My coworker was recently telling me that she is about to get her first slow cooker. I loved seeing her excitement, and then she asked what type of slow cooker recipes were on my blog. So, I created this post is my answer to that age-old question: What should I make in my slow cooker?
It really is amazing how a slow cooker can transform your cooking. You throw a range of ingredients in it, plug it in and then come home 6-9 hours later and the house smells amazing and you have a home-cooked meal. I’m all for quick cooking recipes, but there is nothing like letting flavors develop over hours.
Without further ado, here are my best slow cooker recipes:
I have made this more times than I can recall since discovering it a few years ago. You just throw all of the lasagna or baked pasta ingredients (marinara, pasta noodles, cottage cheese, frozen spinach, mozzarella and Parmesan), let it cook together for a few hours and dinner is served! This is great leftover, too.
It’s no surprise that this dish is one of your, my wonderful readers’, favorites. It just takes a little bit of sauteing before you throw it in the slow cooker, then a little cream at the end, and you have a homemade Indian meal.
This is a seriously creamy and comforting soup for your slow cooker. It gives you an excuse to buy some wild rice, and it would be an amazing weeknight meal to come home to!
My husband has already asked me to make this one this fall or winter. It takes chunks of pork meat and makes them juicy and full of flavor by cooking them with dried black beans and veggies.
This recipe just made the list, and it makes a fabulous vegan chili in the slow cooker. It combines butternut squash, lentils, tomatoes and all of your favorite chili spices for a satisfying bowl of health.
Although this recipe came from a delicious bbq pork Frito appetizer, it is my favorite way to make bbq pork. Grab a pork shoulder and cook it in some (maybe homemade- see below) vegetable stock for 8 hours on low, then mix with your favorite bbq sauce.
This is another staple in our house, especially for big groups. Again, you grab a pork shoulder, combine it with salsa, seasonings and cocoa powder, and 8 hours later on low, you get juicy and slightly spicy pork perfect for tacos or nachos.
I don’t always make my stock in my slow cooker, but it is a great idea to get maximum flavor out of your vegetable scraps or chicken bones and veggies. In fact, I have started cooking my chicken for this Chicken Tortilla Soup with celery, carrot, onion, bay leaf and salt and pepper all day in the slow cooker so I have amazing stock for the soup. Genius!
Guess what? You can totally make a pot roast to rival your mom or grandmother’s…and you don’t have to rely on your oven to help you. This pot roast recipe is so moist and feeds a big group. All you have to do is sear the meat and onions beforehand, then you can come back from church or Sunday morning exercise to a perfect pot roast with carrots and potatoes.
Here’s another delicious, comforting soup that gets its zing from an amazing broth, a Parmesan rind broth. Once you start throwing old Parm rinds in soup, you will never throw those babies out ever again. I like to keep mine in the fridge for soup making year-round.
I hope you feel inspired to bust your slow cooker out and make some amazing meals in the coming months!