I swapped my oven for a slow cooker with some surprising results

Pensioner shares top tip for saving money

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When it comes to saving money, there isn’t much I haven’t tried so after writing about the potential savings of using a slow cooker rather than an oven for Express.co.uk back in July, I decided to give it a go myself. But were the savings worth it?

I first became passionate about saving money when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter who is now nearly 16-years-old.

Before that I wasn’t very savvy at all, accumulating £16,000 worth of debt from living beyond my means.

Since then, I’ve probably tried every money saving tip in the book, saving thousands of pounds by changing my habits.

However, it wasn’t until the cost of living crisis that I swapped my oven for a slow cooker – and the results were surprising.

To be honest my energy bills are at the lower end of the scale because I tend to be careful with my usage.

This is the first year I’ve been using a slow cooker and I’ve noticed a noticeable difference on my energy bills.

However, it’s impossible to say exactly how much using a slow cooker has saved me personally – around the same time I started doing the washing at a lower temperature on a quicker cycle, and I still haven’t put the central heating on.

The good news is those changes, combined with the Government’s £66 energy bill support, have been saving me £25 a month compared to last year.

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My October bill this year for gas and electricity was just £42.91 after the £66 discount from the Government.

It shows I have used 50kWh less electricity than the same time last year – so small changes really do add up.

In 2021, my combined bill for gas and electricity was £67.20 so I’m paying almost £25 less this year because of the £66 energy rebate and all my money-saving methods combined.

The saving is not as high as suggested by a charity called Homeless in Teignbridge Support (HITS) which found the savings of using a slow cooker rather than an electric oven could be as high as £40 a month. 

However, their figures are based on what a typical family uses while my own research was based on a single-parent family.

Its research showed a 160W slow cooker can be used for 15 hours and 42 minutes for the same energy usage as one hour with a standard electric oven.

While not everything can be cooked in a slow cooker, most things can and cheaper cuts of meat tend to taste better cooked this way as it makes the meat really tender.

I’ve not had to turn on my oven at all and have been making stews, casseroles, curries and pasta dishes in the slow cooker – thanks to the internet, recipes are really easy to find.

Your oven is one of the biggest energy guzzlers using 2,000 watts of energy, putting the cost of one hour’s cooking at 68 pence.

In comparison, using an air-fryer for an hour costs just 38p, and opting for a three-minute blast in your typical microwave will cost only 3p.

It also pays to ditch the tumble dryer and swap the central heating for an electric blanket.

Express Money readers can use a really useful online tool which helps people work out how much each of their household appliances is costing them.

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