Slow-cooker-liner

Slow cookers are an easy convenient way to cook food when you’re busy. When you add a slow cooker liner to the pot it makes the process even easier. Let’s take a look at what these liners are and if they are safe to use. Will slow cooker liners melt? 

Slow cooker liners are made to withstand heat up to 400 ℉ so no, they will not melt in the slow cooker. Slow cooker liners are made of plastic, which can be concerning because of the chemicals plastics release, but if you look for the right liners then they will be FDA certified and safe.

will liners melt in slow cooker

Liners for slow cookers are easy to use, but are they safe to use? There are many pros and cons to using a slow cooker liner.

Let’s see what some of those pros and cons are as well as give some tips which brands are the safest. 

Are Slow Cooker Liners Safe to Use?

Slow cooker liners are made from nylon resin, which is another name for a type of plastic. Since these liners are made of plastic the question of whether they are safe to cook with comes up, especially with the risk of a chemical called BPA. Most liners are now made BPA-free and heat resistant, which limits the chemicals to safe levels of use. 

What is BPA?

BPA or Bisphenol A is a chemical that can be found in the manufacturer of most plastics. It has been shown to cause harm to human health since the 1970s. It increases the risk for several diseases such as

  • Reproductive harm (miscarriage)
  • Heart disease
  • Higher risk for type 2 diabetes 
  • Increased, or decreased bodyweight
  • Harms fetal brain development 
  • May contribute to breast and prostate cancer
  • Increased risk of developing asthma 

Here is a chart that shows an increase in disease due to BPA. This study was done in the United States and uses American citizens. 

This study was done in the United States and uses American citizens. 

Breast Cancer18%Increase from 1975 to 2003
Prostate Cancer85%Increase from 1975 to 2002
Impaired fertility20%Increase from 1995 to 2002
Polycystic Ovarian Disease5 to 10% Of women reproductive age
Insulin Resistance20%Of all Americans
Recurrent Miscarriage1%Of all couples

What is a Slow Cooker Liner?

They are simply a plastic bag. They are resistant to higher heat, which most slow cookers don’t reach. They are used to make clean up easy. Liners literally line the inside of your cooker so that food doesn’t stick to the edges. 

Slow cooker liner

How to Use a Liner: A Short Guide

Here is a quick step-by-step guide on how to use your slow cooker liner. 

  1. Line the Pot

Line your pot with the opening facing up. Make sure it’s snug.

  1. Add Food

Place all of your ingredients inside the liner following whatever recipe you’re using.

  1. Put on the Lid

Simply place the lid on top of the slow cooker and let it work its magic. Walk away until the cooking is done. 

Can Slow Cooker Liners Burn Me?

Liners are still inside a slow cooker that gets quite hot. Since they also get hot do not touch them until they have cooled down completely. If you touch the liner while it is hot it can result in a burn.

Temperatures of a Slow Cooker

In case you’re worried about the temperature a slow cooker can reach here is a basic chart. The temperatures below are the max temperatures that the slow cooker can reach at that specific setting.  

Warm170 ℉
Low185 ℉
High200 ℉



Is it Safe to Leave the Slow Cooker All Day with a Liner

It is safe to leave the slow cooker to do its job. A liner is simply a tool that will help keep the ceramic pot clean. Since slow cookers don’t reach temperatures above 400 ℉ they are safe to leave to cook all day.

Slow cooker liners

Pros and Cons of Using Slow Cooker Liners

The Pros

Easy to Clean Up

Since slow cooker liners are just a bag, you can pick them right up and throw them away. No fuss when you don’t have to clean the ceramic insert. 

You Save on Water

Because you can just throw away the liner you don’t have to waste water soaking and washing the insert. A simple wiping out of the ceramic pot will be sufficient. 

Makes More Dishwasher Room

Not having to clean the insert means you have more room in your dishwasher for other items. Ceramic inserts can take up quite a bit of space, and if you have more dishes then it can be difficult to add to the wash.  

A Good Aid

The liners make using a slow cooker much easier for people with chronic hand pain or limited mobility. You don’t have to move the Crock Pot everywhere or expend extra energy to clean it. Liners make it a quick pull and toss. 

Stress Free Meals

You can have a meal prepared the night before and store it in the liner in the fridge. Then the next morning just pop it into the slow cooker and go. This makes having a meal later that day super-efficient. 

Cook More than One Meal at a Time

If you have a larger slow cooker you could use two liners in the same pot to cook two separate meals. Or if you don’t like your food touching you can cook them together in separate liners. Just make sure the liners are tightly in place so they don’t slip. 

Multiple Cooking Uses

Slow cooker lines can be used in temperatures up to 400 ℉ and therefore can be used in multiple ways. They can be used in rice cookers and even stovetop pans, just to make life a little easier. 

