steel vs. non-stick, feel free to leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to answer it for you.



Best Copper Cookware Reviews (2020): Our Favorite Pots & Pans To Buy

I will never forget the moment I got my first piece of copper cookware. Until then, I’d functioned relatively well with a mismatch of hand-me-down pots and pans I’d collected throughout early adulthood.

As an entirely self-taught foodie with a brewing passion for cooking, my first “grown up” pan was a gift from above. I remember thinking in the seconds after I opened it on Christmas morning that it was too pretty to actually cook with. But it was also too expensive not to use it for all the goodness it had to offer.

That’s the thing about copper cookware – you get what you pay for. In my case, my starter copper saute pan remains one of my most prized possessions. True to its copper upbringing, it cooks almost anything evenly because of how well the properties in the pan react to changes in temperature. Yet I had no idea at the time how that investment compared in the greater scheme of all things copper cookware. It is a drop in the bucket.

To start with, it’s not actually considered copper cookware. It has a heavy copper bottom, but is otherwise made up of stainless steel, as are most of my beloved cooking vessels. Not only that, but a pan is downright cheap in the realm of copper cookware.

Quick Comparison: Top Copper Cookwares 2019

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

The 5 Best Propane Gas Smokers Reviews

There are few smells in the world that trigger a person’s taste buds like the unmistakable aroma of meat in a smoker. The scent wafts through the air, making nostrils flare and stomachs growl. Most home chefs and grill masters alike agree that smoking meats like ribs and briskets is the most flavorful and mouthwatering cooking method. I usually smoke chicken, besides chicken piccata recipe is loved by the family.

Quick Comparison: Top Propane Gas Smokers 2019

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

The Gold Standard of Smokers

Though there are other options, like electrical and charcoal smokers, a gas smoker is thought of as the gold standard for smoking meats at home. Propane smokers allow for a leave it and forget it method of slow cooking, which makes things easy for home cooks. At an average cost of about $200, they are affordable, easy to clean and incorporate the use of wood chips, chunks or pellets to blend a unique flavor profile.

Of the styles of propane-fueled smokers, a cabinet style smoker allows for easy access and helps make the process of cleaning a bit more efficient. Some cabinet style models include two doors, allowing you access to the cooking chamber as well as a separate place to check on the flame and water pan.

Similar to gas grills, the temperature of a gas smoker is generally easier to regulate than its wood and charcoal competitors. With that said, regular users of gas smokers often voice concern that they are unable to keep the temperature as low as possible, leading them to take measures into their own hands. Sometimes that means leaving the door slightly ajar to let the air escape, a method proven to help the process albeit you will burn through more gas.

Another thing to consider is purchasing a grill thermometer to help regulate the temperature inside the smoker, as the ones included on the unit itself may not be the most reliable.

Factors to Consider

Here are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for the perfect propane smoker for you:

  • Dependability. Look for a company known for building high-quality products constructed for the long haul. Consider whether it is worth it to spend a few extra dollars on something with outstanding reviews that will most likely last forever versus something lower on the proverbial food chain you may have to replace after a couple of years. Think names like Masterbuilt or Char-Griller.
  • Capacity. There are propane-fueled smokers so compact you can use them inside your home or there are smokers built to feed a crowd. When you’re trying to decide on a smoker that’s right for you, it is pertinent to consider how you intend to use it. Will you be using your propane smoker regularly to feed crowds at large family gatherings? Will you use it a few times a year after a successful deer hunting weekend? Will you use it to feed you and your spouse? Think about your individual needs when considering which smoker to buy - bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better.
  • Build. When you’re looking to buy the perfect propane-fueled smoker, look for quality construction. Consider the materials the smoker is built with. While it might be a nice feature for the unit to be portable, it may also be a better investment if it is built with thick, high-quality steel.
  • Price. There are some pretty expensive propane smokers out there and some pretty cheap ones as well, but something in the middle will probably suffice. The average cost of a propane smoker is around $200, which means there isn’t that significant a difference in price for the quality. While it is never a good idea to bite off more than you can chew financially, $40 can make a difference in this case, and it may be worthwhile to spend the extra money for something built to last.

