Bacon is a snap to prepare in the microwave. Simply place the bacon slices between two microwavable paper towels on a microwavable plate, and microwave on High 30 to 60 seconds for each slice.
When transporting beans to a potluck, wrap the slow cooker in several layers of towels to keep it warm. Use rubber bands or kitchen string around the handles and lid to keep the lid in place during the trip. When you arrive, plug in the cooker and set it on low to keep the beans warm.