I absolutely love my slow cooker. If my house was on fire I’d run back in for this thing once I made sure my better-half, dogs, and computer were safely outside.
Okay, so maybe I wouldn’t go that far, but needless so say the crock pot is my favorite kitchen tool.
Here are some indisputable reasons to prove it:
(I dare you to try to argue against these).
1. The ultimate time-saver.
You’re busy, but you still want to eat well. Time to embrace the power of the slow cooker, my friend. You just toss all the ingredients in the pot, turn it on, and within hours you’ll have a hot and ready homemade meal.
Extra time saving tip — some recipes require a bit of prep work, so another way to save time is to put everything together the night before. That way when you wake up all you have to do is put the pot in the base and press a couple of buttons.
Easy peezy, lemon squeezy.
2. Usually less clean up.
Slow cooker recipes are usually one-pot meals, and that means less clean up. While I enjoy cooking, I don’t like cleaning. That’s another win for the slow cooker because many recipes don’t require much prep. That means less time cleaning and more time eating and enjoying life.
Some people despise eating leftovers. “I refuse to eat leftovers!” I’ve heard some people exclaim with the utmost force.
Seriously? Why do some people refuse to eat leftovers? If nothing else put it in the freezer and then eat it when you don’t have time to cook or need something last minute. Get off your high horse and be grateful for the leftovers. Sheesh.
The slow cooker allows you to make a large pot of yummy-goodness, and then it can provide a few extra meals. That, once again, means less cooking and clean up. That’s a huge win in my book and it’s why I suggest buying a large one (I think mine is six quarts or so).
Bonus amateur slow cooker cooking tip: don’t open the lid while cooking!
Now, without further ado . . .
4 Slow Cooker Recipes You Need to Make, Soon
Now that you know why you should be using a slow cooker, let’s dive into some recipes.
As much as I’d love to promise you that these meals are the most delicious things you’ll ever taste, I can’t. Truth is, I have no idea what tastes good in your mouth. (Yes, that sounded as weird as I thought it would). But, give the one that sounds best to you a try.
Oh, and it would be irresponsible of my to neglect to mention the only negative to using a slow cooker. If you’re home all day while the slow cooker is working its magic, prepare to be taunted and tormented by the delicious aroma of your slowly simmering supper. Or you can just take this as an opportunity to work on your patience.
Prepare yourself for slow cooker glory.
1) The Laziest Veggie-Beef (or Turkey) Soup You’ll Ever Make
If you want something super quick and easy, then give this one a shot. This is one of my “staple recipes” when I need to make something fast that will provide ample leftovers.
- 2-3 pounds beef or turkey, browned and drained
- 1 jumbo bag (about 2 pounds) of frozen mixed veggies (ideally you’d use fresh, but if you don’t have any, then get a large bag of frozen mixed veggies)
- 2-4 diced potatoes (optional, but I include them)
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1-2 15oz cans of Italian or fire roasted tomatoes (may also use fresh)
- 6oz can tomato paste
- 1 quart beef broth (may want to use a bit more, depending on how much broth you like)
- Optional: crushed pepper flakes if you like it spicy, like I do
- Put all the ingredients in the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours.
- Spoon that meaty-veggie goodness in a bowl and eat. If you want more spice top it with hot sauce or something else with a kick.
2. Slow Cooker Thai Coconut Chicken Soup
I found this coconut chicken soup recipe from Betty Crocker, and it’s amazing. If you love Thai food then you need to make this soon. Like, tomorrow.
Time-saving tip — this recipe does require a bit of prep work, so to save time you can do all of that the night before. Then the next morning just put it in the base and turn it on.
I also prefer to add a good amount of heat to this recipe, so I add a few diced red peppers or jalapeno peppers. The flavorful broth from this soup is so delicious you could cook an old shoe in it and it would taste amazing (I can’t recommend that, but if you try it, please let me know if I was correct).
3. Slow Cooker Cherry Pork Tenderloin
Forgive me; this picture does not do it justice. If you like porky goodness, make this cherry pork tenderloin immediately.
But be warned — if you’re at home while this is cooking away, you’ll be tormented by the aroma of yummy piggy goodness.
Serve this with a side of asparagus or any other veggie you prefer and you’ve got an incredible meal.
So Much Meat!?
Yes, you’re correct. All of the above recipes use (a lot!) of meat.
But fear not my vegetarian friends (or those who simply prefer some non-meat-eater friendly recipes!). Here’s a vegetarian slow cooker recipe:
4. Springtime Minestrone
I have not made this springtime minestrone just yet, but it looks amazing. Heck, if you don’t like the whole vegetarian thing you could easily add some ground beef, chicken, or turkey to add a carnivore factor.
So there you have it — four slow cooker recipes you should make very soon.
Happy crock pot cookin’!
Want another fast and delicious recipe? Check out the 4 Ingredient Oatmeal French Toast-Cake for a tasty breakfast that can be sweet or savory.