Our Top Five Picks

Considering each of these things, here are our picks for the top propane smokers in 2016:

Masterbuilt GS30D

This smoker comes in three sizes, 30-inch, 40-inch and 44-inch, ranging from 717 square inches to 2,000 square inches of cooking space. Each size features push button ignition, two doors for easy access to both the cooking area and the water tray and a locking door with built-in temperature gauge.

The handles on the two door system are equipped with cool touch wire handles as well, to help prevent burning your hands on the system when it’s hot.

  • Pros: Comes in three sizes, featuring push button ignition and two-door system.
  • Cons: It is large and among the more challenging smokers in terms of portability.


If you’re looking for versatility in a propane smoker, this is the one for you. The Big Easy lets you smoke, roast and grill using TRU-Infrared technology to evenly cook whatever your heart desires. It holds up to 25 pounds for roasting and features 180 square inches of cooking area.

  • Pros: Versatility abounds with this bullet-style.
  • Cons: The bullet style smoker features a smaller cooking area than its cabinet style comrades.

 Char-Griller 06620

Rooted in ancient cookery, the Kamado Kooker draws from ancient cooking methods that used large clay ovens. Modern day Kamados are built out of heavy ceramic and feature solid steel construction made to stand the test of time.

Versatility is another prominent feature of this smoker, which is actually known more for being an amazing grill. There are 306 square inches of cooking space and 165 square inches of warming space on the cast iron cooking surface. In addition to a temperature gauge, the lid locks.

  • Pros: A rich history has led to the quality construction of a long-lasting cooking vessel.
  • Cons: The bullet style smoker features a smaller cooking area than its cabinet style comrades.

Camp Chef

Portability is a key feature of the Camp Chef 18-inch Smoke Vault, which features two adjustable smoking racks, three adjustable damper valves and a built-in door thermometer. A matchless snap ignition offers an easy and convenient start up as well.

  • Pros: Portability and ease in cleaning are among the best features of this medium sized smoker.
  • Cons: There is less cooking area for larger smoking projects than other cabinet style models.

Nordic Ware

Named with its versatility in mind, the Nordic Ware 365 makes it possible to smoke your favorite foods 365 days a year. While the compact unit may certainly be used outside as well, it is one of only a handful of its kind that are frequently used indoors.

The smoker features a high-dome cover, base pan, water pan, nonstick smoking rack and thermometer, and comes with a recipe book and wood chips.

With this smoker, it’s pros are the same as its cons.

  • Pros: It is small, making it easy to move and a breeze to operate indoors in the cold winter months.
  • Cons: However, its size is also its downfall for hardcore smoker lovers, who may prefer something much larger in the long run.

In Conclusion

This is just a sampling of the options out there for propane smokers, which are capable of delivering mouth-watering smells and even better tastes in the comfort of your backyard. While some people swear by charcoal and electric grills, others argue you can’t beat the portability, versatility and ease of use of their propane competitors.

In review, most gas smokers come in either a bullet or cabinet style construction. When selecting the right propane smoker for you, it is important to keep in mind several factors. Dependability, capacity, build and price are among the main things to consider as you shop.

The best part of all of it despite what you end up with is the end game. Soon you too will be the envy of the neighbors as that delicious, smoky aroma wafts throughout the neighborhood. One last piece of advice – buy an extra rack of ribs, too, because chances are with all of that amazing smoked goodness in the air you may just attract some company.

What does Trout Taste Like?

For a lot of people, there is nothing like the peace and serenity of sipping an ice cold beverage as the sun sets while watching a bobber or working a crankbait through the lake. From perch and walleye to blue gill and crappie, there is something for everyone to enjoy for dinner after a productive day out on the water.

Among the options is trout, a freshwater delicacy that is closely related to salmon. Classified as an oily fish, trout are considered an excellent source of essential vitamins, including A and D. They also are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which are an essential part of any health diet.

So what does a trout taste like? In my opinion, trout has a unique texture and offers a bit of a salty aftertaste. I’ve had it multiple times in various preparations, but just thinking about the simplest preparation of all (cooked whole on a cast iron skillet over an open flame and seasoned with butter, lemon, salt and pepper) makes my mouth water.

