A few weeks ago, Heavenly Homemakers mentioned an issue I’d never heard of before – that there’s a concern of lead in glazed ceramics, including the crocks of slow cookers.
Unfortunately, there’s not a whole lot of information out there. I Googled (or rather, Swagbucked) the issue and read enough to make me concerned enough to stop using my slow cookers (I have a 5-quart and a 1-quart). Then I remembered my favorite slow cooker recipe site, A Year of Slow Cooking, and found this post in which Stephanie says she was assured that Crock-Pot brand crocks don’t contain any lead.
That’s the brand of my 5-quart cooker, but I’m not sure if I believe the company’s claim – and I haven’t used my slow cooker since. I’d like to keep using it, but my boys are very young and lead is so damaging to developing brains that I’m just not sure it’s worth the risk.
In the meantime, I think for the holidays, I am going to ask for expensive Le Creuset cookware. They explicitly state in their FAQ that they don’t use lead, and explain how they use cadmium, so I tend to believe them. And I have to use something to cook my food in!
But it looks like my oven is going to be getting a lot more use this winter. And hopefully by the summer, I’ll have a more definitive answer regarding slow cooker use.