The Cons

Liners are Single Use Only

Slow cooker liners may be efficient, but they are one and done. Once you’ve used the liner it goes straight to the trash, which can be great for convenience, but not so much for the environment. 

Non-biodegradable 

The liners are made from nylon, and no form of nylon is biodegradable. They won’t break down after throwing them out. 

Chemical Leak

Although the liners only release small amounts of chemicals it can still be a concern. Most slow cooker liners don’t have BPA in them, but they are still plastic. Some people don’t want to have any chemical leaks in their food, and that’s okay.

Plastic Melts

This shouldn’t be a problem with slow cooker liners since they can reach temperatures of 400 ℉, however, if they exceed this level they will melt, so don’t use them in cookers that get hotter than that. 

The Liner Might Tear

Tears and rips happen. Usually, the slow cooker liners tear because they’ve been poked and prodded by something sharp. If you’re stirring the contents of the pot be sure to use something blunt. 

Moisture Can Get Under the Liner

Sometimes moisture from the cooking process can leak down under the liner into the ceramic pot. This isn’t a big deal, it just means you’ll have to wipe out the pot after use. 

The Liner Can Stick

The liner can get hot enough in some places of the slow cooker that it will stick to the edges. Each brand of a liner is different, so check the instructions for the ones you’re using. 

Spend Extra Money

If you’ve decided to add slow cooker liners to your shopping list then you’ll be buying them consistently.

Liner Alternatives 

If you’re decided you want to use liners, but don’t want to mess with nylon plastics then there are alternatives out there. 

Silicone Reusable Inserts

If you’re looking for a reusable option, consider getting a silicone insert. They are easily removed and can be used multiple times without having to throw them away. They do require more cleaning, but it’s better than lugging around the ceramic insert. 

Easy to Clean Pot

You can buy a different insert for your cooker that is easier to clean. If your current insert is sticky and hard to use then consider getting a newer one. 

Clean in the Dishwasher

You’ll lose space in your dishwasher, but if you clean the ceramic insert in the dishwasher you won’t have to keep buying more liners. You may have to soak the insert if you have some tough spots. 

Make your Own Liner

Using baking paper or aluminum you can line your cooker yourself with something a bit more biodegradable. These options won’t be as easy to pull out and clean, but they are an option. 

Oil your Insert Before Use

You can oil the ceramic insert so that food doesn’t stick to the sides, making it a bit easier to clean up.

Black Crockpot

Are Slow Cooker Liners Worth it?

As we learned the slow cooker liners are an easy way to keep your Crock Pot clean and ready to use. They are also good for people who have limited mobility. So are they worth constantly buying? If they make your life easier then I’d say yes, they are worth it. 

Recommended Liner Brands

As we’ve talked about different liners we haven’t talked about what brands are the best for slow cooker liners. I would recommend using the KOOK brand or Reynolds brand.

These brands are known to be BPA free and are the top rated. There are other brands available, but do your research to make sure they are BPA-free and safe to use.

Can you use Slow Cooker Liners for other Purposes?

Unfortunately, liners can’t be used for much other than being a slow cooker liner. They can’t be used as oven bags or anything else along those lines.

They can be used to store food in, but you will need to place the liner in the slow cooker insert, then place your meal, cover and then place in the fridge. If you have an instant pot then the liner should only be used in slow cooker mode, as the liner could become unsafe in other modes. 

Are Ziplock Bags an Acceptable Alternative to Slow Cooker Liners?

You should never place a Ziplock bag in your slow cooker. They are not made to be heat resistant and will melt. Slow cooker liners are specifically made to resist higher temperatures. Freezer bags are also not to be used in the slow cooker as they are also not heat resistant.  

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can you Use a Slow Cooker on High with a Liner?

Since most slow cookers don’t reach above 400 ℉ then it’s safe to use a liner when cooking on high. Slow cooker liners are specifically designed for slow cookers in mind, so they were made safe to use on all settings. 

Are Slow Cooker Liners Microwavable?

It’s not recommended to put slow cooker liners in the microwave. However, if the temperature in the microwave doesn’t reach above 400 ℉ then you should be fine. 

Are Slow Cooker Liners and Oven Bags the Same?

They are very close. Both are made of nylon and the only difference is where the opening is. Both are only safe for use below 400 ℉. Slow cooker liners are not supposed to be used as oven bags though, they’re not the right size or shape to work correctly. 

Do you Have to Use a Slow Cooker Liner?

If you’re constantly using your slow cooker then the liners may be necessary. They make cleaning up quick and easy so you can prepare your next meal just as quickly. However, if you don’t use the slow cooker often enough then you shouldn’t need to use the liner if you don’t want to. 

Final Thoughts

Slow Cooker liners are a useful tool to keep your Crock Pot clean and ready to use. They are great for people who need extra help with clean-up and saving space and saving water. If you choose to use the traditional liners or an alternative liner I hope that you can use your slow cooker with confidence. 

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