In the Opinion of Others

In an informal poll of some fellow culinary minds, I learned there are two relatively distinct responses that come to mind for most people when they think about what trout tastes like:

Trout is a Mild Flavored Fish

Many people describe trout as being relatively flavorless on its own, which means it lends itself well to a variety of cooking methods. When it comes to what most fishermen refer to as “good eaters,” trout do not fall as high on the proverbial food chain as the more popular crappie or walleye. Their bone structure makes them a bit more challenging to filet, which plays into why many choose to prepare them whole.

That doesn’t make them any less palatable, however, especially when they are freshly caught, properly handled and seasoned to perfection. For some, that means lemon, butter and herbs. For others that means all things deep fried. Most of the trout species have what is considered to be a relatively mild flavor that lends itself to a variety of cooking methods.

Trout has a Natural, Fishy Taste

Their location, whether they are spawning or have recently spawned and how fresh they are at time of cooking all are capable of having a profound impact on their overall flavor profile. Obviously, personal preference also plays into whether these tasty treats are deemed delicious or deniable.

That being said, there are some people who say trout is too oily, offering too earthy a taste on its own.

Considering the Cooking Options

The good news for trout lovers and haters alike is simple: the options for preparing trout are both boundless and promising.

Smoking Trout

Smoking trout is one of the most popular methods preferred by chefs and fishermen alike. Most recipes for smoked trout are relatively simple and easy to follow. The best part is you don’t necessarily even need a smoker to get the job done. Not only is smoked trout a delicious treat on its own, but it is an excellent addition to dips, spreads or salads.

Less is more when it comes to cooking trout. The same can be said for a lot of fish, but in the case of trout it is especially true. Keep it simple is the name of the game when it comes to debunking the myth that trout isn’t quite as delicious as its fishy relatives.

Fried Trout

Fried trout is delicious – as are most things fried – and grilled and pan seared trout are good too as long as you limit the ingredients to simple things. Think butter, lemon, salt and pepper and perhaps a handful of your favorite fresh herb.

Step by step guides are available to assist in the process of making sure that – if you opt not to keep the fish whole – you enjoy as much juicy meat as possible.

Anatomy of a Trout

While most species of trout are considered equal, they vary slightly based on their country of origin. Globally, trout comes in more than a dozen recognized variations, which includes a variety of sizes, coloring and spotting patterns.

Lake trout arguably has the worst reputation among the trout types, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they aren’t everything your stomach desires. In America, lake trout variations are known to result in some trout being more lean than others. As with most proteins, many chefs deem the most delicious lake trout to be slightly more fatty to help flavor the meat and distribute its juices evenly throughout the cooking process.

A recent trip to the Northwoods of Wisconsin led to me solidifying my personal opinion of what trout tastes like. My husband and I spent the day fishing with family and had quite a haul of trout as a result.

That day I learned that, despite also enjoying fried and smoke trout, there is honestly nothing like cooking the delicacy you just caught fresh in a cast iron skillet over an open flame with the simple treatment of some butter, lemon, salt and pepper.

With that I have my answer to the question of what trout tastes like: it tastes delicious!

What Is Sweet Milk? The Answer Might Surprise You!

The other day I was going through my collection of family recipes and I have stumbled upon my great grandmother’s recipe for a classic cup of hot chocolate. In that recipe, an ingredient I didn’t know about was included in the list, sweet milk.

What is sweet milk anyway? I thought back then. In attempt to remake my great grandmother’s hot chocolate, I did a little research on what sweet milk could be. Though the name itself should already be a giveaway of what this thing is, I was actually surprised once I figured out what exactly sweet milk is.

If you too encountered a recipe that requires you to use sweet milk, or if you just plainly want to figure out what sweet milk is for other purposes, I encourage you to read on. This article contains everything you need to know about what is sweet milk.

What Is Sweet Milk?

Sweet milk, its name is kind of misleading. Upon doing research I have discovered that sweet milk is basically just your plain whole milk.

Why the confusion with the name then you ask? Well it turns out that whole milk used to be called sweet milk back then just because people had to label it to distinguish it from other kinds of milk used for cooking, specifically buttermilk.

Since whole milk comes with a sweeter taste than that of buttermilk, it was given the name sweet milk, which was then dropped today.

In today’s market, you will be able to find all kinds of sweet milk including whole, low-fat, high-calcium, and more. However, you won’t find it in a carton or packaging that says “sweet milk.” It’s just today’s plain old milk.

