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I tried googling this one but I just kept getting recipes.

I bought a slow cooker (Proctor-Silex 33043 4-Quart Slow Cooker), which seemed to have good reviews. However I try to make stock, which I would normally cook for 12+ hours, every time that I do it bubbles over. It isn't to say that the liquid itself boils up and out of the pot but rather a ring of liquid forms on the edge of the pot and begins to bubble outwards.

It causes a mess by burning inside of the metal part of the pan (in-between the heating element and the stoneware part) and spilling down the outside walls of the slow cooker onto the counter.

What can I do about this? Is it just a bad slow cooker or is there a trick I'm missing. I haven't encountered this problem before with my old cooker or pot on the stove. I was considering inserting a toothpick in the edge or something.

Has anyone else encountered this? Is it because I'm making very liquid stock vs say a heavier dish like oatmeal? I've tried shallow (less liquid) and very full but it occurs in both scenarios.

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    A ring of liquid, like condensation? Or like there is a hole in the ceramic? – Doug Feb 18 '15 at 10:37
  • Like condensation I think? But when it leaks it can burn brown which makes me think its the stock itself. – Tai Feb 19 '15 at 20:51
  • Hm, could I request you fill the pot with water, bring it to heat and then take a photo. It's hard for anyone to decipher the problem here without seeing it. – Doug Feb 19 '15 at 21:34
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    Do you have a low heat? I have had crock pots and never had that problem – paparazzo Sep 8 '16 at 21:28
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It's the nature of a slow cooker as far as I know. We usually put a rimmed baking sheet under the cooker if it's going to be on for an extended period of time to keep the water from ruining counters.

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  • Interesting, my old one never did it :S. It's really a waste though. Maybe I'll try the baking sheet – Tai Feb 24 '15 at 20:06
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The solution is real easy and you won't need do any of the crazy stuff mentioned above. Buy some baking paper (brown (sort of waxed) paper that you can line baking trays. The often come ready cut in baking tray sizes, which are plenty big enough. Fine the area that will be in the center of our crock pot when the lid is on. Take a sharp knife and cut an X shape in the center. Have someone, although, it can be done alone, gently pull the paper taut, not tight, and put the lid on your crock pot (with the X in the center) and gently press it down. You'll feel the paper seal the lid to the pot much better. Then as the steam rises through the paper it will condense on the lip and drip down onto the paper and will be funneled back into the pot by the X you cut in the center of the paper. Your problem will solved, for the price of baking paper. Best of luck and best of slow cooking without the mess.

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Depending on the size of your crockpot, you made need something larger than a toothpick between the lid and the rim of the crock. For a family size pot, I use a chopstick, which is less likely to fall into the food, as a toothpick might.

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offset the lid so the seal isn't spitting bubbles and fluid all over. If the bubbles still keep coming, offset it some more. If you have to remove the lid altogether or need to rest it 90Deg to what it's supposed to, then that's fine. It won't hurt anything.

If the lid doesn't like staying offset, put a wooden spoon in the crock and then cover with the lid, the spoon will keep it from closing tight.

It's the tight seal that lets the bubbles live longer and grow, and finally what causes the lid to spit. Break the seal and the bubbles fall, and the lid won't spit anymore.

Ever cook rice? What do you do if it starts bubbling over? You take off the lid. Same principle.

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    Good luck cooking food in a slow cooker with the lid off or not seated properly. – user6591 Feb 24 '15 at 23:39
  • If it's bubbling, then there is no shortage of heat because that's a product of boiling – Escoce Feb 25 '15 at 3:43
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    I'm not sure what type of slow cooker you are used to, but from my experience with them it seemingly won't bubble without the lid. Merely removing the lid from an already bubbling pot will cause the temperature to drop considerably and a rolling boil will slow to almost no bubbles. – user6591 Feb 25 '15 at 3:48
  • A slow cooker shouldn't be producing a rolling boil. – Escoce Feb 25 '15 at 16:48
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    Firstly, I gave a stepped process, if it's boiling over, then it's too hot. Offset the lid, that's should stop it from boiling over with out leaving the lid off completely, if it's still bubbling over you still have plenty of residual heat and moisture in the airspace. – Escoce Feb 25 '15 at 17:28
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Same problem here. Been using the same crock pot for years and never had this happen. All of the sudden, in the middle of making carnitas, with the crock pot only 3/4 of the way full, I got bubbling liquid around the outer edge of the lid, and it started pouring into the metal surround and all over the counter. Weird... The liquid wasn't even close to the top, but was still pouring out. Anyway... Stuck a few tooth picks between the pot and the lid to give the liquid room to flow back in. Still don't know WHY this happened out of nowhere.

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Stick a toothpick between lid and cooker top. That'll leave room for the water to run back down into the cooker. The weight of the lid should hold it in place.

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