Sweet Milk Vs. Buttermilk

So why was there a need to label whole milk as sweet milk back then? Well, the main reason could be because sweet milk and buttermilk are two of the most commonly used milks for cooking back then.

Sweet milk is often used for making desserts such as flan, chocolate, and creamy ice creams. Buttermilk on the other hand, is often used for baking.

Perhaps the reason why whole milk is named as sweet milk back then is to reduce the instances of cooks mistaking buttermilk for regular sweet milk.

Using the right milk for certain cooking recipes is truly a great deal. Having the wrong milk in your fridge can significantly affect the overall taste of the dish you are trying to create.

The clear distinction between buttermilk and sweet milk is a necessary step in the culinary world because these two types of milk come with very different flavors.

Sweet milk for one has a rather sweet taste to it, hence the name. Though not all types of sweet milk come with the same amount of sweetness, all kinds of sweet milk whether it be low-fat or whole comes with an ultimately sweeter taste than other types of milk.

As for buttermilk, it comes with a slight sour taste to it. Not that buttermilk is slightly bad, it comes with a distinct sour taste as an effect of the lactic acids that it contains. Another difference between buttermilk and sweet milk is the consistency.

Since buttermilk undergoes a curdling process, it becomes a bit more thicker than regular milk. Another interesting difference between sweet milk and buttermilk is that buttermilk comes with less fat.

The buttermilk’s certain features is what makes it ideal for baking. The acid contents of buttermilk gets integrated very well with baking recipes that include baking soda in the mix. A buttermilk and baking soda combo is what makes pastries become light and tender at the same time. And unachievable feat when sweet milk is used.

Common Misconceptions About Sweet Milk

Now that you are very well aware of what sweet milk actually is (normal milk), you may now stop getting fooled into thinking that sweet milk is exactly the same as other types of milk that actually come with sweeteners.

One common misconception that is linked with sweet milk is that sweet milk and condensed milk are the same.

Since we now know that sweet milk is basically normal milk, the case that sweet milk and condensed milk is the same is not likely.

Unlike sweet milk, or regular milk, condensed milk actually comes with a lot of sugar. In fact, to make condensed milk, you will need to mix up regular milk with a lot of sugar and wait for the sugar to caramelize to get fully integrated with the regular milk.

The end product of this mixture would be a highly sweetened form of milk that comes with a very thick consistency.

Unlike sweet milk and buttermilk that is often added in the middle of the cooking process, condensed milk is often added at the end of the cooking process as a form of garnish or topping.

A Quick Recap

It can sometimes be surprising to do a little research on a certain ingredient and find out that it’s actually something you are very familiar with. Just like with the case of what is sweet milk, it’s funny to discover that it’s actually just plain milk.

Now that you know what sweet milk actually is, you should no longer have any difficulty in knowing where you can find it. Turns out you can easily buy one from your local supermarket.

If you have any questions about this article, please leave your comment on the box below. I’ll try to get back to you as soon as I can. Thank you and happy cooking!

Best Offset Smoker Reviews (2020): Our Top Recommendations For The Money

Some of my dearest memories from when I was a child are of weekends spent in our backyard, my dad standing by the smoker and me playing with my siblings, waiting for him to finish preparing some delicious ribs. That time, I knew I wanted the same experience when I grow up.

Now, it’s kind of a tradition – my hubby by the offset smoker and my kids in the backyard keeping me company. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it? That’s why I’m here – to help you find the best offset smoker that will take you one step closer to making such memories yourself.

Quick Comparison: Top Offset Smokers 2019

Product Quality Price Our Rating
Camp Chef PG24 Deluxe Pellet Grill and Smoker BBQ A+ $$$  

Dyna-Glo DGO1176BDC-D Vertical Offset Charcoal Smoker

A $  

Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker

A $$$  

Char-Broil Oklahoma Joe’s Charcoal/Gas/Smoker Combo

B+ $$$  
Char-Broil American Gourmet Offset Smoker Smoker Deluxe B $$  

**Below, you’ll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

What Is An Offset Smoker?



Even though there are plenty different types of smokers to choose from, this one, by far, is the most popular one. I think the name alone says a lot – an offset smoker. The idea is that you have two separate chambers, one that you use as a firebox and the other where you place your food. The heat and smoke then find their way from the firebox to the cooking chamber. Sounds simple enough, right? Let’s just say it like this – if you’ve learned how to build a fire, you’ve learned how to use an offset smoker.

The two chambers are barrel-like and in most cases positioned horizontally. The firebox is slightly lowered than the cooking chamber. There is a chimney that connects the two, and there’s another one on the other end of the cooking chamber, through which the smoke exits it.

An Offset Smoker vs. Other Types of Smokers



If you’ve paid attention so far, then you’ve learned that what makes offset smokers different from other types of smokers is the way they’re built. The first advantage is that when you’re using an offset smoker and want to add more fuel to the fire, there’s no need to open the cooking chamber. It dispenses with that need because the firebox is not in the cooking chamber.

You also have the option of turning this into a grill, thanks to its firebox set-up. For this, many manufacturers and sellers will include an optional grill grate to make grilling possible. Imagine having a smoker and a grill all in one. An offset smoker can make that happen.

And can I just point out how cool it looks? I know you agree or you wouldn’t be here reading this. Imagine yourself on a sunny Sunday afternoon, enjoying a cold drink, chatting with your family and friends, all while standing by your new offset grill. Sounds great, doesn’t it?

One thing that I can list as a disadvantage is that an offset smoker will take up a lot more space than other smoker types due to the way it’s built, so keep this in mind if you have a smaller backyard.

What To Look For In An Offset Smoker?

As a buyer, you would want to choose an offset smoker that has a good quality. But what does “quality” stand for when you’re picking out an offset smoker? I’m going to name a few things that can help you decide if the smoker you are thinking of buying is worth your money or not.

1. Budget

This one depends on your personal preferences. Take a look at the various offset offerings in the market and check out how much they cost. After that, come up with a reasonable budget that you know will get you a decent offset smoker.

2. Material and Construction

This one is important. Even if you know nothing about offset smokers, it makes sense to buy one that is made out a high-quality material such as gauge steel. Let’s say this is pretty much the golden standard – always go for gauge steel.

3. Design

Another crucial factor. You’ll be dealing with fire, high temperatures, and thick smoke – you need a smoker made in such a way that it provides safety in those conditions. Watch out for the welds and the seal of the lids, make sure they look well-built. Of course, you can’t know that for sure until you’ve used the smoker for the first time, but this way you’ll lessen the chances of making the wrong choice.

4. Size

This one depends mainly on your lifestyle. For example, if you like to entertain larger groups of people and prepare food for them, consider buying a larger grill. If, however, you plan on occasionally cooking something for your family, there’s no need to go overboard with the smoker size. I do believe, though, that getting a larger smoker could motivate you to host dinner parties more often.

5. Portability

As you can imagine, offset smokers tend to be pretty heavy, so if you plan on moving it around a lot, be kind to your back and buy one that has wheels or casters.


5 Our Best Offset Smokers 2019

1. Dyna-Glo DGO1176BDC-D Vertical Offset Charcoal Smoker

 Dyna-Glo DGO1176BDC-D

If you’re looking to buy a smoker for under $200, then this is the one for you. This model is made out of steel coupled with a high-temperature powder coat finish. These are characteristic that make this offset smoker a durable choice.

Another thing to note about this product is how the cooking chamber is positioned. This one has a vertical chamber, which is different from the usual horizontal ones.

This product can offer you a great introduction to the offset smoker. It’s an ideal option for budget-conscious individuals and for those who don’t need one that is too complicated.


  • It’s easy to assemble it
  • It’s budget-friendly
  • The vertical offset, instead of the typical horizontal, makes it stand out from other models on this list and allows for a good heat flow
  • The vertical positioning of the chamber reduces its footprint, making this more ideal for people with space constraints.


  • It might not be that portable because of its lack of wheels.
  • It doesn’t come with a cover, so you’ll need to buy it separately

2. Char-Broil American Gourmet Offset Smoker Deluxe


If you have this offset smoker, you don’t need to buy anything else. This smoker does more than just smoke meats. You can also barbecue and grill with it. It has a good grilling surface, allowing you to cook more food at a given time.

Get this if you are looking for a heavy-duty offset smoker that isn’t difficult to set-up and operate and produces the best smoking results. It also comes with a storage rack, so you have plenty of space for all your extra grilling or smoking paraphernalia.


  • It’s easy on the budget. The price is cheaper compared to other similar offset smokers
  • It’s very easy to set up. Even those who are new to offset smokers assembled it with ease with just the use of the manual.
  • It holds up well against a considerable level of abuse.
  • The size is just right for small to medium smoking or grilling needs


  • Like most smokers, some had issues with the accuracy and consistency of the thermometer
  • This might not be the best for quick cooking but is superb for slow cooking such as smoking meats

3. Camp Chef PG24 Deluxe Pellet Grill and Smoker BBQ

Camp Chef PG24XT

This model is a crowd favorite because of its superb features. It’s more expensive but its features more than make up for its higher price tag.

One of its remarkable features is its digital temperature control that lets you have full control over the temperature of what you are smoking or grilling. If you don’t like to babysit your offset smoker all day, this is the perfect, no-fuss option for you. The way this smoker, Camp Chef PG24 Deluxe Pellet Grill and Smoker BBQ is built, is what makes it the best offset smoker.


  • This model offers digital temperature control, which means you don’t have to spend your time constantly checking the temperature – set it all up and relax while you let the smoker do the work.
  • It has wheels which make moving it a lot easier.
  • It has a wide temperature range. It can reach temperatures of up to 500° F.


  • Some users might find the one-year warranty disappointing.
  • There is some possibility of smoke leaking from the chamber

4. Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker

Oklahoma Joe

This model is one of the reasonably-priced offset smokers on this list. Made out of heavy gauge steel, this one can withstand a good amount of abuse. It’s also a nice-looking smoker that you will be proud to showcase to your friends.

Oklahoma Joe’s basic smoker package is nice but if you have some money to spare, get the smoker sealer. It will help prevent problems like leaking. You would want to get an additional cover as well to complete your set-up.

All in all, this is offset smoker is worth every penny you spend on it. Even if you get the additional accessories, it still won’t break the bank.


  • Reasonable price
  • It uses reverse flow technology, which gives you a more even distribution of smoke and heat
  • It has wheels for better portability
  • The firebox has a clean-out door which helps when it’s time to remove the ashes
  • The entire smoker is made from gauge-steel


  • It needs to be additionally sealed, as there are some problems with leaking smoke
  • Some users reported a problem with the built-in thermometer

5. Char-Broil Oklahoma Joe’s Charcoal/Gas/Smoker Combo


Need an offset smoker that already comes with everything you need? This is the right choice. It doesn’t just come complete with accessories, it also has a thoughtful and striking design. Price-wise, this isn’t too hard on the budget. The price is accessible and reasonable given its many features.


  • This model has a standard firebox, as all offset smokers do, but it also has an added gas-powered cooking chamber
  • It can be used as a smoker and as a grill
  • When the chambers are combined, it has a larger cooking area than most other models on this list


  • It has wheels, but they are too weak to carry the weight of the smoker (around 200 lbs), so you’ll probably need some help when you lift it
  • You need to buy an additional cover for it


Still having trouble deciding what to get? Let’s go over these products once again so you can finally narrow down your options to just one.

The Dyna-Glo offset smoker is recommended if you like a reliable smoker with multiple racks that you can use for smoking a lot of meat. This can be a good addition to your business or can be a treasured item in your home. The vertical structure of this smoker makes this more ideal for those with smaller spaces.

Get the Char-Broil American Gourmet Offset Smoker if budget is an issue. Even when the price is at the lower-end of the market, its features and functions can trump many of the features of other pricier options.

For serious meat smokers and grillers, you can’t go wrong with Camp Chef. The features are just right, and the smoking temperature will enable you to produce the best-tasting foods. Oklahoma Joe’s Highland Reverse Flow Smoker is a good alternative to the Camp Chef. It has a unique reverse flow technology feature that will allow you to get better smoke distribution, which can result to the best-tasting foods.

For those looking for more versatility, the Char-Broil Oklahoma Joe’s Charcoal Combo product won’t disappoint. You can also do some serious grilling with this, perfect for those weekend outdoor parties.

Make sure you consider these things when buying. If you are looking for more meat smokers, grillers and even other kitchen equipment and essentials, check out our homepage to find more reviews, product recommendations and buying guides.

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